One of the big reasons we started The Run SMART Project was to develop a coaching staff that could provide a unique perspective and guidance to young distance athletes. Many of our coaches are former high school standouts who went on to compete at a high level in college and then professionally. In hindsight, we can offer young athletes so much and help them get to the next level.
Neil Braganza of San Ramon, CA, pictured here kicking to a new 3200m PR in 9:15.72 at the Arcadia Invite, has been working with Run SMART coach Malindi Elmore since the fall of 2014. When he signed up for coaching he had run 4:22 for 1600m and 9:48 for 3200m. Since then he’s made significant progress and is now headed to Yale in the fall!
Neil’s Current PRs:
- 1600m – 4:14.37
- 3200m – 9:15.72
- 5K (xc) – 15:25.10
Neil On Working With Malindi:
Working with Malindi has been an amazing experience. For being an online coach thousands of miles away I feel like she understands me, how I adapt workouts, and how far I can push myself. I truly don’t think my successes and being able to run at a collegiate level with Yale would have been possible without her.
Malindi On Working With Neil:
Neil had a very successful cross country season in the fall, and with his continued dedication, is seeing similar results this track season. One of the biggest changes we made in his program over the years has been to focus on a few key sessions a week and build in more recovery – he used to go hard almost every day. We also have built his base mileage consistently over the years and can handle more load more easily now. I think his willingness to try new approaches is one of the reasons that he has seen improvements and will continue to as he moves to collegiate competition next year.