Don't know if happy to be done with hills, or excited to show coach new level of awesome.

Don’t know if happy to be done with hills, or excited to show coach new level of awesome.

Coaches are totally a thing at the moment huh?

There are coaches for EVERYTHING. And to be perfectly honest, I thought they were a bit wanky for a really long time. I mean really, if you can’t do things for yourself then you should just toughen up and figure it out right?

The problem with that kind of thinking, as I discovered, was that unless you are wonderwoman (which I certainly am not) it leaves you floundering in all the areas that aren’t your speciality. Sure, you might be awesome at a bucketload of things but I will bet there are just as many that you are rubbish at or that you outright do not even understand.

I am really great at putting words together usually. I am good at motivating people, and I am pretty impressive at creating a community. I do all these things with love and passion, and they bring me joy.

I have about three clues about business development though. And I could not write a training plan to save my life (or my marathon). And sure I could Google and search and find all the information that I need, but I would still be winging it all by myself and just hoping for the best. And to be honest, I really like not being the only one giving me kudos and high fives.

So I swallowed my pride and I got myself some coaches.

BEST investment EVER.

I have an amazing business coach who has guided me, helped me plan and develop in ways I’d never have considered, and supported me every step of the way. She has had a huge impact on me and on my business, and I could not be happier.

I also have the world’s most patient and supportive running coach. I’m lucky enough to be training for my first marathon in the company of others also training for ‘big first’ events and I can’t think of anything better than to have such a high level of support and guidance, along with a team of like minded women cheering me on as I go.

There are any number of plans I could have downloaded for free. I could have followed them to the letter and no doubt they would successfully prepare me for my marathon. But they wouldn’t have given me a nudge on the cold and windy mornings when I was struck down with the CBF’s. They wouldn’t have punched the air with me as I pulled PB’s on my tempo runs and started running distances I never have before. And they certainly wouldn’t be there on race day with a massive hug.

My coach will be there though. My team will be there. And I will be there for them too, with high fives and hugs and tears, because I know their journeys to race day just like they know mine.

I’m learning more and more the older I get that the true value in most things is about people. Not numbers or data or directions or instructions, but the source that they come from. Nothing can beat knowing that someone out there is thinking of you and they’ve got your back.

Our Event Training course offers custom plans for 10k, half and full marathons along with small group support and a nurturing, motivating environment. Maybe it’s time you got yourself a coach too?

Zoey Dowling

Written by: operationmove

You may also like these posts
How to hijack your motivation before it disappearsPodcast: Episode 29 - Coaches. Not just for hipsters and billionaires.

Leave A Reply:

(optional field)

  1. <3 <3 Such inspiration. I love the idea of coaches in our lives. I think in our ideal society you would have all these people around you, in your close knit community who help you with all the things that you need help with. Operation Move is that community for those of us who do not have all the support around us that we need. So YAY for OpMove xx <3

    • Zoey Dowling

      I love my coaches to pieces :) I just need a housework coach and an anti-procrastination coach now ;p xx

  2. Zoey Dowling

    Excellent post! I have a pretty awesome running coach too and yes best investment in my running ever. So much easier and more fun than "going it alone".

    • Zoey Dowling

      Our team is so amazing Rach, we feel so blessed to be able to work with you all :)

  3. I've used a coach for several years and love the support and knowledge they have as well as the group training environment. Unfortunately there are so many groups and individuals these day's who bill themselves as coaches but aren't fully trained or qualified to provide a coached course so you need to be careful and choose wisely.

    • Zoey Dowling

      So true Louise. It is so important to understand the qualifications behind your coach, and I think another thing that can make a big difference is the personal relationship you develop with them. I know with both of my current coaches there has been a deep respect and appreciation for their particular skills from the outset and I'm sure that is a key to the great successes I've had with them so far. On the flip side I've had the odd coach/trainer in the past that I just haven't hit it off with, and all the qualifications in the world won't help if those interpersonal skills aren't strong I tend to think.

      • Not always Kate. A previous coach of mine was a highly qualified former elite runner. He didn't have the best interpersonal skills, in fact he once mistook me for someone else, but his knowledge and experience well and truly countered that. He could pick a weakness in my form a mile away, tell me how to fix or send through strengthening exercises to remedy. If I had a question he knew the answer or where to seek the answer. His talk was simple and his plans successful because he knew running. I learnt a lot in a time because he had the experience to share and ultimately that was most important.

        • Zoey Dowling

          Ohhh I think we are talking about very different types of coaching Louise. I would be REALLY upset if my coaches didn't know who I was! But then my running (and business) goals are probably very different to other people's too, different strokes :) I do know that in terms of what WE offer people, whilst all our training plans are overlooked by experienced and qualified trainers as Zoey completes her qualifications and we have a qualified social worker and life coach within all of our groups to ensure we are taking care of the mental health of our participants as best we can (and while I further my own education in the field as well), it isn't the training plans that people join us for. We're about giving all women the opportunity to learn and develop and feel good about themselves by increasing their physical fitness and nurturing their emotional health in a secure and supportive environment rather than smashing out PB's or meeting race goals. Of course a lot of our crew do that as well and we celebrate with them every step of the way, but that isn't what Operation Move is about at its heart. Maybe I needed to be more clear about that within the post, I need to not assume people who read here are already active within our community and understand how we work :) So thankyou, I'll be sure to be clearer about things like this in future!

  4. Personally when I look for a coach I want someone who has extensive years as a coach and / or has a long history in the sport and appropriate coaching levels for their sport (eg I wouldn't go to a PT and expect for a run program, although it certainly see this happening). I also look at their results with other athletes and their ability to customise training to suit me. If they are just going to give me the same program that they give everyone else, then I may as well find one of the many free or low cost programs and do it myself. I recently saw a case of a 'coach' who was actually just selling someone else's programs as her own. With the internet it's easy to get caught up with marketing hype so I think it's also important that people do their research on coaches or programs before committing.

    • Zoey Dowling

      Hi Judy, thanks for your comment :) I absolutely agree with what you've written here, but with respect I think you've misunderstood or missed the point of my post. I appreciate your taking the time to share your thoughts though. Cheers :)

  5. That may not have come across clearly but what I was trying to say is that yes I agree having a coach is a great thing. But unfortunately there are people out there who offer little more than a cookie cutter program that you could find on the internet. It's the over and aboves and the ability to customise to suit individuals to my mind that makes a coach a worthwhile investment.

    • Zoey Dowling

      Oh I think I'm with you now! I couldn't agree more. I've trained from free plans in the last and they've been fine, but if I'm paying for coaching I am looking for a relationship that supports my desired outcomes whilst offering that human aspect as well. The outcomes may be the same from either, but I know for me there is so much value in professional guidance in many areas of my life :) Thanks so much for clarifying :)

  6. I cannot wait until you guys branch into housework coaching, I'm there, paying the money!

  7. Coaches in so many fields are a valuable addition to anyone's current training. In anything. Achieving anything at all, whether it be a marathon, happy relationship, career change, it's all project management. And one of the most important aspects of project management is the right people. I have had life coaching this year and, without question, it changed my life. I'm currently in training with Operation Move for my marathon and Op Move also facilitated nutrition coaching. The difference with this group and their coaches is the team. You can't force a horse to drink but this team with their own ways, will encourage said horse all the way to the edge of the water. I also think the life coach and social worker is a really valuable addition to the coaching team. I know that the coaching material is checked and double checked and is adapatable. Op Move don't promise miracles. But they have me getting up at 4:45am to go run up hills in the freezing cold. And that's pretty close to a miracle as far as I'm concerned.

  8. I agree with Dee so much on this. It's all about paying it forward I think - if you have skills to share, share them. And when I tap Dee to show me how to crochet, it will be in a similar vein :) Every person has in them something to offer the community to make it better.

  9. I was trying to reply to Dee's comment here, I don't know what I've done :)

  10. Pingback: Running and Developing Mental Toughness | Operation Move March 2, 2016

    […] immediate gratification land and start making choices that are going to benefit your future self. I find it really helpful to have a coach for this reason. Although I’d be quite capable of writing my own training plan, I’m far more likely to […]