Sunday, 22 March 2015

To be coached or not to be coached

I'm considering hiring a coach.  When I mentioned this to some of my running friends, they were surprised at the idea of me needing a coach - because I have been competing without one for over 10 years.  I have been running well, I usually place in my age category - or overall, in lots of races.  I have even made the national ultra running team and competed for team Canada without the guidance of a coach.  Hiring a coach wouldn't only be because I would like to improve my speed,  I would like some insight and guidance on the direction of my training and racing.  I have been steadily building my mileage since the winter, and I feel strong enough to start adding some variety to my training.  I would like to run some ultras again, and who knows, maybe try for a spot on the national team again.  This is where a coach would be ideal.

I have a very full schedule right now.  I work and I have 3 young children.  That alone means I am cramming runs into weird parts of the day (really-silly-why-are-you-up-so-early runs before the kids get up, or the-kids-are-finally-asleep-i-can-get-my-workout-in runs).  I need to run everyday though, so I will do this anyway.  I would benefit from some direction regarding these running sessions.

I worry about injury too.  What if the program created for me causes me to get injured?  I don't handle not running well.  What if I can't cram the workouts into my schedule?  Will my coach be flexible enough to change workouts or the schedule if the demands of family present themselves.  What if my coach and I just don't "click"?  Would my coach be available when I need him/her?

So that leaves me wondering -should I take the risk and hire a coach?

 This is me - racing the 5000m as a junior for team Ontario sometime in the late 90's.  I was being coached by an excellent coach Terry Goodenough as part of the Laurel Creek Track Club.  Terry helped me achieve many PB's and several OTFA medals in junior girls 2000m steeplechase.  His unique workouts and quiet way of encouraging me helped me to perform my best.  I hope my next coach is a lot like Terry.

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