Coach, payed training plan or free plan from internet?


Free plan from internet, payed plan, customized plan, one-to-one coaching, running group/club, etc. There are huge range of options available, so which one is the best choice? It’s depends who you are and what goals do you have? Let’s break down pros and cons each opportunity.

Free plan from internet or magazines:

+ they are free
+ might give you simple understanding what you have to do (this depending plan quality)
+ if you just newly runner and run without any bigger goals these might give you a good kick off
– these are not personalised for your needs and level
– they don’t take account your personal life, do you have any other activities/hobbies
– they don’t answer your concern of any aspect
– it’s not guaranteed the program is suitable for you
– there are not support

Payed training plan:

This can be divided two: personalized plans and not-personalized. Let’s consider not-personalized first:
+ same pros as free plans
+ might more varieties during program which give opportunities to fit other activities to in
+ might be more professionally done (again this highly depends on plan and who have made it)
– again it not personalized of your need, so it might not be suitable for you
– they don’t answer your question, if the plans maker is not willing to keep in touch of progress
– same applies to amount of support

Personalized training plan:

+ it considers who you are and what are your goals
+ take account your other activities and how often you are willing to train
+ answer why you need to do certain things
+ often there are support along the way, so you can keep the touch your coach
-as it distances coaching there are not any guarantee of your coach skills (=solution: make questions, gain your own knowledge)
-you don’t see your coach physically so he/she can’t correct your technique or push you further as well as one-to-one coaching

One-to-one coaching:

+ this often include training customized training plan, which advantages you can read above
+ opportunity to fix technique
+ you have someone to cheering and supporting to you just by your side
-often expensive
-difficulties to find right coach with whom the chemistry works

Running club/group:

+ same minded people around
+ possibility to make new friends
+ coach available on every meeting
-amount of training varies, from 1 training per week to several training per week
-workouts are not often personalized to suit your goal (especially if you are adult runner who has meeting once a week)
-often there are not training plan for other days (this again depends on group/club)
-meeting times might not be suitable for you due to work schedule etc.


I would suggesting find a good customized training plan, and if possible to take some one-to-one coaching or join the club if possible. Either you are beginner or advanced runner making things right at the beginning while helping you in the future. Make question, good coach is always willing to help and listen. And this way you also make sure your coach has to work and educate himself/herself all time, as there are not ready coaches in the world.

Often biggest mistakes at beginner have is that they don’t know what they are doing, so they start to hard and broke they body. And advance runners often stay one level years to years because they don’t change anything or they don’t have knowledge enough to step further.


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