It’s true. Since joining ‘Team Tommy Rivers,’ I have said from the start, “coach knows best.” Why is having a coach so much different than me writing my own running schedule and plan? Well let me tell you!….its very different because as a runner, and perhaps it’s just me, but we think we are invincible!
I used to plan out my own training and racing schedules….I used to use coaches that would basically let me do above and beyond what I needed to do (or what they had written for me) because ‘I felt good’ or ‘I needed to train more’ – more is better, right? Wrong.
Recruiting Rivs was the best ultraendurance career decision yet. Not only did I have accountability with my training, but someone to say, ‘what are you doing?!,’ when I do too much or push the limits. The idea of EASY running and SLOWING down was crazy to me! But, that’s what I was instructed to do, and I need to listen to the experts. In the past, I was told if I could go faster, to go faster. What Rivs understands is the idea of control….even though the legs can do more, to not over exert or push the pace. With this, ultra endurance events will become significantly easier, not only physically, but mentally. So i went with it.
Of course….slowing down to a pace that I have never ran in my life – between a 9-10 min/mi has made everything significantly easier and believe it or not, faster. I can still push sub 6 strides, and hold around a 7 min/mi if I need to for certain workouts. The speed doesn’t go away completely. It’s there. Having that base, and even more than what you may think, makes a HUGE difference. I go into daily workouts lasting 3+ hours and it’s not so bad. People think I’m nuts, but its the norm now. I would have been injured without this type of coaching, which I have been for the last 2 years….I am officially injury free and it feels incredible! This year will be a training year to build up the endurance and pace again, but the hard work will pay off.
If you aren’t investing in a coach, I highly recommend it. If that isn’t for you, at least having a plan in place for yourself keeps you accountable to your goals and some structure to avoid injury. You may not think you can reach your goals or dreams, but once you see those positive possibilities and someone else believes in you, it can become reality! Stay motivated, determined, and aim high.