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.
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?
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?
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