“To be honest, it was a huge surprise”
07 August 2020 at 2:00AM
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“To be honest, it was a huge surprise”. Those were the words of SimCorp’s Guillaume Rondy when he found out he had won the first ever Global 5km Race as part of the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay Virtual Club.
The Singapore-based Gain and data management sales professional was taken aback by his world leading time following a busy time in his personal life. “My wife and I had our second baby three months ago, so my usual training routine has been seriously reduced lately so I was really surprised that I was still able to win the Global 5km race,” said Guillaume.
Like most people, Guillaume who also participates in triathlons, has found it difficult staying fit and healthy during lockdown and free time has been sacred with the new arrival. “We knew our second child would be born during lockdown and I wouldn’t be racing for a while. It has been a challenge not being able to go out at all when lockdown was at its strictness and with a new-born baby too. However, I made a point of at least going out for walks with the family, some short runs whenever possible and started some interval work as soon as the gym reopened.”
Guillaume is one of many people returning to the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay community after a long absence thanks to the Virtual Club. “I participated in the first two editions of the race in Singapore [2013 & 2014] and I remember having a lot of fun with my colleagues,” recalls Guillaume.
SimCorp has been proactive in ensuring their employees have been staying physically active and engaged with each other during the pandemic as Guillaume explains. “Our office has had fitness challenges for a while now and there is always good support internally for them.”
Guillaume also takes part in triathlons (Photo credit: Finisherpix)
Something that Guillaume keeps coming back to during our interview is the great camaraderie between his colleagues, especially around those fitness challenges. “I came last in our recent fitness challenge at work, which led to some good teasing!” joked Guillaume. So you could say that the Virtual Club and the Global 5km Race came at the perfect time for Guillaume to redeem himself.
“Our office manager introduced the Virtual Club to us as a replacement for the challenge, as well as a way to raise money for charity.
“We had just finished an internal “steps” challenge with a similar objective so many of us were excited to keep the fitness we had gained and signed up for the Virtual Club,” said Guillaume whose Singapore office is currently behind their Sydney-based colleagues in the Global Championships Leaderboard.
“I find that having an objective is very motivating in training. I had intended to run a 5k Timed Trial by the end of July as a personal challenge, so the Global 5km virtual race came at the perfect time for me.
“I have now signed up for all of the next Virtual Club challenges as short-term objectives to maintain and hopefully improve my running fitness.”
Guillaume certainly had a strategy in place for the race. “I did my run at 8pm on Saturday night, once the kids were in bed. I had thought all day about finding a flat route, close to home and with the smallest amount of road crossings and traffic lights.
“In the end, I settled for a 2.5km out-and-back route along one of Singapore’s main roads that is easy for me to get to, as I didn’t want to drive to get to a track or a park. It wasn’t my usual running spot, but I was lucky in that there weren’t too many cars and I had green lights on the crossings out and back.”
Guillaume is loving life in the Virtual Club after joining earlier this month. “The two things I look for in sport are challenges and camaraderie. The Virtual Club provides a great alternative for both of these, which is why I am so keen to not only do well in the events but also get as many of my colleagues and competitors to join as possible! The more people join, the more fun we will all have.”
But at the heart of the Virtual Club and of the Relay series, is the social impact that everyone is contributing to through The Extra Mile programme. “I love that the spirit of the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay, virtual or not, remains to help those in need through The Extra Mile; this certainly gave me a sense of purpose while training and racing,” said Guillaume.
“I also feel that there are a lot of much faster people than me out there, who don’t know about this. More people need to know about the Virtual Club!”
We couldn’t agree more, Guillaume.
To find out more about the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay Virtual Club and to register please click here.