Have running questions? What about plant-based eating and running? What to eat before, during, after a run? Is Gatorade good for me? Leave a comment below and I'll answer them every Friday! This weeks question comes from Suzie in Oklahoma. She asks "What are the benefits of hiring a coach? Do you really need to hire one or can you go with an online running plan?"

Online plans are good for those who are already motivated and knowledgable about the different types of running workouts. Online plans are not the best if you need daily encouragement, accountability or are a new(er) runner. Online plans are great for those are experienced marathoners. Skip the online plans if you are a beginning runner. If you know you will put in the required work, go for the online plan!

Now to the second part of Suzie's question- a personal running coach.

A personal coach is great for all types of runners- beginner, intermediate or experienced. Of course a personal coach will cost a bit more than an online plan. But a personal coach will be able to answer your questions, find out your goals, your injuries (past, current) and be there to encourage you. If you find that you need the accountability, go with a coach. Of course, only you can put in the hard work! The benefits of hiring a good coach include running experience and knowledge, phone calls and emails, trouble shooting, goal setting and achieving and encouragement!

Another option- maybe the best of worlds?- is to join a local running group. You'll have a group coach, get to run with other runners of your ability and also make new friends! It's not quite as personalized as a one-on-one coach, but more than an online plan. When I was training for my first marathon I ran with a local running group and I made some fantastic friends that I still keep in touch with today!

Now, how to pick the right coach, online plan or local running group is another topic for another Friday!

Your turn! What are your questions about running, marathoning, ultramarathons, training, fitness, nutrition? Leave them in the comments below or use the contact form above to send them my way!


photo credit: the world according to Marty