Interviews running.COACH Functions

Meet our Gold Coach Lina Strand

Our Gold Coach Lina Strand from Sweden just won a bronze medal at the World Orienteering Championships in the sprint relay: huge congratulations. Meet Lina in our interview and get some personal running advise from her. Until the 10th September 2016 you still can profit and we will give you 10% off the gold subscription. You buy it now and start the coaching sessions whenever you want. Find the code and more details below.


Lina’s explanations below the interview*


What reputation and importance does running have in the country that you live in? 

Running is at the moment big here in Sweden. All the running competitions are growing and running has become a big part of peoples try to live a healthy life. Though this is mostly among adults and I wish that younger teens also would embrace this “boom” of running which is going on at the moment.

Tell us your personal running story.

Running has been a part of my entire life and many of my early memories are myself running! My sport has always been orienteering, where running is a big part. The only difference is the surface – we run mostly in forest on uneven ground instead of the flat run on asphalt. But, I’ve been doing that as well and already as a young child we were playing “olympics” and then it was mostly the running events we practiced, from 60m up to 2k, which felt quite long for 8-10 year olds. I have also always preferred running before walking, especially when going home from friends during late nights. I was afraid of the dark and felt always more comfortable running home than walking.

It was my parents who introduced me for the running sports and at the moment I am among top 10 of the world’s best orienteers. This means that I have been training a lot of running as we compete between 15 to 90 minutes of running (orienteering). The last couple of years I have not participated in so many running competitions as the orienteering season contains of so much competitions. Though I this year beat my personal record on the, in Gothenburg (which is my home town), well-known “grus8an”, one round on a gravel track of almost 8 km to 28.16. Though this time still have some potential for improvement.

lina icebug running
Lina icebug runnig Photo: Icebug


What has been your favourite running experience so far?

My best running experience is for sure the world championships in orienteering on home ground this August 2016. I ran the first leg of the sprint relay in Strömstad town and did a solid race and reached the finish first of all. There were thousands of people (mostly Swedish) there cheering and it was magical! My team, Sweden, ended up as 3rd and we got a long-awaited bronze medal.

sprint relay finish
sprint relay finish Photo: Mattias Karlsson


What is your next goal? How do you prepare for that? 

My next goal is next year’s world championships in orienteering in Estonia and on my way towards that and hopefully more medals I need to improve my running skill. I especially need to be faster, so I will try to work on that.

What is your favourite type of training? 

I love to do 8 times 1k on this gravel track (grus-8an) here in Gothenburg. I also like training in stairs, which I quite recent started with. I believe this is a very good and quite easy way to improve explosive skills which is important to become a better and faster runner.

Which is your personal piece of training advice that you can share with us? 

Have patience! Develop running skills takes time. First your improvement can go quite fast, for example to lower your 5k time from 30-35 minutes to 20-25, but then the hard work starts and you need patience. Of course it matters of what your goals is and also how your background looks like, but the hardest part is always to continue and stick with training to get the real improvement later on which may take some years. My advice is to have the courage to plan in long-term, to dream, and then make a plan towards it. Which are the boundaries between my current position and the position I dream on? What can I do to get there and what kind of help do I need?

Do you have any ritual which you do before a competition? 

Yes, I have my warm-up ritual which mostly contains of 15 min easy running and some stretching. Then I always do 2 min-interval in competition speed to wake up the body. I then to some shorter speed-ups and then I feel fully prepared. I believe it is important to find a warm-up ritual that you trust and that makes your body well-prepared. This can change between persons why it is good to try some different so you know which is best for you. Before important competitions it is easy to tart think too much of what may be the best to do and then do too much stuff which makes you tired and unsure before the race. That is why rituals can be important to stick feeling fully confident.

Do you mind your nutrition?

Nutrition is important, but the most important thing for me training mostly 12 times a week is to get enough. Training with lack of energy is nothing I ever would recommend. But of course it is also important what I eat which help me avoid illness. I try to always eat a lot of green salad (ruccola/spinach for example) to my lunch and dinner meals (together with protein and carbs sources).

What is your favourite running brand? 

2XU is my favourite running clothes. The long tights and the shorts gives me a perfect running feeling. Compression tights helps your muscles stay in the right place to avoid the small vibrations when you hit the ground in each step. I am feeling fast! Shoes I prefer the local brand Icebug when I run in the forest as they have the perfect grip on wet and uneven surfaces!

2xu och icebug brand
2xu and icebug brand Photo: Jonas Birgersson


What was a special moment for you as a running coach/ Gold coach? 

I am quite new as a gold coach here at running coach but I have memories from other coaching commissions. My best memories is always to see my adepts fulfilling their goals and perhaps also reaching beyond them after long and hard work. That is always great moments!

Why should a customer book you as a Gold coach?

I am eager to help people reach their goals as I know exactly how great the feeling is when you do it. I have a lot of own experiences, but also an on-going education which gives me broad knowledge. My strength is to see things from a lot of different perspectives which may help to find the right way for my customer even if he or she feels like their development has stopped. I also know that training can be complex with all the things you read in media, some is scientific, but most is not. It is very hard to know, just by reading on internet or magazines what’s good for you and that is why it can be nice to have a gold coach to discuss all this things with.

Would you like to book Lina Strand as your Gold Coach? You get 10% off till 10th September 2016. It doesn’t matter which Coach your book. Just use the code: GETGOLD10


*Lina’s WARM-UP Explanations

Coffee or tea? – Tea. I’ve never learnt to like the taste of coffea, but the beans smells good!

Summer or winter?- Summer. I like training camps in nice wheather and especially when you can finish it with a swim in the ocean.

Running training in the morning or in the evening? I do most of my fast trainings during the evening, but I am also used going up training in the morning as I mostly do 2 trainings a day. But if I have to choose, I say evening.

Running training alone or in a group? Group! Both hard intervals where I get pacing from others, but also the easy long runs when you can chat and run for hours!

Running in the terrain or on asphalt? As an orienteer I must say the terrain. Its benefits a lot, both to avoid injuries as it is more careful, but also that it helps strengthen some of your small stabilizing muscles in your legs.

Running with or without a GPS watch? With! I love analyzing my heart rate and speed after a well executed session.

Running statistics: yes or no? Yes of course! I believe that it helps you improve your running skills. Though statistics is not everything and I also believe that you need the sense of your own feeling as well.

Pre-competition meal: pasta or rice? Doesn’t matter – it depends on the sauce you add. 😉 No pasta or rice without sauce!

Competition nutrition: gel or bar? Gel! It is very easy to “eat” during hard running.

Alternative training: swimming or biking/cycling? Biking, as I am not a swimmer and I like to explore areas which you do much better by bike. I also like alternative training methods as wetvest running, crosstrainer and roller skies.

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