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People: 5 Questions With Dave Norona

You could say that Canadian Dave Norona is a bit of an adventure racing badass. Over the past 18 years, he has traveled the globe and raced in more than 400 events, including triathlons, backcountry sledding, and the world’s most grueling adventure races. Dave’s passion for the outdoors is inspirational, and with his newest venture, Norona Life, he’s dedicated to help others discover and develop their passion through motivational speaking, team building events, and individual life coaching.

1. You have participated in numerous adventure races over the years. Does one stand out as the most memorable or special?

I can honestly say of the over 400 races I did, each one was memorable in its own way. However, my favorite ones were those that got me close to places and people I never would have seen if it weren’t for those races. In Morocco, I consistently could not believe I was on the same planet as I live on in North Vancouver. In China, the zest for life and cheers is impossible to repeat anywhere on the planet. And Greenland was so incredible because of the people. It is these memories of people and places that stay with me today way more than any trophy or result I received.

2. Do you prefer team or individual outdoor pursuits, and why? And do you have a favorite sport?

I prefer individual pursuits because I am quite a positive person and if I get lost or make a mistake, I never dwell on it, but just move in a different direction. I was terrible at team racing at first because I was terrible at teamwork. Team racing changed my perspective on how to help others and accept help. It is why today I am good at teaching team building to companies. Everyone uses that word, but the truth is few companies or people actually know how to work together…we are not taught it throughout life, and it is something we need to work at every day. So even though my preference is individual, I love team racing for what it taught me!

As for choosing a favorite sport I could not choose one… I love the fact that I wake up every morning and do what suits that day. It could be hiking, cycling, snowmobiling, ski touring off my sled, trail riding, or dirt biking. The world is my canvas and I am very lucky to have many paint brushes!

3. In the middle of a race how do you keep yourself going when all you want to do is quit?

I have never wanted to quit once in my 23 years of racing or adventures. There have been very hard spots and challenges, however I thrive off of tough things…after all, you can’t know awesome unless you experience terrible. I tend to focus on the fun and usually quitting comes from a place of high expectation, and even though I expect a lot from myself, I never expect more than I have trained for.

4. Any advice for someone looking to get into adventure racing?

Just get out and do it! And don’t worry how good you are. Just have an open mind and a willingness to try new things and above all have fun.

5. You eventually went on to found the Norona Life coaching company. How do you see the outdoors playing a part in improving someone’s life?

My passion in life is to remind others to get out and have fun. Whatever the sport or hobby, I don’t care—just take some time each day to do the thing or things you love! I am lucky to have found what I love and get to do it every day.

Nature lives in perfect harmony. It works together and things don’t come before their time. The outdoors is a metaphor for life, so being a part of it helps ground you, and keeps you balanced.

To see Dave’s Tips And Tricks videos, visit our YouTube channel

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