While doing an adventure race in KY in 2012 my heel bone pulled away from my foot. Due to the remoteness I had to be helped back to the transition area. During that time my arch had collapsed as well. I went into surgery soon after. I had my arch re-set and a pin put into my outer ankle to control the flexibility of it. My heel and portion of the foot was casted to let the break heal. Upon removal of the cast, it was discovered that my arch had not healed in the proper location. I went two years hobbling and trying to adjust running and walking habits. Even my biking was altered by the extreme pain whenever I would stand for climbs or attacks. I continued to race but my teammates and myself could easily see that my performance was not where it had been in the past. I ended up doing one more 72 hour race in February 2014 before I would go back under the knife to try and fix my foot again. The new surgeon was very optimistic on how he would rest my arch add a few metal pieces and have my mechanics back to somewhat normal. A plate was added along my big toe to help keep my arch in a normal position. A new pin was placed through my ankle to keep it from making too much of a drastic move, and my a bit of my calf had to be cut to allow some more movement for my foot. I was in a boot and bound to my trusty scooter for two months. After that it was a slooow process to start allowing me to bear weight back on my foot. I was finally cleared to run. So that afternoon I set out to run my past normal 9 mile route. About 4 miles into it I got a sharp pain in my foot. I hobbled and crawled back to my car. The next day I went back to the surgeon. It was discovered that I fractured two metatarsals. So it was back in the boot for recovery. In July 2015, I relocated to downtown Gainesville. It was here that I began working with Coach K. We started building up strength and flexibility in my foot. From there we began to work on my mechanics for running. Each week I was improving my run times and running began to have less pain each time. In March of 2016 I participated in another 72 hour adventure race. This race had some extremely long trekking section along rough terrain. The end result for this year’s race, hardly any foot pain caused by mechanics and a third place overall finish.
I have worked with Coach K a few times over the years and in this recent batch of our work together it hit me - Coach K is my own personal Mr. Myagi! (have you seen Karate Kid?) I have learned alot about how my body works and how to improve my performance - as well as decrease back pain! One time I went to Coach K in alot of pain - having tried massage and chiropractic. He looked me over briefly and then we commenced - deep breathing (wax on, wax off). Yes, deep breathing! Deep breathing without raising my shoulders. But what about my back I wondered? Then we did a collection of other relatively easy exercises with my core (paint the fence) and suddenly - no back pain and more flexibility and freedom to move.(karate championship!) Amazing! Generally speaking I have no idea why he chooses the collection of exercises he does, but suddenly I am feeling better and stronger. So at this point, I don't question him. I just do what he says even thought I'm like "what?" and I get where I need to go. He also challenges me to think beyond what I might believe possible for myself - at the age of 47 - and pushes me to be a stronger and healthier version of me. Getting beyond those mental hurdles is huge. I'm currently working towards running a 5k without stopping. I think Coach K's knowledge of body mechanics is vast and I have learned so much. Thank you for working with me Coach K!!
I have only been working directly with Coach K as my running coach for a short time. I sought his advice for a training injury prior to an event. Not only was I able to run a full marathon 4 weeks later, but I ran better than I ever had. I have been blessed to work with some of the best running coaches in the world. I have learned many methodologies including the POSE method, of which is of great value. However, your training can only be as effective as your structural ability and development. The POSE method taught me all about cadence, leg pull, minimum effective dosage, and keeping my stride centered. What it failed to help with was quad dominant running, foot placement, and ab / arm involvement during running to name a few. Until Coach K identified and fixed these problems, site unseen, those POSE methods could never benefit my running. Coach K has designed a simple and effective running program to help me run faster, stronger, and without injury.
Working on my mindset combined with physical training with Coach K has been extremely beneficial for me. There was a time, not too long ago, where I knew what I needed to do (workout, eat right, and take care of me), but just couldn’t seem to get it right. Not “getting it right” began spilling into my work and personal life. I was always tired, grouchy and snippy with my family and coworkers, and almost depressed as I didn’t feel like doing anything but lay around on my days off. Coach K and I began working together on incorporating some mindset work into my workout sessions and I have noticed such a change! A portion of the concepts we worked on included becoming more self-aware. Since doing this work, I have mended some relationships in both my personal and professional life. It feels really great to not be grouchy when I see a certain car in the parking lot at work or when a particular family member calls me I don’t’ roll my eyes in anticipation of a negative outcome. Also, I have been in better moods most of the time which not only my family is noticing, but my co-workers have noticed. I have been getting up at 5-5:30 AM to get a workout in before work and one co-worker asked me recently if I had gotten my workout in that morning because I was so peppy. While beginning a change is difficult, the work we have both put in and the knowledge Coach K shares in the physical and mental realm of training is applicable to a variety of aspects in life. I am so glad I spent time doing something so important and I recommend this to anyone who is looking for a change in life and might not know where to start or needs some direction and accountability.
I'm very active in martial arts and contact sports. After I broke my ulna there were complications that led to 2 surgeries, a bone graft, and a year in and out of a cast. Once the bone had finally bonded, then began the long process of regaining flexibility and mobility in the wrist and forearm. At first I went to physical therapy where my surgeon sent me, but it became clear in one session that they were unable to deal with someone looking for more than 'acceptable range of motion'. I began working with Coach K. Within 30 minutes he had begun to identify the problem areas and had me moving better. After only four sessions range of motion was greatly improved, and a strategy was in place to continue on my own. I was greatly impressed with his very unique approaches to body mechanics and knowledge of physiology that made such quick improvement without pain or unintended damage. I continue to improve and what I learned from him has allowed me to tackle new problems as they arise using his methods.
I started with Coach K because I was unable to run more than one mile without getting stopped by knee pain. I thought maybe that I was just too old to run, but decided to give the running class a try. After working with Coach K, I successfully ran a 5 k and was improving my time. Then I went hiking in Colorado, slipped on ice, and broke both bones in my right forearm. After surgery, I returned to Florida to recover. The broken right arm created a new problem – compensating for and protecting it caused sharp pain and limited the movement of my left shoulder. I starting working with Coach K again to start running again, to help strengthen my right arm (after the doctor’s ok) and to get pain-free full motion back in my left shoulder. On the way, we’ve worked on another problem I’d been living with for years – neck and upper back pain – that probably is connected to the shoulder issue. After working with Coach K, I am on my way to having less pain than before I broke my arm, and I’m back to enjoying running.
With Coach K I went from finishing 2nd or 3rd to winning races.
Running used to be difficult and exhausting, but Coach K was able to fix my posture and form, Then I won 1st place in my age group in my first duathlon.
I came to Coach K with an ITB injury that had plagued me for over a year and had inhibited me from running very much mileage. I had gotten entry into the NYC Marathon and was needing to increase my mileage in order to run the marathon. Through his program of functional strength training, Herb enabled me to increase my mileage and successfully completed the NYC Marathon.
First of all, thank you for being a great teacher. The running class far exceeded my expectations. I really wanted to learn about running form and although I never expressed that - the class was perfect for teaching me correct running form and how to get in shape overall (bonus!). You worked with each student and really met each person at their individual level. Most teachers would take the easy "one size fits all" approach, but not you! I also really liked all the extra exercises that complement running. I truly balanced class with lots of extra tips. Second, thank you for being persistent with me. I don't see much potential and got very discouraged when I didn't lose any weight for 4 weeks. I was ready to quit. Thank you for taking the time to invest in my health, greatly appreciated! Although I may never be a fast runner....getting in shape is do-able!
Just wanted to let you know that in 2 weeks I ran 5 minutes faster (was wearing my Coach K shirt too). This was when I had already run in Tipple race night before. Broke my 3 mile record and placed in all 3 of my last races. Really exciting.