A group of us in the Valley had been using a generic marathon training program for the last few years which suited its purpose at the time – mainly to get us out running regularly and to slowly build up our distance. However, after the Chicago marathon in 2017, the idea of starting the same old schedule AGAIN was not enticing at all and we were all on the hunt for something different. One of our friends suggested Lee and the Road Hammers to us, and we literally haven’t looked back! I will say I was a bit skeptical about having a coach in the city (about a two hour drive away) and whether it would be as beneficial to me as those people that were able to attend the practice sessions in person, but so far the whole experience has been above and beyond what I had hoped for! One of the biggest benefits personally has been having someone to push me outside my comfort zone. I run marathons, so why would I want to run a 5km race?? Turns out that I’d want to run a 5km race because it’s hard, and it makes me a stronger runner physically and mentally, and most importantly because it’s fun to get together with 80 other runners and wear cool swag and push ourselves! Lee has taught me about fuelling for my runs, has given me a schedule that’s personalized and fluid depending on what I’m training for and what’s going on in my life, has taken the time to get to know me and my goals, knows the fine line of pushing me to challenge myself without making the training overwhelming, and has even made special trips to have training runs with the “Valley Chapter”. It’s also been amazing to be part of a running community that is positive, encouraging, and inclusive of all levels.
I’m extremely thankfully to have joined the Road Hammers and to have Lee to give me that little nudge to try new things because as the saying goes “the magic happens outside your comfort zone”!