Friday, December 27, 2013

Reflection of Coaching over the years

What a journey over the several years.  In the past two years my coaching practise has grown immensely, and all by word of mouth.  I have over 35 athletes currently, and continue to take on more folks. 

I have had some amazing experiences with my athletes over the years, but the last two years have been extremely rewarding.  As an athlete, confidence is built through training and racing.  Racing is feedback to how the training is progressing.  As a coach, the build of confidence is no different.  An athlete puts a lot of trust into a coach.  This is a responsibility I take very seriously.  As an athlete, it was always very important to me that my coach took my goals very seriously, and understood what I required to succeed.  As a coach, I strive to understand my athletes’ goals, their areas of strengths and areas where they need to improve; I feel it is my responsibility to always be honest and direct with my athletes.  I have an amazing group of athletes who have performed very well over the last two years, and most well beyond their own expectations. 

Someone suggested I spotlight a few accomplishments of some athletes over the past several years.  So here it goes.

Michael Parker- I started coaching Michael in June, 2010.  Michael had been running for several years and had run a few marathons.  Michael ran his first marathon under my coaching in September 2010.  He did not run a personal best but did run his fastest time in five years.  He ran 3:46:26.  In April 2011, Michael ran 3:19:05.  Michael was very skeptical at first with my approach to training.  Between these two races, he began to follow my training program for him with very little deviation.  In October 2012, Mike ran 3:05:10, and in October 2013, Mike ran 2:52:32 on the same course.  Mike never ever thought he would break 3 hours.  By the way, Mike is in his late 40s.

Mike not only performed well at the marathon distance but posted some pretty impressive improvements over the half marathon and 10 km distances.  In March 2011, Mike ran 43:35 for a 10 km and in September 2013, he ran a 10km in 36:18.  His half marathon performance went from a time of 1:36:42 in August 2011 to a time of 1:21:45 in June 2013.

Ryan Murray- I have coached Ryan for a very long time.  I am guessing that I have coached him since around 2005.  Ryan not only improved his 10km times from 40 min to 35 min under my coaching, but has also posted two great performances doing Ironman.  Both Ironman events Ryan did were in Penticton.

In Ryan’s first Ironman in August 2008, he was 4th in his age category and 53rd overall. Splits were: Swim 55:17; Bike 5:17:18; and Run 3:31:09 for a total time of 9:48:30.

Ryan's second go at the Ironman resulted in a time of 9:16:03 for an 8th overall finish, 2nd overall age grouper and winner of his age group.  His splits were Swim 57:05, T1 1:31, Bike 5:06, T2 2:28 and Run 3:07

Geoff Hophner- I started working with Geoff back in 2005.  At that time he was former swimmer turned triathlete.  Geoff had the determination to run fast.  Our journey has taken us from Geoff running around 40 minutes for a 10km to a personal best time of 33:45 at the Vancouver Sun Run in April 2013.  Geoff also set marathon personal best of 2:37 at the 2010 California International Marathon.

Ashley Turgeon- I started coaching Ashley sometime in mid-2012.  Ashley had been a drop in runner to my group for about 6 months.  In 2012, Ashley hired me as her coach to help her improve her bike and run.  This would be Ashley’s second Ironman.  Under my guidance she was able to shave 65 minutes off her previous time.

Ashley went on to run Chicago marathon several weeks post the Ironman and ran time of 3:37:39.  In November 2013, Ashley ran a huge personal best time at the New York Marathon in a time of 3:16:10.  WOW!

Dr. Chris Hankins- I started coaching Chris in January 2013.  He had a personal best time of around 3:45 when he started with me.  Chris ran 2013 Los Angeles marathon in 3:24:22 and the 2013 Chicago Marathon in 3:05:59Amazing!

Dr. Bradley Jacobs- I started coaching Brad in December 2010.  Brad had run a couple of marathons prior to being coached by me: Edmonton, August 22, 2010 in 3:56:06 and
Seattle, November 28, 2010 in 3:36:00.  Brad ran the 2011 Calgary Marathon in 3:19:45 and the 2011 Victoria Marathon in 3:17:24.  Brad also ran the 2012 Boston Marathon in a time of 3:26:12.

Heather Wiebe- Heather is a very experience runner.  I started coaching her in May 2011.  Heather has run a 2:54 marathon when she was in her late 20’s.  Heather is 50 years of age.  In Sacramento in 2010 she ran a 3:22 marathon.  Since starting with me she has performed exceedingly well despite aging along the way. In the 2012 Portland marathon Heather ran 3:15:14. In the 2013 Boston Marathon she ran 3:18:43.  In the 2013 Portland marathon she crossed the line to an amazing time of 3:10:43.

Dr. Laura Brescia- I started coaching Laura in June 2012.  She came to me with a Marathon time of 3:44.  Laura has run three marathons since joining: 2012 Victoria Marathon in 3:39, 2013 Boston Marathon in 3:40, and 2013 CIM in 3:36:51.

Other great performances of athletes over the past couple of years include:

Rosemarie Gerspacher - finished 18th female at the 2012 Chicago Marathon in a time of 2:47:25. Top Canadian female!

Kim Young- I have coached Kim off and on for a number of years.  Kim is a very accomplished triathlete.  This year Kim ran personal best times in both the 10 km and Half Marathon distances.

Mike Barr- Joined in October 2012 with a marathon time of 3:24.  In October 2013 he ran a 3:17:34 marathon.

Morgan Wittstock- joined in March 2013.  She posted a time of 3:20:29 in her first road marathon in Kelowna.  She was 8th female and first in 20-29 age group.

In July 2013, Ryan Graham and Lindsey Snyder joined to train for Kelowna marathon.  They both ran to personal best times.  Ryan ran 3:24:47 which was a 27 minute PB!   Lindsey ran 3:26:59 and we targeted 3:25 and that was a 21 minute personal best and a Boston Qualifier.

Dan Killick- I started coaching Dan in October 2012.  He had just completed his first Ironman in Penticton where he posted a time of 10:59:02.  Dan came from a very competitive swim background.  His desire was to improve his running and biking.  In August 2013, Dan competed in Ironman Mont-Trembling and finished in a time of 10:32:25.  He shaved 16 minutes off his bike time and 9 minutes off his run time.

Stephanie Mills- a very experienced runner transitioning to the marathon, ran to a 3:07:34 finish in her second marathon at the 2013 New York Marathon.

There are many more athletes I have not mentioned who performed exceedingly well in this past year.  I cannot wait to see what they do in the upcoming season.  

I could not be more proud!  As an athlete myself, I have had a lot of success.  I can honestly say that being able to share my experiences with those I coach has been very rewarding.  It is the best job one can have.  The rewards are endless!

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