Jay Johnson (JJ): We’re really excited to have Dr. Jeff Messer of Desert Vista High School joining us here on High School Running Coach for the month of August 2014. Jeff, thank you so much for your time.
Dr. Jeff Messer (JM): My pleasure, Jay, I appreciate the opportunity, as I always do, to spend some time with you. Always a privilege, and I’m looking forward to this interview.
JJ: Yeah, I am too, we’ve got a lot to cover, you’ve done a great job getting us your training plan, which is extremely detailed, so we will spend quite a bit of time talking about the training. But as we’re asking all the coaches as part of High School Running Coach, let’s first start off with what is, and there might be more than one of these, but can you give me one or two elements of your, either your training philosophy or something specifically you do in your program that you think you would see in all programs? Or I’m sorry, all good successful programs.
JM: Well, I can think of a number of things, Jay, that I suspect or I conjecture are common to the better, and certainly the best programs in the country. Certainly, I hope Desert Vista can be included in that conversation at this point in time, but among those characteristics or qualities, one is structure/discipline. I think it’s important to have structure in training, I think it’s important to have structure in expectations, and I think structure is something that particularly high achieving young student-athletes seek. And I think in general they will embrace structure, and they’ll rise to the expectations of accompanying structure. So I think structure in a program, and it can be as simple as structure in the training plan, I think that’s an important component. Maybe a more important component, and it may be even the most important component, I don’t have evidence to support that statement, but maybe the most important component is simply to convince young student-athletes about their self-worth, and how great they can be, and how limitless their achievements can be. [Read more…]