Final Surge Podcast

In the Final Surge Podcast, we interview coaches, athletes authors, and endurance industry experts to help you train with a purpose.
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Dec 21, 2018

Our two most downloaded podcast of all time are Joe Vigil and Tinman. Tinman was in the Phoenix area for a couple days, my home area, so I arranged to get together with him. We agreed to sit down to record a podcast. As I was setting up we were talking about my high school team's season and he went to tell me a story about how to quickly heal sprained ankles, 40 minutes later we were still going but had not officially started the podcast yet. I wish we had, one thing you get from talking to Tom is a mixture of absolute passion for running and incredible knowledge of the science and why. So 40 minutes in I hit the record button and we picked up where we were in the discussion. I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did.

1:30 We need to work on our skills as endurance athletes, how?

  • Learn from sprint coaches
  • Learn from youtube
  • Take sprint mechanic classes and education

2:52 How much time do you work with your athletes on skills?

  • Talk about knee drive and arm position often
  • Assign training like hill repeats
  • Sam Parsons had no power, huge drops when developed power

4:20 Types of hill repeats

  • 30 seconds
  • mile pace effort, the effort is key
  • 1-2x a week but never get away from it year round

5:15 What about if you live in Florida and have no hills

  • Drive to hills
  • Stadium Steps
  • Pull sleds, not too much weight and do technically sound

6:36 Injury prevention

  • This helps minimalize injuries, can never escape
  • Don't overcook with workouts
  • Slow on easy days

7:34 Keep the ball rolling

  • Don't do anything to disrupt training
  • Post run nutrition
  • Dynamic flexibility
  • Hill work
  • Sleep
  • Slow on easy days
  • Sleep not texting in bed
  • Like a snowball, keep it rolling

10:40 What does it mean to you, when we talk about non-elite runners and easy/hard days

  • Modulate days
  • Easy days are easy, 2:00 or 2:300 or more slower than current 5k pace
  • Cant execute when fatigued

12:18 Walking through a week

  • Talking about a cross-country week with a weekly race
  • Monday long run with striders
  • Tuesday easy run
  • Wednesday key workout
  • Thursday easy run
  • Friday pre-meet work with striders
  • Saturday race with a good amount of distance after

13:49 Do you do that year around?

  • One long run and 2 quality days a week, race counts as a quality day

14:31 How hard are you going on the quality days

  • If not sure use CV reps, hill reps and striders
  • Drew did zero of the 8, 10 or 12x400 type workouts in high school, none
  • You don't need to go real hard if you are doing plenty of 600, 800, 1000 CV's
  • Lots of talk on muscle fibers

23:37 If CV is so great, should you be doing them a few times a week during non-race season

  • Dose-response rate, you get almost all you need from one workout a week
  • Run 1600 or 800 have them do CV work after the run

26:40 Brogan Austin was recently on our podcast off his national championship, how is training different with a marathoner?

  • We never ran a marathon pace workout
  • More fast/intermediate CV speed is better
  • Challenge is the pounding of the distance
  • Cruising speed is more important, 10k/10 mile type pace

29:24 We have a lot of marathon and ultra listeners would their CV work volume be different

  • Build up to 20-24 minutes in reps is all you need
  • No isolation training, there is only one energy system
  • Integrate the different speeds into workouts
  • Kids should participate in other sports, but some kids don't like the other sports

36:24 What is the future of Tinman Elite

  • Focused on Olympics, already have 3 qualifiers
  • Will have everything from 800-marathon in the trials
  • Will add females at some point
  • We are team, but we are family

43:50 Stryd Power Meter

  • Measures lots of components of your stride
  • Verticle Oscillation is interesting to watch
  • Helps you identify issues
  • Analyzing races

Previous Episode with Tom
Recent episode with Brogan Austin
Tinman Elite Website
Tinman Elite Twitter
Tinman Elite Instagram
Final Surge Instagram
Final Surge Twitter
Final Surge Facebook
Stryd Power Meter



Dec 14, 2018

The Hopi Indians have a long history and relationship with running. We talk to Professor Matthew Sakiestewa Gilbert the Director of American Indian Studies and Professor of History at the University of Illinois. Matthew was involved in the making of the movie Beyond the Mesas and has a book called Hopi Runners: Crossing the terrain between the Indians and the Americans.


  • Grew up in Flagstaff Arizona
  • Part of the Hopi Indian tribe
  • Did Phd research on Hopi tribe
  • Professor of Indian Studies and History

Hopi high school boys had won 27-state titles in a row and first or second the last 29 years in a row.

Success is telling of their long history of Hopi running

Hopi History

  • How long do we run, to the fence and back
  • Distance runners in western perspective is distance/time Hopi running was going out and coming back
  • Running is the Hopi trustworthy mode of transportation
  • Family members pass down the tradition of running and spiritual aspect

Hopi Runners Book 
Beyond The Mesas Blog
Beyond The Mesas Twitter
Hopi ESPN Segment

Dec 5, 2018

When people were projecting the winners of the Californian International Marathon, which served this year as the USATF Marathon Championship Race, Brogan Austin was not the most mentioned name. Not even close. After his win the message boards lit up, who is this guy, he must be a doper. Turns out he is not a doper but another Tom 'Tinman' Schwartz trained athlete who has been working hard for his moment. And we caught up with him to talk about his win.


  • Dad ran to lose weight and would run with him as young as 5 years old
  • 1-mile route would run and kept running
  • Tried football in 7-8th grade and was too small
  • Made varsity as Freshman in high school and progressed from there
  • Senior year took on another coach and went from 30 to 70 miles a week
  • Ran at Drake but overtrained by working more on side
  • After college ran but cut way back

Tinman connection

  • Saw success the Tinmen Elite crew were having and wanted to start working with Tom
  • Started working with Tom in July 2018
  • Tom proved you don't need to outwork everyone
  • An approach of one day at a time and keeping the ball rolling
  • All workouts are reasonable, feel you could do more at end of a workout
  • Questioned if it was too easy
  • Never once did we do marathon pace specific running


  • Used to do 3 staple workouts, 6-8 mile tempo a 5:00, mile repeats at half marathon pace, 800 repeats at 5k pace. Was only done one of those a week and Saturday long run as a progression
  • Ran 12 miles almost every day
  • Tom had mix workouts, one we did every 2-3 weeks with 10k pace, then hills, then 800-1600 pace
  • Noticed each time did that workout felt progress
  • Ran 62:39 in half marathon and knew he was fit
  • Workouts are easy to recover from

Expectations Going In

  • Had expectations that could win
  • 1/2 marathon gave me confidence
  • Tinman said could win it
  • Consistently doing 90 miles a week with a few longer weeks here and there
  • Longest runs 2:20 minutes
  • No marathon pace work had me worried, but Tom said at 21-miles you will be stronger than everyone
  • Never had a workout could not do because was fatigued


  • When Matt Llano opened the lead had to force himself to not go with him, plan was to go 66
  • Mid-race started doubting training
  • After mile 20 was told Matt was 2 miles ahead so focused on the pack for second
  • With 5k to go tried to make move and was surprised legs responded even though tired
  • Started reeling in Matt, could see lead vehicles
  • Caught him with 500m to go and surged past making strong move

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Born to Run
Current trainers you are wearing? - Nike Air Pegasus
Favorite race? - Drake Relays
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Buritto
Your favorite workout - Long Run

Previous interview with Tinman
Brogan's sponsor Rabbit
Instagram:  @brogan.austin
Facebook: Brogan Austin
Twitter: @brogan_austin

Nov 29, 2018

Jordan Gusman is the latest member of the Tinman Elite training group and on Episode 104 we catch up with him in Colorado before he heads home to Austrillia to race in their 10k National Champs. We get to know about youth running down under and how his training has changes since joining the team.


  • Kind growing up had bad asthma
  • Moved to countryside for health
  • Played variety of sports
  • Liked soccer running was better option
  • 14-15 got serious about running
  • After high school junior's 

Was breaking 4-minute mile as big of a thing in Australia?

  • Great story about how he broke 4-minutes for the first time

What about a time you underperformed?

  • Tend to get sick a lot
  • Overthink it before major meets

Relationship with Tinman Elite

  • Last month been here in Colorado training with them
  • Heading home to Austrillia for a few races and Christmas and will decide if train here or home
  • We run together twice a day almost every day makes it fun
  • Good mix of guys keep it fun

What have you learned from Tom since joined team?

  • Unlike anything I have done before
  • Every workout seems to have a mix of all systems
  • Still learning how to train
  • CV- Pace can hold for 30 minutes, longest rep is about a mile
  • Don't workout a goal pace, but pace can run today
  • Volume is down too
  • A lot of qualiy in the less miles

The Final Surge… 5 questions in under 1 minute

Favorite endurance/running book? – Perfect Mile
Current trainers you are wearing? – Adidas Solar Glide
Favorite race? – 5k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? – Peanut butter toast and coffee
Your favorite workout – Mile Reps


Previous Podcast with Tom Tinman Schwartz
Previous Podcast with Sam Parsons

Jordan on Instagram
Jordan on Twitter

Stanley the dog Instagram
Tinman Group on Twitter
Tinman Group on Instagram
Tinman Website

Nov 15, 2018

Today we welcome Chris Chavez the founder of Citius Mag and the Citius Mag Podcast where we find out how he developed his passion for track and field which lead to the Citius Mag website. 


  • Grew up Yankess fan dreamed of being a baseball player
  • Didn't play sports as a kid until 7th grade
  • Tried out for high school baseball team, cut early
  • Focussed on sports writing instead
  • One friend convinced him to join the track team as a sprinter
  • Wasn't great started out with breaking 30 seconds in 200 as a goal
  • In college decided to stay in shape by starting to run some 5ks
  • 2013 was the first marathon

Where did the passion for Citius come from

  • 2012 I became interested when stumbled upon Flotrack live stream
  • Started reading about athletes and watching old races on Youtube
  • Volunteered in 2012 for Flotrack
  • Started writing at track meets on weekends and traveling
  • Was helping with ESPN on running
  • When graduated got an offer from ESPN an Sports Illustrated
  • Took the SI opportunity to

Where is Citius going from here?

  • Challenge is the time
  • Core group of 5-6 writers but not our full-time job
  • We are trying to keep it growing, but also balancing everything

Podcast discussion

  • How are your legs feeling?
  • Crazy how that has become a thing
  • Now seeing other athletes using it
  • 1/2 court shot for 25 million
  • The most insulting thing you read about yourself on Let's Run

Final Surge Round
Favorite Book - Born To Run
Current Trainers - Nike Peg Turbo
Favorite Race - NYC Marathon
Favorite Recovery Meal/Drink - Chocolate Milk and breakfast foods
Favorite  Workout - K repeats


Citius Mag Podcasts
Citius Mag Website
Chris on Instagram
Chris on Twitter
Final Surge on Instagram
Final Surge on Twitter

Nov 9, 2018

Last week we had our first husband-wife coaching team on the podcast and this week we follow it up with professional triathletes and owners of GK Endurance Guy Crawford and his wife Kate Bevilaqua.  Guy and Kate share their journey to a professional athlete and talk about their coaching program. 



  • Kate grew up playing netball
  • Phys Ed Teacher and cousin talked her into doing a triathlon
  • Guy is from New Zeland and was outdoor a lot playing rugby and other sports like BMX
  • Late teens picked up triathlons, was swimming a lot

Guy was working for BlueSeventy and continued training and started getting results so went professional

Kate was enjoying short courses and coach convinced her to do a longer one and had great results

First Coach

  • Guy - When started working for BlueSeventy
  • Kate - First few years was with a local club, but when started thinking about longer distances got a coach

Who should get a coach or when?

  • When you have a goal you want to reach
  • Helps prevent overtraining and undertraining
  • Athletes go hard too often


  • Consultation we see what their lifestyle is like
  • How many hours can they do, what their diet is like
  • We each coach our own athletes
  • Core of our clients is half Ironman business executive


  • Half/Ironman 10-12 weeks is specifics before that is base conditioning
  • 4 months out doing 3 bikes/run/swims a week with aerobic, threshold and recovery in there
  • 6 weeks out more specific workouts
  • For runs, some use power, some heart rates and some just by feel

Final Surge Round
Favorite Book - A life without limits/Lore of funning
Current Trainers - Mizuno/Mizuno Wave Rider
Favorite Race - 70.3
Favorite Recovery Meal/Drink - Chocolate Milk/IPA
Favorite  Workout - Trail Long Run/Track Session


GK Endurance
GK Endurance on Instagram
GuyCrawford on Instagram
Kate Bevilaqua on Instagram
Final Surge On Instagram

Nov 1, 2018

This podcast we had on Steve Palladino who is an expert in training runners with power meters.


Pallidino Power Project Facebook Group

Steve’s Coaching Page

Stryd Power Meter

Links to external sites may contain affiliate links. Thanks for using them and supporting our podcast.


Oct 18, 2018

Today we have our first husband and wife team on the podcast together. In Episode 101 we talk to Caitlin and Drew Sapp who own a company called Crew Racing. Drew is a full-time triathlon coach and Caitlin a physical therapist and they have found a niche working with athletes coming back from injuries. They have also recently launched a new Crew Racing Podcast which we discuss. 

How did you get involved in athletics and meet?

  • Met at a triathlon 
  • Caitlin needed a swim coach and Drew won that that
  • Drew was a triathlete in college after being a swimmer
  • Caitlin grew up playing basketball and in college started running
  • 2009 did first triathlon, first Ironman in 2011

Background on Crew Racing

  • 2014 a lot of people were asking both for help
  • Drew full-time coach, Caitlin full-time physical therapist, and works in business

Niche in people with injuries

  • Drew had ACL reconstruction that failed 
  • Several people started coming to them with injuries
  • Trying to give back to athletes 
  • Something missing in endurance rehab because Caitlin would always see them come back with the same injuries

Key for rehab so they are not back to see you

  • Making short and long-term goals on how not to get back
  • Focus on long-term results

Are most of your clients local or internet?

  • Many local and some online
  • Can connect with remote athletes using Final Surge

What about an athlete who comes to you and is not injured, but is coming to you because they don't want to get injured:

  • Back off on over-training
  • Strength training and plyometrics
  • Core work for stabilizer 

Drew Injury

  • ACL in college playing football
  • Again while training in 2016 
  • Had a good team trusted
  • Never wanted to go through surgery again so listened to them
  • While rehabbing view himself as a physical therapy patient, not a triathlete 
  • Conditioning will come back, take the time to rehab

Caitlin and Drew Sapp own operate Crew Racing, which is a multisport coaching group that started in 2014. Caitlin is a physical therapist that specializes in sports orthopedics and I am full-time triathlon coach.

How does someone who needs a good Physical Therapist find one?

  • Key is finding someone who understands athletes 
  • Reach out to local coaches they will know
  • Ask their background in sport

Biggest challenge Drew faced in rehab?

  • Happened right before the wedding
  • Slow progression started coming back 1-minute slow jog 5-minute walk
  • Patient 

Are athletes quick to address problems or do they put it off?

  • Both, both sides of extremes
  • With experience, you learn and shouldn't put off too long

I noticed on your site you also do runners self-defense classes

  • There were issues in our area 

What type of athletes you work with the most?

  • Busy professionals
  • Couples

Been using Final Surge since 2014 in what ways are you using it?

  • Calendar is great
  • Comments more important than anything else
  • New app


Crew Racing Website
Caitlin on Instagram
Drew on Instagram
Crew Racing Triathlon Podcast
Final Surge On Instagram

Oct 11, 2018

He was one of the top-ranked triathletes in the world and holds the Guinness World Record for the fastest hole of golf ever played over 500 years. So what drives Brad Kearns to always push himself to be better? In episode 100 of the Final Surge Podcast, we talk to author, podcaster, coach and world record holder Brad Kearns about everything from his early Ironman days competing against Mark Allen and Dave Scott as well as why we may not be improving as much as we should be since then.  He spends a lot of time talking about stress and recovery. Make sure you subscribe to the podcast at and follow us on our new Instagram account at final.surge


Early Days:

  • Ran in high school and college
  • Injured so much in college got discouraged
  • Awakening to a better way
  • Turned to triathlon 
  • Was a new sport without coaches
  • Figured it out by feel
  • End of the first season was able to compete with world best
  • Started winning and getting sponsors and forced him to change training 
  • Struggled, overtrained and forced things to happen 

What happens when someone is going for that BQ qualifier they have been training for months and before the race, things are not going well because they may be overtrained, should they still race and give it a shot?

  • What is your purpose? 
  • Know why you are doing it, should you go to a starting line with 101-degree temp?
  • If not fully prepared go there and hand out water instead of competing when you shouldn't be

What about getting to the start line healthy?

  • Rest and recovery
  • Work and training are both stresses 
  • Cut workout short if not feeling it

You have athletes that are super busy, what do you teach them about getting ready when busy?

  • Aerobic training or MAF 180-age beats per minute
  • Teaches you to burn fat not glucose 

Many say, but if MAF was the best style professionals would be doing it

  • Look at training logs and they are

What else can you do to become a better fat burner 

  • Noakes has changed course on recommendations 
  • FASTER Study 
  • Elite athletes can get away with more
  • Some carry excess body fat

Why haven't we improved much since Mark Allen?

  • They were amazing athletes and it is hard to improve on that
  • MEAN finishing time can improve if we improve training with more aerobic
  • If carrying excess body fat as an athlete need to work on that
  • Slow down on runs and cut out refined grains and sugars 

Speed Golf

  • Fringe sport strokes + minutes 78 plus 47 minutes = 128 score
  • World record the fastest hole over 500 yards (video)
  • Played the whole hole with 3-wood


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - 4-minute mile Roger Bannister
Current trainers you are wearing? - Vibram 5-fingers
Favorite race? - World Cup Triathlon stop in Mexico
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Salad
Your favorite workout - Track 4x100 all out

Get Over Yourself Podcast
Courses including 21-day reset
Golf Speed Record
Brad Kearns Twitter
Brad Kearns Instagram


Sep 27, 2018

Endurance Nation coaches over 600 athletes. Today we talk to founder Patrick McCrann about his online community which has helped 16 people qualify for Kona World Championships this year. We talk about the community, his use of Stryd Power Meters and more. 

How did you get started?


  • Rower at BU in early to mid 90's
  • Left school to join Peace Corps and took up running while in Asia
  • Brother did Ironman and lead me to try it and first Ironman in 2001

What type of early success did you have when you started Ironmans

  • 10:43 in first Ironman Florida
  • Became harder after the first one because started overthinking

Did you qualify early for Kona?

  • 5 years and 8 Ironman races before qualified
  • Took a while to figure out the execution 
  • Doing Kona again this year
  • 9th Kona

What did you do with your training that made the difference to qualify?

  • Building a schedule where could be consistent with training
  • Learning from the training log

How do you balance the time between training time and family?

  • Wife supportive and also trains
  • Build a training space in the garage 
  • Flexibility with a training plan to adjust

2001 you did your first Ironman, 2006 was your first Kona, when did you start coaching?

  • 2004 friends asked me for help
  • Early on started having success and created own company
  • 2007 turned it into Endurance Nation

What is Endurance Nation?

  • Team of self-coached athletes
  • We give you keys to all the training plans and resources
  • A community that shares ideas, successes, and failures 
  • 500-650 athletes at any given time

Athletes spread out throughout the world, yet you talk about community a lot, how does that work?

  • Forums - 10 years old with huge amounts of info 
  • Social wall like a Facebook group

Is your community for someone more experienced or new athlete?

  • For anyone looking to get better
  • Save time to reach goals

How much are you using Power Meters?

  • Been using Stryd's for a whlie
  • Good number to watch that gives instant feedback

What do you mean by run durability?

  • Running most injury prone
  • Run less per day but run more days per week to get the volume you desire

Many athletes are getting into their final weeks before their big fall race, what do you work on to get them ready for their race and tapering?

  • Race preparation workouts
  • Tapering is more personal per each runner 
  • Rest a little on the early side a few weeks out

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Eat and Run
Current trainers you are wearing? - Hoka One One Clifton 4
Favorite race? - Boston and trail races
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Ascent Protein
Your favorite workout - Long Run

Endurance Nation Facebook
Endurance Nation Instagram
Endurance Nation Website
Stryd Power Meter

Sep 20, 2018

In 2012 ESPN called today’s guest the greatest endurance athlete of all time. Today we welcome Mark Allen to the Final Surge Podcast. Mark has been coaching online since 2001 and recently moved his training platform over to Final Surge. We talk about how he got into triathlons and what it was like in 1989 to break through and finally win his first Kona race.


How did you get started with endurance athletics

  • 1968 Watching Olympics
  • Fascinated with distance swim
  • Joined the local swim team
  • After college thought would be done with athletics then saw Ironman

When was your first Ironman?

  • October 1982 Dave Scott was in the race
  • Came out of the water right behind Scott
  • Halfway through bike was still with him
  • Derailer broke and was forced out of the race

What was your relationship with Dave Scott like?

  • Intense rivalry
  • Healthy rivalry where we respected each other as people and athletes

1989 things really started clicking for you, what changed in 1989 that made you so dominant?

  • Was 0-6 in Ironman but knew had not had my best race there
  • In 1989 focused on solid swim, bike and run not focus on a win
  • Started training longer days
  • Instead of trying to pull away early I waited until later
  • Mind went quiet in the race and things changed
  • Just enjoyed the moment and each mile started getting better late in the race

Do you contribute the success of that 1989 race to the mindset change or the training longer?

  • Combination of both
  • Wasn't any one thing, was a bunch of small things

Do you feel the changes that you made came from your experience or did coaches help you identify where you needed to make changes?

  • Almost completely self-coached
  • Were no triathlon coaches, had running, swim and bike advisors

How did you make the transition into triathlon coaching?

  • Won Ironman in 95 and started to think about what was next
  • In 96 knew it would be last Ironman and someone asked to be coached
  • Other athletes heard and coaching started to grow
  • The time it takes to develop plan was a lot
  • 2001 launched the first edition of online coaching to save time
  • Started earlier this year with Final Surge
  • Took this long to get it where I want it to be

What makes your training platform unique

  • Great mix of science and experience
  • A gap between what science knows and what we get to experience in the real world
  • So much personal experience seeing what works over a long time frame

There are all types of people looking to do triathlons, everything from a hobby jogger looking to do their first local triathlon up to those looking to qualify for Kona. What is your target audience?

  • Service is for anyone, have helped many first time athletes
  • Most are 70.3 or full Ironman competitors
  • Many have experience in running or biking and looking to do something different

When someone signs up, what can they expect to see as far as plans?

  • No templates
  • Everything based on what you input for information
  • We have racing and maintenance plans
  • Can choose between 8, 11 or 14 workouts a week
  • Includes strength training
  • You control days you do your workouts and you can move things around

If someone has questions inside the platform what are their options?

  • Social wall can ask for help
  • Can message me directly through the platform with questions  you have


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Fit Soul Fit Body
Current trainers you are wearing? - Salming 
Favorite race? - Ironman Hawaii 
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - BBQ fish on a toasted bun with mayo and avocado 
Your favorite workout - 3-4 day stage ride


Mark Allen Training Plans 
Mark Allen Coaching Blog
Mark Allen on Instagram

Sep 13, 2018

Parker Stinson is one of the top young American distance runners around and is known for his aggressiveness. In episode 97 we talk to Parker about his first marathon and how he went for it and hear about how that plan blew up on him. Parker shares with us what the game plan is for the Chicago Marathon. We have some amazing world class athletes and coaches scheduled over the next few weeks, so make sure you hit subscribe on your favorite podcasting app so you don't miss any of the action. 


How did you get started running when you were young?

  • 11-12 years old father and sister were training
  • AAU Nationals vs Club Soccer and Hockey
  • Went to Oregon

Why did you choose Oregon?

  • I just wanted a scholarship to any school
  • Went to 2008 Trials at Oregon and never saw anyone care about track like that
  • Junior year won State and made US Juniors team and Oregon became a possibility

Oregon is a tough environment. You are expected to win Pac-12 and compete at nationals. Did that help you get ready for a professional career?

  • You need to score at the conference meet and get to nationals or hey will find someone who will 
  • Made me tough and taught me to get better and be prepared

You said when considering Oregon you thought it was a good place for a professional runner. Did you identify early that you wanted to be a professional runner?

  • I never knew what it meant, but yes was what I was working for
  • Towards the end of college, options became real and understood it

Often times a 26-year old is still focusing on the track, but you have moved to the marathon. Are you done with the track now?

  • Focusing on the marathon, but not done with track
  • I want to work on track to focusing on things like the 10k

What was the worst race experience you ever had?

  • Junior year in Oregon running great 3rd a Pac-12
  • Went to NCAA's and felt strung out before the race
  • Nationals finished 240th out of 244

What did you learn from that experience?

  • Started working with a sports psychologist 
  • Realized I had some allergies issues that lead to panic attacks

Why Colorado to live and train?

  • I signed with Sacouny 
  • Had Achilles surgery where could not run 
  • Was looking for a change of scenery
  • Knew Brad Hudson 

Brad is best known for his marathon training was CIM your idea or his?

  • Wasn't my idea
  • Was a good idea to get the ball rolling towards i
  • We were planning on running Houston but felt ready earlier

During CIM Twitter was blowing up on your race and how you were going for it, can you walk us through that ace?

  • Ran like training: No fear
  • I had no plan to be alone, but they did not come with me
  • I kept telling myself I was going too fast but splits stayed consistent
  • Mile 12 started having a little pain in the calf
  • Mile 18-19 I was still shocked was running so fast and decided to slow down a little
  • Then it hit me the last couple of miles and was passed at mile 23
  • Finished at 7:00/mile pace

The next day what your conversation with the coach like?

  • We knew we were going to run hard and not care what anything else thinks
  • Disappointed because I could have pulled it off, but understood 

What is the goal for Chicago?

  • Break 2:11
  • I feel like im in better shape than that right now
  • I want to execute a good race
  • I need a good marathon mark on the boards

We recently talked to Aaron Braun about his Chicago, do you ever plan to run together with someone like that?

  • If the 2:05 guys go that fast we could have our own separate race
  • Would love to have a couple Americans break 2:11
  • Problem is some are more laid back and I am more aggressive

How has your training been going to date?

  • Amazing, way better than the lead up to CIM
  • Been working on a video series
  • 35k at 5:12 pace in Boulder workout
  • I am fit enough, just don't want to get hurt or overdue it now

What has changed a lot in your workouts now that you are a marathon runner?

  • Fueling has been huge
  • Longer fast runs
  • Gone from 7-day calendar to 10-day calendar with more rest 

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Running with the Buffaloes
Current trainers you are wearing? - Sacounty Triump iso 4
Favorite race? - 1/2 marathon
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Smoothie with extra protien 
Your favorite workout - Long Fast Runs

Parker Stinson on Instagram
Parker Stinson on Twitter
Parker Stinson Endure

Sep 6, 2018

What happens when an endurance junkie sees a problem? A new company is formed, at least that is how Orange Mud came about. Today on episode 96 of the Final Surge podcast we talk to Josh Sprague about his endurance career and how that lead him to redesign water packs with his company Orange Mud.  

We want to spend some time talking about your company Orange Mud, but before we get into that can you tell us how you first got your start in endurance athletics?

  • Adventure racing
  • Noticed ways to make hydration easier

Adventure racing, you don't hear about that as much any more, do you think it is because of the rise in obstacle races?

  • Cost, organization
  • The barrier to entry was higher with adventure
  • Ultra racing is easier to organize
  • Was expensive

What's the most interesting adventure race you ever did?

  • Calico Yosemite Race 

What endurance athletics are you focusing on these days?

  • Ultra-running
  • Endurance mountain bike races
  • Gravel biking
  • Leadville 

You have done a lot of different endurance events, where did this love for endurance sports come from?

  • Country boy in Kansas
  • Everyone was a long distance call so always was playing outside
  • Learned to explore 

You own a successful start-up company, you have a family, how do you find a time to get it all done, do you have any time management secrets or tips?

  • I told my wife I would only do my main training during the workday 
  • I avoid training on the weekends unless riding with kids

Let’s talk about Orange Mud. You are probably known best for your hydration packs obviously, but also wraps, clothing and even awesome looking vintage trucker caps on your website. How did you get your start?

  • Backpacks were one side
  • Clothing was me wanting better clothing
  • Trucker caps were really successful
  • We focused on quality 

What is with the name Orange Mud?

  • My middle name is Clay and always liked it
  • Played with a bunch of Clay names and purchased a lot of domains
  • Clay is a mud and that name just worked better

What was your first product?

  • Hydtraquiver bottle carrier

Can you walk us through how that came about?

  • I noticed upper back didn't move when ran, so focused on that area
  • I wanted a place for a bottle and cash, keys and phone
  • A place for nutrition quick access area

How many variations before you came up with one before you thought it was ready?

  • The first product was 18
  • Most of the early products were 17-23 variations before I was happy with it

At what point did you realize this was a great product and you thought you could bring it to the masses?

  • Started in spring 2012, fall of 2012 we went to market with a functional and durable product
  • 10 months in we launched with an Indiegogo campaign

What makes the Orange Mud different than other packs?

  • We put the bottle on the center of the back 
  • We use a regular bottle so you can use almost any bottle you want
  • Our packs are smaller and more stable than others

How hard was it to break into retail, it is a tough business dominated by big brands?

  • Big brands have the name, we focus on specialty stores, not big-box locations
  • Specialty stores often carry the same as big-box locations
  • We make it in the USA

What is next, what new products do you have coming out

  • Working on a new handheld 
  • High-performance rain jacket/pants

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Endurance - Shackelton
Current trainers you are wearing? - On Running
Favorite race? - The Hawk in Kansas
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Infinite Nutrition Repair Fruit Punch
Your favorite workout - Anything on a mountain bike

Orange Mud on Instagram
Orange Mud on Twitter
Orange Mud Website

Aug 30, 2018

How do you improve on a top 3 American place at the Chicago Marathon? We talk to NAZ Elite runner Aaron Braun about exactly that. Aaron was the leader of the 2017 Chicago Marathon at about 25k, we talk to him about what was going through his mind then. Aaron will be blogging about his 2018 training on Final Surge. Make sure you check the show notes to view the blog.

How did you get your start in running?

  • Active kid played soccer and football
  • Elementary School got 2nd place in a citywide mile race
  • Once I got into high school loved the team aspect of cross country
  • Recruited by a few D1 schools
  • Ended up at Adams State - D2 school

When did it change and you became a fan of running?

  • Mostly in college

When did you decide it possible to run as a professional?

  • My third year, but the sophomore year of running I was second at Nationals
  • Coaches planted a seed it is possible

How did you get connected with NAZ Elite and Coach Ben Rosario

  • When I was training in Flagstaff earlier we became friends
  • As he started his team we stayed in touch
  • 2016 I called him about joining the team

Was Ben's passion for a marathon a factor in choosing a team?

  • That was one of the big factors
  • We wanted to get back to Flagstaff was another factor
  • Had maxed potential at shorter races so wanted to maximize the marathon

When did your thought of retirement come in?

  • 2015 and 2016 I was injured a lot and the thought entered my mind
  • On July 4th in 2016, I did a 5k in Fort Collins and surprised myself how well I did
  • Decided to give running one more chance

You have the Chicago Marathon coming up that you blogging about on Final Surge. Last year you found yourself at the front of the pack halfway. Was that the plan?

  • No pacemakers so we thought it was a possibility
  • Was surprised how long it lasted
  • The plan was to run an even pace and get locked in

What is your goal for Chicago this year?

  • Want to improve placement and time

You can set a goal for a major race, but anything can happen. It is hard to keep improving each race. What advice do you have for age group runners who may be having a hard time dealing with not hitting PR's?

  • I had that problem early in my college career
  • Was hard when I did not PR in a season
  • Now I can look at a race and say did I give my best effort I could today based on how I was feeling

When did you start your buildup for Chicago

  • July 8th was last race of the summer
  • Took a week off and jumped back into training

What races do you have planned between now and Chicago

  • US 20k Championships

I noticed from your training log you recently did a 4-mile tempo run on the track. How often do you do those on the track vs roads or trails?

  • Very rarely
  • Was alternating 800's so pacing was easier

What has been your toughest workout this cycle?

  • 2x1mile at 4:50 with 3min rest then ten mile run alternating paces, then 2 more miles at 4:50, but ran 4:42 and 4:46

When you are doing a marathon training cycle is there a workout you like to do that gives you a gauge of your fitness level compared to the prior training cycle?

  • We use the long steady state as a barometer the last few miles we ignore pace and go by feel so we get a good gauge of our fitness based on that effort

What can the readers expect from your Chicago Marathon blogging?

  • What I am doing and the thinking of why we are doing what we are doing
  • Feedback on workouts and how I was feeling
  • Updated weekly


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Matt Fitzgerald How Bad Do You Want It
Current trainers you are wearing? - Hoka Clifton, Mach and Challenger
Favorite race? - Bolder Boulder 10k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Egg Sandwich and milkshake
Your favorite workout - 4x400 max effort with long recovery


Aaron Braun blogging about Chicago
Aaron Braun on Twitter
Aaron Braun on Instagram
Final Surge on Twitter


Aug 23, 2018

Matt Fitzgerald has had some challenging goals, but this may be the most challenging yet. Today we talk to Matt Fitzgerald about his quest to qualify for Kona after not having done an Ironman in over a decade and also about his new book which is the 80/20 Triathlon.

Last time we talked to you, you had just finished your Running Bum challenge and you were working on a book, when is that coming out?

  • 2020

Your latest challenge is called Kona or Bust, can you tell is about that?

  • Unfinished business
  • Marathon was about breaking 2:40
  • I was 23 seconds short of qualifying for Kona in my one Ironman 
  • 23 seconds were there, I could have got them

You never did another Ironman?

  • I have registered for some, but never made it to the start line
  • Injuries always come up
  • Starting to have some now
  • I have 9 more months to get ready so not rushing it

Your goal is to qualify for Kona, where are you going to need to be?

  • Doing Ironman Santa Rosa
  • Mens 45-49 age group
  • Last year was under 9:30 for the win of my age group
  • Depends on who shows up and how many in the age group
  • If I don't make it this time I will try again next year

How did you pick your race?

  • Looking to stay close to home
  • Didn't want to play a game, just knew I needed to be fit
  • Not many who can run a 2:39 marathon so I know if I can stay healthy I have a shot

Is your goal to qualify for Kona or are you looking to be competitive in Kona and compete?

  • 1998 was the first year I was at Kona to report on it
  • I was exhausted spending the day on that course
  • I swore I would never do Kona
  • It is more about qualifying as I am not awesome in heat
  • I would do the race, but with lower expectations

When you were doing the Running Bum challenge you built up to 90 miles a week, are you close to that still?

  • No, I knew the biggest mistake I could make was to keep that going
  • Smart thing was to take a step back
  • I am better not running every day that is why triathlon was so attractive

When is the last time you really trained in the pool and on the bike?

  • 2009 after the Boston Marathon was training seriously for triathlon

What was it like getting in the pool for the first time after a decade?

  • Dreadful
  • I am comfortable with water but was not training
  • Swimming so technique dependent 

The new book is your 80/20 Triathlon, what brought about this book?

  • When we mimic the training of pro's and their 80/20 we get best results
  • I wrote 80/20 running in 2014
  • Triathlons asked for a version

Is 80/20 still optimal in the pool where the impact on the body is less?

  • Swimmers, even short sprint swimmers, train at high volume and 80/20 is relevant
  • Cannot train at all high intensity because will fry yourself 

You mentioned getting stuck in the grey zone rut, want to talk about a few ways that happen?

  • This book is different than the 80/20 running
  • I put in a list of why people get caught in the rut
  • Less genetically gifted athletes our ranges are a lot smaller
  • There are 8 reasons in the book, the biggest may be the natural pace compromise 

One of the things I loved about this book is you give plans but you also it teaches you how to build plans. One you talk a lot about your zones. You talk about power meters, do you use a Stryd Power Meter?

  • It is legit, I have used it
  • I have not made it a regular part of my training, but it is a useful tool
  • Makes my job easier with some athletes I coach

Have you found since you worked with the NAZ group that you do more strength/stretching?

  • Yes I took that with me



Kona or Bust



Training Plans

Stryd Power Meter

Aug 16, 2018

This week we look at what may be the hottest thing in professional team endurance racing, the Major League Triathlon series. Welcome to episode 93 of the Final Surge Podcast. This week Daniel Cassidy the founder of the Major League Triathlon series joins us to talk about how he got the idea for creating a professional triathlon series and where he sees the growth in the future. If you enjoy this episode please head over to iTunes and rate and review the podcast and please don't forget to subscribe to the show. 

 How did you get your start in endurance athletics?

  • Started racing triathlons as a senior in high school
  • Played hockey and baseball until an injury
  • Swam/biked to rehab knee and became good

Tell us what the Major League Triathlon is?

  • As competing girlfriend was frustrated with how long it took as a spectator 
  • Saw need to take friends and family members into consideration 
  • Wanted to make it more exciting to people and grow the sport of triathlon

How does it work?

  • Mixed team relay
  • 2 men and 2 women per team
  • 300m swim, 4-mile bike, 1-mile run and tag to teammate
  • One hour and 20 minutes or less
  • One square mile or less footprint
  • Have 9 teams

So longest leg is on the bike and 4 miles, is this looped or an out and back?

  • Loop all courses 4-6 loops on bike and 3 on the run

You mentioned 9 teams, how does the season work, is there a playoff? 

  • Point system from each race
  • Last race counts for 1.5x typical points

Do you have other people participating or just professionals?

  • Started to do some other races throughout the weekend
  • Playing with other ideas to get other people involved

Is the shorter distance also done to get new people involved as it doesn't seem as intimidating?

  • Want to give racers a chance to race more
  • Shorter translate into making it easier to watch
  • Want to grow exposure for triathlon 

Like any sport, it's who is involved that makes it work or not. How has the reception been from professionals? 

  • Just about everyone who has a shot at 2020 is involved
  • Every athlete involved has a shot at making the 2020 Olympics team
  • Athletes racing love it which is causing more people to reach out

With the short races and team aspect I would think this would be attractive to TV, have you been talking to any of them?

  • Yes we have had conversations with television networks
  • It is in our future

Have you thought about doing other distances?

  • We likely won't change the distance
  • We are working on super sprint individual races

How about the weekend, is this just race day or do you have expos and exhibits?

  • Focus on race day
  • Do have expo and live music
  • Beer gardens and food trucks
  • Kid zones

How do you decide where you are doing them?

  • We have Atlantic City, Colorado, Tempe and Charlotte
  • Plan on staying in those locations but adding on other locations 

Do you think triathlons are growing as a sport or do you think it has been stagnant? 

  • In the US has leveled off some
  • Need to attract the younger audience

To last, it needs to be profitable which means you need a product which is athletes people want to see as well as sponsors. What are you doing to make it attractive to sponsors?

  • Amplifying reach with online streaming
  • 8,000 people at an event are good, but nothing like big sports games so online is important
  • Engagement rates and views are growing

When a family or friend of a professional triathlete goes to a race they have hours to spend, how did this play into your planning?

  • Community event with food trucks
  • Want vendors to be interactive not just products
  • Music

What races are left this season?

  • Sept 22nd, Tempe AZ
  • Oct 6th, Charlotte for Championship 

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Pass
Current trainers you are wearing? - APL
Favorite race? - 70.3 San Juan 
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Chipotle
Your favorite workout - Hour and a half long run




Aug 8, 2018

Why would a professional triathlete decide to take on a Fastest Known Time 5-day challenge of the Long Trail in Vermont? We had Alyssa Godesky on to talk about why she did it and to talk about the challenges she faced. As a professional triathlete and an ultra-marathon runner, Alyssa was no stranger to pain, but the pain of covering 273 miles and over 63,000 feet of elevation is something different. 

How did you get your start in athletics?

  • Did not do a college sport, played soccer competitively through high school
  • At Naval Academy joined Navy Marathon Team - Ran JFK 50-mile to qualify for the team
  • Transferred schools and started trail running
  • Moved to Baltimore after school and joined Baltimore Running Crew group
  • Tried triathlons and stayed with them

You race many triathlons and ultra races. How do you train for both of these at the same time and remain competitive?

  • Had years of base miles with ultra racing that can build on
  • Ironman training is harder effort training and running more endurance easy miles

What is the difference between Ironman and long Ultra on your body?

  • Early on Ironman was just finishing
  • Now impact is comparable because goes hard in swim and bike

When did you get to the point about leaving your career to pursue triathlons as a professional athlete?

  • 2009 started thinking about it
  • Started working with Hillary Biscay in 2011
  • Started getting serious about the idea in 2013
  • Jan 1, 2014, officially left the job to train and coach

What did parents and friends think of leaving a good job to go after this dream?

  • They were worried but supportive

Let’s talk about your latest adventure and your quest for a fastest known time on the Long Trail in Vermont. You just spent 5 days conquering the trail, before we get to the how, let’s star with they why?

  • Always looking for challenges
  • Was on the bucket list and wanted to get it done before the end of career
  • Always fascinated with records
  • 2011 became aware of the FKT's
  • Scouted pars of the trail in October and had doubts

How long is the trail?

  • 273 miles plus need to hike in and out so longer

Why specifically the Long Train in Vermont? 

  • Out west more elevation but east coast are more rugged so wanted to do east coast
  • Vermont in summer sounded good

What is the terrain like on the trail? 

  • Almost all single track
  • No switchbacks, straight up and down mountains
  • Elevation gain about 63,000 feet total
  • The first two days had longer climbs

What is the key to a long effort like this, are you paying attention to heart rate, pace, just how you feel?

  • How you feel
  • Much of the training was hiking
  • Trying to stay relaxed and upright

How much sleeping did you get?

  • First day 4 hours, about 17 hours total over 5 days

Anything you did to be prepared for sleep deprivation? 

  • Not really much you can do
  • More important to train self to sleep anywhere, anytime

What was the biggest struggle you had on this FKT?

  • The last day
  • Weather had made trails towards end slippery and on top of lack of sleep made it hard

Would you do another one of these again?

  • Yes, this one was supported, next time maybe do a solo

You also have your own podcast, IronWomen, what types of guests and topics do you have?

  • Started to give a voice to professional female triathletes and what they are doing
  • Third season

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Pursuit of Endurance 
Current trainers you are wearing? - Brooks Ghost 3
Favorite race? - Ironman Wisconsin
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Rehab 3:1 FTC
Your favorite workout - Hill Repeats





FKT Site -


Aug 2, 2018

Are you struggling to get the most out of your racing? In episode 91 of the Final Surge Podcast we talk with Shannon Thompson a sports psychology and mental performance expert at Hypo2Sport in Flagstaff where she works with professional runners and the 2x defending national cross country championship team from NAU. Shannon is going to tell you how to break down your race and get the most out of it mentally.


How did you get involved in the psychology field?

  • 3-day eventing athlete and coach
  • Rode professionally for 12 years and coached for 10
  • Could see the role the mind played in performance and training

Your running career?

  • Parents were road races and marathoners
  • Ran some as a rider
  • Got a boyfriend who was an ultrarunner

At the 2-hour marathon attempt, they asked Kipchoge how his training was going to be different. He replied it wasn’t going to be, his mind was going to be. We also know from Dovid Goggins and Navy Seal Training that when your body is done and you do a test of our muscles it shows there is plenty of glycogen left to keep going. So everyone fails before their body really does. What is it that makes some be able to push more than others?

  • Central governor theory 
  • Stress

We have known about the central governor since noakes wrote about it in, so we have had time to study it, What have we learned about if we can change our relationship with the central governor?

  • Study with faces flashed positive and negative
  • Study where coaches gave them false positive feedback
  • Mental performance plan

Let's take that false positive. If someone is struggling in a race is there anything that can be said to change it or is the athlete's performance or is it they are just having a bad day?

  • Tone matters
  • Task oriented
  • Don't freak out
  • Energy matters - Stand and speak with purpose
  • You can catch those three guys

Let’s talk about race plans and the mental game. Running is different than team sports. In most team sports, baseball, football, or even individual sports like tennis or golf you do your play or movement and then have time to think. Running or triathlon you are going and you keep going for several minutes or hours. So I would think the mental game is different. How do you come up with a mental gameplan for endurance athletes?

  • Divide into 1/3 or 1/4
  • Each section a word or focus point
  • Needs to be worked on in practice

Can have two runners on a college team who workout and live and eat together, but on race day one outperformes the other. How much of that difference could be mental?

  • Many things we do not know, we need to get to know the people involved
  • We don't try to compare athletes to each other

If you are sitting down with that runner who is struggling, what type of questions do you ask them to gauge if it is a mental block?

  • Explore past races when they were their best
  • Find patterns

Can you give us an example of how you break down your races into 1/3s?

  • We talk about things we need to do daily, the night before a race, the day of a race, warm ups etc
  • First 1/3 is usually about patience 
  • Second 1/3 is gratitude or love 
  • Final 1/3 something about them being tough self

I Heard you at the NAU camp a couple of weeks ago. You had a great story about love and how love can have an impact.  Can you share that story with our listeners?

  • Noticed from interviewing runners their best race stories usually involve love

What are some common traits you see between those who excel and those who struggle?

  • Excel - Seek out advice, humble, inclusive, more relaxed
  • They love the process 

We know you work with college and professional athletes. What do you notice the difference in ages and how things change?

  • HS athletes are harder on themselves 

We hear a lot about positive thinking. We all know this is important. But let’s look at just this last year’s Boston Marathon. Desi’s self-talk early was I don't feel good. I am going to try to help Flanagan my Olympic Team member, so her self-talk didn't seem to be great. Yet she went on to win. So what do you think happened there?

  • The desire to help her friend gave her purpose

Is there much research that shows a correlation between stress and physical ailments? 

  • Not the level of stress that impacts their health, it is the belief about their stress
  • If you believe stress is going to have an impact vs a challenge you are looking forward to, it will have a bigger impact

Books recommend?

  • Mindset by Carol Dweck
  • Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihaly
  • The Rise of Superman by Steven Kotler
  • Upside of Stress by Kelly McGonigal
  • Psyching for Sports by Terry Orlick
  • Mans Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
  • Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach
  • When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chödrön
  • Talent Code and Culture Code by Daniel Coyle

One thing we hear a lot about these days is mindfulness can you talk about how you use and teach it?

  • Corework for brain
  • If the core is strong you stay more stable
  • Quiets noise in the brain
  • Increase brains ability to pay attention 

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Momentum 
Current trainers you are wearing? - Nike React
Favorite race? - Sun Run 10k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Dense and sweet like fudge or icing
Your favorite workout - Technical downhill







Jul 26, 2018

Today we welcome professional runner Garrett Heath of the Brooks Beast Team. Garrett was a 9-time All-American at Standford before turning professional. Garrett won the 2014 and 2015 Edinburgh Cross Country short course races before beating Mo Farah in the world championships in 2016. We catch up with Garrett about what his plans are for the future and talk to him about a time he almost took out a rabbit in a race. 

How did you get your start in running?

  • Running across the gym in kindergarten and lead to stitches in forehead
  • Was always outdoor and active growing up
  • Middle school my father pushed me away from football so tried cross country running

You ran for a great program in high school did that help keep you interested?

  • Was exposed to high school team while in middle school

There are many successful runners who came out of Minnesota and many of them seemed to spend a lot of time cross country skiing in the winter, did you do much skiing?

  • Did almost all skiing in winter
  • Does keep up fitness, but grow upper body mass and lose a little in the legs

You had a great career at Stanford and I’ve heard in your college career your coach had some interesting ways to work on overspeed work?

  • Used a Vespa and attacked long bungee cord on the back and around our waist and would pull you around the track 
  • Seems crazy now, but made us run fast from 100-400 meters 

When did you know that you wanted to try your hand at professional running?

  • Didn't even realize it was a thing until I was in college
  • Junior year started thinking how it could happen
  • Junior year went and did a few races in Europe which exposed me to it

What was it like running in Europe, how was it different?

  • Meets are like 10-hours in college while over there it is more of a spectator event and entertainment so meets are just a few hours
  • Really physical 

Sounds like there is a model of how to make track and field a success with the public, why don't you think we do this in the US?

  • Trying, some races do, some mile races 
  • College meets too long
  • Track Town did a great job with this too

First time you broke 4 minutes in the mile?

  • At U of Washington. My brother was running at the Junior Cross Country Championships at the same time in Boulder. I was super excited and at the same time my brother was running and won the US Junior race.

You are now running with Danny Mackey and Brooks Beast Team, how did that connection happen?

  • Was running with friends, but they started joining other teams so ended up doing a lot of solo time
  • Liked the resources they had available, much like a college team

Early in your career, you focused more on the 1500, then you started with some 5ks but this year you ran a good 10k at the Payton Jordan. Where do you see yourself focusing going forward?

  • Getting more used to the longer grinding workouts/runs
  • Still, enjoy the 1500, but I am turning into more of a 5/10k guy
  • Still unfinished busienss in the 5k and just starting with the 10k

You have had a lot of success running longer distances in cross country, how different is it racing those bad weather cross contry races vs a controlled track race?

  • XC you need to change your efforts a lot more like a fartlek
  • XC races go by a lot quicker, different things to think about
  • Track try to turn off brain

If money and everything were the same would you make a living on the track, roads or xc course?

  • Cross Country
  • Love the team aspect even on national teams

You have mentioned a few times about the mental aspect of of racing, how much time do you spend working on your mental game?

  • The mental game is huge
  • Need to work on it in practice
  • Being confident in training goes along with it

Not sure how much you pay attention to Let’s Run, but One of the posts from January this year asked who is most jacked Chris Solinsky vs. Garrett Heath vs. Ben True. So how much do you lift and work on strength?

  • We did not lift in college hardly at all
  • Most of that came from cross country skiing and trying to get rid of some of that upper body weight
  • With Brooks and I spend 45 mins 2x a week, but more minimalist lifting than others on the team

One thing a lot of casual observers of our sport may not realize is when you run for a team, it is not like running for a professional football or baseball team with a huge salary. What is that relationship like with your sponsors?

  • Spend a lot of time in Brooks office
  • Coming out of college was blind to how it worked
  • Talked to a lot of agents in the day right after finished NCAA
  • The problem was it was in 2009 downturn was not any money
  • Really tough sport because the market is limited
  • Also, run for Roka Sunglasses

Final Surge round, 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Running with the Buffaloes 
Current trainers you are wearing? - Brooks Glycerin 
Favorite race? – Edinburgh Cross Country 
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? – Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Your favorite workout – Long Tempos



Jul 19, 2018

This week we bring you a "Best Of" episode with Dr. Stephen Seiler and our discussion on polarized training.

Jul 12, 2018

Welcome to episode 89 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome 2x defending NCAA XC Champ Coach Mike Smith to the show. Mike has a unique background working for years alongside Jack Daniels before going into college coaching. We talk to Mike about his coaching philosophies. Please remember to subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss future episodes and share it on Twitter or Facebook.


How did you start running?

  • Played a lot of sports when youth

How did you move from running at Georgetown to Coaching?

  • After college tried running some longer distances
  • Taught school for a few years then moved to Flagstaff to try training for a marathon 
  • Moved to Flagstaff and lived there for 6-years

Was there any coaching between when you left college and the head coaching job at Georgetown?

  • Worked with Dr. Jack Daniels and learned sports science
  • Coached some athletes with Daniels and some club coaching
  • When Georgetown opened up it seemed like a natural fit

What was it like working with Dr. Daniles

  • At first, it was overwhelming, such a wealth of information
  • Learned something through his teaching and stories every day
  • The inquiry of why
  • Asked how and why all the time
  • Unofficial Ph.D. course

You had 4 years at Georgetown with great results. When you heard Eric Heins was stepping down at NAU what was your thought process when you were considering changing jobs?

  • I am from the east coast but had my time in Flagstaff with Daniels
  • New that if NAU job ever opened it would be a hard decision
  • Never really thought it would be so soon
  • Leaving Alma-Marta was not an easy decision 
  • Loved Flagstaff and looked forward to moving back

Took NAU first-year assistant then took over for xc champ any pressure?

  • The first year worked with Eric that was the first national championship
  • A chance to be an observer and work with Eric for a few months was amazing
  • Won the championship in '16
  • Pressure doing it again when on own the next year was something I had seen before as I took over Georgetown as a defending national champion
  • I learned from the first experience 

We focus on the championship race, but 99% of what you do is not at that race it is in practice day-to-day. Can you tell us what you are looking for in practice and what your interactions are like?

  • Skilled coaching is done way before the meet itself
  • Insecure coaching shows at the meet
  • Uncertainty comes out during meets if did our job correctly we are sure we are ready
  • Athletes should be able to make own decisions at the moment
  • Good coaching preparing them to make decisions
  • In practice, we work on those things

What do you think of race plans for your athletes?

  • Early on I would draw up race plans that were complicated
  • Easy for us to come up with the plan, we don't run the race
  • As soon as something happens to plan, an athlete's mind goes to the wrong place
  • The athlete needs to just be able to react based on what is going on around
  • Coaching happens before the race

Not everyone is going for the win as an individual, can you talk about winning the race within the race, what does that mean to you?

  • They will be in situations where they won't have control, they need to understand their place within the race
  • We talk about what it looks like to be in 60th and doing your job
  • What it looks like to be in 81st when you are trying to get to 71st
  • Prepare for the war and not the dream that won't ever come
  • Stay calm during your war

Your culture seems to be of a fun team where the top racers are all competitive, are they as competitive with each other in practice as they are in a big race and is that culture dictated by the athletes you have and will change with the athletes or something you instill in the team?

  • In our program, we teach what healthy competition is
  • We show up to practice to make each other better
  • We push the best out of each other
  • We have gratitude for our best competition 

Tyler Day is one of your top runners and a very interesting story for me. Tyler went to high school less than a mile from my house and I watched him compete in high school. He had that great personality then too. And while Tyler was a good high school runner, I don't think anyone ever looked at him and said he would be a national all-American in college. What do you contribute to the huge jump Tyler made at NAU?

  • There are no measurements for belief and will in a lab, cannot measure his will and belief
  • Moves well within interaction with the ground
  • Some people there is no way to see when something is coming

You said on another podcast that you thought one of the issues you see in training is over-prescription of VO2 work. Can you talk about your training philosophy.

  • We have too many coaches who stay inside the box
  • Outside the box thinking means you are being creative and looking for improvement
  • VO2 is an example of insecure coaching, we don't always need to make things harder 
  • Use races as part of a workout day if racing frequently 

How does your training differ from Georgetown to NAU because of the altitude?

  • From an aerobic standpoint there is some benefit 
  • There are some disadvantages to recovery

Let’s say you were a high school coach living at sea level in a very flat area, and every year the high altitude teams came down to the state meet and over performed, how you would target your planning to offset the advantage the altitude teams have?

  • Some of the best runners in the world don't train at altitude
  • Altitude team may have some advantages, but not a magic pill 
  • You need to know they are beatable 
  • Altitude is a great teacher in suffering, you need to practice discomfort 

How does you periodization work. Are you like a lydiard with pretty strict training periods or are you more of the new school where you touch on everything all year with small variations?

  • Look at NCAA, people who are running great in September, but after taper feel terrible
  • Is there evidence that tapering really works or do we just think it does
  • We need athletes ready to go, but we need to look at it differently and not cut so much
  • The nervous system has to be firing, look at sprints and not pulling back too much
  • We keep volume and intensity high

What are you looking for in runners who may want to run at NAU?

  • Men's team is obviously strong and asked about men all the time, but women's team coming on strong
  • Women's program has me motivated and within 2-3 years we will be a force in the NCAA's
  • We have a great culture and recruiting like crazy
  • Men want to come and compete for team titles, for women we want people who want to build something
  • We want people who are fired up about being a team and every day show up and work
  • We want people who want to be part of a team, not just individuals 
  • People who understand mechanics are a big part of what we do
  • We don't sell, we want people who want to be at NAU 

You talk about moving with the ground, I know you run a summer camp for high school runners, is this something that athletes?

  • We run a yearly camp once a year
  • We show healthy ways to go about running
  • Movement piece is crucial 
  • Drills need correction of drills, do them right or don't do them
  • Teach build the engine and masters of movement 

Final Surge round, 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Once a runner
Current trainers you are wearing? - Ultra Boost
Favorite race? – Western States 100
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? – Mike and Rhonda's Lumberjack Special
Your favorite workout – 


NAU Running Camp
NAU on Twitter 

Jul 5, 2018

Welcome to episode 88 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome Olympian runner Ruben Sanca. Ruben ran for Cabo Verde in the 2011 World Championships in the marathon and the 2012 Olympics in the 5k. Ruben won 2017 New England Grand Prix Road Racing title and was elected U.S.A. Track & Field New England Male Runner of the Year. We talk to Ruben about how he came to American at age 12, his running career and about his newer company, The Lowell Running Company.

Ruben can you start out telling us a little bit about yourself and how you got started running?

  • Born in Cabo Verde
  • Came to the US at 12 and in middle school teacher asked who wanted to sign up for cross country
  • Ran in HS and recruited to run at U Mass Lowell

So you came to the US at the age of 12. I don’t know a lot about Cabo Verde besides it’s off the coast of West Africa. Did you speak English? Tell us what it was like for a 12-year-old to come here?

  • Dual citizenship
  • From tiny island 
  • We came here for health reasons and education
  • Was hard to get here, took all our money
  • Came here on Green Card Visa

Was running big there or something you didn't discover until you got here?

  • Soccer is big there not running
  • I played soccer when I was here too
  • I was a very good soccer player and had to make a decision in 11th grade as soccer and XC were in the same season
  • If quit soccer to run, I had to make sure I took it very seriously

You ran at U Mass Lowell then you went on to compete at the World Championship in 2011 in the marathon and the London Olympic Games in the 5k in 2012. What was it like competing in the Olympics?

  • I was able to represent Cabo Verde
  • My college coach trained me for it and came with me

What is your running goals now?

  • Training for 2020 Olympics in the Marathon 
  • Run many local road races but big focus is on the marathon

You are working full time, you train 100 miles a week and you manage the Lowell Running Company. How do you fit it all in?

  • I get up early
  • I use technology to save time

So one of the ways I first started noticing what you were doing was from the activity online with the Lowell Running Company. Can you tell us what the LRC is and how that started?

  • Started 2016 as I was coaching a few local people
  • Partner with Bay State Marathon to help people run BQ times
  • The goal of LRC was to be a full-service coaching firm
  • Training plans or custom training plans to fit around their schedule

Do you do group runs or is it all virtual?

  • We run clinics every 4-5 weeks to answer questions
  • We have group runs for long runs once a week

Is your coaching all in person or do you virtual coaching too?

  • We do both 
  • We do training for other races too
  • We track the goals of each runner and their results

Do you work with mostly marathoners or do you work with others?

  • Work with 5k-marathon
  • Specialize in half and full marathon
  • Runners are a mix of I want to finish and those who are more experienced

How are you using Final Surge in your coaching?

  • Love it to see what the athlete does 
  • I get notifications on my phone for specific athletes and go through all the athletes weekly
  • Use the messaging often in the app through my email
  • Great for busy people to make it easy as they get their text message of the workout or look at their calendar on the phone

Final Surge round, 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book?  Lore of Running by Tim Noakes and for enjoyment: Running with the Buffaloes by Chris Lear
Current trainers you are wearing? -   New Balance 880’s
Favorite race? – Boston Marathon
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? – Sirloin steak with sweet potatoes and Endurex R4 Endurance Formula
Your favorite workout – 4xmile at 5k pace for track and for marathon 3x3mi at marathon pace w/ a mile recovery at 95% marathon pace. This is one of the standard marathons workouts I do at the beginning of every marathon block.

Lowell Running Website
Sanca Foundation
Facebook Page
Twitter Account


Jun 21, 2018

Welcome to episode 87 of the Final Surge podcast where today we welcome Dr. Justin Ross to the show. Justin specializes in sports performance and has a practice called Mind-Body Health in Denver Colorado. Dr. Ross combined his love for endurance sports with his love for psychology to put together a practice that helps his patients perform their best on race day. We talk about getting ready for the big race and why the mind game is so important to perform your best. Dr. Ross see's patients both in person and online. Feel free to connect to him about what you may be struggling with.


I know you got started later in life in endurance sports and not in high school like many of our guests, can you tell us how you got your start?

  • First marathon when 29
  • Got me hooked on running and triathlons

What are you doing now?

  • Raced a few 70.3 triathlons
  • Just raced 8th marathon which has been the focus of the last three years

You are a psychologist now a specializing in sports performance. Was there a moment, something specific that happened that made you decide I want to go in this direction?

  • In college thought it would be physical therapy or athletic training
  • Took psychology classes and got interested
  • Interested in the overlap of how mind and body relate

So walk me through how this works with you. Someone contacts you and says I need help, can you walk us through the whole process of how you get started with them?

  • Often it is not an issue but staying ahead of a problem
  • Regardless of ability level, they know it is going to hurt and how to deal with it better when it comes

What are the most common issues that you hear from endurance athletes about mental?

  • How to deal with the perceived effort
  • Learn how to deal with discomfort

Navy Seals talk about dealing with this a lot in their training. They say when you think you are done your body has 60% left to give still so how can you work on changing the perception of effort?

  • Endurance athletes train so much that you need to learn how to deal with them in your training cycle
  • How you deal with it while training is how you will deal with it while racing

What is the big difference between working on them on race day and in training?

  • Key in on things in training so you are ready to go there on race day
  • A difference could be the pressure that you put on yourself on race day

How often do you have someone come to you and say my 5k workouts are getting better and I am improving month over month but on race day I'm not improving?

  • It's almost always something going on mentally
  • Need to work to figure out what that psychological barrier is

How do you pinpoint what that might be?

  • Asking the right questions
  • Looking at training and races and discuss what is happening when

Are your patients in person or virtual?

  • Both, do webinars too
  • Denver and Boulder is a hotbed, but Internet opens it up to more

A college coach contacts you and says my team is doing great but year over year we cannot put it together on race day for our Championship race. What sort of general advice would you have for them?

  • If contacting me with just a couple weeks, it is too late. You need to work on this for months like training
  • Learn to bring this into the process of training every day

When you say put yourself into these situations are you talking about getting to the point of fatigue like you would be in a race and then putting yourself in certain situations, or what are you working on?

  • We cannot change what we are not aware of
  • The first week pay close attention to your thoughts while training
  • What do you tell yourself when things get challenging
  • Training logs are a great place to put these notes in

Inner Game of Tennis teaches that self-talk doesn't work, you need to just do the reps so many times that you just go there, do you teach self-talk?

  • Everyone does self-talk, tennis, golf and such are start and stop sports not always action like endurance sports so they are different
  • Endurance sports self-talk is critical when you are spending 3-4 hours on a course

This year's Boston was interesting because Desi said she wasn't even going to be finishing the race and told Flannagan that she was willing to help her in any way. Then an hour and a half later she is competing to win, what lessons can we take from that?

  • We perform better when we are surrounded by people
  • When we are there to help others it can change how we feel

What about goals, are goals part of what you do and if so how important are they?

  • Two things we are working on is the perception of effort and tolerating discomfort
  • Stronger your goal and more meaningful, the more likely you can call upon that to change your perception of effort

How do you work to set goals with clients?

  • Individually driven
  • What do you want to do, is it a certain time or about getting back to enjoyment?
  • Numbers are great, but we can live and die by them

We hear a lot about the placebo effect, and it seems to be a real thing, can you tell us how we think things are working and maybe they are not? Like KT tape or compression sleeves, we hear people who swear by them and others who show research that they are doing nothing. Can you talk about it?

  • Placebo is a sugar pill that cannot do anything, but you think it does
  • Cognitive Bias effect is when it could be helpful but the research is not there so if they believe it helps them
  • Research shows that these things can change performance by like 1%

On race day someone is going for heir BQ and maybe this is their last shot to get it, how can they use their mind to push through?

  • Anyone thinking about BQ'ing you need to work on your mind several months ahead of time
  • Be aware, keep a log of thinking
  • Cognitive appraisal - How are you paying attention to how you feel and what you are thinking
  • Thoughts are modifiable, if aware you can shift thinking
  • Be calm in your mind

We talk about doing this a lot during training, but what about meditation?

  • Meditation is fantastic at calming down the nervous system
  • A lot of benefits to help learn how to shift focus

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Endure
Current trainers you are wearing? - Newton Distance Elite
Favorite race? - Light At End of Tunnel in Washington
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Coconut Water
Your favorite workout - Tempo Runs




Jun 8, 2018

Welcome to episode 86 of the Final Surge podcast with our guest Olympian turned coach Tim Broe. If you were a running fan in the early 2000's you probably remember Tim as one of the few bright spots in US Distance running scene. Tim is now a professional coach with the Saucony Freedom Track Club. We talk to Tim about his early days in running, his Olympic experience and the devastating injury that ended his career to early. We then talk about his latest experience with the Freedom Track Club. If you enjoy this episode please rate us on iTunes and follow us on Twitter  @FinalSurge.

How did you get your start in athletics?

  • Started running in middle school, got dragged into it
  • As a 7th grader ran 5:45 and kept improving
  • Won a state title as a junior in high school

Ran under legendary Michigan coach Ron Warhurst as a professional right?

  • Ran at Alabama, they offered me a scholarship
  • 12-time All American, but didn't take it serious enough until last year
  • After senior year worked at a local shoe store and trained by himself
  • After coming in 4th in the steeple in the Trials became more motivated
  • Kevin Sullivan a Michigan runner and coach put him in touch with Ron
  • Moved to Michigan to train with him

What was that like, what makes him such a great coach?

  • He lives it 24-7
  • First time met Ron had me put on spikes and do 20x400 with every 5th one at 59
  • Nailed it and next day did a 2-hour run
  • Ron took me after hearing that
  • He very much determines workouts by how you feel that day

2004 you made US Olympic team in the 5k, what was it like running for your country in the biggest show in running?

  • Won trials, but didn't have a qualifying time
  • Had to run 13:21, went to London and ran 13:18
  • Felt stressed out and didn't have a chance to enjoy it as much as should
  • Did opening ceremonies and the whole two weeks 

You mentioned had to go get a qualifying time after your Olympic Trials win. Running in the early 2000’s wasn’t exactly the high point in American distance running. You were one of the few bright spots during this time. Was it something that you paid attention to while it was happening?

  • Most high school programs in the 90's did not do much volume, everything was short intervals
  • Did not figure it out until senior year in college
  • The difference now is coaches have their athletes do a lot more tempo, LT, CV pacing for more volume

Talk about how your career came to an end after the high

  • Foot injury, bones were fused together 
  • Had to have bone removed and it lead to a lot more issues
  • At Olympics had a broken foot and torn plantar
  • Just added up quickly

How did you make your transition into coaching?

  • That is all I knew
  • Was at home and visiting old high school coach
  • Started helping with boys team in 2007 and ended up taking over
  • Worked with a non-profit group of professionals

You coach the Freedom Track Club how did that start

  • Started coaching Ben True who was a Saucony Athlete
  • Saucony approached him about creating a team

When you start with Wesley high school athletes, what type of program are you trying to bring to them to develop younger runners?

  • Started with performance increase enjoyment, but found kids don't care as much as they do just belonging to a team
  • One kid had early success which helped develop the team size 
  • Be a good teammate and work hard
  • Do everything right and the times will come

How different was it coaching a team with 11 kids vs 78?

  • The message was the same, approach was a little different
  • The program had no expectations
  • They are driven, usually have to pull them back

I've heard your runners you coach and you talk about taking control of the race, what does that mean for you?

  • At some point, if you are a competitor you need to make your mark and take a lead
  • Focus on racing and not times and times will come

What advice do you have for someone who maybe isn’t at the level to compete near the front and maybe focusing on just setting a PR. What advice do you have for your kids who are not going for a win, but are a number 6 runner on your team? 

  • Win your battles
  • As race unfolds will be with a few kids, that is your battle for win, for a title
  • In a big workout may have them do a workout then run a flat out 400 at the end to build confidence at end of a race

Last fall you had a big signing with Molly Seidel to the Freedom Track Club. I saw she got sick before Payton Jordon, how is her training going?

  • Cleaned up form stuff
  • Been working hard in weight room
  • Training at 85% level, still building a base on her before hit it hard
  • Will run 10k next week to get a qualifier for USA's

Ben True raced the Pre 2-mile race this past week, how did his race go?

  • Ben moved on from team last year
  • He moved to Hanover and the coaching was just to far so parted ways

How will the team develop over the next 2-3 years?

  • We don't have the budget of a Nike, but we are developing a good program
  • Will add a few more after NCAA Nationals this summer

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Men of Oregon
Current trainers you are wearing? - Kinvara
Favorite race? - Billy Mills 10k and favorite to run was 3k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Donuts and chocolate mill
Your favorite workout - The Michigan


Email Tim 

May 30, 2018

Welcome to Episode 85 of the final surge podcast where today we have the pleasure of bringing you one of the best young track runners in the country Jess Tonn. Jess is fresh off her sub 32 10k win at the Payton Jordan. We talk to Jess about her running career to date including her stellar high school career where she qualified for 4 Foot Locker’s, her running career a Sanford and how it has been making the transition to running with the Brooks Beast team. We talk to her about the amazing coaches she has been blessed to have so far and how that has helped her in her own coaching career with RunDoyen. Jess’ energy is contagious and we hope you enjoy this episode as much as we did recording it.

Tell us how you got started running when you were younger

  • Started when was 12
  • Mother worked in the athletic department at ASU so did many sports
  • Tried many sports like soccer, running came naturally
  • PE teacher recommended after-school running program
  • Joined youth team for USATF 
  • Ran at Xavier in Phoenix for high school

You had quite a high school career, 4 year Foot Locker qualifier, 14 state titles in cross country and track and you went to an academically challenging high school with Xavier, how hard was it to put in the time you needed to be successful in school and as such an accomplished high school runner?

  • So much pressure on student athletes to perform now
  • Phoenix is hot had to meet at 5 am 6 days a week
  • Academics suffered a little because of hours
  • Had a great support system

Was there ever a time in high school you thought I want to be a professional runner some day?

  • When made her first Foot Locker coach sat them down and said this was a big deal
  • Wasnt until college that decided it was a possibility 

You also had a successful college career as a runner at Stanford, another tough academic school. There are dozens of young women runners in high school who go onto college and you never hear from them again except on Let’s Run message boards saying whatever happened to….. Why do you think you were able to make the jump to the next level?

  • Amazing coaches
  • Jeff Messer, high school coach developed well and left room for potential
  • College transitions that were hard were the lifestyle not running

What did you study at Stanford?

  • Communications

In November 2015 you signed a contract with Brooks to run as a professional. How hard or easy was it to make the decision to put off your career and chase your dream of being a professional runner?

  • Easy decision
  • When made top 3 in NCAA's knew I wanted to keep going
  • Family and coaches supported making a decision to run professionally

What was it about Danny Mackey and the Brooks Beast team that attracted you to them?

  • Prioritized what ideal position would look like as far as living and training
  • Coach, team atmosphere were all important
  • Visited a few teams and companies 
  • Brooks HQ atmosphere was unbeatable 
  • Coach Mackey was invested in each individual 

Earlier this month you ran the 10k at Payton Jordan, I want to talk about the race in some details and ask you a few questions about different stages. But first, what were your expectations going into it?

  • Had nagging issues earlier this year but decided at USA's wanted to focus on 10k
  • Had strung together 75-80 mile weeks 
  • Training at altitude coming into it
  • A few workouts were tough but indicated was in shape
  • Was great to go back to Stanford
  • Goal was 31:45-32:15 range
  • 2 weeks out did a really hard workout and nailed it so knew was ready

What was that really hard workout?

  • 7x 1k, 600 with short rest

Do you see yourself as a 10k runner going forward?

  • 2020 plan to try and make 10k team

You mentioned you had some injuries, can you talk about getting through those?

  • Had to pull out of Olympic trials which was devastating
  • Had to learn to implement crosstraining
  • Last year was on a long run and snapped a foot bone, came out of nowhere
  • Was in the middle of training block and was in a boot for 8 weeks, 12-week block with no running just swimming, biking and elliptical 
  • Had to work on the mental game

Rabbit took the group through almost 3k at just sub 32:00 pace and when the rabbit left the track things started to stretch out. At 3200k you were down by about 9 second and by 5k it was almost up to 15 seconds and you were leading a chase group in 3rd. When the lead grew to almost 15 seconds did you ever think I should have gone with Ichiyama?

  • No, had a solid race plan
  • Stayed relaxed over the first 5k
  • The goal was to be around 16:00 at 5k and was within 2 seconds of that
  • Was confident in my race plan
  • 6-8k was a little tough but started closing the gap so gained momentum
  • When got tough kept saying one more lap
  • Knew if was within contact with a mile to go could win

In the last mile your group started closing the gap, were you girls talking and communicating as it looked like you took turns leading the chase?

  • No communications, it just happened and took turns leading chase
  • Knew that workouts had set me up to win at end
  • Biggest goal was to compete to win

With 800 to go the lead group was back to 5 and Cliff made a push then with 500 to go Pagano made a push, and you were content on the back of the 5 person pack, what were you thinking, what was your plan as you saw what was going on ahead of you?

  • Learned to stay out of chaos but aware if any moves happen
  • Knew when I made a move had to be definitive 
  • I could have run faster if made my move a little earlier

That last 400 you close in 70, and when you went at 300 there was no doubt who was going to win, you looked so strong. Did you feel as strong as you looked?

  • Felt strong and had been working on mechanics and turnover
  • Through all the drills we had been doing I could feel it pay off over last 200

What have been your keys to consistency across her high school, college, and professional training that have supported your long-term evolution to a sub-32:00 performer?

  • Having fun has been huge for me
  • Staying healthy is tricky because my body feels different now
  • Have had to get to know my body
  • Always riding that line but every injury I can see where I made a mistake, they were learning moments
  • Super in-tune with how I am feeling and communicating with the coach
  • All the pre-hab, rehab is important to staying health

What are your plans for he rest of the race season?

  • 5k in June
  • Good 1500 at Portland Track Festival

You are now coaching with RunDoyen and we will leave a link in the show notes if anyone wants to get a hold of you about coaching. You have been blessed with amazing coaches since high school. You had one of the top high school coaches in the country with Jeff Messer, then, of course, Stanford and now with the Beast club. All of your coaches are successful, but I am sure they are all different in their own ways and coaching methods. What have you learned from your coaches that you will use in your coaching?

  • Communications
  • Adaptability and being flexible and not married to plan, life happens
  • Clients range from college runners hoping to make the team to mom's
  • Use Final Surge makes it easy to communicate

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Peak Performance 
Current trainers you are wearing? - Brooks Ghost 10
Favorite race? - 10k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Gatorade, water and protein 
Your favorite workout - 4 sets of 4x400 or 5-6 mile tempo on the track

connect with you online?

@JessTonn on Instagram
@JessTonn on Twitter
Jess Tonn on RunDoyen


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