minutes per mile blog

thoughts on having a running coach

Excuse the blog mess! I’m still trying to master the technical side of blogging and am clearly not skilled in the world of web hosting, design, layout, programming, management, or content management. Or anything else related to the internet.

When it comes to pancakes, though, I really excel.


One more Amish weekend highlight: On Orange cafe! Anthony and I went there post-race and had a lovely brunch. Fun fact about Lancaster: all the streets are named after food. Some of the ones we spotted: Orange St., Walnut St., Lime St., Chestnut St., and Plum St. How cute.1-DSC03493I’m still in recovery mode and thus have no running photos for you this morning… but I can share some running-related thoughts!

A couple of you have asked about my experience having a running coach. My short answer: One of the best decisions I ever made. Long, categorized answer below, if you’re interested in reading.

  1. A coach holds you accountable. One thing I really like about my coach is that he motivates me to do my workouts, and do them well. Since I have to send him recaps of all my runs, there’s no cheating or laziness allowed when it comes to keeping pace or meeting mileage requirements. What’s also important to me as that there’s no over-training allowed, either. He holds me accountable for the prescribed workouts, and nothing less — and nothing more!
  2. A coach tells you what you already know. This is a weird one, but I bet most of you might get it. Before I hired a coach, I already knew a lot of things I *should* be doing — but I never did them. I knew I should be more strategic in my speed workouts; I knew I should incorporate more fartlek and tempo runs; I knew I should use the foam roller; I knew I should practice race pace more… but I never did them with any consistency. Having a coach give me guidance — even guidance I could give myself — is more meaningful because his guidance has authority.
  3. A coach tells you what you didn’t know. And, of course, there are a lot of things my coach has taught me about running that I never knew before. Like pacing strategies, the science behind fuel and hydration, training theories, and more. A lot of it is quite in-depth but if you like to geek out about running, then hiring a coach basically grants you access to a vault of data and theories that can improve your training and keep you learning.
  4. A coach takes the stress away. This is a big one. The ease of having a coach is wonderful. I have a spreadsheet with all of my workouts, and never have to question what workout I should do, or when. He’s got my whole training plan lined up for me, and all I have to do is trust in the plan and do the runs! Before I had a coach, I would often get lost when it came to determining the quality, quantity, and type of running I was assigning myself — especially one to two months before race day. Now, I’m worry-free! Hoorah!
  5. A coach gives you confidence. Expanding on #4, the confidence I have in my training is a lot stronger now — and thus, my confidence on race day is higher, too. I don’t have any doubts regarding my training and know that if I just listen to my coach and stick to the plan, things should go pretty well. And that feels really, really good.

And lastly, if you’re looking for a coach and live in DC, here is mine; if you’re elsewhere and looking for a coach, I’d recommend reaching out to your local running club and/or searching on Yelp and Coachup.com.

I have two more announcements before we go…

1. Always top your burgers with micro-greens.1-_DSC0679

Such herby flavor!2-_DSC0681And 2. Make your own croutons. Thanks to recommendations from you guys, I was able to make my very own croutons from scratch! Thank you!1-_DSC0692-001Now I just need to practice making my own blog from scratch. Hoping to bring you a better blog tomorrow! :)

  • Do you have a running coach (or other type of coach)? What’s your experience like so far?
  • Other foods that are best made from scratch?
  • Pancakes: Buttermilk, Swedish, wheat, cornmeal, or other? Syrup, butter, or both?

13 thoughts on “thoughts on having a running coach

  1. Love the new lay out!! BTW – was Anthony running yesterday by Arlington Cemetery around noonish? I know I have never met him but for some reason I was like hm that man looks familiar…

    Definitely checking out your coach! That could be a smart move for me to make my comeback at the end of the month!

  2. Oh I would so love a coach! To have that support behind you with really good knowledge and sound advice. Just can’t really afford it right now :( *sobs*
    I love homemade burgers. Nothing beats a big old chunky homemade burger with lots of toppings yum!

  3. Those are almost exactly the reasons I joined CrossFit to help me with my strength training. Especially #4. And the good news is we’re hopefully going to have a running club starting this month too!! I just had coconut flour pancakes for lunch!

    • coconut flour, sounds amazing! btw i read your paleo challenge recap post… can’t believe you did that! really interesting to see the story/results

  4. So after having read some of your previous posts about your coach, I reached out to him and surprised my hubby with a gift certificate for some time with Mike for his birthday (he’s training for his first marathon this year). He was so excited and can’t wait to start and to develop a program with him – thanks for the great idea!

    • what an awesome gift! make sure to tell mike i sent you 😉 and good luck. he’s going to love working with a coach!!!!!!!