Certified Since October 2014
Meet Coach Jeff Howard. Known to many as “Heatrunner”
~ Sr. Instructor ChiRunning
~ USATF Level 1 Certified Coach
~ Certified Master Coach Pain Free Running Method
~ Certified Lifetime Fitness 1:1 Run Coach
~ Ranked Masters elite runner
~ Former Tennis Professional (USPTR, USPTA)
Recent Race Results
~ 5K 21:07 (age 57)
~ 10K 43:44 (age 60)
~ 15K 1:13:01 (age 60)
~ 1/2 1:38:08 (age 60)
~ Marathon 3:56:53 (age 60)
~ New York Marathon Qualifier (NYCM has higher qualification standards than the Boston Marathon)
When people ask Coach Jeff why he studied, trained to obtain certifications from ChiRunning, USATF, Injury Freedom Running, Lifetime Fitness and specialize his efforts in biomechanics, his answer is simple: “I truly want others to enjoy all that running has to offer, to maximize the benefits while greatly reducing their risk of injury. Also, I want to my effort to truly enable others to achieve their running goals healthily whether they are a beginner, intermediate or elite runner regardless of distance. To do so I make myself available for individual and small group instruction.”
Why did Jeff get into ChiRunning, see its value and want to share with others? “A long time friend and running coach relentlessly urged me to run a race. Reluctantly agreed as long as he agreed to never bring racing up again. I saw no reason to pay money to run nor get up early to do so. At the end of the 25k my friend told me that I could raise a donations for autism charities. Thus, my journey as a runner, an educated and trained runner began.”
Over the next few years he noticed many runners repeatedly getting hurt with the similar issues. In the clubs he participated those affected by injuries of some sort or another was exceeded 50% with more than half incurring the same or similar injury each season. The injury rate exceded that of any team he had ever played including football. Made no sense given lesser contact and that every runner was an adult and could make the mature decision to run or recover as well as to modify their running techniques and training to prevent such. Once again Jeff and his friend the running coach connected. He gave Jeff ChiRunning to read. “I knew stress related injuries in tennis were often rooted in deficient biomechanics, improper approach or execution of the athlete’s training and recovery process, often both. Was it the same with running? The answer was, ‘Yes, and more prevalent. Needlessly so.’ ChiRunning and Walking are a phenomenal means for perfecting technique and running with less stress. Less stress and a proper training approach results in less injuries and better performances. I take great pleasure in sharing what I have leaned to help runners of all ages improve their mechanics and avoid the impact that leads to injury. You will run more efficiently which equals running further, faster.
For more than two decades, Jeff has coached athletes of all levels and abilities from newbie to Olympic Qualifier. Primary areas of focus help runners of all ages and abilities to:
~ Build a sound foundation that minimizes injuries while improving performance
~ Develop efficient technique, aligned bio-mechanics that deliver maximum forward momentum with minimal effort (Use less energy. Avoid “Hitting the Wall” and post race soreness)
~ Minimize stress from impact which causes RSI’s, stress related injuries: Plantar Fasciitis, IT Band, Patella Tendinitis, etc.)
~ Personally tailored coaching and training
~ Race Training Programs 5k – Marathon
~ Specialty. improving age group runner’s performance: PRs and achieving 1st 2nd – 3rd place finishes. AND, Taking elites to the next level.
As a coach, Jeff helped numerous runners achieve PRs and their first 1st place Age Group finish. As Masters runner, he has won the Masters division title multiple times while completing 40 races ranging from 5k to marathon, not to mention achieving podium finishes in the Open Division at the age of 60+.
Background: As a 16 a year old Sr., Jeff walked-on to the high school team cross country posting an impressive 4:42 mile and 10:00 minute two mile resulting in runner-up for both MVP and Scholar Athlete (decided by 1/100th GPA). Although recruited to run collegiately, he chose tennis and also walked-on to the basketball team as a Freshman. Following college Jeff pursued professional tennis and his graduate degree.
Running as training for life: His tennis mentor, Dennis Van Der Meer, was Billie Jean King’s tennis coach. Dennis introduced him to several elite runners and coaches as moving efficiently was as integral to tennis training as sound stroke biomechanics. Early on he learned “being the best one can be” meant holistic work-outs combined with sufficient recovery to achieve the desired benefit as well as to avoid injury. This fundamental approach provided a foundation for wellness and winning up to the present (40 years)..
Two essential fundamentals for success were evident in each sport he played: Proper Technique and Performance Optimization. Technique delivers efficiency, ensuring every movement utilizes the least amount of effort with maximum transfer of energy into desired motion. Performance drills optimize physiology, the capacity to achieve the best possible results. Combining the two enables the athlete to achieve while also improving health, well-being and avoiding injuries along the way.
Run Well & Run More, Faster & Further!” Jeff