Over a decade ago, I was a self-coached marathon runner reading books and articles who after training for years gradually improved my racing times. Then, after starting my own business, I stopped running. I gradually gained weight and became out-of-shape. A year and a half ago, I decided that I wanted to be healthier. I considered signing up for another marathon, but I had no motivation to train as I had finished marathons before. Then I thought about completing an Ironman. Could I do it? An Ironman would be challenging both physically and mentally. But this time, instead of spending years reading books and articles as a self-coached athlete, I decided to hire a coach to speed up the improvement. I learned about Train Smart, Race Fast and spoke with Eric (free-consultation). He asked me questions about my goals, recent racing experiences, and expectations and then listening to my answers. I liked that he was willing to spend his time listening to my objectives—not trying to force his objectives on me. After signing up for his coaching services, Eric designed a personalized training program starting with some assessments of my biking power, run speed, and overall endurance. This was an eye opener to me to come to terms with where I actually was physically. Based on the results, we were able to set some realistic expectations for my upcoming season based on my ability and time to train. He understood that I didn’t have unlimited time to train for my hobby. I am confident that if I were self-coached, I would eventually finish an Ironman race in 11 hours. But I am just as confidant that it would have taken me many years and not been accomplished in just 9 ½ months. Thank you, Eric. I look forward to continue working together and see how much my times and fitness improves!