By Robyn Baldwin
To hire or not to hire a run coach that is the question. I’ve only run one road half marathon ever in my life. When I started training for the January 2016 Disney Half Marathon in the fall of 2015 I thought it might be best to hire someone who could help guide me a bit more than myself. For my first half marathon I thought running 5km during the week and then a long run on the weekend where I’d tack on an additional 2km every weekend was the best way to train. While it got the job done it may not have been the smartest. I wouldn’t really know personally unless I tried training for my next half marathon a different way. So cue hire a run coach thoughts. I had a great experience with a run coach this fall but I’ve heard not so great stories. Here’s my list of positive reasons to hire a run coach and four questions that you should ask them before sending over payment.
Upside of A Coach
- Someone tells you when to work out
- There is accountability of sticking to your workouts since you report back to a coach
- They schedule out your tempo vs. speed workouts so everything is balanced out in case you have no idea on how to plan workouts
- They adapt based on your feedback
Before Hiring A Coach
- You should interview them ahead of time to ensure it’s a good fit
- Ask for references so you can ask others experiences with them
- Ask for certifications
- Ask ahead of time how & what platform they will work with you.
Here’s What I Did
Before hiring my run coach for the Disney Half Marathon I talked with two runners who these coaches were currently training to get a real perspective on their coaching style. I also talked to them in person to ask how they like to work. I found out that I get my training schedule in a google doc that would be updated after I input all my feedback from training that week. Their certifications were posted on their website so I took the plunge and knew a three month period would be a great trial. It worked out swimmingly and I know I’ll use them again for my next big road race.
Find out more about Robyn Baldwin’s running journey.