Sharon, a writer in her mid-40s, is not someone to back down from things that scare her; triathlons were no exception. “It scared me. And I knew if it scared me, I should probably do it because at the end of it, I would come out stronger,” Sharon explains.
She decided to give it a shot, and she turned to Coach Jason for help, in particular, with her running. “What I love most about Jason’s training was his constant cheerful attitude and his concern when I was feeling like, ‘I can’t do this,’” says Sharon. “He always listened to me and talked me through what it was I felt I couldn’t do.”
This approach also helped Sharon to not only become a better runner, but to avoid injury. The process, for Sharon, was efficient and effective. “Before I trained with Jason I was a heel/toe runner, which is fine for some people, but I was getting a lot of knee pain on longer runs,” Sharon recalls. “He came to my house and took a video of me running on the treadmill and in one session tweaked what I needed to do to run in better form for me.”
The result? Sharon reached a level of cardiovascular fitness that impressed even her athletic husband, and discovered that she had fallen in love—with running. “On my long run days I don’t use anything—no music, no Garmin, no heart rate monitor,” Sharon explains. “I simply go out and run. The slap slap of my feet is almost meditative and I take in everything around me. Three years ago I wouldn’t have thought that was possible.”
Even though Sharon was able to improve her fitness and form, her biggest gain wasn’t the physical improvement, in the end. “Oftentimes your brain will give out before your body,” Sharon says of her “aha” moment. “When I realized it was my mental game I needed to work on, the physical stuff all fell into place.”
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