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Canadian runs 5,000m joggling world record of 16:50

Halifax native Michael-Lucien Bergeron now owns three joggling world records

On Thursday, Michael-Lucien Bergeron of Halifax ran the 5,000m joggling world record in his third attempt. His time of 16:50 was one second over the old world record, and two years in the making, beginning in 2018 at the BlueNose 5K in Halifax where he ran a 17:01, almost by accident. Two years later, with a small crew of close friends and family in tow, Bergeron ran his newest world record, adding to the half-marathon and 10K records that he already owns.

Michael Bergeron set the half-marathon joggling world record. Photo: Maxine Gravina

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Bergeron specializes in the three-ball joggle, now holding three world records in the event – two on the roads and one on the track. Thursday was his fastest pace to date, having come seriously close to the record on several other occasions. Bergeron explains that his 17:01 5K in 2018 let him know that there was much more in the tank. “I was not aiming for the record then, but the finishing time convinced me that I could go for more. The second attempt in 2018 was part of a race in Halifax called Chase the Pace with the Road Hammers. The track was a little crowded, so I finished that event in 16:56.” Bergeron tried again in 2019, this time with a pacer through 3,000m (who didn’t joggle, just ran), but he faded in the last 2K, finishing in 16:58.

He says the big difference in his most successful attempt was having a team with him. “I had a small crew on bicycles telling me my pace each 200m, which let me just concentrate on just running. I had a strong start, I was on pace for 16:40 at the 2,000m mark, but I slowed down in the middle. But overall, my support crew made it possible.”

To prepare for a fast 5K, Bergeron said his training had to change. He was used to running around 120K weeks, but brought that down to about 80K and increased intensity. “I did multiple time trials and ran many fast intervals, keeping my mileage lower than usual – around 80K a week. I think the main improvement in my time was from the speed work that I’ve done in the last three months. I ran a 15:51 5K a month ago and knew I had the speed to joggle faster than before.”

With another record in the books, Bergeron is looking to lower his 10K record to under 35 minutes. “I did a 35:36 10K back in 2018, and I know with my current fitness that I could easily achieve this. With no races to enter, the plan is to run on the track, with a small team pacing and filming on the bikes.”

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