“We can impact communities. We can impact a nation, the entire world. We can raise the spirits of human kind. It sounds lofty, but that’s what we’re trying to do.”
— Dr. Steve Smith, Pasadena Pacers/Pacer Nation Founder & Team Doc
The Big Picture
We aim to improve the health and spirits of those around us and we do this through running. Running helps an individual take control of his/her own health. Running with the Pacers gives an individual a community, a built-in coaching team, and cheering squad. And all of our programs are completely free of charge. We run entirely on donations, but thrive on volunteerism.
We live to see a person break through a barrier, whether it’s running his/her first few minutes or crossing the finish line at a marathon. We see true friendships form when it’s just you, the road, and the runner next to you. We have found that running together is a great way to dissolve boundaries and barriers that separate us from one another. Running alongside a total stranger very often results in close, lasting friendships, sometimes with the most interesting and unlikely people. This aspect of exercising together has given us a platform to build human connection and a feeling of deep social satisfaction. The warmth of human kindness, admiration and help that results from our programs is our true mission.
Then our runners take that momentum, energy, and positivity and they bring it to their families, friends, and community. Everyone wins.
What started as less than 40 runners 20 years ago has grown to hundreds of runners in many cities. We remain free, friendly, and fun. We remain humble that we found a place, a purpose. And we remain welcoming to any and all who would like to take a run with us.
How We Get It Done
Some more technical details, if that’s your thing. The Pacers follow four points that guide our program, help you to avoid injury, and add joy to your personal journey:
- Working out well below your ability level;
- Gradually increasing difficulty;
- Training with a group; and
- Raising the spirits of others in a motivating, positive environment.
Further, as a free club run completely by volunteers, we rely solely on donations of time, money, and in-kind items. No one is ever required to donate, but everyone is encouraged to share something that is comfortable and meaningful to them, even if only a little encouragement to your fellow Pacers. This helps strengthen our sense of community and keeps the club free, which in turn makes it easier for new people to join the club and start their journey.
Go. Run. Do good.
The Pasadena Pacers is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, charitable organization and donations are tax deductible.