1. You have been coached by many coaches over the years, in high school, college, club and your professional career. Could you name several coaches who stand out in your mind because of their coaching style or philosophy? What did you take from them that impacted your running?
High School Coach....Keith Weatherbie
College....played field hockey for first two years at Bowdoin. Was coached by Russ Combs and the late Jim Wescott at NCSU.
Coached by Lynn Ruddy and the late Frank Sabasteanski at Bowdoin when I came back from NCSU.
Coached by John Babington when I ran for Liberty AC and Bob Sevene when I ran for Athletics West.
Keith Weatherbie, John Babington and Bob Sevene had the most influence on me. They expected a lot and knew how to handle workouts and athletes so the workouts always flowed smoothly. John was an avid runner and Sev often ran with me. John and Sev had a deep understanding of the runner's psyche. Mutual respect between athlete and coach is very important so is the chemistry of personalities.
2. As one of the most successful women's distance runners of all times, with decades of sub 3-hour marathons and faster on your resume, can you tell us about your approach to training over the years? You have been self-coached more than you have been coached. How did that evolve, and how did you approach it?
Keep it simple. Run the way you feel. The athlete knows her own body and how it responds from workouts better than any trainer or coach. I have always run the way I feel on any given day. If anything, I cut myself short on rest and don't take enough easy days. Learning this as I age.
My three key workouts for marathon training at the height of my career starting three months ahead of the actual marathon date: Long run of 20 miles; medium-long run of 12-15; one speed workout that could be either a track workout, tempo or race. All other runs were run with the energy and stamina I had at the particular time. When I was training twice a day, I felt as though the morning workout maintained my fitness and the afternoon session improved my fitness because I was always training at a deficit after a morning workout.
3. As you look back over your career, what training do you wish you had done more of? What training do you wish you had not done? In hindsight, what type of training works best for you? What is a signature "speed" workout for JBS?
See above. No real regrets except for perhaps not tapering enough.
Signature workouts: 10 x 400m with 200m jog recovery throughout my career before children.
High School: 1 x mile, 2 x 800m, 4 x 400m, 8 x 200m, devised by Coach Weatherbie.
College: Different ladder workouts depending on the coach.
As I moved to more marathons, I did a lot of mile repeats (4-6) with half the number of 800s and 400s.