RRCA Coaching Certification – Part 1

If you’ve read my blog for any amount of time, one thing is probably pretty evident: I love running.

Me, Jen and Mom at the Neverland 5K.
Me, Jen and Mom at the Neverland 5K.

I love running, talking about running, blogging about running, tweeting about running…okay, you get the idea. And so a few months ago, I got it in my mind that I wanted to learn more about running, and with that knowledge, be able to share it in a positive way.

Which led me to some daydreaming…


I signed up to receive emails about upcoming certification courses, and started to receive periodic updates. Each time I got a new message, it was exciting to see where the courses would be held next: New York, NY; Salem, MA; Hartford, CT; Philadelphia, PA…some were closer to where we were living at the time (back in Charlottesville, VA) and some were definitely more far-flung.

By June, I had done more research into the courses (and read tons of blog recaps) and realized that these classes were fewer and more far between than I had previously realized. So, on June 27, I took a big chance and took the next step: I registered for a course in Ft Lauderdale, FL!

(Of course, I DID check to see if there was a refund policy, and as soon as I saw that there was…well…it was ON)

Fast forward, and hubs and I moved down to Florida (not for the class, of course, haha – but we had been planning on it) and I was getting super excited about the prospect of the class. I even checked out the roster and learned that I’d get the chance to finally meet Mary, which was awesome since I had been a big fan of her blog for quite some time. Along the way, I also began to brainstorm how a RRCA Coaching Certification could be incorporated into my goals (more on that later) and before long, it was time to head down to Ft Lauderdale for a weekend of learning!

Oh, and y’know, we brought Dug along too. That was another adventure (and, of course, another opportunity for me to share another pic of him).

Making sure hubs fills up the car right.

The course itself was really great – lots of information and a very engaging instructor, Randy Accetta. His self-deprecating humor and obvious knowledge base was an incredible blend for the 16 hours we were with him – and along with the course content, it was really pleasant to meet other runners (all experience levels) with dreams, laughs and stories to share.

The 2013 Ft Lauderdale RRCA Training Class
The 2013 Ft Lauderdale RRCA Training Class

We received a big workbook with all the information (which was presented in a slideshow format throughout the weekend) that would be on the big 100-question test, part 1 of the steps needed to gain RRCA Coaching Certification. Our registration fee also covered meals (breakfast and lunch) and a cool surprise: Daniels Running Formula. By the end of the two days, our brains were so filled!

The next steps were presented to us both in class and via email:

  • Take the test (80 percent required to pass) – has to be taken 30 days from completion of course
  • Send in proof of CPR and First Aid certification – has to be submitted 60 days from completion of course
  • Get certified!

Well, I took the test yesterday (91 percent, woot) and since I didn’t have up to date CPR/First Aid, signed up for the soonest course (tomorrow!) to ensure I’d have all the elements completed on time.

Once these processes are all in motion, I’ll be listed on the national directory of coaches. Of course, I will need to organize my big ideas before I move forward, but it’s very exciting to see it all come together! I personally have trained for several races in the past, and it is my experience that a coach can really be a cornerstone in a successful training cycle, no matter the athlete’s experience and skill level.

I’ll be checking in here with more updates on this exciting development as they come, but in the meantime, please feel free to leave your questions, comments or anything – I’d be glad to help (as always) and am over the moon to be closer to being able to share my knowledge/experience with a bit more authority 😉


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