Coach Jonathan Marcus on the Art of Coaching and Improvement

Buckle up, runners! We’re diving deep into the art of coaching, performance, and improvement with coach Jonathan Marcus today.

Coach Jonathan Marcus

Jonathan Marcus is to running as Charlie Munger is to investing: a coach that uses “elementary, worldly wisdom” to mold his athletes into high-level runners.

His past coaching and running industry experience includes:

  • Assistant track coach at Portland State University
  • Division I / NAIA / post-collegiate club / Oregon High School levels
  • Involvement with the Portland Track Festival, USA Track & Field, NIKE’s Bowerman Track Club, and the Run Portland/Team Athena running clubs

He was appointed USA Track & Field High Performance Coordinator for the men’s middle distances in 2011 and his national role with USATF included serving as co-meet director for the prestigious USATF High Performance track meet held annually at Occidental College.

Currently he’s the Director of High Performance West, an elite training group in Portland Oregon. He also has an incredibly enlightening and action-packed podcast with fellow coach Steve Magness called On Coaching that I highly recommend.

What I most respect about coach Jonathan Marcus is that he’s a lifelong learner: always reading books, learning, educating himself, and connecting with others to improve his ability to perform at a high level as a running coach.

Follow him on Twitter and you’ll understand. He tweets out:

And that’s exactly what we’re doing today: learning more about the nuanced side of running.

Coach Jonathan Marcus on Performance

Our wide-ranging discussion might surprise you because we talk about some interesting topics that, on first examination, don’t appear to be truly about running or coaching!

Issues like:

  • The books that Jonathan is reading (and why they’re not all running books)
  • Empathy and bias (and why these are crucial traits for coaches)
  • Vision (and how this relates to your success as a runner)
  • “Cognitive coping skills” for racing and challenging workouts

For those who want to transcend beyond an elementary understanding of running, this conversation is a fantastic primer on the nuances of high-level running achievement.

I think you’re going to love it.

Subscribe to the Strength Running Podcast on iTunes or on the Stitcher app to hear my conversation with coach Jonathan Marcus

Show Resources & Links:

Please give Jonathan a big ‘thank you’ for coming on the podcast and sharing his thoughts on performance!

SteadyMD: A New Pod Sponsor

Also, a big thank you to our new podcast sponsor, SteadyMD!

I recently learned about this new type of medical care for runners and I immediately reached out to its founder (and sub-3 marathoner!), Dr. Josh Emdur. What he’s done is create a platform that connects runners with a Primary Care Physician who’s also a runner.

This is critical – and anybody who’s seen a physical therapist who isn’t a runner knows that you can’t get the same care from a sedentary provider. A doctor that is a runner just like you and who understands the things that are important to both casual runners and advanced runners.

Things like:

  • your training plan
  • nutrition
  • shoes
  • running form
  • common injuries

In other words, this is the runner’s doctor.

Meet via phone or video call or text anytime to get personalized medical care. See all the details about how you can get more personal, tailored medical care that’s specific to your needs as a runner.

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