“I am a serious runner of five marathons in two and half years. Since working with Fernando I have received the confidence from his coaching that has taken my running to new heights. I’m eager for my next marathon under his guidance. His professional experience of the sport and enthusiasm to be “in my corner” has given me the confidence to break the 2:30 hour barrier. His methodology of using all energy systems to become more efficient has really helped me to excel. In the twelve short weeks I’ve been following his methods I have PR’d in shorter races getting me prepared for my upcoming fall marathon. I am very lucky to have him as my trainer and would highly recommend his running expertise onto any fellow runner looking to take their running to the next level.”
— -Braulio Benitez, 2:36 marathoner
I looked into more than 30 sites, contacts and friend’s suggestions, until I found Fernando’s profile in the Newton site (I run w/Newton’s), but one tiny detail: he was not a coach nor was training anyone by that time... So I decided to contact him anyway and see what he would respond.
After a couple good messages exchanging and then 2-3 phone calls we agree on the terms and type of training he would prepare for me. Since then, the evolution started and the changes I’ve felt and experienced so far has been impressive, as the dedication and weekly workouts he’s been preparing for me have been personally tailored rather than coming from a bulk of 10-20 people, all the same.
So, why did I decide to go ahead w/Fernando? Even though the monthly rate I’m paying is not cheap when compared to other on-line and/or in-person coaches, the time dedication and daily follow-up is worth it. He lives in California, and I live in Miami…different time zones, huge distance, yet it feels like he’s training me while living in Miami right across the street.
His understanding and comprehension on how to adapt the workouts to my lifestyle and reality is something I’m very happy with and let me explain why, as this could be one of the big benefits of training w/Fernando: I am a person who has a family (1 child), both me and my wife work 8-5 everyday, we live a normal life yet w/a lot of work, so time is very valuable and every second counts to maximize it as much as possible. So, the first thing Fernando did before even sending a training log was to ask me “which days can you run? At what time can you run?”…so as you can see he was trying to adapt the workouts to my reality rather than me stressing to follow a program which might not be achievable.
Second thing was to deeply understand all of my history (as much as I could) regarding my running experience, race results so far and any other sport I’ve done in the past, hence, he could get a picture of where was I coming from and see how much base we would need to work on before setting any goals or rushing into complex and structured workouts.
Third thing was the fact that we started talking about objectives and goals in the next year or so for a marathon; how to improve for my next half marathon; achieve a PR in a 5K within next 2-3 months (which I did – 19:39 @ 5K on July 4th). With that he was able to understand what could be possible and what would need more dedication to work on (i.e. as I want to qualify for Boston 2017, I’d need to run a 3:07 approx. in order to ensure a place, this means 7:00-7:08 pace/mile). How would we get there and by when? … that’s exactly what we will discover in the forthcoming months.
So the journey started and a good coach-trainee relationship began. Why? Because this has proven that is not only about paying Fernando’s for his program sent every week and then the following monthly …NO, it has been more than that, he is a really passionate, experienced and dedicated professional runner who’s willing to share his knowledge, his experience, his emotions and his passion for running, trying to help me achieve my goals and being almost 24/7 for any question, regular conversations, SMS and emails. So, the contact w/Fernando is almost daily and he’s always looking at my exercises right the same day I complete them (through Garmin Connect), always cheering up or being very clear about why the workout was brilliant or why it would need to be better next time…what was the breakthrough, which was the opportunity to improve, and many other advices which for me are very valuable.
Besides all these points, he’s a very open person and excellent coach/runner. He possess a unique talent which only a few people in the world have, and he knows it, and he uses it, and he enjoys it…but beyond that, the most important aspect is that he’s an excellent person and I’m sure that he’ll help me achieve my goals: 5K in 18:30 or less, 10K in 38:00, Half Marathon in 1:28 or less, Marathon in 3:07.
Still way to go, yet I am very happy to have Fernando as coach, and very confident he’s the one to help me keep evolving within the world of running!
— -David Oliveria, Miami FL