Final Surge Podcast Episode 78: Kellyn Taylor

In Episode 78 of the Final Surge podcast we talk to HOKA NAZ Elite runner Kellyn Taylor and her coach Ben Rosario. Kellyn is coming off a great NYC performance and is now preparing for the Boston marathon in April. We discuss her current training, why she and Ben chose Boston as her next race, and her expectations. Ben also talks specifics on training and how they are preparing for the Boston course and how it is different and unpredictable at times.

Welcome to Episode 78 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome professional runner Kellyn Taylor and her coach Ben Rosario. Kellyn is coming off her top 10 finish at the New York City Marathon last November and is one of the many amazing Americans in the Boston Marathon in April. We talk to Kellyn and her coach about the training to date and what to expect in Boston. They share with us what the workouts look like, what Boston specific work they are doing and get into details about the hills and why they chose Boston for the spring marathon. Make sure you check out Ben's 10-weeks to Boston Blog and follow Kellyn online.

Listen to the podcast on iTunes or listen to it on Stitcher or Google Play if you have an Android device.

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How did you get started in running?

  • Ran in middle school
  • High School moved to running all year and became state champion
  • Went to a Jr College then Witchita State

You ran a great race at NYC, at what point did you decide Boston was going to be your next race?

  • After NYC decided was not going to do a spring marathon
  • Changed mind shortly after

How is your training going, where are you with it?

  • December until a few weeks ago did base phase
  • Now in the second week of specific marathon training

Ben, you have been blogging about the training, can you tell us what the weeks are looking like right now?

  • In the second week, bumping mileage up to peak mileage which will be 6-5-4 and three weeks out
  • Long steady marathon efforts are the bread and butter

Arnold on Twitter asked about the mental aspect of running when you decide you did not want to do a marathon right after NYC was it more for mental reasons or physical?

  • Mental is part of it

Ben, when you are coaching elite runners like this, how much do you talk about the mental aspect of racing?

  • Try to focus one week at a time
  • Want it to be that you are so fit when it comes time to race you are just confident
  • They have been through it so many times they know what to expect
  • Boston weather so unpredictable cannot plan and just get fit

One thing Ben has been talking about on the blog is how different Boston is. What has been different about the Boston preparation?

  • Hammering downhills
  • Yesterday 22 miles and probably 19 of them were downhill
  • Milage is higher than it has ever been
  • Paces have been faster

Listeners love to hear about mileage, what is your mileage at right now?

  • 118 right now, will be 130 at peak
  • This 118 is about what the peak was going into NYC

Besides the training, is there anything different in your other preparation to get ready for Boston?

  • Yes, told Ben I would do things right
  • Usually don't eat right, core, prehab, rehab, naps, trying to focus on that stuff more

When you were training for NYC you were training with Steph Bruce, she is doing London this time so are you still training with her or are you doing different workouts?

  • We do some stuff together, but we are doing a lot of different workouts

Ben, is this something that was strategic or do you let them decide what marathons they are doing and just guide them?

  • Kellyn handles downhills and miles well so Boston made sense
  • Steph has run Boston once before and did not go great so she does not have great mojo there. She is more of a finding a good pace and locking in so London made more sense

You and Scott Smith were up in Boston and run parts of the course, what were your thoughts?

  • Valuable experience
  • Didn't realize how downhill it was
  • Got to do every mile of the course at least once, huge advantage
  • Now know what to train for specifically

You and Scott have done three of the same races so far, does it help having Scott Smith there to do the workouts with someone?

  • Helps a lot
  • Nice to have someone to talk to about the workouts

What is a hard workout you have done recently?

  • Recently had 3 races back to back and those were hard
  • 30x400 with the wind in the face on hills was tough
  • (Ben) Our long runs have spice which they don't often think of as workouts, the first day of 8-week we did a 22-mile hilly long run that was difficult up and down. First Boston specific run. Ran 6:20 pace for 22 miles at 4500 feet.

Do you like running hills or would you rather have a flat course?

  • Not as fast as some women, not a 2:19 marathoner yet
  • Hills help even playing field
  • Built to handle them well
  • I do like them

You have done quite a few marathons and have experience, Jonathan from Twitter asked what your diet is like leading into the race?

  • Going into NYC for the last two weeks took dairy out and eats gluten-free
  • Meat, veggie, and rice are staples.

Ben: Going back to the Boston question, seeing it helps the athlete to see it and helps me to sculpt the workouts better. We are doing these hills not to survive Boston but to thrive on the Boston course.

If you are doing 110 miles a week, how much of that is specifically downhill so you can get used to it?

  • 4 easy runs a week
  • Maybe 40-45 miles of the 110 would be downhill

Another question we got was about easy runs, what does an easy run look like?

  • 10 miles in the am and 4-6 in the afternoon
  • More of a general feeling than a pace
  • Pace on these runs do not make or break your training

What are your goals for Boston?

  • Always have specific goals
  • I make big goals
  • Going to Boston my A goal is to be top-3 and on the podium

Ben, can you talk about what is going on with the 10-weeks to Boston blog at this time?

  • Had written plans for public
  • Each week I talk about what Scott and Kellyn are doing and what to expect in the next week
  • All the tips I can think of to get you ready for the Boston Course

Kellyn on Twitter
Ben on Twitter
Final Surge on Twitter
NAZ Elite Logs
Coach Ben's 10-weeks to Boston


Team Final Surge

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