I have worked with my endurance coach, Eric, for over two years now. I originally sought out a coach in December of 2017 after a recommendation from my chiropractor. I had spent a lot of 2017 injured from over training, but I had earned my spot at my first Boston Marathon that coming April and all I really cared about was getting to that start line injury free. My chiropractor knew me pretty well at that point and said the main thing I needed was someone to reel me in, slow me down, and teach me how to run in a way I could sustain for life.
I met Eric for coffee to learn more about his coaching style and what he offered and decided to go for it. Yes, this was an investment. I now had a new monthly payment. But I really wanted to prioritize my training and my health, so I made it work. I knew there would be value in 1:1 coaching completely custom to me, my strengths, and my schedule.
Obviously, this has worked well since I am still working with Eric as my coach over two years later. But I won’t tell you I was an angel athlete in the beginning. Eric made me start training by heart rate and time rather than set mileage. And he quickly told me my easy runs were nowhere easy enough. I was confused. I felt like they were fine. But he could tell by my heart rate that I was working harder than I should have been. He also had me start run/walking. This was a huge adjustment for me. Let people pass me on the lakefront while I took a walk break? I hated it at first. Next I found out that he was never going to have me run 20 miles as a training run in this marathon cycle. Excuse me, what?! I had always run at least one 20 miler. I fought him on this one. But I realized that I was paying him for his expertise and it would be a waste if I didn’t trust him. So, I gave him my trust. I did exactly what he said for the 4.5 months leading up to Boston.
I got to Boston feeling extremely nervous. The night before the race I was more nervous about a race than I had ever been before. I felt like I hadn’t done enough. How hard would 26.2 miles feel when my longest run that year had been 16 miles? What if I hadn’t done enough speed work. What if. What if. What if. Luckily, Steph and Melissa singing show tunes for awhile helped me laugh the nerves away. I didn’t even mention how terrible the racing conditions were going to be…
But I showed up. I said, okay this weather is insane, but I am going to push as hard as I can for as long as I can. And I walked away with a 2+ minute PR on a hard course in crazy conditions. I felt truly amazing throughout the entire race. So, maybe Eric really did know what he was doing.
It really wasn’t even about the PR that day, but the fact that I had gotten through the training cycle without injury. Having a coach to check in with regularly, ask questions and hold me accountable made SUCH a difference for me. If I had to move something around, he made it work for me. If I was sick, he adjusted for me. If I wanted to go out and run like a maniac, knowing he would see it held me back. Having this contact and someone invested in my training was really a game changer.
I’ve stuck with having a coach ever since. I can’t imagine not having one now. My running is really important to me and I think having the individual support is what makes me run well and healthy. I have learned a lot from Eric and Superfly Coaching and it has made me extremely passionate about smart training. So passionate, that I decided to become an endurance coach myself.
I took on my first few athletes this past November and had a few more start in January. Being on the other side of training is really exciting. I understand the hard parts of making changes, slowing down, dealing with injury, etc because I have been there. I want to help athletes reach their goals and also teach them habits that will help keep them running for a lifetime. I am so invested in their goals and working with them is truly fun for me.
If you want to learn more about my run coaching, please feel free to reach out. Send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or a DM on Instagram. I have room for a few more people to start if they are ready. And I will be taking on more athletes come fall marathon training cycle too. Eric and I are also in the works of bringing together a virtual Superfly Track Club a group through Superfly Coaching that will focus strictly on runners. Stay tuned!
I am always working at being the best runner and coach I can be. I learn new things every day, I try new things, I talk through things with Eric.
I can confidently say I would not be the runner I am if I had not explored coaching. No matter what your goals are, I think coaching can help you reach them. It helps to have someone believe in your goals as much as you do.