We’ve all been warned don’t mix business with family or friendships! Dual relationships can lead to some messy situations, but sometimes mixing roles is unavoidable or happens anyway. Maybe your landlord happens to be your father, your sister is your boss, your teammate is your massage therapist, or maybe you’re dating your landscaper and are training partners with your hairdresser.
Balancing these different roles is something I know well, because, for over ten years now, and for the foreseeable future, my husband has also been my running coach.
Our dual relationship began because I honestly felt my husband was the best fit to be my coach. We both trained under some of the same coaches, had similar philosophies about training, and we shared similar strengths: both benefiting from high mileage and long aerobic intervals. He had seen many of my successes in running so he knew what worked. Additionally, he had a big hand in my qualifying for my first Olympic Marathon Trials in June of 2003, so I knew he could help me accomplish my running goals.
Having my husband as my coach has not always been smooth sailing, but we have learned how to balance the coach/athlete relationship with the husband/wife one over the years. Here are few of the things I’ve found to be helpful to make our dual relationship work.