Sean Meissner is the newest coach on the iRunFar staff. He offers coaching to runners of all ages who aim to improve their running whether they are running for the first time, aiming to better their marathon time, or run an ultramarathon well.
Sean joins us with a strong background in running and racing in a wide range of distances and on varied surfaces. Over the past 10 years, he has mainly focused on trail ultramarathons (he currently has 127 finishes) and has been a Montrail-sponsored runner since 2003. Sean also loves to mix it up on the pavement with quite a few marathon and shorter races each year, including cross country races.
Sean’s coaching background consists of helping to coach several runners through their first marathon and ultramarathon. In addition, he has been an assistant coach for the Sisters High School Cross Country Team for 10 years.
As an iRunFar student, Sean will provide you with a bi-weekly schedule. Each schedule is based off the previous two week’s training as well as upcoming commitments and racing. Sean is happy to answer any questions or address any concerns by email. His coaching also includes phone consultations, which are highly encouraged when initially developing a training program, prior to a focus race, and when resetting goals following a focus race.
The initial phone consultation is especially important, as it allows Sean to learn more about you than a simple email would. During this call, you can share with Sean your running background, strengths, weaknesses, goals, time constraints, and any other information you feel would be useful in developing your training plan. Remember, this is about you, so the more he knows about you, the more he can help you.
Coaching fees are $150 per month or $750 for 6 months ($150 off/1 month free) when paid in advance. Sean also offers phone consultations for $60 an hour or $80 for an hour and a half.
Please contact Sean directly with any inquiries.
From Gina Guss:
Sean is a fantastic coach, full of enthusiasm for running, racing, and coaching. In 2010, he coached me to a 16-minute road marathon PR and to the finish of my first trail 50K. In 2011, he prepared me perfectly for my first 40-mile trail race finish. A trail 50-miler is next, and he’s coaching me toward that goal as well. In between these races, he has also helped me improve my 5k, 10k, and half marathon times. Having personalized coaching and a training plan fine-tuned for me has made all the difference! Thanks to Sean, I continue to make steady improvements and I’m looking forward to what’s ahead.
From Russ Johnson:
For 7 years, I was a somewhat frustrated and injury-prone back-of-the-pack runner. Then, I started working with Sean. In the 8 months since, I have set personal best times at the marathon, 50 mile, 100k, and 12-hour races, and a personal course record at the Peachtree 10km, all at age 53. I finally qualified for the Boston Marathon and Western States 100 Mile Run, and gained the confidence to run my first 100-miler which I just finished, still running strong after 90 miles. I get occasional age-group awards and even won a 12-hour race. I have been injury-free and most importantly, I’m having fun!
Sean solicits feedback to monitor my progress and adapts my training accordingly. He is generous with advice and expertise. I now train harder AND smarter and really enjoy the training. It’s the best investment I’ve ever made in fitness.
From Jeremy Hurl:
Sean Meissner has helped me tremendously in my pursuit to become an ultrarunner. Not only helping me, but truly pushing me to new heights in my running career. He has coached me through 6 successful ultramarathons this year, as well as 25 other races of varying distances. Along the way I have PRed in the 5k, 10k, and completed my first 40 mile and 50 mile ultras. With his ability to balance speed work with endurance training, I have won a 5k, 10k, and placed highly in my ultras over the last year. With Sean’s guidance I am now looking forward to training for my first 100 miler in 2013.
From Rob Kapfer:
As a recreational runner who wanted to dabble in the world of ultramarathons, I knew I was over my head and needed the support of an accomplished runner. After meeting Sean for the first time at the 2009 Badwater race, where we crewed for Jamie Donaldson, I gained respect for his character and running accomplishments. So I felt comfortable seeking coaching advice from Sean for three very different races over the past two years.
First was the Self-Transcendence 24-Hour race in Ottawa, where Sean coached me starting from 15-mile weeks to being able to complete 110 miles in 24 hours in just 8 short weeks. The second race, which was recommended by Sean, was Three Days of Syllamo, which is a three-day stage race (31 miles, 50 miles, and 14 miles). This race marked two firsts for me, it was my first ultra stage race and it was my first trail race. The most recent race where I was coached by Sean was the Utica Boilermaker 15k road race, one that I have run in the past. With Sean’s help I was able to break my previous PR by 10 minutes.
Sean’s coaching style is very effective. First he is a very accomplished runner who has clearly dedicated his life to fitness and running, which allows Sean to relate to runners. Sean has a low pressure coaching style where he works with you to tailor custom workouts for the individual and the race. He demonstrated this to me by coaching me on three very different running events. Overall, Sean is a motivational coach who is down to earth and I would highly recommend Sean based on my experience and I look forward to having Sean help me the next time I get over my head.