Absolutely grilling Steve Finley, Director of Community and Head Coach of our upcoming fall marathon support group, The Program. (Applications open Friday.)
Hello Steven, if that's really your name...
Hi Tim, how are you?
We'll get to that later. Tell me: Who are you anyway?
What is happening? I'm guessing you want my credentials? Well, I ran in college at UVA and Oregon where I was an All-American in the steeplechase. After that, I ran professionally with Nike Oregon Track Club, then became an assistant coach for two years. We sent 18 of our 24 athletes to the London Olympics. Fast forward a bit and I joined the Nike Running team in NYC where I was the Head Coach for Programming and Marathon Training for five years. During that time, I also founded Brooklyn Track Club.
That's enough bragging, thanks. Now, what exactly is a marathon support program?
A marathon support program creates an environment where athletes are provided with the resources they need to approach marathoning confidently. Confidently is really the key here. The Program will guide and support athletes through 16 weeks of training with plans, detailed advice, educational resources, best practices, personal experiences, etc.
Sounds fake. Why are you lying to me?
It's very real. Training plans usually cost a ton and you're left to do it on your own, and personal coaching is also not as accessible or scalable for the community. The Program gives you access to coaching and training for free. We'll also provide access to resources that would be typically hard to find, like PT, prehab, strength and mobility, nutrition, you name it.
*Looks down at notes under "brain buster" section.* Here's one for ya, what's the difference between a "training" program and a "support" program?
A "training" program is more hand-holdy, whereas a "support" program operates to empower you to adapt your training plan into your own life. Does that make sense?
No, not at all. Okay, trick question, will this make me faster?
That's not a trick question. That's very much the whole idea. If you’re able to engage with the training program and approach it the right way, you’ll see yourself improve. We're going to be downloading all of the best practices of training for our participants. They'll all become wiser, smarter runners holistically. Not just for this one cycle, but for all future ones, too.
If I'm in the virtual group, how am I supposed to bond with people? RIDDLE ME THAT, COMMUNITY MAN.
I'm glad you asked. Virtual can be difficult, but we're going to actively be facilitating connections and group runs. This is also where our Strava will come in. All the participants will be invited to join our Strava group and you'll be able to see everyone doing the weekly workouts. On top of that, we're creating various opportunities to come together online, like during our orientation and monthly zoom calls.
Somebody sent you these questions beforehand, didn't they? Give it to me straight... What's the key to having a great training cycle?
We've literally been planning this for months. Anyway, the key is consistency. The Program is a bedrock for people to stay consistent with their runs and their progress through all of the ups and downs of the cycle. You want to be informed about the obstacles along the journey and maintain that consistency that'll have you showing up confidently on race day.
You're advertising this as a fall marathon support program. Wow, Mr. Specific! Can you tell us which ones?
About 70% of the resources we offer in The PRogram will be applicable to any marathon, whether that's Chicago, Berlin, etc. We're beginning 10 weeks out from Berlin and 12 weeks out from Chicago. However, the laser-focus will of course be geared towards New York. We're launching just ahead of the 16 week mark.
You're a good man and I appreciate you.
Thanks. I'm calling HR.
Okay, that was slightly more than 5 questions. Just keepin' ya on your toes. Thanks for reading and get ready to sign-up for The Program this Friday!