A decade of more coffee, please
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In the 2010s, I drank a lot of coffee. Here’s my resolution for 2020 and for the 2020s: I am going to drink MORE coffee.

If you know me even a little bit, this probably doesn’t surprise you. Coach MK will never tire of telling people about how scandalized I was upon discovering that the Starbucks at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis did not open until 6 AM. She’s right - it’s a very on-brand story about me (even if I would argue that opening before 6 AM on a weekday amounts to nothing less than a brand promise for Starbucks). 

So yes, I am already the first in line for coffee, often literally. The only difference in the next decade will be the unmitigated joy and lack of reservations with which I continue to get back in line every time I want to. My generation (you know, millennials, the ones who are going to save the world, you’re welcome!) has been lectured regularly about our expensive coffee habits (as well as other totally frivolous things like haircuts) and for a time, I subscribed to the notion that the less money I spent on coffee and the less coffee I drank, the better a person I was. To refrain from indulging in the one thing I wanted most at nearly any given time felt noble, like an act of discipline. 

I renounced coffee for a week once, and briefly, I felt like Saint Francis of Assisi. But then, after passing through the mild caffeine withdrawal and coming out on the other side supposedly sharper and more awake and more alive, I still missed it terribly. The smell, the taste, the routine, and the way all of it put together felt like starting my day with an act of self-love.

To be clear, there is nothing quantifiable about this resolution; there will be no tracking involved, no logging of my daily coffees on any app that will then sell my data to a third-party company. I won’t be tallying anything at the end of the week, month, or year, and no part of me will want to compare my coffee consumption in 2019 with my coffee consumption in 2020. I don’t want the most . I just want more. Well, but I don’t want to be up all night. Actually, it turns out that I am somewhat sensitive to caffeine, which is inconvenient when all you want is more coffee. Some years ago, I began mixing my regular coffee beans with decaf coffee beans (so that I could have more coffee) and I remember someone once saying, “wow, I thought you were too much of a coffee snob for that.” I’d kind of thought I was a coffee snob, too, but if mixing regular and decaf so that I could have more was too gauche for the snobs, I was ready to renounce my snob credentials. Because more (as you’ve understood by now) is really what I am after.

I’m a run coach who knows we’re never really talking about the running, and I’m a coffee lover who knows that in this context, we’re not really talking about coffee, either. I want more coffee in 2020 because coffee is a source of comfort and centering. It’s one of the few things I routinely do for myself that isn’t strictly tied to optimizing my productivity and running my household. When I went to my first appointment with a new therapist a few months ago, I made time to stop at my favorite coffee place on the way, so that I would have something warm to clutch in my hands as I sat across from a total stranger and told her deeply personal things about myself. I was gratified to see that she, too, had her coffee next to her as we talked. So far, so good.

Ultimately, I want more coffee in 2020 because coffee is my love language. I love e-mailing someone a Starbucks card when they do me a real solid, because even if I can’t take them out for coffee to thank them, which would be my first choice, it feels like I’m expressing my gratitude in the most “me” way possible. I love being on vacation and roaming around in search of the first coffee of the day, either by myself or with my indulgent family in tow (I love my family even more when we’re all at a coffee shop together). I love making coffee for my husband; even when he’s on a no-caffeine streak, he’ll have a cup of decaf with me, I think in part because he knows I love having someone to have coffee with. I love it when someone visits me and I get to make them coffee in the morning when we all wake up (and then memorize how they take their coffee for all future coffees together). 

Maybe the deep-down reason I want more coffee is that I want more opportunities to express love, for others and for myself. Much has happened this year, and one of the big differences in my life now compared with my life in 2018 is the abundance of opportunities to give and receive love. More of that, please, and pass the cream. Whatever you want more of in the coming year and in the coming decade, I hope you get in line for it with a big smile on your face just like mine. And whenever you are in the Boston area, write to me; if it is even remotely physically possible I will move heaven and earth to take you out for coffee. That's the Coach Sarah brand promise, right there. I promise, it will be for me just as much as it will be for you.

You are coached, you are loved, and you are winning at life.

Coach Sarah
PS: Coach MK has LOTS to say about how to approach YOUR resolutions for the new year! Read about her invention of Romjul here on the blog!

PPS: If you enjoy the content I am creating over here, PLEASE forward this email to your friends and encourage them to sign up! I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your support as I start this totally new, totally unexpected, career change!

P.P.P.S. Click here to subscribe to Coach MK's newsletter if you haven't already!
Weekly Podcast Roundup
On last Sunday's episode of #AskAway, Coach Sarah takes the helm and answers questions about running with high blood pressure and the 2020 offerings of SLOW BURN, our exciting new strength program for runners!

Coach MK and Coach Sarah are getting ready to ROAR into the new year and the new decade! On this week's episode of the Running Life podcast , they delve into the way New Year’s resolutions rely on the assumption that something is wrong with you and you need to fix it. We want you to think about what you did WELL this year and what you want MOARRRR of in 2020!

Romjul is a challenging concept , counter to everything we've been taught for our entire lives, and if you're stuck, we're here to help. Coach MK will be joined on Sunday, December 29th by Jummy Olawale the Therapist and Dalia Kinsey the School Nutrition Dietician to help you make the leap from resolution to Romjul ROAR!

Between now and Romjul, remember that you can STILL join the Holiday Strength Challenge and help support Play University (an organization that supports kids facing transportation scarcity in the Milwaukee area) and The Blue Bench (providing support and assistance to survivors of sexual assault in the Denver area) while having a grand old time and playing to win amazing prizes! The FPP Holiday Strong Facebook group has all the details.
If you have ever run a race and been denied a medal and/or a shirt in your size, e-mail us and tell us about it . We are on a mission to make it right, because you deserve to be front and center.
Do you like downloading things and waiting for cats to play with you? ROS DOES (but she does put on a good disappointed face!).

We have a Romjul infographic to accompany the Romjul podcast, and you can download it here!

Click here for t he Maintain PDF that accompanies the podcast!

Click here to download worksheets from last week's webinar on goal-setting for 2020!

Click HERE for the EAT Explanation sheets ( and here for the EAT podcast).

Click HERE for the EAT execution sheet.

IF YOU ARE A RUNNER NOT CURRENTLY RUNNING for ANY reason, please ask about joining Runner, Interrupted, now open to the public! Stay tethered to the running community while you maintain that space in your day and that real estate on your calendar for when you come back. It sucks to be a Runner, Interrupted, but we're going to have fun ANYWAY! (Spoiler Alert, there will be MORE THINGS TO DOWNLOAD as we go!)

If you are RETURNING to running after a long period of interruption, you might be interested in giving our ReBuild program a try!

Click HERE for the ReBuild Puzzle Document that accompanies the ReBuild Episode of the Running Life Podcast (air date 9/7/19).

BE LIKE ROS and follow Coach Sarah EVERYWHERE!

#WINNINGATLIFE of the week!
Kerry Birney says she never wins anything, but we are here to put a STOP to that nonsense because she is #winningatlife this week! Kerry ran the Richmond Marathon in 2017 and has been running by heart rate ever since, She is an emergency medicine physician's assistant who also trains students on the job, and she is a mom of three kids aged 4, 6 and 11. She is also one of the runners who beta-tested our Slow Burn program this fall, and she has been running with us in Maintain ever since and holding it together beautifully even though nothing this holiday season has gone according to plan. STILL HERE, still winning at life. YAY KERRY, thank you for supporting us and letting us coach and love you!
Shara Alpern is #winningatlife, in part because she looks amazing in her cranberry-colored yeti. An attorney, a mom of two kids, and an alumna of the Twin Cities' Loony Challenge and the Niagara Falls International Marathon, Shara is winning at life because she never stops, no matter what life throws her way. Even when she can't do as much as she would like to be able to do, even when she isn't where she wants to be yet, Shara gets up at the crack of dawn five days a week and moves forward, without overdoing it or burning herself out. It doesn't always feel glamorous or glorious, but she is hanging in there and doing the work that she has in front of her. That, Shara, is tenacious AF, and WE LOVE YOU MOAR than you can imagine!
To be featured here as well as on our Facebook and Instagram pages, use the tags #coachedandloved or #fitnessprotectionllc when you post photos on Instagram, telling the world what Fitness Protection means to you!