Final Surge Podcast

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





All Episodes
Now displaying: Page 5
Feb 21, 2018

Welcome to episode 77 of the Final Surge podcast where we talk to coach Steve Palladino on Power meters for runners. Back in episode 61 we addressed power with Jim Vance, today we take another look at it and dive deeper into the numbers and success stories. If you want to get even more information make sure you check out Steve's power Facebook group which you can find in the show notes. 


Can you tell us about your background and how you got involved in running

  • Ran in middle/high school (4:27 mile)
  • Ran in Jr College then U California David
  • Post-collegiate ran 2:16 at Boston in 1979 and ran for Adidas
  • Then became podiatrist 
  • Started running again late 30's
  • In 40's started competitive cycling and was an early adapter to power meters for bikes

A lot of questions still on power for running, why are you such a fan of running with power?

  • Power is an output, closest measure of what is going on metabolically to produce our movement
  • Power will show similar effort on track, on roads or even on a dirt hilly trail
  • Can take a workout easily off the track with power and will get same workout effects 

You mentioned perceived exertion. Alex Hutchinson did a piece recently in Outside Magazine that I thought was very fair taking a look at some of the issues he has with power for running. I have been using a Stryd power meter myself recently and have become a fan, but he has some good points. So why do we need a power meter when we have RPE?

  • Power calibrates RPE and RPE modulates power.
  • There are days when your RPE are a little off and power will help you recalibrate RPE on those days. 
  • They fine-tune each other

If you look at Galen Rupp or Alan Webb or Kellyn Taylor these are professional runners who are having a lot of success in their sport and not needing power, so what does this really solve, what is missing?

  • Coaches have had success and a lot is on the track so when on track pace works well
  • Power you can take it off the track onto a trail or road and do similar workout
  • Elites just have not identified it yet and it is starting to make some inroads
  • Just like cycling started out as a fringe thing, now all elites use it

With triathlons I can see coming off the bike your legs are tired and running with power may be able to inform how you are feeling. But for someone who is just running an open 10k on fresh legs is power that important?

  • Triathletes will benefit from the data, but variable is what type of power can you produce after a bike ride
  • Fresh 10k power can be very beneficial for pacing and to keep you where you need to be for a whole race
  • Elites are racing athletes where age groupers are more racing for a time so different benefits

We recently added your power Zones to our Final surge platform, Can you talk about how you use zones?

  • Added more than Stryd has
  • Looked at a lot of races so has been able to adjust and finer tune power zones
  • Upper-end zones have more than other systems based on race ranges and information

To get your zones you need FTP or your functional threshold power, how do you get that base number?

  • There are several ways to estimate
  • Critical Power Test - 3 minute and 9-minute test
  • Recent 5k-10k race
  • Comes out to about lactate threshold power 

A key number is running that you like to focus on is running effectiveness, and I know this is something we are looking at adding to our system, what is running effectiveness?

  • How effective you are at converting power to speed
  • Important metric 

Let’s give an example of how this can change. Let’s say you have a runner who’s running FTP is 350 at 8:00 pace and you train for a few weeks and now you get an FTP of 350 but at 7:45 pace, does that mean the running effectiveness has changed?

  • Yes, getting more speed at same power
  • Slow moving metric, but can get improvement

What can I do to improve my running effectiveness?

  • Somethings we know and some are still unknown
  • Leg Spring Stiffness - by weight training/plyos/hills
  • Form issues can be improved, horizontal power issues
  • Improve running economy

You mentioned running spring stiffness and vertical oscillation, and there are a lot of numbers that power looks at. So I finish a run and log in to look at my Stryd numbers? What should I be really tracking and looking at? Is it my Run Stress Score, or running effectiveness or leg stiffness or what do I need to focus on?

  • Don't want paralysis by analysis 
  • Look at power and power to weight
  • Running effectiveness
  • Leg Spring Stiffness
  • Horizontal Power
  • Those are the main ones, others are secondary and help break down the above primary numbers

If someone is looking at this and wants to try it, most plans they are following on the internet are not power plans. How can they look at a workout and modify it for power?

  • If you know your power zones and reference them can translate
  • Turn distances into durations
  • Easier to take those off track and onto other surfaces

You mentioned coaching high school athletes and that you have been using power with your high school kids, can you talk about how that has been going with them?

  • Not every kid, but one from each group of similar ability
  • Training load can be monitored easier to make sure stays where it needs to be


You have trained some athletes to amazing big PR stories using power. Can you tell us about one or two of those as a demonstration of how power really helped?

How can things like snow effect power?

  • Power doesn't change but running effectiveness/pace changes

Where do you think this goes from here? What needs to happen for it to make a big breakthrough like power for bikes have?

  • Seeing success over and over
  • So many metrics need to focus on simplification
  • Success stories getting shared

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Lore of Running
Current trainers you are wearing? - Hoka Stinson
Favorite race? - Boston Marathon
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Burrito
Your favorite workout - Long Run with spice

Pallidino Power Project Facebook Group


Feb 14, 2018

Welcome to episode 76 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome Chi Running founder Danny Dreyer. Danny is a competitive ultra runner who found a better way to move when he started doing Tai Chi. Danny wrote the book Chi Running which is hugely successful and we talk about his journey into Chi Running. Final Surge has started offering Chi Running Plans and you can check them out under our training plans section at 


How did you get started in running?

  • Grew Up in Boulder and started in 1971
  • Decided to do an ultra, trained over 3 years
  • Ran man ultra races
  • Moved to San Fran started learning Tai Chi

What was it you learned about Tai Chi that you decided this could help with running

  • Moved with body around central axis
  • Arms and legs got in sync with each other 
  • Watched those who passed during races and they had relaxed forward leans
  • Move from center

If you were speaking to everyday runners what the biggest difference is between what they are doing and Chi Running, what would it be?

  • You lose structure/posture and muscles work harder
  • Be smart, forward fall

You started off the answer talking about posture, paint a picture for us, what is good posture?

  • Stand up aligned tall
  • Shoulders over pelvis and pelvis over ankles

Many specialists say power should come from your glutes, do you think what an everyday runner does is different than elite runners?

  • Should not be using glutes or legs for power
  • Use gravity
  • Western runners are too upright and reach and pull
  • Kenyans have a forward fall
  • Use glutes only proportionately
  • Uses every muscle in body in proportion to size
  • Look at running injuries, most are from knee down
  • Need to use core more

There are three phases of the stance you talk about, can you explain those?

  • Propulsion is where body ahead of feet falling forward
  • Just pick up feet to keep up with body
  • Mid-stride is the flight phase where you leave the ground
  • Landing phase is the biggest deal 
  • Don't want to reach leg out as impact is coming 
  • Injuries are usually too much impact or overuse
  • When land foot under knee or behind it
  • Tai Chi relies on opponent to defeat themselves, here

Do you make wholesale changes all at once or is it in phases?

  • Every focus will help, but you learn them one at a time
  • Need to practice a lot, technique drills

The original book came out in 2004, how has the program changed since then?

  • Has exploded to the point where we have over 200 instructors
  • More aware of the program


One thing you talk about is race-specific training, how what is race-specific training in terms of Chi?

  • Need to learn how a course will have an impact on you and train to the course
  • Find out what is on the course, where it is on the course and train to the course
  • Have practiced the course so you know what it feels like and how you need to change your strategy

This week we started offering your training plans on Final Surge, can you tell us what to expect in those?

  • Everything divided into phases
  • Technique early
  • Move into conditioning phase
  • Learn how to fuel on long runs
  • 5k, 10k, 1/2 and full marathon


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute

Favorite endurance/running book? - Gordon Perry Run Fast and Injury Free
Current trainers you are wearing? - Altra Lone Peak
Favorite race? - Headlands 50k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? -  Cocoa Tropic
Your favorite workout - Hill Intervals on trails 


Chi Running Training Plans

Chi Running Website

Feb 7, 2018

Welcome to episode 75 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome back Dr. Jay Dicharry. Jay is the author of a must-have book for any coach, Anatomy for Runners. Jay has a follow-up book he has just released called Running Rewired. We have all heard of the book Born to Run, but are we born to run or is it something that we adapt to over time. Jay discusses that as well as how deliberate practice can make you more efficient. Make sure you check out Jay's book Running Rewired which you can find on his website An Athlete's Body.


We had you on episode 49 of the Final Surge podcast so welcome back. On episode 49 we talked a lot about your book must own book Anatomy For Runners. You have a new book out called Running Rewired. I am more of a wi-fi guy so what do you mean about runners getting rewired?

  • Get past running requires amazing flexibility or strength 
  • How your nervous system impacts how you move

If someone read your book Anatomy for Runners, why should they read this too, what would they get Running Rewired too?

  • Anatomy for Runners fits into a space with more scientific background
  • Was for intelligent and in the know runners and coaches
  • Was good for clinicians
  • Rewired more for everyday runner
  • Rewired from ground zero to increase capacity

Are we naturally wired to run, like if I took a 4-year-old and said run, are they wired correctly or do we need to learn it?

  • Young kids learn to play and are more dynamic
  • Problem not sitting, but that we do one thing all the time then expect to move differently when we put on our shoes
  • We are not born to run, we adapt to run
  • Takes cultivating of how we move

You talk about deliberate practice in the book. How do we know if we need to work on getting rewired and if we do how do we know we are doing the right things to get there?

  • Not about volume of practice
  • Practice has two types specific and deliberate
    • Specific putting on shoes and doing more of it
    • Deliberate says these are the skills you need, let's refine them with a plan 
  • Not about running more, but running with quality
  • Everyone I have ever seen needs more deliberate practice

You mentioned everyone needs to get better, so how do we know what we need to work on?

  • Roadblocks in books that test you
  • Some motions will be less skilled at

In episode 49 we dug into your clinic and your clients. In your clinic, you don't have just elite runners, but you have many average age group runners coming in. So you see a wide variety of situations. With seeing so many people over the years are there certain things you see usually see that you can quickly narrow it down to what the issues are without even seeing the athlete. So like if a runner came in and said I have shin splints or i have pain on the outside of my knee probably from IT band, could you give them 1-2 things to work on or is it too specific to each person?

  • I have a lot of lab data that identifies what causes overuse injuries, usually a few paths

If I took 5 mid pack runners and 5 elite runners and did a video on them, could you tell just by their gate which were the elites? And if so what about the gate is different?

  • Elites are blessed with great genes from their parents
  • As far as form can be both
  • Yes form matters, but capacity important too

One thing you talk about in the book was core exercise. If I do a lot of planks, L-ups, V-ups and those type of core exercise can you explain why they may not be the best?

  • Running is dynamic and not static
  • Holding the body stable like a plank does not help much
  • Get people moving in positions that challenge without putting stress on joints
  • Spend more time doing more dynamic movements for core
  • Coaches your core routines are killing your runners
  • Building skills as body twists while running

What does training core with rotation look like?

  • Lay on back with knees and legs up like sitting in chair, grab med ball and hold up
  • Rotation is important while running, twisting forces

If a runner or coach said this was all great information, but I have 15-20 minutes to spend with my team before they start running, what should we focus on, how would you guide them on the biggest bang for the buck?

  • Skills and performance workouts in book
  • Skills building muscle memory, lots of bang for buck to rewire central nervous system
  • Identify roadblocks with tests then fix the ones that need working on

One of the things you talked about in the book was pelvis tilt and correcting it by using the stomach muscles to pull up on the front of the pelvis, this is how I was taught so can you talk about why this is wrong and what people should be doing for pelvis tilt?

  • Shortens step
  • Can analogy for strength
  • If lose core position crumbles can

One issue that gets talked about is knee dominate vs hip dominant or pushing vs pulling, what does this look like for a runner?

  • Can look at squatting patterns, squat knee forward position overstride
  • To quad dominant
  • Overstride pushes loads and increases stress per stride
  • Want to move to hip or glute dominant

Running Rewired
An Athletes Body

Jan 31, 2018

Welcome to episode 74 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome back Hoka NAZ Elite Coach Ben Rosario who talks about what he has planned for the Boston Marathon. Ben has two elite runners, Kellyn Taylor and Scott Smith who will be competing in Boston. We are just over 10-weeks out from Boston and Ben is offering three new training plans that are specific to the Boston Marathon. These three plans are tailored to the level of runner you are. In addition to the training plans Ben will have a weekly blog post which talks about exactly how to execute the training plans for the upcoming week. Make sure you check out his plans on and follow along with his professional athletes as they prepare for the unique course that is Boston. 

You have two runners joining the great American field at the 2018 Boston Marathon, want to talk about them?

  • Kellyn Taylor off a top 10 finish in New York City
  • Scott Smith coming off a 2:12 PR in Frankfurt

With Boston you never know what the weather will be like, could be 40 and raining or 75 and sunny, but if the weather is not a factor Boston can be a fast course so is the intention to run a PR at Boston?

  • Net elevation drop can be fast
  • Course-specific work for the downhill
  • Although it is about racing more than time

If you look at the field, especially the women's side, it is an incredibly deep field. Was the goal for Kellyn to always run Boston? 

  • At first, she wasn't sure if she wanted to do a spring marathon
  • Once she decided she wanted to do a marathon, Boston was her choice
  • She is ready to handle the course as well as the level of competition

You make your logs available for all your athletes. But for Boston, you are going a step further with 10-weeks To Boston.

  • This is a plan for the last 10-weeks heading into Boston
  • Specifically prepared for being ready for that course
  • Hills to match the up and down of Boston
  • Train like the pros with three plans that are variations of what Kellyn and Scott are doing
  • Super advanced (120 miles a week), Advanced (75-100 miles a week), Intermediate (50-75 miles a week plan)

You have other plans available for the marathon too, how do these differ from those plans?

  • We have 5 other marathon plans on Final Surge, but these are based on what our athletes are doing specifically for the Boston course 

Can you tell us about the blogging you have planned for these 10 weeks?

  • Will be doing a weekly blog talking about what Scott and Kellyn are doing and how their training is going and second will be talking about the upcoming week, how to execute the workouts on your plan for this week and it will be like you are training with the pros

You have 10 weeks before Boston, what do some of the staple workouts look like during that time?

  • Each week they get closer to specific 
  • Start out mile and a half at marathon pace and gets long specific work as gets closer to race
  • 6 weeks out gets harder with tempos and hills
  • Weekends alternate long runs and longer marathon pace work

You have a document you include with your plans that talk about your terminology. Can you explain how you use the CV workouts in your plan?

  • This is 30-40 minute race pace
  • Faster than marathon pace, but not going to really hammer you
  • Because running so many miles in marathon training gives you some faster work without jeopardizing training

When you get to your long runs are most of them steady or are you working quality into your long runs?

  • Every other week
  • Some carb depleted steady runs
  • Some race pace specific work into your long runs  

There is a lot of specific work to Boston so runners who have never run Boston can be prepared. This weekly blog is going to be able to help a lot of athletes. We want to get on again before Boston to talk about this training some more. 

Jan 24, 2018

Welcome to episode 73 of the Final Surge Podcast. We have had some great runners on this podcast. Neely Spence Gracey, Nick Willis, Nick Symmonds, Dathan Ritzehein, Kim Conley and more, but maybe none has had a bigger influence on the running scene, especially the American running scene like today's guest. Today we welcome American mile record holder, Alan Webb. Alan retired from running in 2014 and has not been seen much around the running community since then, but that is about to change. Alan is part of a group starting a new coaching service called RunDoyen. We talk to Alan about the goals of the business and how you or anyone else can get personalized coaching from him and other professional runners. We also spend a little time talking about his training and the state of American middle distance running. Please remember to share this podcast on social media. 


Before we get to some questions about your career, let’s find out what you have been up to for the last three years. How is the truck repair business?

  • Business has been great

There is a new site and Twitter account popping up called RunDoyen. It has listed yourself, Tara Welling, Ryan Vail, Aaron Braun, Jessica Tonn and more. A tweet said you are launching a new concept that reinvents the way the running community connects. Can you tell us what this project is?

  • Coaching site, schedule time with one of the coaches
  • Video chat
  • Final Surge training logs
  • Message board system
  • Access to professional runners

Will it be a monthly membership service?

  • Purchase Time
  • Purchase Training Plans
  • No monthly fee, packages that are over the course of a training block

What type of training plans are you offering?

  • Mile to marathon
  • Not limiting to one distance, offering variety

If someone is interested in working with you in a mile program, what is the timeframe?

  • Customized to individual
  • Would prefer more time 2-3-6 months to develop
  • Looking to build relationships long-term

What was it about this idea that got you excited to get involved in it?

  • Easy to use packaged online system
  • Can help people around world to work with different people

What else can people expect?

  • Drills, strength training, other things integrated into the training plan
  • Communication between athlete and coach on daily basis
  • Athlete tells us what is going on so we can make adjustments

What type of feedback are you looking for with communications from your clients?

  • What actually got done
  • How you are feeling, how run went
  • Any questions they have for the coaches
  • Video appointments for communications too

Are nutrition and physical therapist you have listed on site included?

  • Different packages
  • Can schedule time with other specialists

These are well-known professionals, what type of client you will be working with?

  • We are all looking for variety
  • More geared towards non-professionals
  • People looking to improve

We know your work ethic and how hard you hit it on your workout days. What is your coaching philosophy?

  • There are times you need to hit it hard, but also time for recovery
  • Recovery balance is important
  • Recovery helps keep you healthy

Will you personally be working with someone who wants to run a longer distance like a marathon?

  • Yes, looking forward to it

When you ran you were known as someone who liked to hit the weight room and hit workouts hard. Was that something specific to Alan Webb or would you incorporate this into your athletes you are working with too?

  • That was specific to me
  • More important for me as a miler than a marathon runner
  • Strength training is important, but specific to athlete
  • Amount/intensity needs to adjust to event/athlete

We had Jonathan Marcus on recently and talked about some of your workouts, will be dusting off your training logs to bring some of those back?

  • Some of it for sure
  • Will be adapted to the athlete/event
  • Some of the basic workouts are great, fun, tough

One of the workouts was a shorter 100's do you remember what your paces were?

  • 400-800 goal race pace
  • Really fast going hard
  • Hardened to faster pace to take edge off the mile

Do you have all your old running logs?

  • Lost some, but have many of them 
  • A few high school years have a few lost
  • Have quite a bit

It has been three years since you retired if you could paint a picture of what that time has looked like?

  • Tore ALC so personal running has taken a dive
  • 2 and 5 year old are handfuls, but going great
  • Wife Julia getting ready to run her first marathon

Do you have any running goals for the future?

  • Would love to run a marathon
  • Would be just to get through it
  • Nick Symmonds is my inspiration
  • Have to get ACL fixed first

You are arguably the greatest US middle distance runner of all time. So when you looked at retiring, why truck repair?

  • Good growth market
  • Enjoyed learning a new skill and been fun

I want to ask you about the mile. When Steve Scott set it, it stood for 25 years before you broke it in 2007. And now it has been another decade and no one has touched it. Why do you think this has been so hard to break?

  • It is a fast time
  • Have to be on and everything go right
  • To stay at the level is difficult, tough to get there

You ran 3:46, that is a well respected time. Is American middle distance running progressing the way it should be?

  • Yes, we are progressing the right direction
  • We are getting medals in major championship races
  • We are seeing on a consistent basis success in big races
  • Big pipeline coming up
  • High School runners are now breaking 4 minutes on a regular basis

What do you think has been the biggest reason for the resurgence?

  • Internet makes it easier to be a track fan

What advice do you have for young high school runners?

  • Persevere and don't worry about people running faster
  • Different runners develop at different ages

You had times in your career that you were plagued by injuries. Looking back at it now is there anything you think you would have done differently?

  • Would have added in more recovery
  • Would have been a little more conservative in workouts
  • Better perspective

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Perfect Mile
Current trainers you are wearing? - Nike Structure Triax
Favorite race? - American Mile Record
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Spaghetti 
Your favorite workout - 800's, 8x800

RunDoyen on Twitter
RunDoyen Website
Alan Webb on Twitter
Alan Webb American record mile race

Jan 17, 2018

Welcome to episode 72 of the Final Surge podcast where today we welcome runner and coach Jacob Puzey. Jacob and I have a great conversation about his early running career and how those experiences and the coaches he worked with influenced who he is today and how he coaches. Jacob was the top Canadian male in Boston in 2017, is the 2016 and 2017 Canadian Road 50K National Champion and has a great coaching resume. Jacob's business Peak Run Performance is teaming up with Final Surge in the coming weeks to offer new coaching services in several languages, so watch out for that.  


Could you give our listeners your background on how you started running back in the day?

  • Middle school basketball player
  • Did not come naturally had to work at it
  • 10th grade started running year round

How did the high school career and running career after high school go?

  • Qualified for Oregon XC State Meet as a senior
  • Tough Oregon high school area
  • Ran against a lot of future D1 college runners
  • Ran for a Junior College who was defending national JC champion
  • 2 National Championships for JC

When did you make the transition into coaching?

  • Took 2 years off after junior college
  • Started training for marathon
  • Developed a love for it again
  • Went back to finish college and did some youth coaching at middle school and high school

You have coached high school runners and ultra runners. What are the foundational principles you take in your coaching philosophy that would be applicable to all runners?

  • Stamina, speed strength, need to work on all of them
  • Nutrition and skills would be emphasized by event

I know from your bio you took over some high school programs that did not have a history of success and you created state championship programs. What did you do to turn around and build those programs?

  • Did not try to make wholesale changes
  • Go in and listen and learn about cultures of team
  • Winning traditions in other sports so was easier
  • Get them to buy into potential in that sport
  • Competed against the great teams

All coaches have influences that have an impact on them as coaches. Who are some of the influences who have impacted your coaching philosophy?

  • Middle school, high school coaches, college coaches
  • Learned different training philosophies from hs/college coaches
  •  Greg McMillian, Joe Vigil

What does the typical athlete you are coaching these days look like, what is their experience level and distances they are training for?

  • From Millenials waiting tables to executive empty nesters
  • All distances
  • Coached people who raced on all 7 continents last year

You are going to be releasing some coaching very soon on Final Surge, how is it you ended up on Final Surge as your coaching platform?

  • While living in Flagstaff ran with some NAZ Elite Guys
  • Heard about NAZ Blogs
  • Worked for Greg McMillian
  • Did not look at it until was ready to launch something
  • Liked easy syncs
  • Right vision behind company

((((30))))What can people expect to find in your packages?

  • Multiple languages
  • Speak the same language as athlete
  • Every coach speaks at least two languages
  • Tailored training plans and 1-0n-1 coaching

How many coaches do you have?

  • 4 with a nutritionist
  • Coaches have experience in several countries to understand unique differences

You have 4 coaches that work on your team, what events do you focus on?

  • All surfaces, all distances, all disciplines
  • Road and trails
  • Stage races
  • Tailor training to person

There are many tools runners use. GPS watches, heart rate monitors, HRV readings, Power Meters. What type of technology do you use?

  • All of it and as little as possible
  • Trail and ultra a lot of metrics thrown out the window
  • Run by feel
  • Like that they are available in Final Surge

You have a lot of running accomplishments, you were the top Canadian male in Boston this year and a lot of success in Ultras. One of your accomplishments is the 50-mile treadmill record you set. When I saw the video this was the first time I had heard of you. How hard was that to run on a treadmill for 5 hours?

  • Was easier than thought
  • Started just below world record pace but found himself going faster
  • Was originally thinking of going for 50k record
  • Didn't expect it to be an hour quicker

Do you use a treadmill often?

  • Yes, in Calgary it is cold
  • Wear microspikes 4-6 months a year when outside
  • Boston training did a lot of treadmill miles
  • When need good footing will use treadmill when cold

You ran the TransRockies with your brother, for those who do not know what the TransRockies is can you tell them and what it was like doing with your brother?

  • 6 Day stage race
  • 8500-12k feet elevation
  • If run at team you all need to be within 2-minutes of each other


Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Once a Runner
Current trainers you are wearing? - Altra Paradigm
Favorite race? - 50k-50miles (3-6 hours)
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Steak, salted chocolate covered almonds
Your favorite workout - Georgetown 400's

Instagram PeakRunPerformance
Twitter @teampeakrun
Twitter @JacobPuzey

Jan 10, 2018

Last summer in episode 56 of the podcast we had on Jonathan Beverly who is a writer at Runner's World and an author of a few running books. He has a new book out called Run Strong Stay Healthy. This book is a great resource for any runner who is interesting in making running a lifetime habit. Most runners end up quitting the sport, but there are several who make it a lifetime habit. Jonathan found 9 keys to focus on to make running a part of your life for life. We talk to Jonathan about those keys and what you can do to stay running. 


We had you on episode 56 to talk about your book Your Best Stride, and now you have a new book out called Run Strong Stay Hungry, can you tell the listeners what this book is about?

  • Keep running for life
  • Care about your running and performance

How did you collect the data for this book?

  • Started with people knew who had been running for a lifetime
  • Started young and running as masters

Why do people stop running?

  • Injuries 
  • Life changes
  • No longer competitive or PR's

I personally stopped a few times either for injuries or life changes but kept coming back.  How many stories do you run into like mine where people fall away from it in different seasons of their life and then come back to it?

  • Several stories, but several wish they could, but don't for several reasons

When looking at why people quit running, Do you find it different between mid-pack runners vs elite runners?

  • Mid-packers have an advantage over elites
  • Non-elites our competition is relative vs. elites ran to win

When you started thinking about the idea for this book and researching, was there anything that you discovered that really shocked you?

  • Most of the people who continue running tend to run by feel, expected they would be more discipline

You mentioned key 3. In the book, you list the 9 keys to stay in the race. Do you find one of these 9 to be a key component that everything points back to?

  • Most who ran for life fell into most of the key areas
  • Those who do have a plan are willing to use it as a rough guide
  • Run by feel helps make you a student of the sport

One of the keys you have is making it a habit, with the New Year there are people who start the year with a run streaks, do you find streaks helpful or not?

  • Both
  • Most are anti-streaks
  • Habits are built when it becomes regular
  • Not am I going to run today, when am I going to run

What advice do you have for making it a habit?

  • Learn to enjoy a run alone
  • Getting anything in is better than nothing
  • Never a bad idea to go for a 30-minute run

Do these lifetime runners work a social aspect into their routine?

  • Yes, most occasionally enjoyed a run with other people
  • Connections to sport with other runners

When I was younger racing and the competition kept me interested. Now it is running with friends and helping others with coaching that keeps me interested. The big difference now is I am very much a student of the sport. I go to clinics, I read constantly and I am always trying to learn more. Can you talk about how being a student of the sport can have an impact?

  • Learn about the sport and training
  • To run by feel you need to be a student of the sport
  • Being a student adds to the interest

Let’s look at technology. there are things like GPS watches and Starva. I could imagine in some ways this may hurt long-term participation but it could also help it by connecting you with others in your community and creating introductions. How do these new technologies have an impact?

  • Community aspect is great
  • Comparing yourself can hurt

You are a high school coach yourself. How did writing this book change you, do you do anything different in your coaching now?

  • Can work to become better
  • Reward and praise progress over results

There are some aspects of this book that can help you stay healthy, what are some of the keys you learned?

  • Trust your body, trust yourself
  • In tune with their bodies

Jonathan on Twitter
Your Best Stride
Run Strong Stay Hungry

Jan 3, 2018

Welcome to episode 70 of the Final Surge Podcast, our first release of 2018. Today we welcome back coach Jonathan Marcus of High Performance West who is also the co-host of the On Coaching Podcast. In this episode, we find out what Jonathan is up to since our first visit over a year ago and take some questions our listeners sent in. Remember if you like the podcast please share it with a friend or on Facebook or FinalSurge where we can be found @FinalSurge.


What is going on with High Performance West?

  • Goal January 5th Full Launch
  • Workout of the day
  • Story/thought of the day
  • Will continue doing daily post with workout and story of the day
  • Have over 5,000 workouts written down to pick from

You recently had a workout from Nick Symmonds. Jerry and Alberto Salazar are two of greatest coaches around and you have stated they are influences on you.  They are big believers in lots of high-end aerobic development, but Nick's workout was anything but. Talk a little his workout and what you took from it?

  • Very fast, 400m and faster pace
  • Have to be cautious and keep people healthy too
  • Learn from your mentors, but find your own flavor and thoughts

What advice do you have for coaches who read your site and the workouts of the day and how they should employ them?

  • Designed to make you think
  • Give you the why and how they did it
  • Context of how it fit in
  • Purpose is to get you thinking and growing

What is your other project Coaching With Craft

  • Goal is short 5-minute videos
  • Contribute to the community of coaches

We wanted to open it up to some of our listeners and we gathered questions from them so let's get into them.

I have heard you talk about doing workouts in a way so that after the hard effort you clear lactate with more aerobic running. I have also heard you say that most of what we know about lactate acid is a myth from the 80’s. What do we know and what should we keep in mind? I do mostly 5k-10k road races with 1 track workout a week.

  • Common interpretation lactate acid is a wall/barrier
  • Lactate is a fuel source 
  • We get to a tipping point where we cannot keep up and acidosis happens
  • Acidosis turns the muscles off
  • Lactate Flush: Since we can buffer, if we give it enough of a buffer then can turn it around to be fuel
  • 400s at 2k pace with 60 seconds rest. At a point, you will be cooked, but what you can do is flushes at 1/2 marathon to marathon pace for 200m, then easy 200, after about 3-4 of them lactate will reset to a point where using lactate as fuel.

Father of a runner who took over the school's indoor track distance team after they were left coachless had a few questions:

What should the warmups-drills-exercises look like?

  • Keep it fun
  • Jay Johnson Lunge Matrix videos
  • Good team bonding time
  • Good to have drill set A/B
  • Observe and watch

You mentioned minimum effective dose often, when do you know when that has been reached?

  • Make sure there is enough left they can do what they need to do tomorrow
  • Watch over time what they can handle

I am a 33-year-old runner who has been running for 3 years. I started for weight loss and fell in love with the sport. I just broke 20 minutes in the 5k which has been a goal for a year. You talk about looking at the canvass and seeing what is missing. That is what I should be working on. How do you know what that thing is?

  • You don't know what you don't know
  • What problems do you need to find a solution to
  • The problems that arise formulate the questions

I have been coaching xc/indoor/outdoor distance for 4 years. I have done a good job developing 1&2 mile runners on the track, but very little luck with developing 800 runners.  I don’t have any of those “jump out of the gym” athletes that you talk about. What types of workouts can I add and when should I add them in?

  • I had the same problem until a few weeks ago
  • Added speed work starting day 1
  • Prperation work/ lifting/ gym work
  • Quick stairs/ Power stairs
  • Plyos

In one of your podcast, you said Alan Webb did not go to altitude but was getting similar results from his lifting. Can you explain this?

  • His cardio was great
  • Hormonal release from lifting similar to performance drugs

One thing you talk about a lot is, after a workout or rep, you ask your runner to walk you through it. It is easy to talk about what happens on a bad rep, but what about ones that are “fine”? Do you dig deeper or take fine as an answer?

  • Depends on the session
  • All about the psychology of what is going on
  • Are they engaged or on auto-pilot

Recently you have talked about how you are spending more time on form and mechanics. Can you talk to us about what you have learned, what you focus on and where should we be going to help educate ourselves on this?

  • Form/mechanics have become more of a focus
  • As a younger coach was more about getting the work in, do more
  • When I hit a roadblock I had to look at different strategies
  • Easier to control from top/arms down
  • Arms like slingshots at acute angle
  • Transitions down to legs

High Performance West
Jonathan Marcus on Twitter
Marcus from Episode 40


Dec 27, 2017

Welcome to episode 69 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome world record holder Camille Herron. In 2017 Camille won Comrades set two American Records and two World Records. Camille has had an interesting journey which has been riddled by injuries and we discuss how she has overcome those and what she has learned to make herself a stronger runner. We also talk about her secret weapon in an ultra race, beer. Camille was great to talk to and I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I did recording it. We are now on Spotify so please remember to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Google Play or Spotify, wherever you consume it.  


In recent weeks Camille has set a 100-mile world record 12:42:39, a
100km USA track record 7:36:39 at Desert Solstice and then went on to run for
12-hours and set a 12hr All-Surface World Record 92.708 miles.
She is the new Ann Trason and arguably, she will be in for a shout as ultra-runner of the year.

How did you get your start in running?

  • Basketball player ran for first time in middle school
  • In high school focused on running
  • Tulsa University scholarship but a lot of injuries
  • Became hobby runner after that

What exactly did your running look like after Tulsa

  • Hobby run
  • Husband ran professionally 
  • Was running long as recreational about 70 miles a week
  • Husband started coaching

How do you go from always injured to running 70 miles a week?

  • Frank Shorter: Run for stress relief
  • Started running slower
  • Biomechanics and physic courses: Started feet strength/barefoot

Where was your minimalist running in relation to Born To Run?

  • 3-4 years before
  • Very minimalist shoes from Boulder Running Company

Moved to minimalist running and your husband is coaching you, where did you jump back into competitive running?

  • Longer distances seemed to be better
  • Focused on qualifying for Olympic Marathon Trials
  • 2007 Marathon debut
  • Ran 2:38 at Twin Cities and it took off

When did you make the jump into ultramarathons?

  • 2009 sponsored
  • Started doing back-to-back marathons
  • Grad school, how to enhance bone recovery

When you talk back-to-back marathons how often are you talking?

  • A few weeks apart
  • 2011 David Monti of NYC Marathon suggested ultra running
  • 2013 made debut
  • Underperformed in the first ultra

We see injury problems from growth spurts, which you had. You also studied bone recovery. What advice would you have now for those struggling?

  • Did too much high intensity
  • Focus on easier aerobic volume development 
  • Don't be afraid of mileage as much as intensity
  • Recover with easy days easy

When did you do the first ultra?

  • 2013
  • 2014 first Comrades but got sick and ended up in the emergency room

You had done marathons, you understand the wall. So what was the first ultra like, was it like you expected or different?

  • Was too cautious
  • Could have pushed more

What is your diet like?

  • Meet and potatoes, wholesome southern diet
  • Eat Taco Bell or Subway day before races 

What about fueling during a race?

  • Naturally good fat burner
  • Diet analyzed and was 50% carbs, 36% fat, 14% protein
  • Take in 60-90g carbs/hr
  • Take gel every 30 mins and sip on sports drinks as needed
  • Will have a beer or whatever body tells me to have

You have a beer during a race?

  • Helped settle stomach
  • If tired of eating gels will have a beer

We are at the end of 2017, can you walk us through what a year looks like for you as a competitive ultrarunner?

  • Have had major highs and lows
  • Started with some trail race in New Zeland
  • March in a race 10 weeks before Comrades tore MCL
  • Took a few weeks off and came back slowly walk/run
  • Won Comrades off injury
  • 3 weeks later Western States, fell and got a concussion
  • Leadville ran into issues with pelvic pain
  • Won Comrades to two DNF and being broken
  • Tunnell Hill 100 

Did at least 8 races this year, a marathoner may do 2-3 races a year. How do you recover so quickly?

  • Family heels quickly
  • Studied recovery in grad school
  • Use active recovery always walking twice a day after a race

I saw you earlier this month at Desert Solstice. We went to see Zach Bitter, but he was out. We saw what you were going after. After 11.5 hours of running on the track in a 1/4mile circle, you still seemed to be smiling so much.

  • In love with running
  • Love what you are doing

Broke Ann Trasons 12-hour record which has stood since 1991?

  • That is why I was smiling, felt great

What was the hardest part of running for 12-hours on a track?

  • Concentration, cannot zone out like on trails
  • Hard to get into the zone

How hard is it to get going again after you have to stop to use a restroom or something?

  • It was hard because it was warm
  • Took 18-minute break, had to start off walking before really got going again pushing

You had two World Records this year, now what for an encore in 2018?

  • Been fun to break the records
  • Want to try for the 24-hour record
  • Need to redeem self on trails
  • Goal to win Western States and Comrades in same year

You are very active online, where can people find you?

Twitter RunCamille
Instagram RunCamille
Facebook RunCamille

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Your favorite endurance/running book? - Lore of running
Current trainers you are wearing? - Nike Zoom Fly
Favorite race? - Comrades
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Cheeseburger and Fries with Beer
Your favorite workout - Long runs with heart rate progression


Dec 20, 2017

Welcome to episode 68 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome competitive runner and coach Korey Konga of Upper Left Distance Training. Korey came to running as a way to change his health. Korey has a successful ultramarathon resume and has transitioned into coaching. If you enjoy this episode please remember to share the love and share it with a friend.

  • How did you get your start in running?
    • Change of lifestyle
  • Started running ultras and picked up sponsors
    • Moved into coaching
  • What was it that triggered you to change your lifestyle and get into running?
    • Jogged a lot on job
    • Friend suggested run a half marathon
    • Running replaced drinking
  • What was the process like developing as runner and becoming an ultra runner?
    • Read blogs and got inspired
    • 6 months after his half marathon he qualified for Boston
    • 3 months later did his first ultra
    • Training errors lead to injuries
  • You mentioned you got hurt a lot the first year. As a coach, what advice do you give newer runners who may run into those injuries problems?
    • Easier said than done, but listen to body
  • What signs are you looking for when working with your athletes to recognize they may be pushing the envelope too far?
    • Watch Final Surge feedback ratings
  • When did you make the transition into coaching?
    • Been coaching for a while, but two years ago opened the business
  • What does your typical athlete you are coaching look like?
    • 1/2 marathon to 100-mile ultra races
  • What was the biggest difference with training between a 1/2 marathon runner and an ultra running?
    • Time commitment and volume
    • As move to more specific stages changes, ultra do a lot of long hill repeats
  • You mentioned the base season may be similar between the 1/2 and ultra, are you talking types of workouts or volume?
    • Volume can be different, but workouts similar
    • All do short hill sprints, strides
  • You mentioned a runner in a pancake flat area, if I had a restriction on hills available to me, how would you recommend someone trains to get in some hill type work?
    • Treadmill
    • Really short hills for sprints
    • Stadium stairs for strength
    • Parking Garage can work
  • When you are building volume for long runs for ultra runners how often do you utilize back to back long runs?
    • Depends on the individual, but not as much as some people
    • Big run on mountains on Saturday, then come back with a faster flat run
  • Do you focus on feel, pace per mile, heart rate, power?
    • Mostly feel
    • Some CV work will use pace per mile
  • What advice do you have to runners looking to make that change about becoming fat burners and if that is important in ultra running?
    • With volume and easy long runs, it just happens
    • Will use depletion runs occasionally
  • For someone making that jump from 1/2 marathon to longer races is fueling the biggest obstacle you face?
    • Mental game
  • Many new runners are probably not thinking about getting a coach. What type of advise do you have to runners who are considering getting a coach, when is the time right?
    • Any time is a good time to have a coach
    • Can avoid a lot of problems and progress quicker
    • Not for everyone
  • Are the athletes you work with mostly online or in person?
    • Almost all virtual coaching
  • Walk me through the process of what it may look like if I reached out to you and what do those conversations look like?
    • Why are you reaching out
    • History, family life, work/life balance
    • Questionnaire
    • Final Surge Invite
  • Do you build in pre/post strength routines or just running plans?
    • Different options
  • We are now entering into winter months, what advice do you have for ultra runners who are going to be spending hours on the trails for training in the winter?
    • No such thing as bad weather, just soft people
  • One of your recent posts recounted an encounter with bears, cougars and more. How do you stay safe?
    • Ton of bear and mountain lions in Oregon and never been an attack, but be aware of surroundings
    • Make sure someone knows where you are going, what loop you are doing
  • You have been very active with your updates and blogging on the site, what information are you trying to provide?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite running book? - Science or Running by Steve Magness
Current trainers you are wearing? - Adidas Adios
Favorite race? - Orchas Island 50k
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Pizza
Your favorite workout -  Gnarley hill repeats


Korey Konga on Twitter

Korey Konga on Instagram


Dec 14, 2017

Welcome to episode 67 if the Final Surge Podcast. Today we welcome back Jay Johnson which is the other half of the podcast we did last week. In this episode, Jay talks about marathon training. We talk about his book Simple Marathon Training, which he points out is not to be confused with easy marathon training. Jay focuses on helping busy people who want to train for a marathon put a plan together. We discuss some of the concepts in his book in this episode.

Listen to the podcast on iTunes or listen to it on Stitcher if you have an Android device.

Stream it right here:

Your book is called Simple Marathon Training: The Right Training For Busy Adults With Hectic Lives. I think most of us think we have busy lives, so does this mean this book is for everyone who wants to run a marathon?

Jay also discusses who the book does not fit.

If someone is is looking to run their first marathon and wants to use your book as a resource to help them get through the process, where do you recommend they come in at? What should their minimum base be?

How much does your book stress strength and mobility work?

You do private online coaching, when someone who is a professional with a family comes to you and says I want to run a marathon, what are the first things you ask them to make sure they are really committed?

You mentioned using fat as a fuel source. When we had Scott Simmons of American Distance Project on and Ben Rosario of NAZ Elite, they both mentioned doing depleted runs or runs to trigger fat for fueling, is this something you focus on with your training?

Simple Marathon Training
Twitter @CoachJayJohnson
Instagram @CoachJayJohnson
Boulder Running Clinic

Dec 6, 2017

Welcome to episode 66 of the final surge podcast where we welcome back Coach Jay Johnson. Jay was the very first guest back in episode 1. In this interview we covered two very distinct topics, we talked about his site High School Running Coach and his upcoming clinic which has a fantastic lineup, and we also talked about his Simple Marathon Training Book and marathon training and fueling. We decided to break it up into two episodes as they were distinctly different. So in this episode, we will be talking about his high school training clinic which Final Surge will be a sponsor. If you have any interest in learning from the best coaches in the country, you will want to be there, and it is very affordable.

The Lineup:

You have John O'Malley - Sandburg (IL)  his boy Dylan Jacobs lead much of the race and is now on his way to the Footlocker National Race.

Dan Iverson Naperville North (IL) - Girls coach who’s girl’s team created one of the most dramatic moments when they came from way back to come within 5 points of knocking of Fayetteville Manilas.

Doug Soles of Great Oaks who’s boys came in 6th and girls came in 8th.

Jonathan Dalby - Mountain Vista whos boys came in 3rd and girls in 6th.

Then Joan Hunter who was our guest here in episode 64 who lead Loudoun Valley’s boy's team not only to a perfect score at their state meet but also a national championship. Can you tell us a little about how this came together?

What topics will they be covering?

5 of the best coaches in the country, it is amazing that these top coaches are sharing and not trying to keep anything a secret.

Jay also talks about why coaches should stick around after the clinic is over on Saturday night and maybe even for Sunday morning.

Twitter @CoachJayJohnson
Instagram @CoachJayJohnson 
Boulder Running Clinic

Nov 29, 2017

Welcome to episode 65 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we talk to Jason Moore. Jason is a coach and the creator of EliteHRV, one of the most advanced HRV apps on the market. EliteHRV now integrates directly into Final Surge. We talk to Jason about what HRV is and how athletes and coaches should be using it to help with their training. 


How did you get started in endurance athletic and how that lead to what you are doing with Heart Rate Variability (HRV) and coaching?

What is HRV?

Is the real value of HRV for an endurance athlete looking at the data to determine how well they are recovered?

How does HRV vary from morning resting heart rate?

If we want to track HRV what equipment do we need to get started?

You mentioned the Polar chest straps, will any ANT+ chest strap work or does it need to be newer?

Your CorSense monitor has a Kickstarter campaign? And where can they find one of them right now?

Your app is EliteHRV. What makes your app different than other HRV apps on the market?

How do you take that morning reading? Do you need a stabilization period or do you take it right away or what is your recommended process?

When someone looks at Final Surge and see’s their numbers, what should they be looking for?

What are we talking about when you are looking at the number going down, what is the variation you want to monitor?

Inside your app everything is color-coded, can you discuss the colors you use and what they are telling you?

What are some non-training factors that could play a role in HRV that we should be aware of?
Follow on Twitter @JasonMooreMe



Nov 15, 2017

Welcome to Episode 64 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome Joan Hunter. Everyone who knows the unpredictability of a high school cross country race. So when a team goes 1-5 for a perfect score it is a pretty special day. When it happens at the State Championship meet it is even more so. When you get the top runners from around the state it is hard to have 1-5 all from the same school. That is exactly what Joan’s team Loudoun Valley did this past weekend in Virginia. We talk to Joan about her training philosophy, her expectations for the season and what she expects at Nike Regionals. If you want to hear more from Joan, she will be speaking at the Boulder Running Clinics coaches conference put on by Jay Johnson.

Can you give us your background on your running, how you got started with running and how that ended up with your current coaching position?

If you were a 2x State Champion but never ran until you were a Junior in high school, that means you had a lot of natural talent. Did you not realize your ability when you were younger?

What did your post-collegiate running career look like?

I believe you used Tom Tinman Schwartz as a personal coach for a while?

What have you learned from Tom, what training philosophies have you taken away from what he has done in the past that you use in your coaching?

Your team just went 1-2-3-4-5 for a perfect score of 15 at the Virginia State meet on the boys' side, how does that feel?

Going into state what was the game plan, did each runner have their own race play or did you have a team plan for them?

How did the race develop, did they go straight to the front and lead or did they close later?

A few years ago you had a good team that was dominated by your son, sub-4 miler Drew Hunter. How does this team differ now that you have so much more depth?

How much did having Drew as part of the program help grown the program?

Coming into this season your boys were talked about as possible NXN title contenders. Did the team set any goals coming into the season or did you talk to them about expectations at all?

Last year your boys went to Nike Regionals and came in third and just missed an automatic bid to Nationals. This year you are currently ranked as the #1 team in the country, I know you can never take for granted you will win a Nike Regional race, but how confident is your team going into the qualifier?

How do you keep your team ready in this two-week block leading up to Nike?

What does your week this week look like?

During the season do you use training blocks like a 3-4 week period or do you look at the season as a whole?

You came in 3rd at Nike Regional last year, what did you learn, how has your training changed leading into this year?

What is the breakdown of your team between seniors, juniors, sophomores?

You talk about how you progress your runners, how does the training differ between the top sophomores vs what a senior may do?

How have you been using Final Surge in your planning this year?

You are going to be speaking at Jay Johnson’s Boulder Running Clinics this winter in January, do you know what your topic will be?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Healthy Intelligent Training- Keith Livingstone
Current trainers you are wearing? - Adidas
Favorite race? - 800
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Smoothie
Your favorite workout - 200 repeats


Coaching Clinic with Joan Hunter put on by Jay Johnson

Tinman on Final Surge 

Drew Hunter on Final Surge

Joan Hunter on Twitter

Nov 8, 2017

Welcome to episode 63 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome back Ben Rosario the head coach of Northern Arizona Elite. Ben just had four guys run 2:13 or under and had two of his female runners crack the top 10 at the NYC Marathon. We talk about this fall and how the training went and then we spend the majority of the podcast talking about marathon specific training and his training plans that he has available on Final Surge. If you have interest in the marathon you are going to love this episode.

Ben, we had you in episode 4, and people can hear your background there and we had you on again in episode 44 talking about high school summer running training. Today I want to focus on some marathon talk, sound good?

Your crew at NAZ Elite has had quite a fall on the marathon course. Let me run down a few of these.

I believe it was in Chicago you kicked off the season where you had Aaron Braun run a 2:13

Then in Frankfurt, you had Scott Fauble make his marathon debut, Matt Llano come back from a long injury and run a strong race and then Scott Smith set a 2 1/2 minute personal best in the Marathon. So let’s start there with the guys. Four men 2:13 or under, that is quite some depth at the marathon. Including a great debut by Fauble. How happy were you with the results?

Was there a reason for Frankfurt?

On the women’s side, you had both Kellyn and Steph run in NYC. And they both had top 10 finishes. Did they both decide to do NYC so they could train together?

For a marathon to go well there is a lot that needs to go right. Not only on race day but also in training. So what went well that allowed you have such great finishes?

You have this long list of elite athletes, but you also develop plans for non-elite runners. One example is you worked recently with Matt Fitzgerald and helped him run a PR 10 years after his best. Want to talk about that?

We cannot talk about NYC without at least mentioning what Shalane Flanagan did becoming the first American women to win in 40 years. What does this mean for American running?

You have proven you can certainly coach marathon runners, so let’s talk about some marathon training.

On Final Surge at you have some training plans that are available for purchase including 5 marathon plans. The 5 marathon plans are a beginner, intermediate, advanced, elite and the Eric “Big Dog” Fernandez Awesome Marathon Plan, can you tell us what the difference is between these?

How does someone know which they should get?

Let’s talk about little bit about that beginner plan. The plan starts at 25 miles a week and builds up to 48-50 miles. And It looks like one long run up to 20 miles.
The first couple of weeks is all easy runs with a long run one day a week. A newer runner who is running their first marathon may not know what their paces should be, how would you tell them to find their easy run and long run paces?

In week three you start adding workouts with a fartlek. Some people say you should wait longer into a buildup why are you adding in a fartlek here?

After you start workouts, so you are getting to the end of your first month, what should a beginner marathoner’s week look like for training, how many days should they be running and how many should be workouts or long runs?

Later on in the plan, you introduce in the medium-long run. How does this compare to the long run?

What about races, how often do you recommend shorter races for someone training for a marathon?

One of the workouts is a workout that many, who have trained for shorter races, know well, but you are using it in the marathon and that is a 12x400. What is the purpose of this workout for a marathon runner?

As I mentioned earlier you hit high of about 50 miles, the week before the marathon you run 41 miles. Talk about the taper and what athletes do wrong with the taper?

The marathon is a completely different beast than the shorter races when it comes to fueling. And within that I would assume there is a big difference between someone who is running a marathon in 2.5 hours vs someone who is running a marathon in 4.5 hours is that true?

What about workouts, what workouts are you doing to allow them to handle the wall better are you doing carb depleted workouts?

What is the difference in race-specific workouts for beginner plan vs a more advanced plan?

In your log runs you seem to spice them up quite a bit with surges and adding in workouts into them?

NAZ Training Logs and Training Plans
Ben Rosario on Twitter
Northern Arizona Elite on Twitter
Northern Arizona Elite Website

Episode 4 with Ben Rosario




Nov 1, 2017

Welcome to Episode 62 of the Final Surge Podcast.  Today we get the honor of talking to Bart Yasso. Many of you know Bart as the longtime writer at Runner's World. Bart has been at Runners World for over 30 years and has become known as the Mayor of running. Bart has a new book called “Race Everything.” In Bart's new book he gives his thoughts on the changes in running, he talks about every race distance from 5k up to ultra’s and triathlons, he talks about his favorite workouts for each distance and provides training plans. We really enjoyed this conversation with Bart and hope you do too.

You have been around a long time, and many know your story, but for those who have not heard, can you give us a few minutes of how you got your start in running and how it lead up to where you are today.

What are some of the things that have changed for the better in the decades you have been involved in running?

I am sure you remember those early days with the fancy Timex Ironman and Casio watches we used to wear. Do you like technology advances like the GPS watch, heart rate monitors and power meters?

We have all heard of the selfie, but now we have the “Bartie”, this is when you take a selfie at events with a group of runners, how did this first start?

You do an amazing job connecting with everyday runners and I am sure that over the years that helped the Runners World brand. There are some professional runners that connect well too, but I would say most do not. Do you think the sport could benefit from the elite athletes spending a little more time trying to connect on social media and at events with the everyday runner?

Your new book is called “Race Everything.” When I got it I was not sure what to expect, but I really enjoyed the format which we will get into. So what brought about the book?

In the book, you write about some of your favorite races at different distances, and I think you have raced more than 1000 races?

So with that many races under your belt, you are more than qualified to answer a few questions on races. What makes a great race?

If a new runner is looking for their first race is it better for them to pick a large race like the Austin 10k or Carlsbad 5000, or is it better for them to get into a small local race that may only have 150 runners in it?

In the book, you give some good training advice in general and for each race distance. The 5k has become the most popular race distance to run. What makes the Carlsbad 5000 your favorite 5k race?

Another thing you talk about is racing series. There are many summer series and such where they race often. What advice do you have for someone who trying to decide how often to race?

It seems to me one of the fastest growing race distances in popularity is the half marathon. If someone is jumping up into a 1/2 from a 5k or 10k, what race day advice do you have for them that they should be considering?

And for the marathon, a key workout for you, and for thousands of runners over the year has been the Yasso 800s, which I believe Amby Burfoot coined the term for in your honor correct?

With the Yasso 800's you do them at marathon time, that is not the same thing as marathon pace if you are expecting a 2:50 marathon you are doing the 800’s in 2:50?

When should athletes do them in their training cycle and how often?

One of the things you talk about is building mileage, there is a good rule of thumb that most people use that says no more than 10% increase, while other's point to the fact that there is zero scientific evidence that supports that, so what is your suggestions on mileage buildup for someone who is looking to run a longer marathon or ultra?

So with this book, you have announced the end of your Runner’s World career. What will the future hold, can we still expect to see the Mayor in the future?

Final Surge Round: 5 questions in under a minute
Your favorite endurance/running book? - Anything by Amby Burfoot
Current trainers you are wearing? - Hoka OneOne and Altra
Favorite race? - 50miles
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Pizza
Your favorite workout - 5x1mile

Bart Yasso Website
Bart Yasso on Instagram
Bart Yasso on Twitter
Race Everything
Final Surge on Twitter
Final Surge on Facebook
Podcast Episode 3 with Amby Burfoot


Oct 25, 2017

We were supposed to have Runners World’s Bart Yasso on the podcast this week, but he had some technical difficulties so we had to reschedule his interview. This week we bring you one of our earliest and most popular episodes where we talked to Tom Tinman Schwartz for an hour about training. This is probably the most detailed training episode we have done to date. 

Oct 18, 2017

In episode 61 of the Final Surge podcast, we welcome coach Jim Vance who literally wrote the book on power meters of runners with his book Run With Power. Power meters have been around for a while with cyclists, but for runners, they are fairly new. Final Surge recently started importing Stryd’s power numbers from Strava and Garmin. We talk to Jim about what some of those numbers mean and how he used power training to coach Ben Kanute to his recent runner-up at the 70.3 Worlds. I just recently started playing with a Stryd power meter so I learned a lot as I did this podcast. This is a topic we will continue to cover as we become more familiar with it and as the technology continues to advance. If you are listening to this podcast when it first comes out you head over to or to our @FinalSurge Twitter account and register for a chance to win a free Stryd running power meter.

Listen to the podcast on iTunes or listen to it on Stitcher if you have an Android device.

Stream it right here:


You coach some great Triathlon athletes including Olympian Ben Kanute, how did you first get started in endurance athletics and how did that lead to coaching today?

Let’s start here, most endurance athletes have heard about power meters for the bike, but what is the power meter for running?

How can a power meter help a runner? If someone gets a new power meter, what is the first thing a runner should do?

What is your power number that you get, what does it mean?

Once I have a dataset of 4-6 weeks of runs, what numbers should I be looking at and trying to change and improve?

How will power numbers differ for different workouts like a long run vs a tempo run?

As a coach, I am trying to understand this better. If we are doing a 7x1k workout at tempo, how do I use a power number?

Can you talk about these zones and how you use them to write workouts?

What is the biggest difference in power numbers you are going to see in newer runners vs more experienced runners?

What would be a significant change in these numbers, what are you looking for in numbers?

Facebook question: So, page 205 (Power book by Vance) says the analysis should explore the following key metrics in the post-race analysis: NP, IF, VI, TSS, EI, CTL the day before race day, TSB on race day, w/kg during the race, power zone distributions, point in the race where power and/or pace dropped off. This appears to be the story that emerges which should guide your next training cycle. Is there a simplified way to understand that story? I realize I should look at the numbers and decide a weak area...but that's a lot of numbers! Can you guide our eye for making decisions about the next step in training?

You recently released some plans on Final Surge for running with power, can you tell us what is in those plans?

You mentioned Ben Kanute ran a 340 for power in a 70.3 race, when we are looking at the power number in Final Surge should we be aiming for a certain number.

Run With Power
Vance on Twitter
Vance Training Plans

Oct 11, 2017

If you are following us on Twitter @FinalSurge or on Facebook you have probably seen the project with Matt Fitzgerald we have been helping to promote called The Running Bum. Matt sees what it is like when a decent age group runner in his mid-40s becomes a full-time runner and joins Ben Rosario’s Northern Arizona Elite Team as a member.  We discuss with both Matt and Ben what the experience was like and what Matt learned that he can use in his coaching. Thanks for following the Running Bum blog online and enjoy this episode we did with Matt and Ben. 

What brought on this idea to go run and train with a professional group?

Why NAZ Elite and Ben Rosario, is there a reason you reached out to them specifically?

Ben, what were your thoughts when he reached out to you?

When did the training start for the Running Bum project?

Where were you in your marathon fitness in November when you reached out to Ben about the project?

What was your marathon PR before this project?

Ben, what did you think when he approached you saying he wanted to run a PR 9-years later?

Was there a moment after you arrived in Flagstaff that you thought this may be different than I thought it would be?

You faced some setbacks with injuries, a groin issue, an Achilles issue. I know you say you have a long history of injuries. Training with pros, this could have gone anyway on the injury front. Can you talk about the setbacks and what you learned from them?

Ben, was there a point where you got concerned or did these health issues not surprise you?

How long did it take to get you adapted to the altitude in Flagstaff?

Besides training at altitude, what do you think changed the most about your training when you started training with professionals?

Ben, when you have a team, you have a team chemistry. When you add in a new athlete it can change the atmosphere and chemistry of the team. How did it go adding Matt in?

Reading the stories on the blog, you talk about the conversations with the other athletes on the runs. This was one of the more enjoyable parts. What was it like running on a team when you were not used to it?

Was there anything about the structure of the week or the workouts that surprised you?

Ben, what would a 9-day cycle look like a month out from the race?

Was there anyone workout that you saw that stood out as it looked hard and had you worried?

What did you learn from this experience that you can use in your coaching going forward? 

I was looking at your splits per mile on your Final Surge Log, you started out with a 6:02 per mile pace. Every mile after that was right around there within about ten seconds. Your last couple of miles show a 6:02, 6:07, 6:03 pace. You don't seem to have hit the wall and were pretty consistent, how did this vary from past marathons you have done?

Ben, we have a lot of recreational runners trying to get better. If you had someone at home who had a full-time job, kids at home and were busy, what advice would you give them to running a successful marathon where they don't hit the wall?

What was it like being in the same coral as the elite runners at a world major marathon?

Was there any point in the race you had any concerns?

Ben, was there a point you were concerned it would not go as well as it did?

Whats next, are you ready to go after a mile PR?


Matt Fitzgerald Website 
The Running Bum blog 
Final Surge entry for Matt’s actual Chicago Run 
Northern Arizona Elite 
Matt on Twitter
Ben on Twitter 
Final Surge on Twitter
Final Surge Facebook page
Matt’s Final Surge Episode 29 recording 

Sep 27, 2017

Make sure you check out the Running Summit at


Follow us on Twitter @FinalSurge

Sep 20, 2017

Welcome to Episode 59 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome legendary coach Dennis Barker. Dennis was the long-time coach of Team USA Minnesota where his athletes achieved 75 top 3 finishes in US Championships and 29 different athletes made world championships teams. We talk about some fundamentals of training and his new book The River Road.


How did you get your start in running?

You founded Team USA Minnesota in 2001, at that time there was Team Hanson, Mammoth, maybe Oregon Project around that time, how has that team aspect lead to a resurgence in American distance success?

We were solid in the 70’s and 80’s, and we have had this resurgence, what happened in the 90’s where the US fell off the map so badly?

USATF teaches a strict periodization where coaches such as Salazar do more year-round training, how have you seen that change?

You mentioned you ran a lot of local races. If you look at local 5k/10k runners, how should they structure their year of training?

How does a coach who has coached 29 World qualifiers move to high school coaching?

How is training different besides just the volume?

Your new book The River Road is a novel, the running community had Once A Runner, was your goal to write the next great running novel?

As you wrote this you got the chance to think about the last 30-40 years of running. What has changed the most over that time?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite running book? - Coe/Martin Training
Current trainers you are wearing? - Asics
Favorite race? - Carrie Tolleson 1500 Final 2004 Olympic Trials
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Octoberfest Beer
Your favorite workout - 8x1200, 24x100m hills

River Road Book

Dennis on Twitter

Sep 13, 2017

Welcome to episode 58 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome Jens Jakob Andersen. Jens founded, a website with the goal to help you find your next pair of running shoes and to offer you a deal on them. In this episode, we talk about the growth of RunRepeat, how free shoes could bias results of these reviews and what are some of the trends he is seeing in shoes. Please remember to leave us a review on iTunes. Your review will help us grow our podcast. Next week we have one of the legends of coaching who will be joining us to talk training.  

How did you get your start in running?

How did your passion for running lead you to create RunRepeat?

When did RunRepeat start?

Can you explain to our listeners the goal of RunRepeat?

Each shoe has a number score associated with it, how does the rating system work?

Reviews are from experts on other sites and users who review the shoes on your site?

Who are these expert reviewers that work for you?

If reviewers are getting free shoes, can it cause a bias in the reviews?

If a new shoe was provided for free, will they look at the reviews and treat you differently?

How many miles do they run in a pair of shoes before they review?

What are some of the current trends you see in running shoes that seem to be having a good impact?

What about the Nike 2 hour shoe, what do you think of that shoe project?

All this money goes into marketing to say their shoe is the best. So how does someone find out what is the best shoe for them?

When I was younger I run almost solely in the Asics GT 2020 line and its successors, in the last decade though I almost never buy the same shoe two times in a row. Do you find people tend to buy the same shoe each time or do they tend to jump around between brands and models?

If I am always buying something new, I need to go into a store to try them on. If someone is buying online would you recommend they stick to the same shoe because they cannot try them on?

When do you know its time for new shoes?

Do you find the shoes that rate the highest are the most popular shoes that companies market the most or do you find no relationship between ratings and popularity?

We have had some new companies emerge over the last few years such as the Sketchers Performance line and Under Armor, what do you see as up and coming running shoe lines?

They recently signed King Cheserek to a deal which is a huge name. I had a pair of GoRuns about two years ago and if I am being honest, they were probably the most comfortable running shoes I ever owned, but they broke down really quickly. What are you seeing from them and the ratings?

I noticed one of your studies showed that the higher the priced shoe, the lower the ratings were, is that because people have unreasonable expectations when they spend more or why do you think that is?

You have a study which was ironically posted on your website on July 4th that said American runners are getting slower. But when we look at the Olympic A standard qualifications like the 5k, they the standard was faster in 2016 than it was in 2012, and we had more people who hit the faster A standard. So the elites are not getting slower, so tell us about this report?

Is it because more people who would have never considered doing a marathon before are now doing it for charity?

What other interesting studies do you have coming out?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite running book? - Shoe Dog
Current trainers you are wearing? - Declined
Favorite race? - Norway 1k vertical climb
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Chocolate
Your favorite workout - 10x400 with 1 minute rest + 3 min rest then 10x200 with 1 minute.

Email Jens
RunRepeat Website

Sep 6, 2017

In Episode 57 we welcome Carrie Lane, Sports Performance Coach at Authentic Performance Center, USTFCCA Strength Training Certification Instructor. Former track and field coach at University of Nebraska and University of Virginia.


How did you get your start in endurance athletics when you were younger?

You are known for your strength training, but you ran collegiately as a distance runner, can you tell us how you got made that transition?

A lot of young athletes, especially distance runners, are becoming more specialized. How important is building an endurance athlete even more so than just a distance runner to remain durable and for consistency?

You mention plyometrics, when do you move athletes from plyos to getting under the bar and lifting?

When you read about coaches like Percy Cuerety, and runners like Sebastian Coe we hear a lot about strength training that is not running specific. So where do we start in build dynamic runners?

How often would you do the skipping and dynamic warm ups?

How would the warm up differ before a recovery day vs a workout day?

Over a course of a week, what type of structure should all these exercises have?

Carrie discusses using a rope for hurdle mobility drills.

When you finally get into a weight room, how often should an athlete be in the weight room?

On those weight room days would you recommend getting them in on a workout or easy day?

Should the weight room days be done in a different part of the day like run in the AM and weights later in the day?

We think of strength work for a sprinter or thrower, but why is it important to work on strength for endurance athletes?

What about the differences between male and female, what areas are different that they need to work on?

We recently started doing a band routine a day post run. How much band work do you typically incorporate?

If you have some dynamic warm-ups leg swings before you run, then you have core work almost daily. Work in some band work. You have some plyo work and you are getting into the weight rooms a few times a week, is there a point for a distance runner where the returns are just not worth the extra time you are doing?

You have a program you have made available for distance runners, can you tell us about that and what is included.

Strength Program 

Carrie on Twitter
Carrie on Instagram 

Aug 23, 2017

Welcome to Episode 56 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we welcome Jonathan Beverly an author at Runner’s World and is a former Editor at Running Times. Jonathan has recently released the book Your Best Stride. We dig into what your best stride is and how you get there. We have been getting a lot of great feedback over our iOS App and the updated Android App is being worked on as we speak. Make sure you download the app and review it in the App iStore. Also follow us on Twitter and Facebook @FinalSurge.

How did you get your start with running?

How did you transfer from a high school runner to the editor of Running Times?

You have a new book called Your Best Stride. What made you decide to write this book?

You have been running since 1980 so you have been around, is there anything you learned while writing this book that really surprised you?

Let’s start digging in with upper body and the role it plays. I have a sophomore girl who just joined our team who is a first-time runner. Day one she held her arms way up and pretty much in front of her, can you talk about the role the arm swing plays in our stride?

You stress all things starting at the hip, can you talk about how important the hip is?

How do we get our hip flexors extended or loosened?

How do you make sure you glute bridges are right so you make sure you feel it in your glutes, not your hamstrings?

Your Best stride, how does that differ from the best form for all?

One thing that is discussed all the time when we are talking about stride is foot strike. How important is foot strike?

How can someone with a large overstrike work on their mechanics to fix this?

Can you talk about what we are doing for the 22.5 hours a day we are not exercising and how it effects our running?

What do you recommend about running shoes and switching them up? If you find a shoe that seems to work should you buy a bunch and stick with it or should you switch them up?

When you are going to the running store and they look at you and say you over pronate, what would you recommend?

We all want our best stride, what cues can we use to check ourselves while we are running?

What are some other things you can briefly tease our listeners with that are included in your book?

What are you working on now, any other books you have coming?

Final Surge 5 questions in under a minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Road Racing for Serious Runners
Current trainers you are wearing? - Topo Fli-lyght 2
Favorite race? - 10 miles
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Peanut butter and honey sandwich
Your favorite workout - Tempo run


Jonathan on Twitter 

Your Best Stride

Aug 16, 2017

Welcome to episode 55 of the Final Surge Podcast where today we do something a little different. This week we talk to a variety of professional coaches who coach Olympic athletes, high school coaches who are among the most successful in the country, professional athletes and coaches who coach mostly online and we talk to them about training logs. We ask them who should be using a training log, what should be included in the log and their experiences with training logs. Now onto the show.

This week’s guests

Drew Wartenburg
Norcal website
Norcal on Instagram
Norcal on Twitter 
Drew on Twitter 

Neely Spence Gracey
Neely Website 
Neely on Instagram 
Neely on Twitter 

Mario Fraioli
Mario Website 
Morning Shakeout 
Mario on Twitter 

Joan Hunter
Joan on Twitter

Matt Fitzgerald
Running Bum Blog
Matt on Twitter 

Sean McCaffery
CBA on Twitter 

Kyle Kranz
Kyle on Twitter 
Kyle Website 

1 « Previous 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Next » 8