Yesterday I found this terrible headline on Facebook that made me shake my head and want to cry at the same time:
There are so many things wrong with this situation that I can’t even explain. I do not know the whole story, but the idea that someone would copy and paste training plans just to make a profit… wrong on so many levels.
As running gets more popular, so does the idea of having your own coach. Having a coach has a number of benefits — they can help you figure out how to hit your goal, the right training plan for you and help you avoid injuries (which is HUGE).
But, how do you find a running coach? I mean… obviously you can always hire me ;), but if you are on the hunt to find a running coach, here are some things to consider:
1. Know your goals! Like anyone else, coaches are good at certain things. If you are working towards an ultra, it may not make the most sense to hire a coach that focuses on 5ks.
2. Do your research. Social media can help you find some awesome coaches — after all, most of them are active in some way (and if they aren’t, their runners are!). But, that’s not good enough. Dig a little deeper — find out what people really think about the experience and see if there are reviews that you can find.
3. Set your expectations. One of my biggest pet peeves is someone who “coaches” by simply sending you a training plan and telling you to go for it. That’s not a coach. You can read a book and get better support than that.
Before you hire a coach, figure out your expectations. Do you want to talk to them on a regular basis? Do you want to be able to run with them? What is important to you in your relationship?
4. See if they are legit! If you want to pay someone who helps you get better at running —> make sure they know their stuff. Sure, we can all act like we know something from reading Runner’s World. Check out Road Runner’s Club of America to see if they are in the directory. This doesn’t mean they are a good coach, so you still have to do #2.
5. Be honest. Like any relationship, you need to be honest with your coach and let them know what works and what doesn’t. After all, that’s the only way they can help you get better. In my opinion, you are paying for a service — so you deserve to get a good product in return.
Have you hired a running coach before? Yay or nay?
Any other tips for people searching for a running coach?
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