Today’s Theme is a Free Friday.
I went with 5 Things I Like about Having a Running Coach.
For those that have been here, you might remember that I recently started with a Running Coach. Yes, I still feel funny saying it and somehow I even felt a little bit of a fraud like who am I to have a Running Coach. Then I remind myself that I’m me and that not only can I have one, but so can anyone. She is my running personal trainer and I deserve one.
1. I no longer need to spend countless hours trolling to find the right plan to follow and then let wondering if it is the right one for me. Caolan sends me a plan customized for me and my goals. It is not a one stop shopping plan. It’s a what does Christine need to do plan.
2. I am learning. Yes, I’ve read books, blogs, and talked to other runners before but somehow this is different. Since I’ve been working with her I feel like I have learned so much. If there is something in my plan that I don’t understand why she wants me to do it a certain way all I have to do is ask. She then explains her reasoning, what she is looking for me to get out of it, and why she thinks its an important part of my training.
Case in point – Monday’s are the days that I normally do my long runs. On the schedule for next week, she wants me to do my 9 miles with no fuel making sure to have my recovery drink ASAP when done. This seemed strange to me, so I asked. She then explained that ” Doing long runs at an aerobic pace without fuel forces your body to rely on fat for fuel rather than (limited) glycogen. This only works at an aerobic pace where you can actually rely on fat. At faster paces we must use glycogen (which is why races and tempos must be with fuel).” She also suggested it is good for mental training and some other stuff. Her explanation made sense to me and maybe it’s a good thing to try to tap into my fat as I do have some to spare:)
**edited to add that she further explained this is not done for weight loss but that it does encourage fat metabolism which most of us can tap into.
3. I don’t have to think anymore about “What I should do today?” I already know. It’s actually helps me plan out my week and is a real time saver too:)
4. It’s keeping me on target while training smarter not harder. The first thing she had me do is slow down my everyday aerobic runs as I was running them close to a minute too fast. I used to do most of my runs at a 10:20 pace or faster. She has slowed me down to at least as she calls it a 11+ and many and 11++. My post half recovery run was done at an 11+++ which was lovely. So now most of my runs are at and 11:20 pace. You wouldn’t think a minute makes that much of a difference, but it does.
5. It is giving me confidence as I gear up to start my MCM training that I will be able to meet my goal. Caolan knows my goal is to finish MCM strong. I’m not going in this to be fast and in our conversations we are thinking possibly a 4:30ish time or that’s what she thinks. That is 15 minutes faster than Philly, but I must remind myself that I jumped into Philly last minute without a lot of “real” marathon training. I will trust her and the process and see where it takes me. More important to me though is to run the whole race unless a planned walk is built into it. I walked at the end of Philly (unplanned) and for some reason it bugs me. I know that MCM ends on a hill or there is a hill very close to the end. I want to go into this with the confidence that when I get there I will still be running.
Have you ever had a Running Coach?
I wrote about this is my Blog Post Dreaming The Dream Until I can’t Dream It Anymore. I’m not your typical runner. I don’t have the runner’s body (what ever that is). I wasn’t athletic ever, but I’ve become a runner along the way. I have a passion for it. I have a need for it. I love to share it. So I think to myself, why couldn’t I win to be on the cover of Runner’s World. Wouldn’t it be cool if just your average running mom made the cover? So, please vote for me here.