Erin Rapallini – Testimonial 10/26/16
I learned of MTM from another club runner. We were talking about running and racing goals, and how tough it is to keep going on your own. She mentioned that she runs with a club a few times a week, and that I should come out and try it.
After the 1st Sunday long run and I was in! The team offers great support, comradely, and quality work outs. There are people of all levels, and great examples of perseverance that inspire.
My goal in finding a running club and specifically one with a coach, was to get back to a high level of fitness, and back to the speed that I had when I was running more competitively. I wanted to do this even with demands of the FT job, 3 kids and all that life has to ‘offer’ outside of running. I knew that I needed something more than my self-made weekly running schedule. I needed a connection to a team, and to a coach that would push me just enough – and believe in me even if I was doubtful.
Since joining MTM, and coaching with Ron, I have been able to increase speed, had a PR in the 10 mile race (my favorite distance) and meet a lot of GREAT people with similar interests. I have surprised myself sometimes with what I have been able to do. (Thanks coach!)
The best parts about MTM are:
1) Coach Ron: he is 150% dedicated to helping you become the runner you want to be. He meets you where you are, is flexible – yet pushes you to keep aiming higher. He offers insight on how to improve, where to focus and will give it everything you will.
2) The people: it is a GREAT team, with a wide variety of people, speed, goals, and fun, fun conversations to keep those long runs interesting. (not to mention great after-run options when possible)
3) The results: you will see results.
I have run many races including 7 marathons over 18 years before hiring my first running coach. That would be coach Ron and I am very glad I did.
I was planning on another marathon and with so many plans out there and so much conflicting information, I wanted some clarity. I looked for a coach who had a lot coaching experience, was also fast, and had great reviews. Ron had all of these.
After my first meeting with Ron, I had confirmed my decision to try for a marathon PR 10 years after my last PR. An aggressive goal but Ron gave me the confidence and the plan to do it. Long story short, mission accomplished, I made my sub 3:10 marathon goal last weekend at the Chicago marathon. I felt confident going in as I loved the negative split plan and I trusted the training.
Beside achieving PR’s, other bonuses of working with Ron is learning and training and running smarter. Even though I have read many running books, I definitely learned new things too. Furthermore, reporting back to a coach and running with a group also makes you more accountable and it’s easier to stick to your plan.
Last bonus is getting to know some of the other runners in the group. It really helps to have some company for those difficult or long runs and the group could not be more sincerely supportive of one another.
I have been working with Coach Ron and the MTM Team for less than 3 months and already achieved a PR in my “A” race for the year! Not only have I increased my speed and base of miles in this short period of time, I have also improved my running form and learned how to be a more efficient runner. Prior to working with Coach Ron, I had recurring medial tibial stress syndrome and chronic shin pain for years despite going to an orthopedist and doing physical therapy. Although I was able to achieve a PR here and there, I was never able to run healthy. I am happy to say that even through the increase in miles and intensity in workouts from Coach, my shins are no longer an issue!! I absolutely would not be where I am right now with my running without Coach Ron. Achieving this amount of progress in such a short period of time has me extremely excited for the future and a leap to the marathon!
In addition to the coaching benefits, the MTM Team is one of the most welcoming, positive, encouraging groups of people I have had the pleasure of running with. Everyone is each others cheerleader and there is truly a sense that we are all in this together. After running on my own for many years I was nervous to join a group, but the MTM Team welcomed me with open arms. I am loving every practice and opportunity that I get to spend with these awesome people. Love the MTM Team and can’t wait for our destination race in February. Phoenix here we come!!
I pleased to share with you my 2nd running article from In Shape News Flash.
I hope you enjoy the article and information I've shared, If I can ever be of help with your running, please don't hesitate to contact me at Coach@miletomarathon.com
Have a great month of May and I'll...
See you on the roads
I.Love.To.Run. I have been a runner since I was 12 years old. That’s 24 years of running! Over the years, I’ve had ups and downs, and good races and bad. But, there is nothing like being out on a run with the sound of the wind in my ears, my breath steady, legs pumping, and the feeling of freedom I experience.
It is that experience that I hope to replicate on Sunday as I go for my Personal Record of 2:59 in the Chicago Marathon.
I went out for the varsity team in 8th grade and quickly discovered this gift for running. Running became a part of many aspects of my life and still is today – how I eat, exercise, organize my day, sleeping, friendships, personal reflection, and on and on. After competing through high school and college, I took some time off only to discover that the habits I formed still reflected the runner in me. I started running for fun and set a target of running my first Twin Cities Marathon in 2002. I trained with my dad and we completed not only the 2002 TCM, but also the 2003, 2004, and 2005 together. Another habit formed…I have completed 10 TCMs only taking off 2007, 2009, 2011 for the birth of my three children. Throw in a couple Bostons, a Grandmas, and Mankato, and now I’m staring down my 15th marathon this coming weekend in Chicago!
Running is a balance of having fun but also challenging my limits. When I started working with Coach Ron, I was a little hesitant because I didn’t want to throw off that balance. However, I’m not getting any younger and my marathon PR of 3:04 is so dang close to sub 3:00! I wanted to go for it and needed some help to bump me to that level. Over the past 6 months I’ve been working with Coach Ron and am ready to go for a PR of 2:59 on Sunday in Chicago. The pace will be challenging my limits, but I’ll also be reflecting on the fun I’ve had along the way to get there. Coach Ron has prepared me well and just as importantly I’ve met some great people with a similar love for running through the weekly workouts.
Let’s do this!
I am not a runner...or so I thought!
Just a bit of a background on my running experience: I ran my first 10K about 4 years ago, ran the same one the following year. In fall and winter of 2013, I had bunion surgery on both of my feet. Although successful, it took many months of rehab and staying off of my feet. In 2014 I needed a goal to get fit and decided to run my first half marathon. One turned into three, all while training on my own. I thought, there would be no way that I can run another 13.1 miles after running the first, but here I am.
I hired Ron in April of 2015 as he was a reference from a good friend. I have to say that without his help, I wouldn't feel comfortable saying that I am ready to run 26.2 miles, and I am! He put together a series of long and short runs and condition running regimes that have gotten me to where I am today. I started this journey with the goal of finishing in 4:20, and am right there. I ran a couple of half marathons this year as well, came in under 2 hours for one of them, a personal best!
I didn't expect this to be as mentally challenging as it is physically, but I have persevered. Having this great city to run in has helped tremendously as well has having a few friends running it too. I visited the new 606 Bloomingdale Trail and the new Northerly Island Park for some of my runs...I also made it to the most northern and southern parts of the lakefront trail, something I had never done on my own 2 feet before.
I am running to raise awareness for Diabetes as well, a disease that has affected my family personally. I am inspired by those who have helped me raise over $2,000 for a great cause.
All in all I feel that at this point, I'll run the marathon and am confident I'll hit my goal. I'll contribute my success to Ron's training program, my dedication, and the encouragement from family and friends.
Good morning everyone.
Our MTM runners had a great weekend of results at the Twin Cities In Motion Races. Here are our results:
Jerusha Cascione - 24:38
Neal Buethe - 1:19:19
Kandace Konstantinides - 1:14:28 4:00 PR
Beth Carlson Frauenshuh - 1:20:07
Jenny Roach - 1:22:32 (2nd fastest 10 mile)
Linnea Steffens Burman - 1:26:54
Samyuktha R Appaji - 1:27:31 PR
Susan Larish Otto - 1:27:34 PR
AnnDee Bashyal - 1:55:51
Carrie Gordon - 3:07:03 4th AG 20:00 + PR
Brian Wallenfelt- 3:17:21 1st marathon
Joel Theisen - 3:26:09 1 marathon
Gerard Cramer - 3:42:01
Matt Eliason - 4:04:26 1st marathon
Chuck Maas - 4:11:04 34:00 PR
Paige Lenoch - 4:59:01 - 17:00+ PR
Sean Donley- 5:23:23 - 1st marathon.
I hope I didn't miss anyone? Soooo how did your race go?
See you on the roads
My running journey started 20 years ago at the ripe age of 13. Growing up in South Dakota, I needed something to occupy Sent from my iPhone cars (not that either of these actually happened). On a whim, I tried out for the high school track team but comically thought I was going to be a thrower. At the first try out, I was laughed off the field, then the running coach asked me to come over to the sprinters’ try outs. It was a much better fit, and my forte ended up being the 800 m with an occasional 400 m thrown in for good measure. I also joined the cross country team to stay fit in the off-season, but I really hated the long distances associated with it. I took time off in college only to pick up true long distance running in grad school. I started with mostly 5ks and 10ks but ran my first half marathon in 2007 and then tried a full marathon later that year. They must have spiked the Gatorade with something because I became hooked and have completed 8 full marathons since then plus countless half marathons, 10ks and 5ks.
I’m currently training for the Chicago Marathon, my first full since having my daughter 2.5 years ago. I noticed about 1 month into training that I was hitting PRs and running faster than I had ever run during training. A runner friend suggested trying to qualify for Boston, a life goal of mine, but one I was never entirely sure I could pull off.
I reached out to Ron to ask questions, explain my goal and determine a plan of action. I officially signed up with Mile to Marathon in mid-July and have been so pleased with the results. I’m running faster, stronger and smarter than I ever have. Ron’s coaching and training plan, combined with biweekly barre workouts, have completely changed my body and running efficiency. Working full time, being a mom and training for a marathon has had me questioning my sanity at times, but it’s been worth every hour, every step and every 4:30 a.m. alarm clock.
I am toeing the line in 9 days, trusting my training and ready to rock Chicago!
I’m running the Twin Cities Marathon this weekend. It will be my first marathon. Though I sort of signed up on a whim, I’m really excited to be running it.
I’d never really been much of a runner before. In my early twenties, I’d run enough to complete triathlons I’d sign up for. But I didn’t particularly enjoy running and I wasn’t very fast. As my life got busier with work and family, I stopped running and doing triathlons.
About a year ago, I started running occasionally and I realized that I had a lot more fun when I was trying to run fast. I wasn’t very fast, but I was starting to get hooked. And I knew I wanted to get faster.
I decided to run more and to keep an eye out for a running coach. At the beginning of 2015, I set a goal of running at least 100 miles a month for the entire year. I also set a goal of breaking twenty minutes in a 5K.
In April, I learned that Coach Ron was starting a run club at the IDS. I leapt at the opportunity to have a running coach and quickly signed up. Ron would take the club out for running workouts twice a week. I really enjoyed the comraderie of the group and the variety of workouts he’d have us do. We often did intervals, hills, drills, and all sorts of stuff that I’d never do on my own.
I was also running outside of the club with friends quite a bit. I’d managed to work my way up to running as far as a half marathon, and I was having more fun running than I’d ever had before. So in May, I signed up for the Twin Cities Marathon figuring that I better sign up now while I was enjoying running or I might miss my opportunity. I has no idea how to get ready for a marathon or if I even had enough time to do so.
So I decided to talk to Ron. We got together to discuss a training plan and to set a goal time for the marathon. First, I warned Ron that regardless of his training plan, I would need to run at least one hundred miles a month. He assured me that would not be a problem. And, of course, it hasn’t been. In fact, in August I ran 270 miles. We also needed to set a goal time. We came up with 3:20 based on my pace for during long training runs. Looking back, this seems like an ambitious goal as I had just managed to break 1:45 in the half at the time. But now I’m pretty confident that I can make that goal.
Throughout the Spring and Summer, I followed Ron’s workouts as diligently as I could. His workout schedule kept me honest and the workout variety kept me interested. Each week had a variety of different types of workouts and as the weeks progressed the workouts increased in intensity. Often, I’d look at the workout Ron had setup for me and think that there was no way I could complete it. But most of the time, I was able to complete the workouts at the paces Ron assigned. He seems to have a knack for pushing me to go a little faster (or further) than I had previously thought was possible. As I completed these workouts, my confidence really started to increase.
Ron also encouraged me to start running with his Mile to Marathon running team. I usually joined the team for track workouts on Tuesday nights. I’d never run on a track before, so I was intimidated at first to be doing these workouts with a running team. I figured that the other runners would be way faster than me and it’d would be obvious to everyone that I didn’t know what I was doing. Both were true. The first night, I lined up facing the wrong direction. But it was no big deal – Ron quickly got me turned around and taught me the basics of track running. And there were runners who were much faster than me. But I found it exhilarating and motivating to run with them even when I couldn’t keep up. There were also runners of all abilities, however. The whole team was a lot of fun. I was motivated by
everyone’s focus on improvement.
Throughout the training season, Ron answered my questions and helped me figure out how to adjust my workouts as various work and family obligations came up or minor injuries occurred. He also helped get into the right shoes and we’ve made progress on my running form (even if there is still plenty of room for improvement).
Ron has had me do a number of races this summer including a 15K, a 5K, and a half-marathon. I broke 20 minutes in the 5K (19:46 to be exact) and I shocked myself by finishing the half-marathon in under 7:00/mile pace.
I feel totally ready for the marathon this weekend. I couldn’t be happier with the training I’ve done and Ron’s coaching.
Where to start!?
I don’t have a running background, I never ran in high-school, college or any organized group until I ran my first marathon in 2009 with a friend I met during undergrad – from then on I was hooked! At first, running was a means to living healthier and losing weight; today it is my social hour, stress relief, and a way to compete with myself.
Flash forward a bit….this past summer I finished my 12th marathon at Grandma’s Marathon and sufficient to say…I didn’t meet my goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. I had PR’d at the Twin Cities Marathon in 2014 with a 3:42 and really set my goals high for qualifying, so my heart was broken when I finished Grandma’s a bit slower than my PR. Similar to some other “bad races” I thought the marathon just wasn’t for me….or I needed to find another approach, so I googled “running coaches” in Minneapolis and wala! I found Coach Ron
I started training with Coach Ron at the beginning of July and since then – I have never looked back! I have tried many new things and learned to take one workout at a time - not focusing on the future race or goal pace. I never stepped on a track for a workout until mid-July and now…that is by far my favorite workout! Something about the freedom of running fast for a specific, set amount of time and then you are done In addition, I had never done “speed work”, had never consistently ran with a group, or really “raced” without music…actually raced in general. “Learning” to race has been a lesson in itself and now I think I actually prefer “racing” a 5k, where in the past I would have never even signed up for a 5k. I had always signed up for 10 milers, half-marathons, marathons, and ultra marathons.
This summer of running has taught me a lot of lessons, created an amazing amount of friendships, and resulted in plenty of successes! I recently PR’ed in the 5k by ~4 minutes. I think previous to joining Mile to Marathon my 5k was ~25:15 and last weekend I PR’d at the ALARC Legends 5k & 10k Races with a 21:22 – not to mention won the race for women (first win ever!) and the 10 mile by I PR’d by ~ 2 minutes at the White Bear Lake 10 mile& 20 mile races with a 1:18. The best part of this story is I know I can run faster, more efficient and meet by long-term goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. Not only do I know I can meet this goal and beyond but also having the support of Coach Ron and the team makes it THAT much better!
I am most definitely looking forward to running the Twin Cities 10 mile race this coming weekend- not only for a PR, but I LOVE this course, the people, and the energy! In addition, my running friends are like my second family – everyone understands each other and no matter what, runners connect to runners, we can talk about anything and everything during a run – that’s what makes running in a group/team fabulous! I can’t thank Coach Ron and the Mile to Marathon team enough!!
Good luck to everyone racing this weekend!!
Lifelong runner. Professional and passionate coach helping to make running goals a reality for 30+ years. Let's get started making your running dreams come true!