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 19, 2019

Episode 146: Professional triathlete Morgan Pearson was one of the founding members of the Tinman Elite club and joins us to talk about the founding of the group. We also discuss his transition to becoming a professional triathlete and his win at this past week's Club Cross Championship.

1:02 Morgan's background and how it lead to a later change to triathlon

2:50 What were your times before you made the jump?

3:49 When you made the big jump is that when you realized you may want to run at college?

5:14 Did you compete in swimming in high school too?

5:50 When did you make the college commitment?

6:08 Why did you make that transfer to Colorado?

6:57 Did you realize when you made the transition to Colorado did you realize you wanted to pursue this after school?

8:26 You were one of the founding members of Tinman Elite right?

8:51 What made you decide to join Tom?

12:00 When you started Tinman with Drew early on, did you ever even dream it could become what it has become?

13:58 You have run under Wetmore and Tom, what are some of the biggest differences?

17:02 When did you decide to make the jump to triathlon?

19:39 Your first triathlon you won, how did the race go?

23:09 How much training on the bike did you do before that?

24:17 USA Triathlon must have been interested in you after that win?

25:04 Was it after that win that you decided you were going to focus on it?

25:45 What has been the toughest transition from runner to triathlete?

27:34 Are you racing more as triathlete than you were as a runner?

28:29 When is your Olympic qualifying race?

29:58 Three Club Cross Championships in a row and you won the individual title

32:47 How did the Club Cross race play out?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Running with the Buffaloes
Current trainers you are wearing? - 361
Favorite race? - Club Cross
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Kale smoothie
Your favorite workout - Fartlek


Morgan on Instagram
Morgan on Twitter


Dec 12, 2019

Welcome to episode 145 of the Final Surge Podcast. Today we welcome hall of fame sprint coach Tony Holler. Tony is an extremely popular coach known for his program Feed The Cats. He has been coaching for close to 40 years and we talk to Tony about how what he does with sprinters can translate to the endurance world.

1:00 How did Tony get started in track

4:08 What was your background in track before you became the head coach in 1990?

5:28 Where did that drive to change the program and learn come from?

7:58 Do you find that writing so much makes you examine closer the way you think and why you think them?

9:28 What can an endurance athlete or coach learn from your system Feed The Cats?

12:58 You say the faster your top-end speed, the faster your sub-max speed is, how does that work?

15:45 John O'Malley is also the only coach two have two different individuals win Footlocker

16:38 If a miler works on top-end speed, how is that helping with his mile time, is it biomechanical, neural, combination or what is impacting his mile time when we work on top-end?

20:32 You say speed is neurological, not muscular, does that mean a kid shouldn't be in the weight room, or they can, they just are not going to get the benefit they think they are going too?

24:23 Your school comes to you and says you are now the cross country coach, how do you implement springing, X-factor and lactate workouts?

30:32 Would you be doing those daily or part of the workout days or when?

Track Football Consortium
Feed The Cats Video series
Tony on Twitter



Nov 24, 2019

Welcome to episode 144 of the Final Surge podcast. We welcome back the founder of the Boulder Running Clinics Jay Johnson to talk about his clinics and the state of high school distance running. What are the most successful programs doing and how are people incorporating things like speed more into their programs. I have been to several coaching clinics and I can say without a doubt that Jay's Boulder Clinic is the most informative and useful one I have ever been too. Enjoy this episode and if you attend the clinic in January come to say hi to me. 


1:40 Intro to Boulder Running Clinics

4:03 You have been around the high school running scene for around 20 years now. It has changed a lot. What has been the biggest change you have seen?

8:02 You can have coaches sharing ideas and talking to each other but if they are doing different things how do you know what to implement. 

17:33 One probably is you need to look at the whole system not just workouts because the system works as a whole. 

25:55 Clinic is Jan 17, 18. Who else do you have presenting?

29:13 There was a lot of talk last year about Feed The Cats, can you talk about what that session was about?

Boulder Running Clinics Website
Jay on Twitter

Nov 14, 2019

Episode 143: Dathan Ritzenhein joins us to talk about the recent Chicago and NYC Marathons. Along with his own running, he is also coaching and his athletes include Olympic hopeful Parker Stinson. We talk Olympic marathon trials and shoe tech. 

1:00 What happened so you needed to pull out of the Chicago Marathon?

4:28 We have 11 men under the A Standard now so it is harder than ever to make the team

5:01 Will the trials be your next race?

6:23 You are now coaching Parker Stinson who has the A Standard

7:47 Parker's first marathon he went out hard and blew up in historic fashion, this race was a perfect split

9:57 When did you and Parker start working together?

11:36 Was racing strategy the first thing you guys talked about?

13:50 There were 4 Americans all running within 20 seconds of each other

15:12 We are seeing crazy times being put up, how much do you attribute that to the shoes?

17:40 Is there any concern with you that the technology is getting too advanced?

19:44 Even if you could limit them in races, but that doesn't change the fact that they get the benefit in training

21:33 What did you think of the 1:59 marathon?

22:49 What did you think about the women's new marathon record?

23:40 Have you been to the Atlanta course to scope it out?

25:03 Is it a lot of hills, or the hills it has are big?

26:20 With the hilly course, who has an advantage?

28:01 Comparing marathon times on paper, but there are currently 4 guys are under 2:10, could this course be an equalizer? 

30:02 How are you using Final Surge

Dathan on Instagram
Dathan on Twitter
Dathan Coaching Services

Nov 7, 2019

Episode 142: This week we welcome Mario Fraioli to the podcast we talk about the recent Chicago and NYC marathons, the sub 1:59 marathon and what this all tells us about the upcoming Olympic Trials. We also discuss the shoes. How much do they help and what should be the limits. Please share the podcast with your friends.

1:08 Were there any big surprises or take-a-ways you had from the NYC marathon results?

2:59 Desi went out early, did that surprise you?

5:50 How did your NYC Marathon go?

6:15 Chicago on the men's side we had 10 under 2:12

7:54 Jared Ward had a great NYC race too

8:32 On the women's side of Chicago do you think that 2:14 was real?

10:47 We have so many distance runners getting popped for drugs, you almost need to ask yourself why they are still doing it

12:39 What did you think of the 1:59 marathon?

17:24 Looking at the US Trials we have twice as many men and women qualified, why? Is it because of the shoes?

19:55 The new shoes, how much do they make a difference?

23:20 Is there an advantage to Nike athletes?

25:53 Should there be some sort of technology limits we allow?

29:23 The US Marathon Trials course is hilly, who is this going to help?

33:00 On the women's side is there anyone a lock for the team?

35:50 So what are you up to with the Morning Shakeout Newsletter and Podcast?


Morning Shakeout
Mario on Instagram
Mario on Twitter
Mario's Website

Oct 31, 2019

Welcome to episode 141 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome marathon and ultra runner Brad Lindeberg. We talk to Brad about his quest for 50 marathon or longer races in 50 states and how having a personal coach has helped him achieve new goals. 


1:17 How you got started in running?

3:01 How was your high school cross country career?

5:08 Did you keep running after high school?

6:30 Did that 2010 marathon go much better than  2001?

7:20 At what point did you decide you wanted to pursue that goal of running 50 marathons in 50 states?

9:51 At what point did you decide to hire Neely as a coach?

13:30 You are running NYC this weekend, does that mean you got that sub 2:55 marathon?

15:23 How has that personal coaching helped you?

17:12 What is a big take away you have learned from Neely as a coach?

20:11 Is a lot of the communication going on in Final Surge?

22:40 How has your training block for NYC been going?

24:35 Has there been anything different in this training block?

27:02 Has she given you any advice specific to the course?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? -Inside The Marathon
Current trainers you are wearing? - Altra
Favorite race? - Boston and Shiprock Marathon
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Salmon Burger with bacon and pickle 
Your favorite workout - Progression runs

Brad on Twitter
Neely Spence Gracey Coaching
Brad on Instagram
Brad on Strava


Oct 17, 2019

Welcome to episode 140 of the Final Surge Podcast. Corcoran High in California has a very successful running program. Coach Isaias Ramirez is the unlikely leader of the program. With no running background, Coach Ramirez leaned on other coaches to help develop his winning philosophy. In the last year, he has implemented something he learned at a clinic called RPR, Reflexive Performance Reset. He credits RPR for taking a successful program and making it even better and reducing injuries to almost nothing. We discuss what RPR is and how he uses it. 


1:20 How did you get involved in running?

3:15 How long you been coaching now?

3:34 You were a lineman in football then a football coach and then became a cross country coach. Did your background in football help or how did you learn how to have so much success?

5:47 What was the philosophy you adopted for your program?

8:10 You start learning to develop your plan, what was your progression like?

9:54 What does a typical week look like for you?

11:18 CV, hill sprinting sounds like you have adopted some Tinman?

12:00 Do you have enough data to look at it and make some conclusions about how it is working?

13:01 How often are you doing those CV workouts?

14:43 You don't have a big team, injuries can hurt your team greatly so what are you doing with RPR and can you explain what it is?

20:14 Did you have shin splint issues before RPR?

20:58 Is it a certain stretching routine?

21:33 Is it a specific routine that is always the same?

23:30 How long was it before you started seeing results?

25:10 What about other common running injuries?

28:55 How are you implementing this?

30:00 Walk us through what your practice looks like

Corcoran on Twitter

Oct 10, 2019

This is a best of episode. Tom Schwartz joined us to talk about skills, hills and keeping the ball rolling. 

Oct 4, 2019

Episode 139: Today we welcome back triathlon coach Mark Sortino to the podcast. Mark joined us on Episode 39 and now he joins us again 100 episodes later. Mark runs Team MPI and we talk to him about his coaching organization, some coaching continuing education sessions that he has coming up and what to expect at Kona 2019.

1:10 Tell is who you are and what you do in 2 minutes. For a more full bio listen to episode 39.

3:07 How many coaches are Team MPI up to?

3:40 With your 15 coaches are they full time or part-time and this is something they do on the side?

5:04 How many coaches are each coach working with and how do you match the athlete to the best coach?

6:58 How individualized is each plan if you have a coach working with 20 athletes.

8:22 What is the Team MPI system look like?

10:25 How do you work on a swim stroke or run gate for someone you are working with online?

13:52 Do you have people video themselves doing strides or such?

15:09 What type of education process do your Team MPI coaches go through?

17:04 A key is communications, how do you communicate with your athletes?

19:56 Do you find yourself using the Final Surge App more and more?

21:48 Talk about the upcoming coaches retreat you have at Ironman Arizona

25:05 Kona is coming up, can anyone beat Daniela Ryf on the women's side?

28:25 Patrick Lange, can someone beat him at Kona? Does any prepare better for one race than he does?

30:50  Jan Frodeno and Sebastian Kienle will likely be his biggest competition. All three are from Germany, what has happened to the American's?

32:23 Which of the men do you think is going to win?


Upcoming Coaches Retreat at IMAZ
Team MPI Training Plans
Team MPI Website
Team MPI on Instagram
Team MPI on Facebook



Sep 19, 2019

Episode 138: Jason Fitzgerald of Strength Running. Jason has been blogging and creating online courses for about a decade. Jason has a new program out called Running Smarter, Runner Stronger. This program is 17 chapters of high-quality video to make you a better runner. Check out Jason's program and if want to train with a purpose head over to for your free account, now onto the show. 

1:33 How Strength Running Started

4:45 You have been doing this for a decade now, but when I saw your new trailer I knew this was next level stuff

6:25 Who is this new course designed for?

9:00 We expect strength training and injury prevention content from you, but this is so much more, does this take place of a coach?

10:50 One of the things you talk about is overstriding, in this video series what is the structure of the advice they would get?

15:25 One thing you hear often is you don't want to change form too quickly in their running for. What are some of the things you work on to do this?

18:50 Overstriding vs long stride

23:12 A new runner the cardiovascular system grows and develops faster than the body, how does your program deal with mileage buildup?

26:41 One of the chapters is on speedwork, can you give an example of what may be found in that chapter?

29:54 Where can people find out more online and get a sample lesson?


Running Smarter Program
Jason on Twitter
Run Smarter Course

Sep 12, 2019

Episode 137: Brad Curtis is the cross country coach of a small school in Arizona. Their boy's team this year is a top ten school in the state, not bad for a school of only 200 kids with only 12 boys on the team. We talk to Brad about the struggles of being a coach from such a small school and how he has built a strong culture.


1:10 When did you start in running?

2:08 His background in boxing and how far the boxing career went

4:02 How did that lead to being a cross country and track coach?

4:59 How old is the school and how big is it?

4:58 You are competing in a state where some schools have 3-4,000 kids

6:23 Small school makes it tough in what way?

7:52 How many kids are on the high school team?

8:15 When you took over the program from Josh how big was the team at the time?

9:00 When your team is not big and not competitive how do you entice kids to come out and get involved?

10:50 How big is your middle school program?

11:38 Are you losing them because you are a small school without the resources or facilities?

13:29 You have 25 kids and 12 boys, and you are looking at a top 10 school in the state this year. How hard is it to keep kids so you can build this?

16:00 When you have 3500 kids and you have 50 boys on the team it is much easier to develop and find those top driven kids, when you only have 12 you have to get the most out of each one of the kids, what is the secret to keeping them all driven and focused?

18:33 Has the success of Jordan Black helped by getting people working harder or does it discourage people because they cannot keep up with him?

22:21 How did you change the culture in the program?

24:33 How has training changed, what has been your philosophy?

26:40 What does a normal day look like at your practice?

27:40 What does the week look like?

29:38 So how many miles is that a week?

30:35 Small schools can fluctuate, what advice do you have to make the program more consistent?

33:00 Did it help with recruiting?

34:45 If you have only 12 boys, and some are really fast and some are really slow and then in between, that doesnt leave large packs, how do you monitor how much people are running and at what effort?

37:23 Do you find it beneficial for those who do log their miles?

38:35 Do you have a workout you repeat to kind of gauge your level of fitness and progression?

40:03 Are your 1k's at CV pace?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Running with the Buffalo's
Current trainers you are wearing? - Brooks Ghost
Favorite race? - 5k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Chocolate Milk
Your favorite workout - 1k repeats

Brad Curtis on Twitter
North Phoenix Prep on Instagram





Sep 6, 2019

Episode 136: Reed Fischer of the Tinman Elite Group has had quite a year. He has set a PR in everything from the 5k to the half marathon and just came in 5th in the 20k National Championship. This is quite an accomplishment for someone who didn't break 23 minutes in a 5k his freshman season or 5 minutes in a mile until he was a sophomore in high school. We talk to Reed about his growth and about the success of his team. 



1:15 How did you get started in running?

4:20 When you were a freshman/sophomore what type of times were you running?

6:50 Where was it that you made your biggest change that set you on this path?

9:53 You had a steady progression after that, when was it you realized that college running may be a possibility?

 12:14 Did you think you had a shot at making the team at Drake?

14:21 Who started working with Tom first you or Brogan?

15:45 How did you end up teaming up with Tinmen?

18:31 Most of you are not the NCAA Champions but you have tremendous success as a team and competing for national championships so what is it that is making you guys so successful?

23:40 Tom has been fairly open about his training, what has been the biggest change in your training since you joined him?

27:33 Breaking down the 7/7/7 a little more and many PR's this year, what is the plan with the marathon?

29:00 Does your success this year make you want to give the 800 a go and see what you could do?

30:37 The first marathon is always an experience, so going into your first one what are your expectations and goals?

35:00 Next year is an Olympic year, what will your focus be?

36:55 You are a very young team how has the reception been from other teams?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Running with the Buffalos 
Current trainers you are wearing? - Asics GT-2000
Favorite race? - Drake Relays 
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Cheeseburger
Your favorite workout - Tempo and a long run


Instagram: @reedfisch
Twitter: @reedfisch

Aug 29, 2019

Episode 135: We welcome Dr Jason Karp who has been a competitive runner since sixth grade. Dr. Karp is also a coach and the bestselling author of 8 books and over 400 articles. We talk about several issues including cardio, mental health benefits fo running and the importance of coaches and athletes knowing about the Female Athlete Triad.

1:10 Background on how he got started getting interested in running

2:29 Did you become interested because you had success?

3:40 In high school did you continue sprinting or did you move up in distance?

5:08 In high school did you know you wanted to take this career path?

6:50 Where did you decide to go to school?

11:33 Was your intention to keep coaching after this process?

11:58 What level of coaching are you doing right now?

12:44 You are a big supporter of running while not all exercise trainers are a believer in cardio, you even wrote a book called Run Your Fat Off what do you find so beneficial about the sport?

14:05 So how do you Run Your Fat Off?

16:11 How often do you hear "I can't run" and how do you overcome that?

17:58 You have a book called Developmental Concept for Cross Country, what is that about?

19:38 One of the things that many young women need to be aware of, and I would argue that coaches really need to be aware of is the Female Athlete Triad, what do coaches and athletes need to understand?

23:50 I went to a clinic with Jay Johnson a few years back, and I don't remember the exact number, but they looked at incoming female athletes in college and it was some off the wall number like 70% were not eating enough calories for their athletic needs, can you talk about how important calorie intake is?

26:53 As a male high school coach you mentioned these conversations can be uncomfortable for high school girls, this is where we need to loop the parents in

28:00 For more information is the Running for Women the best place you have for information on this?

28:25 What is the REVO₂LUTION RUNNING™ certification program for coaches and trainers?

31:07 You mentioned some of the benefits of running mentally, can you talk about some of the mental benefits of running?

33:17 You have 8 books, is there another one in the works?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Joe Sheehan
Current trainers you are wearing? - Hoka
Favorite race? - Mile
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Chocolate Milk
Your favorite workout - 400m reps


Jason's Website
Dr Jason Karp on Facebook
Instagram  @drjasonkarp


Aug 15, 2019

Episode 134: Matt Baxter grew up running in New Zeland. He comes over to the states to run for Coach Smith and the NAU Lumberjacks and helped lead the team to 3 straight Cross Country titles. We talked about the mental game of not always having your best race and his transition to running as a professional for NAZ Elite.

1:15 How did you get started running in New Zeland?

1:51 what is high school running like in New Zeland high schools?

3:02 When did you make the transition to coming to the United States to run for NAU?

3:22 What was it like coming to Flagstaff and running at elevation?

4:40 Why did you decide to come to the States?

5:53 3 years and 3 national titles, was there one that was more special?

7:15 In 2017 you were second overall at Cross, but then at Indoors you didn't even qualify for nationals in the 5k, what happened?

10:05 When you are a high school runner you can have a bad race and still win a race, but when you are running at a high level it is different, what is it like mentally to get used to that?

12:06 In 2018 you were the favorites, but there was a lot of talk about BYU. Coach Smith said that on that day even though you didn't have a great race it was great because of how tough you were, can you talk about how that race went?

15:15 What is it like running under coach Smith?

17:04 With you and Tyler gone from NAU cross country now, what do you think this year holds for them?

18:33 Why did you choose to run with NAZ Elite and Ben Rosario?

20:27 You ended up heading back for New Zeland after you signed, was the plan always to be gone for 6 months?

23:17 What is your favorite place to run in Flagstaff?

24:23 What is the biggest difference between training under Ben and Coach Smith?

26:13 You have a new young crew at NAZ, what has it been like?

27:37 What is it like having a former competitor like Rory as a teammate now?

29:34 What events will you focus on the next few years?

31:12 You could have 4 countries all represented in Tokyo, have you talked about that as a team?

32:55 The NAZ group does a lot online reaching out to runners and making the sport look fun, you are drawing in young runners as fans, what can we do to make the sport even more attractive?

36:20 Thousands are racing on weekends, what do we do to reach the hobby joggers and get them in the stands?

40:08 What is the next race for you?

40:52 You running with Tyler in Flagstaff again?

43:00 Talking about Tyler running as a professional blows my mind with how far he has come since high school. 


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Once a Runner
Current trainers you are wearing? - Clifton
Favorite race? - NCAA Cross
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Oatmeal
Your favorite workout - Mile repeats or long tempo


NAZ Elite




Aug 8, 2019

In episode 133 we have a great show for you. Did you watch the USATF's? Did you see the men's 5k? I thought it was absolutely one of the most entertaining 5k races I have ever seen. Over the course of that race I went from thinking what is Woody Kincaid doing up there, to thinking Woody Kincaid is done to saying wow, what a gutsy race by Kincaid. I became a fan. We talked to Woody about the race, what he was thinking and how he feels about being top 3 but not getting a spot on the World's team. This was a great episode and I hope you enjoy it and share it.

1:30 How did you get started in running?

2:08 What was it about running that drew you in?

2:44 Did you have early success?

3:10 At what point did you realize you wanted to do it in college?

4:02 Did a lot of colleges have interest?

5:00 Did the option come from Colorado to run there?

5:35 When did you decide you wanted to run professionally?

6:35 What did you learn from going to Kenya?

8:00 Did Rob Conner introduce you to Jerry or how did that relationship start?

9:24 Talk about your 2-3 years of running as a professional and what it has been like?

12:00 You went into indoors, how did that season go?

12:48 Do you think that race at indoors helped get you focused?

13:41 How was your training leading up to outdoors?

14:47 Were you confident before USATF's?

15:32 The 5k at USATF's was one of my favorite races, what was the gameplan you had before the race?

17:45 In the first 600m you already gapped the field, did you know it was going out that fast?

18:58 At the mile marker when he starts talking to you what is going through your mind?

20:07 Did he put a crazy hard surge when you decided you were not going to take the lead?

21:18 When you clipped him was that when he pulled off to the side and almost stopped?

21:45 When you got to the lead what was your gameplan?

23:40 Pack catches you, I turned to my son and son and Woody is done, did you have concerns when they caught you?

25:13 With 500 meters to go you fall back to 5th did you think you were ok because you can kick well?

26:00 with 250 to go you fought your way back into it and I became a Woody fan

26:45 When you are racing you are thinking about winning, you probably are not thinking about the standard the whole time right?

27:30 You just miss the standard, what do you think about the current system of not allowing time to chase a standard?

29:03 So what is next for you?

29:42 Let's talk about the status of the sport, what do we need to do to fill the stands?

30:33 Have betting at the track?

30:50 What if the race had fone different, what if you finished not in the front?

32:00 I imagine this is going to help the contract negotiations?

33:03 You mentioned the Price of the Mile podcast, what happened with it?


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Running for my Life
Current trainers you are wearing? - Pegasus 35
Favorite race? - 5k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Beet Juice
Your favorite workout - Tempo with speed work

Woody on Instagram 
5k race on NBC Sports

Aug 1, 2019

In Episode 132 of the Final Surge Podcast, we welcome Olympics Trials qualifier and 50 mile US Trail Champ Dani to the podcast. Dani currently also coaches for Luke Humphry and the Hanson running team. She recently had a fundraising run for domestic violence and sexual assault advocacy which we talk about.

1:15 How Dani got started in running and as a multi-sport athlete

2:05 Were you playing club softball?

2:20 What was it about track that drew you in?

4:00 Do you remember what type of times you ran for the mile in middle school and high school?

4:55 You had success as a middle school miler, did you play both softball and run in high school?

5:50 Once in high school did you always want to run in college?

7:32 What was your running career like as a professional runner?

8:55 2017 US 50-mile Trail Champ, what was that like doubling the marathon distance?

11:20 How did you get started coaching?

13:20 What is the similarity in coaching at all levels from MS-Adults?

14:40 Let's talk about middle school coaching, you want them to fall in love with running so you need to make it fun, but they are not going to have fun if they are not racing well, so how do you balance that?

18:05 You recently did 340 miles to raise money for sexual assault and domestic violence awareness, tell us about that experience

21:00 Did you have a lot of people joining you on the different legs of the run?

22:12 What was it that made you decide you wanted to do a run for this?

23:40 How do you train to run a marathon every day for 8 days in a row?

26:00 What was the hardest part of it?

30:10 Do you have something set up so if people still want to donate they can?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Basic Marathon Plan
Current trainers you are wearing? - Hoka OneOne Clifton
Favorite race? - Great Lakes Relay
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Craft Beer and Sweet Potatoe Fries and Veggie Burger
Your favorite workout - 3x6miles

Dani Coaching
Dani on Instagram
Dani on Twitter
Final Surge on Instagram
Final Surge on Twitter

Jul 26, 2019

Dr. Jeff Messer is one of the most successful high school coaches of the 21st Century. He has won more state cross country titles than not including winning the 2016 National Coach of the Year. In 12 years he was involved in coaching 11 State Championship teams. Jeff is also the head of the exercise science department at Mesa Community College. We have a great discussion on building a team, what your goals should really be and how important things like sleep and nutrition are to a successful high-level athlete. 

:45 Background as a runner

 1:52 You stay on top of all the latest science, what came first the love for that or the love for coaching?

2:52 Coaches may be looking at a research paper how do we know if the research paper is actually a good paper and good research?

4:15 What is your success in cross country as a coach?

5:15 For a high school coach who doesn't your science background, how can they become better educated?

6:18 Some coaches know the science and can explain everything. Some don't know the science but can tell you what works for example. How important is it to know the science or not?

7:30 If you were giving advice to a newer coach. What type of general advice do you have in what is important in building a program?

8:37 You talk a lot about how the goals are not the time, but the process is the goal. What does that mean?

9:57 What areas are part of the process?

11:41 Often times the athletes we are working with are high achievers, including in the class. How do you stress the importance of sleep to these student-athletes?

14:10 How much sleep does a 16-year old who runs 50 miles a week need?

15:15 How often do you run into students who are not getting enough sleep?

17:10 If you have an athlete that will run in college and another runner who has no desire to run in college, do you coach them differently? 

19:07 The question I get most often from parents is about nutrition. Can you discuss what the latest research says?

21:16 For a coach who wants to give something out to their parents on nutrition, what resources do you recommend? 

23:12 What is the biggest mistake athletes are making with nutrition?

24:33 Often times you will have an athlete not making the gains they should be in racing and workouts, what do you do to break down what is going on?

26:53 Can you discuss role of iron?

28:45 What should the Ferritin levels be?

30:34 How is the coaching with Jessica Tonn going?

32:17 You have had several successful high school runners who went on to success in college and as a professional. When you have an athlete who you know has that potential, do you handle them differently? 

34:22 Sarah Hall had Tweet about running too much in high school, how do you feel about that?

36:38 You have an athlete coming in as a freshman who has a lot of potential, what is your progression over four years of high school. 



A recent article on sleep for runners 
Nancy Clark Nutrition Website
Email him at Jeff.Messer At



Jul 18, 2019

Welcome to episode 130 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome Jeff Taylor. Jeff has been coaching youth runners for close to 30 years and in the last year has launched a non-profit organization called Kids Love to Run. We talk about the organization and the challenges of getting youth engaged with distance running.

:55 How he got running in middle school with the 800m 

2:12 Was there an influence in your youth that got you to love to run as a youngster?

3:45 Where did the passion for coaching start?

5:39 It is one thing for a coach to say 'never again' but how did you get the kids to buy-in?

10:03 Sara Hall tweeted that kids can run a lot of miles in high school, what do you think about high miles?

12:27 How did your organization Kids Love To Run get started?

14:16 how big are your events?

15:08 How do you change things up for a 7-8-year-old runner to make it fun for them?

16:35 Are they all from your school or is it open to other schools?

17:04 Do you encourage the kids to do AAU/USATF meets?

17:54 How difficult is it to keep the attention of the younger kids?

18:54 Where do you see this going from here?

Kids Love To Run Website
Kids Love To Run Twitter
Kids Love To Run on Facebook


Jul 11, 2019

Episode 129: Today Stryd Power Meter employee Evan Schwartz joins us to talk about the new and updated Stryd Power Meter. The power meter is just one tool that many people are turning to for help in their training and racing. Today Evan joins us to talk about the new wind reading on the Stryd and other changes such as the automatic critical power reading. 

1:30 How did you end up in Boulder Colorado working for Stryd

4:15 What is your role at Stryd

5:45 Stryd Power Podcast

7:12 What is a power meter?

10:03 How does a little device on my shoe measure my effort?

11:57 How do external things such as wind effect power?

15:18 How is a pod on the foot sensing the wind?

19:12 If it is measuring my effort was wind something that needed to be measured?

23:18 DC Rainmaker has been a skeptic of power, but he put your device through the tunnel and it was amazing how accurate those wind numbers were. 

27:20 When will it be out?

28:24 Is the wind update the only update?

32:18 Are you finding any teams are adapting power?

39:01 You just released an update to critical power model, what is the new automatic critical power?

44:37 Who would need to do the power test vs. using the auto power results?

46:40 So it uses 3 months of data but you don't need 3 months?


Stryd on Facebook
Stryd on Instagram
Stryd on Twitter

Evan on Instagram 
Evan on Twitter 



Jul 5, 2019

Episode 128: Lawrence Avery did not start running until he was 30 years old. Almost a decade later he is running sub 2:30, has a successful coaching business and splits his time between his home UK and Kenya. We discuss what inspired him to get running, how an injury lead to his passion for coaching and what he has learned spending that time in Kenya.  

:40 Got into running much later, not until he was 30

3:10 When you decided you wanted to run a marathon, how did that training go?

4:35 Were the 5ks the only racing you did in your marathon build up?

5:03 How many people show up for free 5ks in the park?

6:18 So is the running scene really healthy in the UK?

7:50 How big of an impact has Mo had on the running scene?

8:25 Was there anything that drew you towards the sport to start competing?

9:10 When did you go to Kenya to train?

9:46 What have you learned from your time there?

12:03 You picture everyone in Kenya running, is it that way, or it is it the ones who do run just have a lot of success?

12:44 How has your coaching changes because of the Kenya experience?

13:26 So with the easy runs being so easy to do you just say effort of giving them a pace?

13:59 What distances do you coach?

15:42 In the UK is there an emphasis on BQ or do you focus more on European marathons?

16:25 What is your buildup plan like for the marathon?

18:12 Give us an example of a key workout you do during the 10-week marathon training

19:45 Where can they learn more about your coaching? 

20:15 Tell us about the contest you are running right now

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? -  British Marathon Legands of 1980's
Current trainers you are wearing? - Vapor Fly
Favorite race? - Night of the 10,000 PB's
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Smoothie with milk, oatmeal and peanut butter
Your favorite workout - Long marathon pace repeats



Coaching Website and blog 




Jun 27, 2019

This is a best of episode. Dr Jay Dicharry joined us to talk about running rewired. Are we born to run or is it a learned skill. Dr Dicharry talks about that and deliberate practice. 

Jun 20, 2019

Episode 127: Mark Hadley is a very successful marathon coach having coached several Olympic Trial qualifiers and over 100 Boston Qualifiers. He is also the father of Alana Hadley who was tearing up the roads as a high school runner. We talk about some of the common mistakes new marathon runners make, the five key tenants that distance runners should focus on and what you should be doing right now to get ready for that fall marathon. 

:15 How did you get started in running?

3:10 You said you ran road races before you ever got to high school, how young were you?

4:10 What attracted you to distance over sprints at that age?

5:15 Was there a coach that had a big impact on you?

8:10 You have had a lot of success as a coach, but you seem to focus mostly on the marathon, is that correct?

9:27 What are some of the key tenants of coaching you like to focus on?

17:40 How can you coach passion?

21:15 So let’s talk about someone who is getting ready for a fall marathon, we're almost getting to that time. If someone is racing say NYC in early nov, what should they be doing right now?

26:50 What is the biggest mistake that new marathon runners make?

29:10 What percentage of weekly mileage should the long run be?

31:06 Are your clients often those who tried the marathon before in the past and failed?

31:55 Is there a benchmark workout you like to implement into training to test progress?

33:30 How is your daughter Alana doing?

35:35 What advice do you as a father to someone who has a very young and talented runner?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? -  Daniels Running Formula
Current trainers you are wearing? -  Nike Pegasus
Favorite race? - NYC Marathon
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Chocolate Milk
Your favorite workout - Long Tempo Runs

RunDoyen Coaching Webpage
Mark on Twitter
Mark’s blog

Jun 6, 2019

Episode 126: In 2012 Bernie Montoya won the high school Dream Mile in a time of 4:01 and became the top recruit in the country. He decided to stay home and go to ASU. Whatever happened to Bernie? Well in college he was diagnosed with a heart condition and then had a series of injuries. Hope you enjoy this great story of overcoming adversity.

:50 There are going to be some that don’t follow the high school running scene too closely, you were the top recruit in America in 2013 and I want to get into the story of where you are now and what you have gone through. First take us back to when you were younger, back to when you were a football player and how you ended up in running

3:25 You ran your first race ever it was the Footlocker West Qualifier?

5:45 It is the summer right now and some kids are thinking about what they want to do their first year in high school What advice do you have for an HS freshman who is just starting their first summer of training?

7:22 When you were getting ready for your first track season did you push yourself to run with the better runners or did you hold back some?

8:39  Over your career what type of ancillary work or non-running work did you do that you would recommend to a serious high school runner?

10:00 Did you hit the weight room in high school?

10:43 Did you do many 2-a-day running sessions in high school?

12:06  All around the country there are kids getting ready to run their junior and senior years who are going to be aiming for that sub 4:10 mile or sub 4:50 mile for female. For that athlete that was a star like you, what advice do you have as far as getting finishing the career and the college decision-making process?

14:58 What was the most memorable or favorite race you had in high school?

16:40 One of the things that I always heard about you was how everyone liked you. You didn’t act like a star athlete that was different than anyone else, you respected your competitors and you were friends with them. Was this something you did consciously?

18:50 Let’s move to the next part of your career. You had to make a decision on where to go to college. Oregon, Colorado, all the big teams were recruiting you, how did you make your decision?

21:26  You get to college and you are an immediate impact for ASU, you have a lot of success as a freshman, how do you feel your freshman year went, how was the transition from high school to college?

22:55 Your whole story changes in 2015, talk about the heart condition

27:21 What was it like being forced to take that time off?

29:45 How hard was the comeback after six months off?

31:24 How long did it take to get back?

33:15 What is your best advice coming back from a long downtime?

35:19 What are you working on now?

36:50 What does the future hold for you in terms of running?

38:39 You can look back at your career with this time off, who can you point to that really helped you as an athlete and as a person?

40:48 I notice the passion you talk about your high school coach with, you think you will ever take that road?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Pre
Current trainers you are wearing? -  Adidas
Favorite race? - Twilight
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Pizza and a Coke
Your favorite workout - 12x400

Where can people follow you online?
Instagram 2_bernie

May 30, 2019

Episode 125: Polar has been a leader in heart rate technology for several decades now. One of the largest GPS watch brands on the market, we are pleased to announce we now import from Polar directly into Final Surge. Tom Fowler is the president of Polar, a former professional triathlete Tom discusses workouts with Mark Allen, a horrifying accident he had and we do talk about some new things Polar is doing like Power on the watch with no third device.

:55 Who is Tom Fowler, what was his business background before he started working with Polar as President

2:25 With all those athletic business connections, what is your athletic background?

4:31 You mentioned you raced against Mark Allen, what was it like in the 80’s racing on the triathlon circuit?

8:10 What was the most memorable sessions with Mark Allen?

13:00 Story about Scott and Allen competing in the pool on workout days

15:25 If they were doing it without technology, then do you really need technology?

19:49 Heart rate, distance, and pace, power. How much are you adding in power and what are your thoughts on it?

23:55 I saw Polar is tracking power to the watch itself with Vantage V, how does that work?

27:18 Have you taken the Stryd and Vantage on a run and compare the results?

29:50 What other metrics will your power measure?

31:20 What else does Polar have coming out?

34:17 How is heart rate accuracy between wrist and chest strap?

37:30 Great story about an injury that almost ended his athletic career


Polar On Facebook



Tom on Instagram


Polar Vantage V Video:

May 23, 2019

Episode 124: We welcome back Olympian Kim Conley to the Final Surge Podcast. Kim has had a rough time with injuries since she last joined us before her marathon debut. She is back on the track now and we discuss what her plans are for the 2020 Olympic year.

:40 Last time we had you on we were talking about you doing your first marathon. With the Olympics in 2020 just a year away, what are your plans?

1:55 What type of injuries did you go through?

2:20 How long will you be at altitude training?

2:32 What are you going to be focussing on in the immediate future?

3:09 In 2016 you went after both the 10k and the 5k, will that be the plan again?

4:04 You recently raced at Payton Jordan and I want to read an Instagram post you did right after the race.   “ I spent some time pulling the field along last night in the 5000m, but my indecisiveness to push the pace from the front also reminded me that I have additional elements to address as I rediscover my racing identity." What do you mean by this?

5:54 Do you think the reason was gameplan or because of the time you missed that you didn't finish like you wanted?

6:35 Are you making progress towards getting your competitive edge back?

7:17 How often are you getting up to altitude for training?

7:35 A lot of everyday runners go through injury issues too, what advice do you have to them for coming back from an injury?

8:55 How long did it feel like it took for your fitness to come back?

9:53 How hard is it mentally to come back and know you are not where you used to be?

10:52 Do you have a group you are training with?

11:17 What do you think of the new Olympic standards in place?

12:12 Has it changed your training at all?

13:00 What would you like to see as a selection process for the US?

14:25 How is your training changed coming back from injury?

15:06 What different rehab/prehab exercises are you doing?

15:25 Tell us about the new book about you called The Underdog

16:27 How involved in the process have you been?


Episode 28 with Kim Conley from 2016
Kim on Twitter
Kim on Instagram
Kim Website

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