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Cally  Macumber

Cally Macumber

What are you up to?

Right now, I remain focused on my life’s professional work = helping runners of all levels train right and reach their potential.  I’m super excited about some of the great enhancements at Runcoach we will introduce to our runners this year.

What are you reading?

Gabor Mate’s The Myth of Normal. Full disclosure I’m a terrible reader and usually put books down about 60% of the way through.  Dr. Mate’s book fascinates me.  I had no concept of inter-generational trauma and the impacts.  Further, it has practical advice on how to move forward and become inherently present.  Up until now I only had running:rolling_on_the_floor_laughing:coach_tom
What are you listening to?

I’m a lyrics junkie so I like to delve into the words.  Mostly I still listen to pop, rap and of course the classics.  Taylor Swift is probably my favorite and I’m fascinated by Kanye the artist and his stories.  Recently, I was reacquainted with my college favorite Abbey Road which I still believe is the best album ever.

What are your non-running goals for 2024?

I want to read more.  I’m excited for my last season of coaching the OLA middle school track program and want to pass the reigns to the new coaches who are terrific.  I will take my first European trip to Spain in March to visit my brother, sister-in-law and niece = can’t wait!

Ok, but what about running?

I’m just coming off a ski accident and subsequent concussion so just getting back into it.  Still I’m hopeful to run the KP Half Marathon on February 4 in San Francisco.  I have a special athlete I’m hoping to pace to her first half marathon finish (you may here more about that in the future).

Breaking Barriers: Completing a Full Marathon - The interviewee reflects on a significant achievement.

Major milestone:

I finished my first full marathon in January 2024 thanks to the dedicated guidance from Runcoach and Coach Tom.

What is the secret to your success?

Mental resilience and running economy build up.Success_Story_January_

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?

Inconsistent training. Training adjustments to reach sufficient aerobic fitness.

What is the most rewarding part of training?

Happiness.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community?

Dedicated and personalized coaching to personalize your running training experience. Hence, stay responsive and stick to the training plan.

Anything else you would like to share?

I appreciate Coach Tom's guidance and will be a lifetime mentee.

Runners love outdoor miles, but there are times when weather conditions may force you inside. During these moments, your training does not need to be derailed! Indoor workouts can be a powerful tool to enhance your running performance, offering a chance to focus on strength, flexibility, and cross-training. Explore the following variety of indoor workouts, ensuring you stay on track with your goals:

  1. Yoga is an awesome complement to running. It helps improve balance, flexibility, and mental toughness. You can incorporate yoga to improve your range of motion, enhance flexibility, and prevent injuries. Poses like Downward Dog, Warrior series, and Pigeon pose target areas commonly stressed during running. Dedicate a few sessions a week to yoga to enjoy its full benefits. Tune in here for a great workout!

  1. Strength training helps prevent injuries and improves running efficiency. Focus on exercises that target major muscle groups, including squats, lunges, deadlifts, and core. Incorporating resistance training with weights or bands can improve strength and stability, contributing to better performance on the road.  We recommend this workout (which requires no weights or equipment) 2 times a week! 

  1. Treadmill workouts become a valuable asset when weather conditions make outdoor running challenging. Mimic your scheduled workout on the treadmill, but place it at 1% incline and use this chart to adjust your paces.

  1. Plyometric exercises focus on explosive movements to enhance your power and agility. Plyometrics engage fast-twitch muscle fibers, important for running fast. For example, these exercises can be done in a basement or garage! Include plyometrics into your routine and take your running performance to new heights.

  1. Indoor cycling or Swimming are great ways to build cardiovascular fitness without the impact on your joints. Whether you use a stationary bike, join a virtual cycling class, or swim in the pool, these low-impact workouts allow you to maintain or improve your aerobic fitness. We suggest biking 3 miles for every 1 mile run prescribed within your plan, or swimming for equal time to run time.

Whether you're facing difficult weather conditions or simply seeking a change in routine, these indoor workouts will keep you engaged and motivated on your journey to becoming a more resilient runner.

Running with Joy: Unveiling Marathon Success with Runcoach

Major Milestone? The Marathon Runcoach_Success_Story_Lorea

What is the secret to your success?

Having fun, actually enjoying the runs.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?

Planning adequately to get the time in and considering travel, so needing to be flexible.

What is the most rewarding part of training?

Being outside in nature, watching the trees change, learning to identify a few, listening to my body and thoughts.

What feedback would you offer on the Runcoach experience?

I did not download the app until the end of September because I thought if I only put in weekly miles I would be okay. But a friend who has run several marathons advised me to buy it. It was a game changer! I now had a plan, it even included rest, timed runs were great and it gave me confidence to know I was doing the right thing. Being able to email the coaches (Cally for me) was great. I asked her several questions, she always answered on time and I felt someone had my back. It made me feel accompanied. The daily tips were also great. Specially the reminders to “not do anything new on race day!” because it is so easy when one is nervous to want to change things up, but I stuck to the plan and it worked. I did go out too fast, I couldn’t help it, but fortunately because I was well trained I was able to keep going. Great experience.

Striking the Right Balance: A Runner's Secret to Marathon Success

Major Milestone? 

Completing Dublin Marathon in 3:54. This was my first marathon in 22 years, and my best time in 37 years, nearly 4 decades later.

What is the secret to your success?runcoach_success_antony_boyd

Discipline and focus, and setting realistic goals. I have learned that if there are failures along the way, there are always lessons that can be learned which can help make you a better runner going forward.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?

It is very hard to fit the training in around family and work commitments. Sacrifices have to be made and sometimes you have to be selfish to get the me-time in. But at the end of the day, it is about finding the right balance in a realistic way. You cannot please all of the people all of the time.

What is the most rewarding part of training?

To see the improvement. To come back from a hard run at the end of the day following a really tough day at work, but knowing you have given it your best, the positive energy gained can turn any negative thoughts into a runner’s high. And you know that you are going places as you strive forward and closer to reaching your goal.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community?

Just go for it. You will not regret it. And don’t be afraid to seek help from those around you. I am in my mid fifties and am running better and feeling better with myself than I have done in decades. I have not been able to do this on my own though, and have learned to seek help from nutritionists, physios, experienced runners and a chiropractor. The whole system needs good maintenance to work properly.

Anything else you would like to share?

Mix up your training runs - include some road running and trail running. Milestone races also add some spice and excitement and allow you to benchmark your improvement over time and to engage with the local running community too. And also try to keep it interesting by mixing up the routes and throwing in some big adventures to give excitement and memories too. The mental well-being benefits are huge.

What feedback would you offer on the Runcoach experience?

The coaching advice from Cally has been first class, She was always good to respond in good time, answering all of my questions and sharing her huge experience and knowledge. Thank you Cally!

Overcoming Doubts, Achieving Milestones: An Inspiring Interview with a Dublin City Marathon Finisher

Major Milestone? 
Dublin City Marathon (Ireland)

What is the secret to your success?Dublin_Marathon_Success_Story

Listen to good advice like following the training plan, good nutrition, rest and sleep, strength exercises to reduce the risk of injury and warm up before every run. It's not one of these, it's all of them. Make this a routine. Above all, you have to want it.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?

Worrying that I was not good enough or fit enough to run a marathon. Earlier in the training plan, this knocked my confidence. But as I achieved my sub goals I began to see the value in the plan and my confidence slowly grew. Worry has no value..stick to the plan and have patience.

What is the most rewarding part of training?

By far the most rewarding part of training was seeing my fitness level increase. A year ago, doing a 25k run was tough; now I find it relatively easy and enjoyable. My preference is longer distance running and the training plan Runcoach gave me helped me to become a confident endurance runner.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community?

Whatever your big goal is, set mini goals along the way and train for each goal. Enter competitive runs and stick to your plan as best you can. This will give you a big confidence boost as you achieve each mini goal.

Anything else you would like to share?

I started running at the age of 51 and two years later I've just completed my first marathon. It's never too late. In the marathon, I ran with with people of all ages, abilities and challenges. If you want to do it, you can.

What feedback would you offer on the Runcoach experience?

Runcoach is a terrific resource to have supporting you. There are plans to suit all stages of your progress including weekly schedules and audio guide when running. But the best part is that you get a dedicated professional coach...a real person to help you and answer questions. My coach Cally is brilliant and definitely helped my achieve my goals.

October 26, 2023

Master Marathon Pacing

Pacing in a marathon is like a finely tuned dance. Too fast, and you might find yourself running out of steam before the finish line. Too slow, and you might miss out on reaching your full potential. To master your marathon pacing strategy, you'll need to find the balance, the sweet spot, where you can maintain a consistent pace and finish strong. Let's explore tips to ensure a successful race day.

Start Slow to Finish Strong:

One of the most common pacing mistakes in marathon running is starting too fast. The excitement of the race and the adrenaline rush can tempt you to sprint out of the gate, but this can lead to early fatigue and negatively impact your overall performance. To avoid this, consciously start the race slightly slower than your goal pace. This conservative approach ensures you conserve precious glycogen stores for later in the race.  We like to think of mile 1 as a warmup mile where you can utilize a bit of fat for fuel, allow your body to warmup and turn the race fro 26.2 to 25.2 miles right off the bat.  We recommend the first mile be 30-45 seconds slower than goal pace to accomplish the above objectives.

Embrace Negative Splits:

While many marathoners aim for even splits (maintaining the same pace throughout the race), some runners aim for negative splits. Negative splits involve running the second half of the marathon faster than the first. This approach allows you to finish strong and provides a mental boost when you pass other runners in the late miles. There have been strong results from Marathon runners who complete negative splits inclusive Kelvin Kiptum’s recent World Record at Chicago where he ran 1 minute faster for the 2nd half of the race.

Adapt When Needed:

Flexibility is a valuable within a marathon. Unexpected obstacles, like weather conditions or muscle cramps, may require adjustments to your plan. Be prepared to adapt without panicking. Sometimes, slowing down briefly can help you recover and continue at your goal pace. Many athletes have receive a great lift when they actually stop and walk briefly (preferably through an aid station) as the quick break allows muscles a brief recovery.

Trust Your Training:

Your marathon training program was designed to prepare your body for the race. Trust in the process and the hard work you've put in during your training runs. The pace you've practiced is the pace you're ready for. By following your training plan and being consistent in your workouts, you've build the endurance necessary for a successful marathon.

Keep in mind that every marathon is a unique, so remain adaptable and embrace the journey that this specific race offers. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned runner, pacing is a skill that can always be perfected!

Unveiling the Secrets of a Massive Personal Best Achievement at the 2023 Chicago Marathon

Major Milestone:


1hour and 35 minute improvement from 2021 Chicago Marathon (7:11) to 2023 Chicago Marathon (5:36). success_story_octoberr

What is the secret to your success?

Sticking to the plan as much as possible and granting myself forgiveness when circumstances won't allow me to follow the plan. Be that weeble that wobbles but doesn't fall down or give up. I fell a lot but I kept getting up, dusting myself off and making an effort to change my mindset.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?

Replaying the negative chatter in my mind when I don't think I did something good enough or missing the plan workout. This only compounds the issue and can break my spirit. I find a positive scripture, mantra, or inspirational song that I play over and over in my mind to over talk, drive out and over take every negative thought until my spirit being becomes focused and unstoppable on reaching that goal.

What is the most rewarding part of training?

Building self confidence and allowing it to spill into other parts of your life. When you push yourself to achieve in what appears to be at times the impossible (lack of time, getting past an injury or illness) during the training there is nothing that anyone can throw your way that you will not feel can be handled or conquered.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community?

Getting in the miles is important but don't skimp on the cross training. I found it important to get in my strength training, cross training, yoga which helped build up the muscles needed in my entire body to support the change that was needed to improve my time. Believe your Coach when they tell you to trust your training and don't ignore the taper without consulting with your coach. We think getting in all the miles is important but proper rest each night to give the muscles time to repair and for the mind to rest and relax is just as important. It is finding that balance in mind, body and spirit that will keep you focused on not allowing anything to take you off course from achieving your goals.

Anything else you would like to share?

The Coaches are top notch in the field. They have been there, done that and know how to make the minor adjustments in your plan to bring out the very best in you. I absolutely love the way they approach it from a partnership perspective. Easy to talk to, bounce off ideas and always willing to make adjustments that make the best sense to achieve your goals. I took advantage of every tip of the day each coach shared and incorporated it in my run for that day. I found myself pulling from those tips of knowledge miles 19 -26 when I had to dig deep to keep up the momentum in the race.

What feedback would you offer on the Runcoach experience?

The experience with Runcoach has exceeded my expectations. When I physically could not train my coach challenged me to strengthen my mind. See the race from start to finish. I smiled on race day when I got to those places my mind saw before the race and pulled from the daily tips when the course changed from the last time I did that race. So glad I signed up for the year plan. Worth every penny.

Vicente_BehrensA Marathoner's Journey with Relentless Dedication and Inner Strength

Major milestone: New York City Marathon

What is the secret to your success?

Relentless dedication, patience, and planning.

What is the biggest obstacle to reaching your goals and how do you get over it?

Having enough time to train during the week due to long days at work. I overcame the frustration with meditations and simple short exercises like a 20min indoor ride or 10 min full body stretching.

What is the most rewarding part of training?

Discovering the inner strengths and potential. Learning to accept the setbacks. Overcoming self doubts when things seem too hard.

What advice would you give to other members of the Runcoach community?

Follow the plans on the calendar. Schedule your long runs and prepare well the night before. Trust the process and don’t give up even when you feel that you have not achieved all the goals in a week. You will come back stronger.

Anything else you would like to share?

Having a clear goal with recommendations for the training every week allowed me to get focused and achieve so much more than I thought. It’s very helpful to read daily tips from the coaches because some days, there was a line I needed to hear from someone else.


Fall_runningAs the days grow shorter, and the leaves begin to change, there's no better time to embrace the beauty of fall running. The crisp, cool air, the vibrant foliage, and the absence of scorching summer heat make fall an ideal season for runners. To fully enjoy your runs and stay comfortable in changing weather conditions, it's important to have the right gear and essentials. Read this must-have fall running checklist that will help you stay safe, warm, and motivated during your seasonal adventures.

  1. Layered Clothing: Fall weather can be quite unpredictable, with chilly mornings and warmer afternoons. Layering your clothing allows you to adapt to changing temperatures throughout your run. Start with a moisture-wicking base layer to keep sweat away from your skin. Add a long-sleeved shirt or a lightweight jacket for warmth, and don't forget a wind-resistant outer layer to protect against cold gusts.

  2. Moisture-Wicking Fabrics: As you transition from the hot summer months to cooler fall weather, moisture-wicking fabrics become your best friend. These materials pull sweat away from your skin, keeping you dry and comfortable during your run. Look for moisture-wicking shirts, socks, and even underwear to prevent chafing and discomfort.

  3. Reflective Gear: With shorter daylight hours, it's crucial to stay visible when running in the early morning or evening. Invest in reflective gear, such as a high-visibility vest, reflective running shoes, or even LED lights that can be attached to your clothing or gear. Safety should always be a top priority.

  4. Gloves and Headwear: As the temperature drops, your extremities can quickly feel the cold. Keep your hands warm with a pair of lightweight, moisture-wicking running gloves. Additionally, consider wearing a beanie or headband to protect your ears and head from chilly winds.

  5. Proper Footwear: Fall often brings wetter conditions, so choose running shoes with good traction and water-resistant features. This will help you maintain stability on wet or slippery surfaces while keeping your feet dry. Don't forget to replace worn-out shoes to prevent injury.

  6. Hydration Pack: Although the heat of summer has passed, staying hydrated during your runs is still crucial. Consider using a hydration pack or belt to carry water or your favorite electrolyte drink. Proper hydration ensures you have the energy to tackle those longer fall runs.

  7. Compression Socks: Compression socks not only provide extra warmth but also offer support to your calf muscles. They can help improve blood circulation and reduce the risk of muscle fatigue and cramping during your runs.

  8. GPS Watch: Fall is an excellent time to set new running goals and track your progress. Invest in a reliable GPS watch to monitor your pace, distance, and heart rate. Many modern watches also offer safety features like live tracking, which can be beneficial if you're running alone.

  9. Recovery Tools: As your mileage increases, recovery becomes more critical. Consider adding foam rollers, massage sticks, or even a visit to a sports massage therapist to your routine. These tools can help prevent injuries and keep your muscles feeling fresh.

With the right fall running essentials, you can make the most of this season while staying safe and comfortable. Embrace the crisp air, enjoy the changing scenery, and keep pursuing your running goals. Gear up, step outside, and enjoy the beauty of autumn runs.

If you’re in need of a new GPS device, please reach out to your coach or info@runcoach.com in regards to our Garmin partnership promotion.

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