The coaching journey

I’ve got a dream dear reader to escape my grey office job and spend my days working in and around running. To be outside more than I’m inside and sharing my passion for running and the outdoors. I’m not sure if it’s possible or how exactly to get there but I’m going to try. At the weekend I took my first little step towards it attending the first 2 days of a coaching in running fitness course.

It was challenging, fascinating, eye opening and definitely knackering. But it was also wonderful to spend a weekend talking with other people who are also passionate about running and helping others run. I came home on Sunday evening with my brain whirring as it tried to digest all the information received. Not least about my own running form which I know has some weaknesses but to have others instantly spot the same was really interesting.

I’ve always taken an interest in the ‘why’ behind the plans I followed and trying out different approaches to marathon training to see what worked for me. I’ve also been writing training plans for my wife for a while now, dabbling at the planning aspect of being a coach. Always more to learn but an area I do feel a little comfortable with. What I definitely need to focus on now ahead of day 3 of the course in December is planning and running sessions, developing the skills to effectively lead and then observe a session. That ability to observe and then effectively manage the feedback process is so important as a coach, a skill that also crosses over into my day job as a manager.

What I loved about the weekend was the positive environment that the course is taught in, 2 instructors who clearly have huge experience but are able to teach in a way that you feel ok making mistakes. The focus was on helping us succeed and be ok with failing along the way if it helped us learn. Can’t wait now for day 3.

Between now and then I need to make time to help all that information sink in, but also start to put into practise some of the skills already learnt. To that end I’m going to be joining the coach at my triathlon club to help with the Wednesday night run sessions. Will be interesting being on the other side for the first time! Wish me luck.

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