Tuesday, October 21, 2014
Meet the Coach: Brandi Kapka
Brandi Kapka, a longtime supporter of Team In Training (TNT) and The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), will serve as one of the marathon coaches during the Spring Season. If you have not met her at one of our events, you will want to read along to learn why she is so passionate about TNT and the LLS mission.
How long have you been coaching with TNT and what was your first event?
My first event with TNT was in 2009 during the Summer Season with North Trails Half Marathon. I then mentored and after that began coaching. I've been coaching now for five seasons and LOVE it!
What is your style of coaching?
I love to make training fun for the participants. #1 is that we are a TEAM. This means we leave no participant behind and essentially are a family out at training. I vary my coaching depending on my participants' needs. I also have a track record for getting walkers to become interval runners!
Some people are intimidated by the idea of training for a full or half marathon. What advice would you give them?
I would tell you that if you can get up on a Saturday morning and join an amazing group of friends, then you can do it! All you have to do is have some determination and accountability. That comes easily when being with this amazing team and hearing the stories of our honored heroes each week and learning on your team to encourage you every step of the way. I have yet to see someone fail!
Is there an Honored Hero that has left a lasting impact on you? Who and Why?
My initial Honored Hero when I first signed up is still my favorite. My cousin was diagnosed as a teenager with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and somehow managed to survive and thrive. He even beat all of the odds after many treatments and is now a father, even though he was told he wouldn't be able to have kids! I think of him each time I train for an event and every time I cross a finish line. In fact, he ran across the finish line with me at my first event, even though he was just finishing treatments!
What is the best kept secret about Team In training?
The best training advice I ever received was about my shoes. Pay attention to your body and your feet! Don't let yourself get too many miles on your shoes before replacing and rotating them to prevent injuries. Injuries are not our friends. Be sure to let a professional fit you for a pair of shoes that are right for you. Take an old pair of running or walking shoes with you to the store and let them advise you of what is the right fit for your activity level and impact.
Join Brandi this season by registering at www.teamintraining.org/ntx