I’ve Hired a Long Distance Running Coach

June has arrived, which means I am officially celebrating my one year run-aversary!

Last post I talked about how over the last 365 days I’ve really gotten committed to running but I haven’t really gotten serious about it. I’ve decided it’s time to take the next step in my running career and have hired a running coach!

After speaking with some of my favorite run bloggers and talking with a handful of recommended coaches, I’ve finally decided on Coach Joy Frantz who lives local to me.

Running coach Joy Frantz

She is an ultramarathoner which was a big factor in my decision to begin working with her. Many of the running coaches I spoke with had strong backgrounds in running shorter distances (5K, 10K) and posted great marathon times, but the marathon was the longest distance they had run.

Not that 26.2 miles is anything to sneeze at, but ultrarunner Scott Jurek is my running idol and I would love to run an ultra sometime before I turn 30 (3 years away).

I received my first week of workouts this morning in time to implement before my long run … which turned out to not be long at all.

When I first started talking with Coach Joy I told her how I use Galloway’s run/walk/run method and she said she would like me to stop doing that. Our first order of business is getting me to the point where I can complete all my runs straight through. That alone should help me improve my time in the long run (pun kind of intended 🙂 )

Normally I do run/walk/run intervals of: 1:30 min run / 30 sec walk. Today I did intervals of 4 min run / 30 sec walk. I’m not gonna lie, it kicked my butt.

After only 2.11 miles my legs were feeling exhausted. So much for a long run … but I am glad that I have started on this new journey. I feel like I’ll be able to make quick strides in improving my distance over the next few weeks, and my pace should definitely get better too.

Today, with the new intervals, my mile one split was almost a full minute faster than it normally is. Progress!

I’m looking forward to working with Coach Joy and really taking the next step as a runner in Year 2.

And I am REALLY looking forward to leaving on our cruise tomorrow — Allure of the Seas jogging track, I’m coming for you!

Have you ever worked with a running coach? What was your experience like? 


  1. Ali @ Hit the Ground Running
    June 2, 2013 / 2:51 am

    Ooh, a real coach! That’s awesome! I’m considering finding a running coach for when I really get into my marathon training in August or so.

    • Kristina
      June 9, 2013 / 3:06 pm

      Hi Ali, I think that is a great idea. I had read a few posts that said running coaches are a waste of money, which is why I hesitated in hiring a coach when I first started considering it a few months ago. I think it all comes down to what you want out of a coach. If you’re really self-motivated you can definitely find a training plan online and hit the ground running on your own. However, having a coach has already helped me push myself when I wouldn’t have done it on my own!

  2. Karla Bruning
    June 6, 2013 / 8:36 pm

    Kristina, I’m so glad you’ve taken this step and are already making progress! As you move forward with a coach and meet more local runners you’ll just keep getting faster!

    • Kristina
      June 9, 2013 / 3:08 pm

      Thanks, Karla! Over the past week I’ve already been able to make some big strides thanks to Joy just pushing me and telling me that I can. The outside motivation is really helpful!

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