For several years I had been in a running rut and couldn't get a half marathon PR. Jonathan came up with a training plan and held me accountable to do all of my runs. He was very knowledgeable and kept in regular contact. Without his confidence in me, I wouldn't have believed I could do it but I managed to break my goal of a sub 1:50 half marathon!
I will definitely be asking Jonathon to help me with my next goal.
I have been a runner for most of my life, but after a series of injuries and a lot of mediocre races, my running had gotten stale. Jonathan understood how important running is to me, and his coaching helped me get back on track both physically and psychologically. His coaching program helped to renew and refresh my enthusiasm for running, and as a result, my speed, strength, and stamina improved.
Coaching is both an art and a science. Jonathan understands the concepts of periodization, phases of training, adaptation, and variety. But he also understands the psychological needs of his athletes, and provides encouragement and a shared love of the sport.
I began my running journey in 2014 when I decided to train for my first Half Marathon. My goal was to finish in “under 2 hours”. By fluke and with no experience I finished the race in 2:00:54. I decided to keep going until I reached my goal and ran another Half in 2015 where my time was 2:06:24…still good but going backwards. In 2016, I ran the Air Force Half Marathon. I was not mentally prepared and at no time during my training did I feel like I would achieve my goal of “under 2 hours”. I finished this Half in 2:23. I was so discouraged and disappointed, especially because my kids knew what my goal was and they had seen my going backwards.
I called my friend Cheryl and asked her “Who is that running coach you are using”? Enter Jonathan Torchia. Jonathan sat down with me face-to-face to understand my previous experience and goals and then gave me a plan specific to what I wanted to achieve. I ran the WFPS Half Marathon for the first time a few months later in 2016 and I finished with chip time of 2:01:02….much closer to my goal and headed back in the right direction.
This year, 2017, after looking at my calendar and talking with Jonathan, I decided to run the WFPS Half again. I asked Jonathan to give me a plan that allowed me to train faster and shoot for a goal of finishing well under 2 hours.
I finished this race with a chip time of 1:57:56. It felt SO AMAZING! A goal that I had been working on for 3 years had come to fruition. I know without a doubt that I never would have achieved this without Jonathan’s plan and his mentoring. Committing to and executing the plan made my body strong and Jonathan’s mentoring and support made me mentally strong! He may not even realize this, but he has taught me that if you have a goal and a plan and you commit to it, you can achieve ANYTHING. And the best part of all? My kids (aged 9 and 13 now) have been watching me the whole time and now they know this too.
Thank you Jonathan. This means more than you know!
Early this year I signed up to run the mb full marathon as it was on a bucket list of mine and I knew at the beginning of my training I could not do it alone. Having Jonathan coach me was probably the best decision I made for my running career.
As most people life can get pretty crazy when it comes to balancing full time job, home, and just life in general .. then throwing marathon training in the mix.. yikes! Jonathan and I had a chat then he took the time to work out a schedule for me that was flexible and doable.
Jonathan was encouraging from the start always checking in and offering advice. The day before the marathon I stopped by wfps marathon booth at the expo to say hi and he had some genuine motivational words that eased my nervousness and got me pumped for the manitoba full marathon!
Coach JT thanks for helping me cross that finish line ... it's been slice!!!
I started going out to Winnipeg Run Club in August of 2016 with the intention of getting in some outdoor miles in preparation for the WFPSRUN in October. This group that Jonathan created was extremely welcoming and friendly and I immediately felt like I had been going for years.
I followed all of the events leading up to the fall half marathon very closely and was amazed with how connected Jonathan was with this group as well as the community. I heard about River City Run Coaching thru social media as well as speaking with some fellow runners who were being coached by Jonathan at the time. Everyone was extremely happy with he handled their individual training but what stood out for me most was that they all said that during their training they also gained a friend.
When his event rolled around I was extremely pumped and ready to crush my goal of 1hr40min. Turns out the day went well and when I came in at 1hr35min and Jonathan was the first person to greet me at the finish line! Immediately following the event Jonathan reached out to me thru social media because he had heard that I was interested in being coached to run my first full marathon. We met for coffee in November 2016 and the next day I was signed up the Fargo Full Marathon in May 2017 with Jonathan as my new Coach and a goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. (Say what?? Yes you heard me)
Training began in early December and I was immediately impressed with how engaged he was with what I was doing. We were still a little less than 6 months away and he paid very close attention to the mileage I was doing and he was always just a call or text away. Never once did I feel like communication between us was a problem, even when he went away for a month long vacation he was still available anytime of day. When I ended up running into some injury trouble right in the middle of training Jonathan was extremely positive and motivating and did his absolute best to keep me from getting discouraged. Jonathan was always there to recommend different forms of cross training I could do to keep me moving forward.
As race day approached Jonathan’s presence grew more and more with almost daily check-ins. Sometimes just to ask how I was feeling, sometimes just to give some advice on nutrition, and sometimes just to talk. On the day of the race Jonathan was there with me at the start line and again was the first to greet me at the finish line. My result was not exactly what I was hoping for, but again Jonathan was there to offer his support and encouragement and within the next 6 hours I was signed up for my second full marathon of 2017.
Anyone considering hiring a coach to take their running to the next level and beyond should seriously consider Jonathan and River City Run Coaching. I feel extremely fortunate to have been able to learn so many things from him over the last year, and I will be forever grateful. Jonathan you are a great coach and an even greater friend and I cannot wait to begin training with you as my coach for the Fargo Full Marathon in 2018.
Jonathan is a very motivating guy, and he had me ready to start getting serious again for qualifying. I was already registered for the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, and my intention was to attempt to qualify, but with Jonathan in my corner, I felt like this would be a tremendous asset.
And so we began the process, with Jonathan customizing a plan for me and constantly evolving that plan every two weeks, based on how I felt, how well the runs were going, and what was going on in my life at that time. As it turned out I had a bit of an injury to contend with, so while I did my part doing the exercises and seeking athletic therapy throughout the training process, Jonathan adapted my plan to try to manage the days I was struggling due to the injury, and adapting it so that I could actually function when I would be most effective, ultimately benefitting my training, allowing me to not miss out on any of the crucial long runs.
I also benefitted form discussions Jonathan and I had regarding nutrition and fuelling, tactics to train stronger, and of course we discussed race day strategy. In the end I benefitted immensely from his tutelage and experience, I excelled because of his encouragement, his belief in me and his support.
One of my training runs included the Manitoba Half Marathon, and at mile 6 a guy from the crowd comes running up beside me in pants, jacket and an umbrella - ‘Hey man’ - he says - ‘how you feeling? You look totally fresh!’ This guy was of course my coach Jonathan. At the finish line there he was again, and we discussed how I felt, how my result positioned me in the training process, and how he was so pumped at the good conditioning I was in for my ultimate goal. That’s the kind of dedication you get from this guy. I can’t say enough about him.
Ultimately I did not BQ that day in Minneapolis, but I had a PB. No excuses, it just wasn’t my day. The hills were killer for that pace, but I will be back one day. What I’ve learned from the coaching from Jonathan will now be a practice I can put in place for every race going forward. He taught me what I needed to know going forward, to someday get that BQ.
But the one thing I got out of this journey with him that I did not count on or expect was I can honestly now call him my friend. When the marathon was all over the first message I received was from him. That message was not a message from a coach. It was the most heartfelt message a guy could receive from another guy. It was a genuine message from one runner to another, from a friend - filled with hope, encouragement, and brotherhood.
I appreciated that message the most.
Working with Jonathan and River City Run Coaching has been an instrumental part of helping me train for my first marathon.
It's given me the motivation I needed in times when I felt my goal was impossible. Having Jonathan personalize my program and knowing he is available whenever I need to talk it through will be what gets me to the finish line!
Who starts running at 48? This girl! I reached out to Jonathan in October 2016 just before running my second WFPS Half Marathon. I had previously run five half marathons and one full marathon, all using a simple training app on my phone. I knew that I wanted to ‘step it up’ and improve as a runner but wasn’t really sure where to start.
Jonathan came highly recommended as someone who could help me achieve my running goals and create a training plan tailor made for me. We discussed goals, work schedules and so much more. He put together a plan that would both challenge me as a runner and keep me motivated and running happy.
I have been training with Jonathan for a little over a year now and I am amazed at the progress I’ve made. My running has improved significantly in both speed and endurance, all while staying injury free. Jonathan did a tremendous job preparing me both physically and mentally for my goal race, the Fargo Full Marathon this spring. Checking in after runs, advice on nutrition, hydration and race day strategy were all key components of my training plan.
Jonathan’s feedback and encouragement were instrumental in me running a PR (by almost 20 minutes!) in Fargo and qualifying for the Boston Marathon - my ultimate goal. He was there at the finish line as a coach, but also a friend. It is a moment I will never forget. I am grateful to have Jonathan in my corner as I prepare to run Boston this spring.
I am living proof that with some hard work and the expertise of a dedicated coach, anything is possible. Thank you River City Run Coaching!
I never really considered running long distances growing up. My parents and some other relatives did some half marathons and even some full marathons when I was in my teen years, and I always laughed at how crazy they are and that I wouldn’t ever want to do something like that. A number of years later (my parents have retired from running for the most part) my wife mentioned she would love to do the Seawheeze ½ marathon in 2017.
We both love Vancouver and this would be a great opportunity to see a bunch of the city. We were both very lucky to get in to the event. I hadn’t ran much since doing some sports in high school so this was certainly a scary idea. I ended up doing the race in 2 hours 41 mins with very little training and planning. I had to walk a lot of the second half. I didn’t do any more running after that race for the year.
2018 we decided we wanted to do Seawheeze again because it was a ton of fun, despite the run being very hard. This time I decided I wanted to get some help to show me how to train properly. I had been attending Winnipeg Run Club and knew of Jonathan and his coaching. I decided he would he could help train me and show me how a plan can make this race go a lot more smoothly. I signed up with Jonathan in June 2018 with the race occurring in August.
During the weeks of training Jonathan helped me with pacing, distance runs, and held me accountable to do the training. We set a goal of 2 hours 15 mins for this year. With Jonathans help I was able to finish Seawheeze in 2 hours 7 mins. A few weeks later I ran the annual WFPS Half Marathon and finished with a chip time of 2 hours 14 seconds! A huge improvement from the 2 hours 41 mins. Jonathan was right at the finish line waiting to congratulate me on the run.
Thank you Jonathan for helping this new runner and showing me what I was capable of with some hard work and determination. I’d highly recommend Jonathan to anyone looking to push themselves to reach a new goal.
In the past I have run many full and half marathons but in the spring of 2015 I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. After 2 years of surgeries, chemo and radiation I decided I needed to get back into my runners and get moving.
Jonathan understood the frustration of not being at the same point as I was at the time of my diagnosis and he gave me an attainable schedule that allowed me to complete 2 half marathons and get very close to my old running times. The coaching wisdom and energy that Jonathan provided kept me going …..and it showed in my results.
I consider Jonathan to be not only a coach , but a friend who wants the best for you and he works hard to make sure it happens.
Jonathan has been my coach for three races. Each race, his coaching has brought me something different and unique. The first time I PB’ed a half marathon by eight minutes. The second time, I tackled my first full marathon. I can honestly say I would have never run a full marathon if it wasn’t for him. He awakened the determination and perseverance that was lurking within me. The third time, he reminded that I could set my goals high and run whatever I set my sights on. This lead to Chicago, a World Major Marathon. The Chicago Marathon is the fourth-largest race by number of finishers worldwide and I can now say, I am one of those Finishers.
Jonathan’s coaching is consistent and he truly knows his athlete. There is no confusion with his methods and he will guide you towards your goal with his seasoned experience. What you need to do to succeed!!!
He truly has been a huge part of my goals and I am honored to know him as a coach and as a friend
I started running 2 1/2 years ago beginning with a 5k and working myself up to a a bunch of half marathons. Last Fall, I injured my IT band badly and had to take 3 months off and seek medical attention. As I started healing and strengthening, I cautiously approached my dream of running a full marathon. I realized all to quickly that I would need help finding the right plan for me.
By recommendation, I contacted Jonathan and shared my goal with him...to run a marathon, injury free...no Advil or taping to get me through! He encouraged me and helped me believe in myself. I followed the 12 week plan he wrote up for me and was amazed with the results!
Jonathan touched base with me weekly to see how I was doing and gave me little tips along the way. I completed the Twin Cities Marathon injury free and was very happy with my time!
I am so thankful to Jonathan for his skill and knowledge and would not hesitate to contact him for help in achieving my future running goals!
I contacted Jonathan this summer in regards to training. I was in a rut and not meeting my goals.
Jonathan made a training plan specifically for me. I became a strong runner. His advice helped me tremendously. I never imagined I would be able to run as fast or strong when I started his plan. I'm excited and anticipating the next phase in my training. Thanks Jonathan Torchia.
Jonathan did a tremendous job of preparing me not only physically but mentally as well for my first ever half marathon. He is extremely knowledgable and set me up with a challenging schedule helping me meet what I thought was an unattainable goal. Jonathan checked in on me weekly and responded to any questions and concerns in an extremely motivating manner.
I started to see significant change in my ability to run further distances in faster times and in the end I went into race day feeling great about my training. I am so happy to report my official time of 2:10:06 and can confidently say I would have been nowhere near that without the help of Jonathan.
There is magic in Jonathan's coaching, he is extremely motivating and really seemed to care about how I was feeling, not just how far I was running. Jonathan has a wealth of experience and was able to offer on-the-fly adjustments to my schedule if necessary. He had excellent tips, strategies, and advice about training, rest, tapering, and racing. Working with Jonathan far exceeded my initial expectations.
His positive attitude is unparalleled and I cannot wait to work with Jonathan again for my next half marathon! With Jonathan's support and expertise you will become a stronger runner with the confidence you need to succeed!