Why I Decided to Get a Coach

I think everyone has their own reasons for getting a coach for endurance training. I have resisted for a long time, mostly because I just felt like I didn’t really need one (and didn’t want to spend the money if I didn’t). But also because I REALLY enjoy making my own training plans. I also enjoy controlling my own decisions and my training and never really felt like I needed the accountability. But…

To be honest, over the last year, even as my paces got a bit faster and I had some PR’s in different distances, I never really imagined that I could be a 3:30 marathoner. Did I think my body was capable of it before Eugene? Yeah, I think so. But it still seemed crazy to me.

As I ride my PR high, I have naturally started thinking about future goals. Could I be a sub-3:25 marathoner? Could I be a sub-3:20 marathoner?

Those are numbers that I NEVER, EVER considered possible. But now, somehow, it seems kind of natural that those would be the next goals.

And I don’t know how to get there. 

I believe those are truly crazy-fast numbers and I think that if I want to DREAM BIG and go for it, I need some help. I also think that to continue to get faster, I am going to have to   do some things different than I have always done.

So I hired a coach.

There were several things important to me in my coaching selection.

  1. I wanted someone local. I wanted to be able to meet with someone face-to-face occasionally. I wanted someone who I could get to know, outside of a computer screen or a phone.
  2. I wanted to be a part of something. I played team sports my whole life and while endurance sports are a great substitute for the competitiveness, I really miss the team environment. I wanted to be a part of a group that had a “team” feel.
  3. I wanted someone who would be invested in my training. Our (non-running) spouses may support us and be proud and excited when we PR, but they aren’t really invested in our training and results. And our running buddies and friends are certainly happy for us and support us, but they aren’t analyzing our numbers and training trends or thinking about our performance the way we are and a coach will. I want that.
  4. I wanted to “click” with someone. I wanted to feel like we got along, had a similar mentality, similar approach to training, similar vision for what I can do.
  5. I wanted someone responsible. Maybe this should be a given, but my Type-A personality would struggle with someone who was giving me my training schedule at the last minute or, worse yet, late. I wanted to know that my coach took their role seriously and was committed to being consistent and organized from week to week.
  6. I wanted someone who would scare me. I want to be challenged. I want to push my body in ways I never have. I want to look at my running schedule and be a little bit afraid of what I see. Pushing my limits, but in a smart way, is how I know I will get faster.

Do I think having a coach automatically guarantees that I will PR this fall? No. Not at all. I know I have to put in the work and do all the right things to stay healthy. Even after that, I know (from experience) that the stars still have to align on race day. But I am ready to give up control. I am excited to see what my training looks like. I am looking forward to doing new things. So, July 9th, it begins…NYCM training with Coach.

About Corey

I am a 30-something swim, bike, run addict married to my best friend and in love with my two schnoodle doggies.
This entry was posted in friends, Goals, Races, running, training. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Why I Decided to Get a Coach

  1. I love this…you really verbalized my reasons for doing the same thing AND for switching coaches to someone local here in Jax (he not only coaches, but runs our run club workouts). I loved (still do) Mollie but it’s different when you can meet for one-on-one runs and literally have him in your face. Excited for you and the next chapter in your running! hugs.

  2. Jenny says:

    While I’m not a member of the team, I am a self-proclaimed Granato Groupie. Looking forward to following your training and seeing you race in Chi, Corey! (I’m always down for a post-race beer or bloody mary ;))

  3. chanthana says:

    I’m so happy to have you on the team! I’ve been with Granato since 2010. That’s five marathons and numerous other distances plus several PRs. You will love him. You will hate him. But you will be a better runner through it all!

    • Corey says:

      Thank you! I am very excited to work with Kevin! You guys are also a big part of why I wanted to join 🙂 It’s cool to see how much you all support each other. I can’t wait to meet you!!

  4. Steph says:

    This is great! I think you will love having a coach. And my favorite reason is also to also have someone who would scare me. I would never have pushed myself to the paces that Michele had set up for me. Can’t wait to follow your progress 🙂

  5. Sandy says:

    How exciting! I think it is a good decision and you will be successful. I look forward to following your training and seeing you reach your goals.

  6. i just hired a coach too — for many of the same reasons. i’m excited to have some expert guidance and stop doing guesswork when it comes to crafting a training plan. good luck!

  7. Great analysis! I’ve started to wonder at what point / if I will ever want a coach. For now I’m still making significant improvements on my own, but I bet I’ll want to at some point if I continue this for long! Helpful to read your thought process on the whole thing!

  8. Christina says:

    I think this is a very good idea. I had my coach for my last marathon and she was so wonderful. What I mostly appreciated with it was someone else giving me feedback rather than me just stewing in my own brain thoughts. Sometimes what we really need is a vision from someone else’s eyes 🙂

  9. elizabeth says:

    🙂 i enjoyed having Jess while I did and look forward to having her again when I can run. All of those were reasons I wanted a coach too, except for the Atlanta part. I do wish I could see her locally, but I didn’t have any luck finding anyone here that I clicked with (not that i tried that hard).

  10. Terzah says:

    I think it’s a great decision and that you will love it. I’ve really enjoyed being coached–takes the pressure off when I’m sick and because he writes my plan week-to-week I can’t get nervous about upcoming workouts. I concentrate on the week at hand! Enjoy!

  11. Awesome- that’s so exciting! Can’t wait to see you go after those big dreams this fall, let’s go for the 3:20! 🙂

  12. all great reasons! hope the new coach/relationship/’team’-ish environment is everything you are looking for it to be. the “team” aspect is one reason i really found myself loving crossfit. i haven’t (personally) found that same camaraderie with the random runners i’ve met here (though i never did get to meet up with you so maybe that’s what was missing 🙂 ). anyway, i hope your new teammates are as awesome as you!

  13. Pingback: Reflecting on NYC Marathon |

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