04/27/2012, 10:26am PDT

After good results in SACTOWN race, she prepares for CIM training group

April 27, 2012
For immediate release

Fresh from success in the Credit Union SACTOWN Ten-Mile Run, Sacramento Running Association coach Mary Coordt sounds eager to help local runners break more barriers in the 30th California International Marathon.

Coordt, who has run in four U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials, is assembling a group of 50 runners she will guide through a 14-week training program beginning in August for the CIM, set for Dec. 2.

Based on results from Coordt’s work in the SACTOWN race on April 1, those runners will be in very good hands.

Coordt helped 12 of her 20 runners meet or surpass their time goals in the 10-mile race, which started and finished at the state Capitol. Four others came within 30 seconds of their goal, with all 20 finishing the event.

“We opened it up to all levels of running,” Coordt said. “There were people who’d never completed 10 miles to people with race goals to break 70 (minutes).

“It was a nice, small group. I could really give it more attention … A lot were just so excited to get more guidance, understand the purpose of a workout.”

Elk Grove’s Coordt, who earned a Master’s degree in Nutrition from UC Davis, emphasizes there are many pieces to a good training puzzle.

Core strength. Nutrition. Form. Quality workouts. Balance in life.

She’s also big on helping runners understand why they’re doing something, giving them a better chance to continue to succeed on their own.

“I truly believe in equipping them with tools so they know what they can go out and do on their own,” Coordt said. “Why are you trying to do a tempo (run)?”

Coordt’s running resume is impressive. She finished third at the Twin Cities USA Masters Marathon Championship in 2009 with a 2:45 effort, is a multiple winner at the Napa Valley and Big Sur Marathons and has placed as high as 54th at the Olympic Trials.

She also coached an SRA training group that participated in the Boston Marathon on April 16. But with temperatures climbing to the upper 80s during the race, survival replaced any notion of trying to run a personal best.

Despite the extreme conditions, all 12 of Coordt’s runners who started the race finished the demanding test.

“The race director sent special e-mails warning people about the heat: ‘This is not going to be a race; this is an experience,’” she said. “I said, ‘Don’t go out at goal pace. … You deserve to be here. It’s just about the experience.’

“It was just brutal. It was a lot of walking breaks … It was surviving the brutal heat of the Boston hills.”

Applications have closed for Coordt’s CIM group, which will focus on running a personal best or achieving a Boston qualifying time, two common occurrences in the annual race from near Folsom Dam to the state Capitol.

“We’ll have Wednesday and Sunday workouts, two quality workouts,” said Coordt, noting runners will do their other workouts on their own. “We’ll have from 4:30 runners to 2:40 runners. It’s a wide range.

“The idea is just showing people it can be a fast course. A little guidance, a little tweaking in their training program. What can we do differently to get everyone to a personal best, get you to Boston.”

More than 3,000 runners have already registered for the 30th CIM. The race is founded and organized by the Sacramento Running Association.

Other SRA events include the Lake Natoma Four Bridges Half Marathon, The Super Bowl Sunday 10k Run and the Credit Union SACTOWN Ten-Mile Run.

The Sacramento Running Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to finding ways to encourage people of all ages and abilities to run. The SRA is committed to developing new, quality running events that appeal to a broad variety of runners.

SRA beneficiaries include the American River Parkway, youth fitness programs, local running venues and aspiring young runners.