Run Faster Fun Friends


Fall 2012 Marathon Dynamics E-Newsletter


...and faster too, apparently!

Sherab RunAnyway NYC(above) Marathon Dynamics top cheerleading runner Sherab Melvin always seems to find her way to the heart of the action.  Here she is, nattily attired in her wickedly "boss" MDI Purple Power singlet, whooping it up at the startline of the RunAnyway marathon around Central Park in NYC, the morning of the infamously cancelled New York City Marathon.  Incredibly, this pic was featured front and center in the online versions of BBC North America and USA Today early last week!

It had to have been statistically the hottest summer we've had in 25-30 years.  And it just happened to be the best racing season Marathon Dynamics runners have ever had.  Coincidence?  Perhaps, but maybe there's something to going though that sticky sweatfest of a summer's training, only to come out the other side in super-fine fall racing form, hmmm?

Sure seemed to be, as droves of MDI runners had personal record breaking performances.  Even the craziness of the last minute cancelled NYC Marathon, didn't throw off too many of the crew (we had about 25 there in NYC that weekend), some of whom even hustled back to Hamilton to drop the biggest race of their entire lives!

Click here for the highlight recap of what truly was a season to remember.

SPiN TORunning Party of the Year - most of us have enjoyed a few weeks of relative "smell the roses" running (and perhaps a week or two more?), but there are 130 MDI Dynamos (and supporters) stoked to party our arm warmers and compression socks right off at the biggest and best ever bash we've ever had: the Purple Power Party at SPiN Toronto on November 24th.  Completely sold out--gonna be quite the night!

Be sure to join/check our Facebook page for afterparty buzz on Nov. 25th

For now, we've put together a jam-packed newsletter we hope you'll find informative, insightful, useful and perhaps even a little entertaining. This is a super special edition since it`s the first time almost EVERY coach at Marathon Dynamics has contributed at once, so we hope you enjoy it!

Next season is just around the corner - new Customized Running Plans and our GTA Training Groups start up in early December, click here for details. And we'll do an informal, early-bird, "Meet, Greet & Move Those Feet" (1 Mile trials) on Monday, November 26th at our brand new central Toronto INDOOR track training location, Monarch Park Stadium (RSVP ASAP click here if you'd like to join space!), for those of you chomping at the bit to get started right away.

See you soon crew!

The Running "Repechage"

Use Second Chances to Finish First!

By Kevin Smith, Marathon Dynamics Running Coach

Can Mens 8Between the excitement (and relief!) of trampoline phenom Rosie MacLennan’s lone Canadian gold medal, and the furor over the gold-worthy heroics of Christine Sinclair and the rest of our women’s soccer team (in their ultimately bronze medal performance), unless you were glued to the coverage of the London Olympics this past summer, you may have missed an equally inspiring effort put forth by the Canadian Men’s Eight Rowing Team.

Gold medallists in Beijing in 2008, the team was favoured for at least a medal this go-round, so it was with no small measure of shock and dismay, when in their opening qualifying heat, they finished dead last.

In many other sports contested at the Olympiad, that would have been it--pack up your sculls and paddles and head home.  But thankfully for this crew, in the sport of rowing (and a few others such as fencing, and cycling), they host a “repechage” which allows those teams who’ve lost their first race another chance to get to the final, IF they keep winning from then on.

In short, that’s just what the gutsy guys on our rowing team did, and in the Olympic final, they came within a short stroke of upsetting the favoured German team for the gold, finishing with the silver medal.

As a Canadian, a sports enthusiast, and a long-ago competitive rower (one season at Western), I was very proud of our crew, and as I reflected on their remarkable “rise from the ashes” success, I realized how our own philosphy and approach to training and racing at Marathon Dynamics is very much a “running repechage.”

The surest way to be successful and keep improving as a distance runner over the long term is to EXPECT and PREPARE for setbacks—rather than hope they don’t happen, and languish in depression and inactivity when they do.  All too often we encounter runners giving up on training mid-season after a "hiccup" of more than 1-2 weeks occurs, or waiting until they’re 100% healthy (whatever that means!) to start training again.  The runner mistakenly figures that because the original path they'd envisioned to reach their goal is blocked, there's no other way to make it happen, and figuratively--if not literally--throws in the towel for weeks or even months more, often regressing to their pre-season fitness level (or worse!) in the process.

The very best way to remedy this “boom and bust” cycle, is to combat the onset or early stages of setback aggressively and enthusiastically with a pre-established, well-honed system of running fitness-saving and motivation-stoking behaviours.   Do this, and you'll always be nearly good as new upon your return to "full bore" running training, no matter how long your layoff

Always treat training setbacks as opportunities to find an alternate path to the same original goal. 

The Marathon Dynamics Repechage:

In addition to any "prehab" activity you do regularly (yoga, stretching, strengthwork, regular daily walking and/or supplementary short easy jogs) and rehab (strategic rest, icing, massage, physio and other modalities of treatment) you undertake to address specific issues as they arise, make CERTAIN that you take steps to "pitfall proof" your running season.

Well BEFOREHAND (not WHEN you get hurt!) ensure that you have motivation (like doing it), proficiency (know how to do it), and facility (access to equipment, scheduling, etc.) with AT LEAST 3-4 go to aerobic x-t activities (get heart rate up and keep it up for prolonged period) for when running goes south.

Better yet, make sure your choices are diversified enough in function and form that you’re ready for anything, since many running injuries (especially hip, knee and foot) prevent you from doing certain other x-training activities as well.

Here's a great checklist:

a)  are 2-3 of them “running similar” activities? - work similar muscles in a similar way to running, and provide a similar cardiovascular bang for buck with similar effort as running (water running, x-country skiing, elliptical, spinning, etc.)

b) are 1-2 of them “running contrast” activities? - work opposite muscles (or running muscles in a different way), and/or DON'T provide the same aerobic effect (swimming, yoga, strength work)

c) are 1-2 “low to no” impact or weight-bearing activities? - don't impose a lot of shock or force on/through the lower limbs (swimming, water running, rowing, elliptical)

d) are 1-2 of them “moderate” impact or weight-bearing activities?  - do impose some shock/force through lower limbs, but not in same manner/degree as running (power walking, leg strength work, racket sports, soccer, aerobics).

If your answers are "YES!" on all four, then you are truly embracing our Running Repechage approach.  When adversity hits, simply switch running workouts over to running similar aerobic workouts (same type, time, intensity, and frequency), and fill in with the other activities depending on your level of running and circumstance, and carry on with your training.  Business as usual--almost!  A more detailed guide as to how to make this happen is found on page 2 of our recent "Cross-Training For Runners" here.

Flexibility, creativity and adaptability are your greatest assets to achieving your ultimate running goals.  Achieve them you will--just maybe not in exactly the same way you'd originally envisioned it all happening!

At its French origin, repechage means “to fish up again”. So keep angling my friends!  If the fish aren’t biting, try different spots, different lures, different casting, and if you’re determined enough, sooner or later, you’ll catch the big one.

KevKevin Smith is a full-time coach with Marathon Dynamics and a sometime elite masters distance runner, water running enthusiast, (hyper) active elliptical trainer-er, life cycle-ist, inline speedskater, power walker, hiker, reluctant rock-climber, and skinny gym-monkey when not enjoying family time with his wife Sherri and son Sebastian!




The ONE Thing...

By Jennifer Faraone, Marathon Dynamics Running Coach

With your peaPower of Onek running season over, now is the perfect time to take a pause and think about ONE small thing that you can do differently in your training program.  Starting today.  I'm a big believer that small changes can lead to big results!

I say ONE thing because let's face it: time is something that we all wished we had more of!  So let's be realistic rather than unrealistic. 
Let’s focus on ONE small change that can go a long way.  Trust me when I say that this ONE small change doesn’t have to require much time and effort.

Let me give you an example.  When I was ready to start training again, I knew that there was ONE thing that I had to do in order to keep myself injury free: to get my right glute (butt) muscles stronger!  I knew from my previous glory days as a slightly competitive athlete (coupled with the many times I visited the friendly folks at Urban Athlete for therapy) that most of my injuries originated from weak right glute muscles. In fact, my glutes and I were like many relationships:  if I gave them attention on a regular basis, they would be content.  But as soon as I started to spend less time with them, they would get mad at me and give me the cold shoulder (or in my case, the muscles would not fire properly).  So I knew that I had to be more consistent in my relationship with my butt muscles if I wanted to resume training.

FortunJenn F Trail Runately for me, my glutes are easily pleased and only require that I perform some simple strengthening exercises two or three times a week (if only all relationships were that easy!). It doesn’t take much time or effort…usually just a series of step-ups on a park bench during an easy jog and a simple rotation between two other strengthening exercises while I either watch tv with my husband or play with trucks with my son on the floor.  This only takes a few minutes a week and yet it keeps my glutes happy, and therefore myself happy (as I can continue training injury-free).

As runners, we all have at least ONE thing that we can do to make us a better, stronger, and happier athlete.  And in most cases, this ONE thing is usually pretty simple and simply requires a little (and I stress the word “little”) love and attention.  Perhaps it is to start stretching 3 key muscle groups on a daily basis? Adding strides at the end of every run?  Incorporating 3 core strengthening exercises twice a week?  Allow yourself 1 rest day a week? 

Challenge yourself by taking a moment and think about ONE small change that you can start incorporating today. You might just surprise yourself with how easy it can be to start seeing the results!

Jennifer FJennifer Faraone has succeeded as a top-ranked distance runner (personal bests of 35min for 10K, and 1:18 for the Half marathon), and enjoys cycling and trail running, and has even represented Canada at the World Mountain Running Championships.  When not running, she's ultra-busy with parenting her two young children, baking and discovering new red wines.

Congrats Jennifer on winning the 2012 Five Peaks Southern Ontario Elite Trail Championship. You still got it girl!

Don't Fear The Carbs!

By Jackie Dupuis, Marathon Dynamics Running Coach

Carbohydrates as an ergogenic aid have been studied by modern medicine since the early 1920’s.  At the 1924 and 1925 Boston marathons, Harvard Medical School tested the theory of a high carbohydrate diet and marathon running as compared to a high fat diet.  The results demonstrated that runners on a diet high in carbohydrates had reduced the symptoms of fatigue, stupor and the inability to concentrate during the race as compared to the runners on a high fat diet. (Levine et al. 1924, Gordon et al. 1925). 

FCarbsrom the field to the laboratory, more studies were done and the key study that is still referred to today was conducted by Christensen and Hansen in 1939.  They demonstrated that a diet high in carbohydrates improved endurance performance and that ingesting carbohydrates during the event delayed feelings of fatigue.   They also found that the time to exhaustion was much sooner on a high fat diet and mixed diet.  Another study out of lab and back into the field was published last month in The International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism.  It looked at the dietary intake of carbohydrates before a marathon by novice runners.   This study found that the day before and morning of race ingestion of carbohydrates was “associated with faster marathon times” (Wilson et al 2012).  This study recommended consumption of a moderate to high amount of carbohydrates in the 24 to 36 hours before the race.

What does this mean?  As my Exercise Physiology professor at York University has been telling us “your body has KILOGRAMS of fat in it but only GRAMS of carbohydrates”.   These small amounts of carbohydrates are stored in your liver and muscles as glycogen and in your blood as glucose. So how much should I eat?  Every person is different but what has been the suggested amount six or seven grams for every kilogram of a person’s body weight.   You will need to adjust based on your stomach.  The message here is to eat your carbs if you want to run well.  

How many carbohydrates are in your sports drink?  Here is a handy dandy equation to see the percentage of carbohydrates in your drink.  Studies have shown that between 4 – 7% is the optimal glucose uptake while exercising.   For example a 335 ml bottle of Gatorade contains 22 g of carbohydrates.  Divide the grams of carbohydrates by the volume in the bottle to calculate the percentage of carbohydrate; 22g/355 ml = 6.2% carbohydrates. 

Jackie D

Jackie Dupuis is a coach with Marathon Dynamics and has been known to commit endurance crimes. (Of which coach Kevin can attest). These crimes are balanced with fine wine, travel and reading books.




The Lure Of The Marathon

By Bruce Raymer, Marathon Dynamics Running Coach

Bruce RunningAmateur long distance runner Bruce Raymer ran his first marathon after losing a bet with his coach.

His subsequent 14 year courtship with this "seductress" was agonizing, beautiful, savage and intoxicating. In all, it resulted in 3 failed relationships, 7 roommates, 1 bachelors degree, 4 stress fractures and 13 stamps in his passport. So why did he do it, or for that matter, why do any of us do it ?

In Bruce's case, there were undoubtedly easier ways to see the world and obtain a post secondary education (most certainly without the stress fractures). But because he was shallow and elitist in his youth, he ran marathons because quite simply, he was fast, and won a lot. And hey, who doesn't like winning? But how many are ever going to win a marathon ? I can tell you, its less than 1/4 of 1% of all marathon runners (and less than 1/5 of 1% of the general population has ever done a marathon!).  Even so there are myriad (to steal a word from notoriously verbose coach Kevin Smith) other reasons to do so.

Let's look at a few shall we:

1) Chafing
2) Bloodied nipples on men (always an attractive image, particularly when wearing white!)
3) Free Beer (if you're lucky)
4) The highly coveted T-Shirt
5) The equally coveted finishers medal 
6) Beating Girls 
7) Beating Boys 
8) Beating anyone who wears full length neon tights
9) Walking downstairs backwards for up to one week
10) Toe nails are over rated
11) Eating deep fried anything...guilt free!
12) More laundry anyone?

Albeit, these are all great reasons to train for and run a marathon, but maybe there's a bit more to this 26.2 mile seductress. Maybe, in the words of Bruce's 5th roommate, its "the ultimate test in pushing the limits of human endurance". Maybe it's the sheer challenge of such an undertaking, and then the sense of accomplishment that follows. Or perhaps it's that as humans, it's simply h
ard-wired in our DNA to take risks and push limits, and to find out what we're really capable of achieving.  These are all valid reasons as well.

Bruce supposes that in end it comes down to a simple truth: if you ask 100 different runners why they run marathons, you'll more than likely get 100 different answers.

But hey, what does he know...he's just a shallow elitist (or used to be, anyway)

Bruce RBruce Raymer is a top Canadian Masters runner, running coach, & also Ontario Sales Manager for Elliptigo Canada.

A competitive runner for over 25 years, Bruce has been a Canadian Marathon Champion (1999) & 7 time National Team member, with over 10 years of coaching experience.

Competing internationally allowed Bruce the unique opportunity to see and experience how different cultures incorporate fitness into their daily lives.  Bruce is excited to share and pass this knowledge and experience onto runners to help them set and achieve their fitness goals. 

What "NOT Running" Taught Me

By Dera Nevin, Marathon Dynamics Running Coach

Setbacks happen, in running, as in life.   Our approach to setbacks, what we learn from them and how we confront them, define who we are.  Setbacks offer powerful lessons which, if received, can make us stronger.   Over the past 3 ½ years I’ve experienced what for many runners is a very significant setback:  not running.   And yet, as I return to running and reflect upon the past few years, I come back a stronger, more motivated and happier runner.

On Sunday November 11th, I expect to toe the line for my 12th marathon.   The last marathon I ran was January 11, 2009.   I won my last marathon (out of a field of 11, but still!).   For this marathon, I’ll feel like a champion just crossing the start line.  I expect to complete this marathon in something close to 75 minutes slower than my last marathon.  But it’s a victory, and that evening I’ll be celebrating something more important than the marathon win. 

I finished the previous marathon elated but tired.  I had run two marathons and three half-marathons in quick succession, but was feeling very confident in my training and my abilities.  After a brief break, I attacked my training with renewed vigour, until I experienced problems with “the usual suspects” – a trio of weak gluteal muscles.  I took the necessary time of 3 weeks off, rehabilitated, and resumed training. 

Only I wasn’t hitting my times.  Everyone knows this feeling:  when you just don’t have energy to run your normal times, distances and paces.  Usually, this occurs every so often in training, and Kevin tells us to move on, and have confidence in the training.  However, for me, poor performance happened over and over again.  I would push myself, but without any results.  I would take extra breaks, but the rest would leave me feeling even more depleted.  In reaction, I would push myself too hard, and strain this or that muscle. Then I’d be off running again, in rehabilitation.  I was experiencing a setback to my running, which left me drained, frustrated and without confidence.  After a long discussion with Kevin, he and I agreed that I would take more rest, on the theory that resting from running makes us stronger. 

Then I received some significant news from my doctor.   This news put the strains I was experiencing in my running in some context.  But it did something else:  it wiped out my confidence in my health.  Things would never be quite the same again.  I had a really hard time accepting that.  My body never let me down, and now I felt betrayed. 

And not accepting this change in my health condition, I fought it.  Let me tell you: your health is not something to fight.  Looking back, my reaction doesn’t make much sense, but that’s what I did.  I was just scared. 

My No Runningrunning suffered.  And I suffered.  For two years, I couldn’t accept that my physical condition had changed.  I would surge off in workouts, without the strength or (since I wasn’t running as much) the conditioning to support running with the same intensity as before.  Inevitably, I’d aggravate old injuries, and then be laid up for weeks.  I’d then try to return to running, ramping up the intensity and distance too quickly.  I was getting frustrated.  And running wasn’t fun.   I was in denial.     

Then I was just not running at all.   My life changed.  Instead of waking up at the crack of stupid to meet my friends and go for a run, I slept in.   I stopped watching what I ate.  I lost contact with my running buddies, for want of anything in common.  Things were easier, but I didn’t like it.  I had given up on running, an activity that I’ve literally done all my life.  I felt like I had given up on myself – because I had.

It took a complete meltdown to help me realize it.  In October 2011, for the first time since 1998, I DNFed a race.   I dropped out of a half marathon at kilometer 16.  I wasn’t running very well, and I dropped out so that I wouldn’t have that “bad” time show up in my race results. 

There are many good reasons to DNF a race, but as a recreational runner, “bad time” legacy is not a particularly good one.  It’s the height of arrogance and cowardice.  At home later than day, I was not proud of myself at all.  I felt like I had lost my running, like I didn’t deserve it or something. 

In fact I hadn’t lost running.  I had just lost my integrity, my courage, and my trust in myself.    Or rather, I had mislaid it.   That trifecta:  integrity, courage and trust, was still there.   But, as I thought about it, I realized that I had to rebuild my relationship with running, the same way one rebuilds any relationship that’s been damaged.  First:  I had to trust myself again, which meant trusting my body and where it was now.  Second, I had to act with integrity, which meant keeping my running commitments, even when I wasn’t running well.  Third, I had to find my courage.  I was afraid, in light of my health and my long layoff, that I might not run “properly” again.   I also had to re-learn patience, discipline and joy.

In December 2011 I recommitted to running by re-joining Marathon Dynamics.  That was a great decision.  Now that Kevin has “slowed things down for me” I am noticing improvements.  Not in the times, but in my overall enjoyment of running.  And perversely, the running has brought a necessary stability to my underlying medical condition.  I am also re-learning how to trust my body’s reaction to running stress.   I have myself back again. 

Two weeks ago I went for my longest long run with a friend who has supported my running comeback just by being there (and by being a carrier for gels!).  As happens with long run running buddies on the slowest of all LSDs, our conversation was meandering, silly, and touching.  As we stood by the lighthouse in the west end, a full 12 miles from where I started out earlier that day he commented on how far I’d run that morning.  But for me, the distance that matters most is how far I’ve come in a year:  from not running at all, to running with a smile. 

So:  what I’ve learned from my three-plus year hiatus.  Treat your body well and trust it.  Adaptability is the key to resilience.   Pure intentions are the most motivating.  Power originates in integrity.   And running is awesome. 

Dera N
  • Dera Nevin has been a runner since childhood. First track & Cross-Country, then a dozen marathons (3:25 fastest time), 50+ half marathons (1:30 fastest time).  Her favourite things about running are friendships, crisp fall runs in the park, and guilt-free post-run brunches!



Run Like A Kid

By Steve McKinnon, Marathon Dynamics Running Coach

A Kid runningfew years ago I was coaching hill repeats with our Oakville crew. It was late fall, somewhat dark and near the end of a long season. A season that was building for the big day for everyone - race day. Everyone focused on their hill times, form, how they felt, somewhat nervous because it was the last hill workout before moving back to the track.
One of our runners was finding it difficult to make her "times". As hard as she tried to concentrate and press herself, she fell short on each repeat. Watching the clock, checking her heart rate, looking at other runners, comparing herself to other runners, she became more frustrated with each repeat.
"Cathy, what's up. You're having a hard time tonight?" I asked.
"Steve, I just can not do it!"
"Listen Cathy, the hard part of running is getting out the door, you've already done that tonight. However, the other hard part is not to get to caught up in the workout. Cathy, tell me why do you run?"
"What do you mean?" she asked.
"Why do you run, we know you are training for a marathon but why did you chose to run in the first place?"
"I chose running because it makes me feel good, I like how it makes me feel".
"And tonight, how do you feel?'
"I don't feel good about it."
"Cathy, ever notice how kids are always running. When they run they look like they are having fun, no worries, just running because it makes them feel great and because it can be fun. Do you remember? Cathy, will you trust me?
"I guess so, what to you mean"
"Give me your watch, your GPS, water bottle and car keys. I want you to forget making your times, forget the race, forget about your 'adult' responsibilities, forget why you are here tonight. I will time you, all you have to do is run, run up the hill. Don't worry about a thing, just run"
"Steve, are you sure, I won't be able to complete my work out, make my times"
"Let's find out" I said.
Cathy gave me her watch , GPS\heart rate monitor and got ready to run. As she started I said, "now go run like a kid, no worries, just have fun"
She started up the hill and as she passed me she gave me a small smile. When she came back to me on the hill, she was smiling more. On the next repeat she had a big smile and she whispered as she ran by "this can be fun again". Cathy made her times that night after she learned to run like a kid again.
Sometimes I think we get caught in the pursuit of making our times, equipment, the race, training and forget the reason we are out on the roads, the track or the trails in the first place. In fact there may be many reasons but I bet all could honestly say, "I run because I like the way it makes me feel, and sometimes it really is fun, like when I was a kid".

Steve McKSteve McKinnon has been a running instructor & coach for over 12 years, a race director to many of Halton's largest road races, and has been a competitive road runner (5K to marathon), with an impressive 2:37 Marathon PB.  He won the inaugural Kitchener Marathon, and twice completed the Boston Marathon

Marathon Dynamics

Customized Training Plans & Coaching


Winter-Spring '13 Training Groups Start SOON!

Monarch ParkIncluding our brand new Downtown (east) Toronto INDOOR track location - Monarch Park Stadium. The glue is still drying and the crew is hurrying to get this super 400m indoor track and field facility ready in time to open on schedule.

We have 35 spots (max) guaranteed for runners interested in joining us there on Monday nights...act fast!

Click here to check updated website info. All sessions are @ 6:30-8pm, unless otherwise noted)

·         Monarch Park Stadium (New Indoor Track)...starts Dec 3rd
·         York University (Indoor Track)...starts Dec 4th
·         High Park - Grenadier Restaurant...starts Dec 5th
·         Physical Edge Physio...starts Dec 6th
·         Monarch Park Stadium (New Indoor Track)...starts Jan 8th

Our "Winning Edge Guarantee" is BACK!

Worked so well in 2012, that we're at it again in 2013.

"Halwinning edgef back" guarantee on coaching fees: if you'll commit to training with us this season (training plan and coaching, at least 4 months), we WILL help you improve your personal best half or full marathon time by (at least) 3%. If that doesn't happen (subject to a few conditions and restrictions - click here for full details), we'll credit 50% of paid coaching fees upon request toward next season, or refund same amount if not.

3% improvement doesn't sound like much? For 4hr marathoners, that's over 7 minutes! For 1:45 half marathoners, that's well over 3 minutes! Click here for a table which shows race time improvements based on your current PBs.  At the bottom, you can even enter your exact current PB and it will calculate your guaranteed improvement.

Register by/before December 31st (online registration is now open) for a Customized Training Plan and 4 months (min) of ANY level of our Personal or E-Coaching, and your "Winning Edge Guarantee" goes into effect.

If you’re new to Marathon Dynamics we feel that on every front—from our staff, to our systems, to our services—we can provide the best training plans & personal running coaching, and deliver the best results, for the best price.  To find out more about our how our Customized Training Plans work, please click here, and if you’d like more information on our Personal Coaching Services, please click here, and to find out more about who our coaches themselves are, please click here.

* Initial Testing for new Customized Training Plans is available at all sites thru the months of December and January, but please call/email to notify us of your attendance at least 24hrs in advance (alternatively, self-testing is an here for further instructions).

If you’d like to “tawk shawp” re: your 2013 running goals, the best time to reach Coach Kev for a free consultation is between Nov 19-Dec 3rd (10am-4pm).  After that, we kick into gear and things get a little crazy,  so call soon...905 891-3197

THANK YOU MDI Sponsors...New & Old!

CVT NewWe are super excited to welcome the newest member to the MDI sponsor family - China Visit Tours.Josi MS

Great wall of China Marathon is a great way to experience China and meet friends from around world. Please join us at the 12th marathon on the most beautiful part of great wall on MAY 1ST ,2013. For information session and registration details, please visit our website or email us at 

For a great recap from one of our own Marathon Dynamics runners, Josie Mori-Stoodley, who ran it last year click here!

And we are ever so grateful for the ongoing support of our returning sponsors as well, all of whom have provided great value and assistance to our Marathon Dynamics running team members!

Absolute  Endurance

Downsview Half Marathon

Cliff Bar

Road Warrior





Runners Mark

Physcial Edge

Your Faithful Marathon Dynamics Coaches,

Kevin, Jackie, Michelle, Bruce, Steve, Jennifer, Dera


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In This Issue  

Hot Temps = Hotter Racing - Best MDI Season Ever!

The Running Repechage - By Kevin Smith

The ONE Thing - By Jennifer Faraone

Don't Fear The Carbs - By Jackie Dupuis

The Lure of the Marathon - By Bruce Raymer

NOT Running Taught Me... - By Dera Nevin

Run Like A Kid - By Steve McKinnon

Marathon Dynamics News:


New Sponsor: China Visit Tour

Thanks MDI Sponsors!

Absolute Endurance

Physical EdgeMizuno LogoClif Bar Logo

New China Visit Tour Logo Road Warrior 

  Downsview Half MaraRunners Mark
This just in...

Don Campbell

I would like to thank Marathon Dynamics for designing a customized training plan. Kevin Smith provided me with e-coaching which made my dream of qualifying for Boston a reality. I am so proud of my accomplishment and know I could not have done it without MDI. Thank you very much!!  Don Campbell
Run The Great Wall!  

Ever dreamed of running the Great Wall of China Marathon?

MDI runner Josi Mori-Stoodley did ...and made her dream a reality!

Click here to read her account, and here to learn more about it if interested in doing it yourself!

 Josie Great Wall

A Happy MDI Runner
You really have brought me to a place I never thought I would see. I never imagined I’d be able to deliver the race result that I did this past year. I’m still in disbelief of the time in fact!  I've vastly improved through your coaching.  You took me from a 4:02 marathon where I thought I left everything I had on the course down to a 3:19 in 3 years – with a BQ to show for it as a bonus!"

Ken Moscoe
Another Success Story  
I'd achieved some success making my own training plans, but I felt I could improve and didn't know how. With the experience, knowledge, and technical expertise of Marathon Dynamics, I've been able to bring my half marathon PB from 1:48 to 1:34! I also ran my first marathon, and I'm heading to Boston next April.  If you have the drive and determination, MDI can take care of the planning that ultimately produces your dream results. You'll marvel at coach Kevin's ability to assess your fitness and predict your race day results. You'll arrive at the starting line feeling super confident and ultra-prepared.

Kristin Dalzell after her 1st year with MDI

MDI Runners Rule!
"I just wanted to say THANKS!  Without you, your help and support, my PB result at the 2010 Ottawa marathon (3:26) would not have been possible.  You went the extra mile with me (pun intended!), by giving up a lot of your time to teach and coach me through each and every concern I had (which I know were many!).  You believed in me that I could accomplish my goal…and made it really easy - all I had to do was to follow your program.

I am truly grateful and you have made me a better runner!"

New Marathon Dynamics Runner David Gauthier, who improved his marathon PB by 23 minutes

Marathon Dynamics Runners Rave  

MDI Rocks! Why? The Personalized Training Plan and the Weekly Group Coaching. I did both. The result? 18 weeks later I qualified for Boston! The Plan was personalized for me, advocated cross training combined with a sensible number of non running days and was easy to follow. So I was realistically able to manage life outside running. And bonus...when I needed my Plan to be tweaked (due to really rough winter weather) it was easily done.

The Weekly Group Coaching got me ‘out there’ with other runners (of all abilities) and my professional MDI Coach. The coaches are runners too and were adept at keeping me on track (literally!) with my Plan by providing encouragement, advice (by email, phone or in person at the weekly workouts) and good jokes! Boston here I come!

MDI Runner Katie Thomas improved her marathon PB by over 15 min and qualified for Boston

And Rave Some More!
"Marathon Dynamics coaches offer a positive focused atmosphere for people at a variety of skill levels, which is something I very much appreciate. Their friendly encouragement has worked like a tonic to inspire me to push through my own obstacles and reach my traing goals. This is one of the most intense activities I’ve been involved with; I get to with feel the burn and the joy...marvellous!"
Jacquie Jacobs - qualified for Boston at her debut marathon in her 1st season with MDI
and even more!  
“Thanks to Kevin Smith and the Marathon Dynamics approach to training, I was able to fulfill a personal dream - to qualify for the 2010 Boston Marathon.  By joining the Marathon Dynamics team in 2008 and following their program, I was able to improve my marathon PB from 3:57 to 3:19 in just one year!” 

“Even more important to me is that Kevin works really hard to foster a friendly and supportive team environment throughout training and coaching sessions... As a result, I have been able to establish incredible new friendships with some great people that share my passion for running.” 

New Marathon Dynamics Runner Harvey Foote 

Jumpin' on the Praise Train
"MDI does a fantastic job of tailoring your training to you. The plans are very detailed, the support is fantastic, and the results speak for themselves. Kevin really knows his stuff and his approach is both resolute and flexible at the same time. I look forward to working with them again to take the next step in my running.

MDI runner Glen Way improved his marathon PB by over 10 min in his first year with MDI (3:08 for a Boston Qualifier)
Bev Whelan - 3:07 debut!  

"Marathon Dynamics’ training program showed me that if I run the race the right way, I can break 3 hours.

My first marathon was painful, but the training for it was a lot of fun, and I would definitely recommend Marathon Dynamics to anyone. Whether you’re aiming for a particular time, or your goal is just to finish, the coaches will design a program that will help you safely and enjoyably reach your goal"

MDI Runner Stephan Steen  
"I had run 10 marathons and really needed something extra to boost my performance level if I was ever going to qualify for Boston.  With the help of MDI I managed to shave over 13 minutes off my PB at the Mississauga Marathon!  Without the MDI program and their support I could never have done so well"

MDI Runner Benoit Keppenne  

"8 months ago I was immobilized on an hospital bed with severe injuries suffered in a horrible motorcycle accident. I just ran my half marathon in 1:29--an 8 min PB!

This would not have happened without MDI's help. The personal plans are very effective at keeping you focussed & the camaraderie of the group running sessions and coaches push you to the limit without you even noticing it!"


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