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Begley's Distance Divas is a nation-wide social group for women runners of all abilities. Amy started the group with the goal of connecting female runners from all over the country, and providing them with the opportunity to learn from the experience that she has gained from being a national champion and Olympic runner.

Amy will write a bi-monthly blog about various tips for training. Members will have access to additional training advice and a member chat where Amy and other members can answer questions about running. More serious runners can sign up for personal coaching through Coach Begley Training.

As the group grows, a group uniform will be available, and Amy will host social events at some of the top road races in the US. Eventually, the group will offer travel planning services for these road races.

Begley's Distance Divas members will receive:

    Access to group forum

Blogs with training advice from Olympian Amy Begley

Basic training plans for distances from 5k to the marathon

Free months of personal coaching plans for members that sign up for coaching through Amy's "Coach Begley" website

Strength training, stretching, and injury prevention tips from Amy

Begley's Distance Divas T-shirt (click here for more information)

Social functions at top US road races (coming spring 2013)

Travel planning for top US road races (coming fall of 2013)

3 months of free training from coachbegley.com to members that refer 10 new members.

Free Divas racing tank ($60 value) to all members that refer 20 new members

Amy will do a free 2-day seminar for members in the first city/metropolitan area with 78 members

Amy wants to create a nation-wide social group for women. Each year, Amy will select some of the top races in the US for group events. Amy will attend the races, and will host group runs, a pre-race team dinner, a team hospitality suite, and a post-race celebration. Tickets to these events will ONLY be available to group members, and will require an additional fee.

Eventually, we will also offer travel services such as tours, hotel bookings, and airport shuttles. It will take us a while to get things going, but Amy's goal is to provide group members with a road race experience that is similar to what she gets as an elite invited athlete.

We will host our first group event in the spring of 2013. More details to come!

 

Each month, Amy will release 1-2 journals with advice on a new topic. The topics will be chosen by group members. The journals will only be available to Distance Diva members.

Preview Posting

Why is a coach important?

If you set a goal to run your first 5k, set a PR in the 10k, win your age group, or run a marathon you will probably look for guidance. There are a lot of resources for runners of all abilities on the internet or in books. There are many ways to get from point A to point B but picking the best one for you is the challenge.

The bookstore or local running store has a shelf or two full of training manuals with pre-set generic training plans for every event and pace. The internet also has sites with workouts and training plans. However, a coach does not follow a generic pre-set training program. They have a training philosophy with specific phases and workouts. The training is tailored to the athlete’s current state of fitness and goals. It is constantly adjusting to allow for the athlete’s improvement, while still keeping within the philosophy. Effective coaches use scientific knowledge to guide their training plans.

So what separates a great coach from a good coach? Great coaches need to understand the physiology behind a good training plan. Most effective coaches do know the science. The best coaches supplement this knowledge with great instinct and an ability to motivate their athletes. They know when to push through an ache or pain, how fast to progress, and when to back off. There is a fine line between running PR's and being injured. The best coaches keep their athletes healthy and minimize time missed due to injury. This is a true artistic ability that is a rare find in a coach. Finally, great coaches know how to motivate their athletes. They know what to say and when to say it. They give you a gentle (or not so gentle) kick in your butt when you need it, but also lend a sympathetic ear when it is needed. Great coaching is about balance.

Whether you are a veteran runner or just beginning to run or race, it can be hard to set a training plan and stick with it.  Some runners can follow the generic plans on the internet with no problems.  However, other runners need help in modifying the program to fit around their job, school or kid’s schedules.  It becomes a balancing act to fit in all the components of a training program and a hectic schedule.  A coach can help you prioritize workouts, mileage, and races to fit your schedule. 

Once you are ready to go beyond the generic training plans it is time to find a personalized coach.  There are many coaching websites to choose from.  You need to decide if you want a one-on-one in person coach to meet with or an on-line coach to guide you.  The next decision will be cost and amount of interaction you want with the coach.  This decision takes honesty.  What do you need to stay focused?  How much communication do you need with the coach?  You need to talk with the coach and find out their training philosophy.  If you can commit and believe in their program, then you have found the right match.  Half the battle with any training program is buying into it and committing to the process.

Good Luck on your journey to finding the right coach and program to help you achieve your goals. 
 
Amy Yoder Begley
6-time US Champion
US Olympian

 


Third Time's a Charm

"I am not a runner”, I used to say that and believe it.  I met Amy my first couple months in Albuquerque, NM when I called her dog walking ad to walk my yorkie.  There was this immediate connection over our love of yorkies.  I knew she was a professional runner which just blew me away; it still does.  It happened to be around the time that I was getting married the next summer.   Like most brides I wanted to rock my dress.  Amy agreed to be my personal trainer because I flat out told her "I will NEVER RUN".  Over a two month period Amy would meet up with me to walk.  I am in pretty good shape so walking was just not giving me the results I wanted.   So after many hours of Amy convincing me I could do it we came up with a walk-run plan.  It was tough at first, not the running but believing I could run.  We started with a basic 2 minutes walking with 1 minute running and we progressed from there.   By the time I got married, I was able to run for 30 minutes without walking.  I would love to say it happened for me, it "clicked" but it didn't.   After the honeymoon, we came back home and I lost my goal.  I walked away from running and my BUM got bigger and I got a bit sad.  It was always in the back of my head "GO RUNNING" but I didn't...I got pregnant!

I love being a Mum it’s amazing but when I got home from the hospital with this new little baby girl I looked in the mirror and I said "CALL AMY"!  I did, I called my BFF in Oregon.  I call her my personal Olympian.  I said I want to run again, lose this weight and train for a 1/2 marathon.  It was October and I picked a race in New England, the Smutty Rock Half marathon for the following Oct. I had a year!  Amy was amazing!! I ordered my running skirt.  I then went to a running store and bought my sneakers and followed my friend’s advice.  I made my husband and some friends from home start running with me.  It was great having Amy in my corner; she called me every day that week.  The morning of my FIRST RACE she called me from Oregon at 4:00 am her time to give me a pep talk.   I needed it!! I was freezing and it was HARD!!! I finished in 2:35 and I was elated, you would have thought that I won the race.

That was my second go around with running...we broke up AGAIN!!  What I discovered was that I was lonely.  I wanted to run with people.  I loved the race.  It felt so exciting to be a part of something, I counted damn it.  Even my 2:35 half marathon finish counted.  I got a NUMBER and a MEDAL.  But I put the brakes on running.  Amy would call and ask, "how's your running?”   I would say, “I am a little busy right now the Holidays and blah blah blah...”.             

Then I met other women that ran!!  It was amazing!! We all decided to do a local 10k in the tidal basin for Christmas.  We did the Jingle Bell Run with reindeer shirts and antlers.  I came home and called Amy again.  I told her that my new goal was to run a race every month for the next year.  I also wanted to run a 10 minute mile pace.   That goal worked!!! This time it took!!  My husband and I ran 16 races last year including: two half marathons, one 10 miler, five 10 k's and eight 5k’s.  I love it!  I have run Disney,  Rock'n'Roll, Cherry Blossom, Chocolate race and Charity races.  I get excited to find my next race.  I love the race experience including the EXPO, race photos and looking at new gear. The best part is talking to other women about running and encouraging women to keep going, just like my friend and coach Amy Begley. 

Now I am in a routine where I run 4 to 5 times a week.   I can run a 9:00 minute per mile pace in long distances and 8:47 minute per mile pace in short distances.  I am so excited to meet more crazy gals that love to run races.   It will be a great experience to hang out with other strong women encouraging each other to reach our goals.  Guess what??  "I am a RUNNER"!!

Elizabeth Moran
National Harbor, MD

 

Memberships are $50.00 for one year. To join our group, please click below to fill out an enrollment form. After you have completed the form, you will be directed to a payment page. We accept all major credit cards through paypal. Memberships will not be processed until payment is received. Please allow up to three business days for your membership to be processed.

Once we have processed your membership, we will send you a welcome email with information on how to access the members-only areas of the website. We will also confirm your address and t-shirt information before we send out your official Begley's Distance Divas shirt!

Thank you for your interest in Begley's Distance Divas!

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Portland area BDD members can sign up for weekly training runs in the Beaverton area.

The training sessions will follow the Distance Divas training plans provided to all members. However, Amy will be available at a majority of these sessions to answer any questions or give advice to members.

Members can sign-up for $30 per month (cash payments only), or $75 for three months (credit cards accepted).