Jenkins is self-coached, but most top runners are not without some kind of outside guidance. Jaymee Marty of Sacramento, who qualified for her first Olympic Marathon Trials (2012) in a time of 2:45:09 at the 2010 Chicago Marathon, effusively praises the coach who gets her there, Nicole Hunt, but admits that the pressure of having to adhere to a very rigorous schedule was very stressful.
“The workouts were super complex and I was often having to stop mid-interval to rest for 30 seconds to be able to complete them,” Marty says. “I was also perpetually anxious, worried that I would not be able to nail my goal marathon pace workouts or get in the miles in those high-mileage weeks.”
So unlike Jenkins and myself, Marty’s tactic was to make in-workout adjustments rather than table the session for another day. Nevertheless, the underlying principle is the same.