More change: Getting a running coach

There is no question that in the past few months I've gone through a lot mentally with running. Even though things went well for most of the winter, I felt like something was still amiss. After a PR at Shamrock, I felt much more positive about things, but something still didn't seem right.

In the short time since changing my mind about the Cleveland Marathon, I've been very much at ease. I've allowed myself to recover well, which has helped me get back into things both physically and mentally.

I've made some big changes in the past few weeks by riding my bike for the first time in about 3 years (I still haven't blogged about that, huh?) and going to the track for the first time in about 5 years. I needed to do something different to get something back -- perhaps it's just a confidence issue that is missing.

While I couldn't be more thrilled with my Shamrock performance, I know that getting to my sub-1:40 goal will take some extra work. Despite all these changes I've made, I have felt this urge to do something even more different.

I can read all the running blogs in the world, all the Runner's World archives, and all the running books about training/styles/advice, but at the end of the day nothing replaces the value of having a human supply one-on-one training and advice.

Over the past couple of years I've seen posts about Coach Caleb on Twitter and dailymile. People have spoke very highly of him, but I never thought that I would seek out someone else's help who wasn't local.

Late last week I send him a note on Twitter about what types of services he offered. Long story short, we exchanged a few messages and just like that he has sent me my first week of workouts.

It seems weird to say this, but I have a running coach for the first time since a couple of training groups in 2007. While it's still "virtual" to some degree, there's a real human behind this who I can easily find in many places. (That's right Caleb, you can't hide from me!)

Caleb will send a training schedule once a week and will work with me based on my feedback on what I've been doing and my workouts. I've actually moved his planned Monday workout to Tuesday, but he's already setting me up well for the two races I have planned coming up. We'll be building a path to that sub 1:40 at Cleveland next month.

Even better, he's familiar with the Richmond Marathon course, so I'm looking forward to getting his help to making the third time there the best experience yet.

Perhaps the right title for this post should be something about "evolving" instead of change, but that's something I'll have to check on later this year. For now, it's time to embrace this change I'm making.

Image: mrpuen / FreeDigitalPhotos.net