This past Christmas, I received a calendar that had daily inspirational quotes for runners. As you can see in the picture above, the statement for January 5th is, “Believe in yourself. Push your limits & do whatever it takes to conquer your goals”. Most people might read this statement and get fired up, just the push they need.
As a coach with an understanding of physiology and biomechanics and how the body responds to training loads including rest/recovery, I probably view this statement through a different pair of lenses. Believing in yourself is paramount in goal achievement, but it is the second part of the statement, “Push your limits & do whatever it takes to conquer your goals,” that I feel uneasy about. Many people think “more is better, greater intensity is better”, but in reality, nothing is better than “just enough” to elicit the intended training response. As a coach, I want to build my runners up, without breaking them down. Pushing your limits and doing whatever it takes to achieve that will more than likely provide greater risk of injury and overtraining, than to reward you with goal attainment. Many of the runners that train with me often hear me use the statement, “the risk to reward ratio” is too great towards risk.
Earlier today I logged into a pace calculator to put together a race plan for a runner. On the website I saw a link for an article on active.com. Check out this link for the article, “7 Reasons Why You Need a Running Coach”, https://www.active.com/running/articles/7-reasons-why-you-need-a-running-coach/slide-5
As a quick synopsis, the author notes these reasons for needing a running coach and I’ve added my thoughts in the bullet points: