Lately, it may seem like everyone and their Instagram followers has a running coach. Of course world-class Olympic athletes have coaches. And sure, it makes sense for runners trying to qualify for the Olympic Trials. (Indeed, the ready availability and increasing popularity of run coaching may have helped feed the enormous boom in this year’s Trials qualifiers.) But what about us non-elite, non-Olympic, pretty average runners? Do we need coaching? Or is it an extra “thing” to spend money on in this supposedly cheap sport?
What if you’re trying to run a sub-3 marathon? Or qualify for Boston? Or chase other PRs? What about if you’re trying to run your first 5K?
But sometimes it feels like not only does everybody have a running coach; especially on Instagram, it feels like everyone is a running coach. Have we hit peak Run Coaching? Hiring a coach or a coaching service comes with a price tag – you’re paying what a coach’s training and experience are worth (or are you? Sometimes it’s hard to tell.)
Is run coaching a luxury, or is a coach’s guidance a necessity if you want to achieve ambitious running goals? Under what circumstances is it a luxury or a necessity? What about group coaching? If you had to choose between a coach and something else – a gym membership, say – and run coaching, what would you sacrifice and why?
Give us your thoughts and experiences in the comments!