Speed Development Program

A CURRENT MCRRC MEMBERSHIP is REQUIRED to participate in this program. Please note that membership is NOT included in your program registration. PRIOR TO JOINING this program, you must become a member. If you are unsure if you have a CURRENT MCRRC Membership, please contact office@mcrrc.org for assistance. Otherwise, please click here to become a valued member.

Registration is CLOSED for 2021.

Program Overview:

This year, the Speed Development Program will be dropping the “speed” and focusing on runner development.  The focus will be on building a strong foundation, cross-training and creating healthy habits.  Because we will not have a goal race, we are going to create a virtual “Run the Towpath” race where participants need to run 185 miles during the program to finish it.

We will offer an in-person long run option for those who opt-in during registration.  We will only hold in-person workouts when new COVID-19 infection rates are 10 or less per 100K residents and the test positivity rate is 5% or less based on the county dashboard.

All runners will be provided 3 structured workouts a week.  The interval training will be based on time and perceived effort.  The long run will be based on either distance or time, per each participants’ preference.

We will host a 30 minute “Ask the Coach Anything”  session once per week using Zoom.  This will provide participants time with the coach.  We will utilize breakout rooms if someone wants to ask a private question.

We will also host cross-training sessions or expert speakers, also using Zoom.  The cross-training components will be contain videos from the internet (yoga, core, HIIT, etc.).


MCRRC Membership is required for participation in this program.  If you are not a member, you will have the opportunity to join MCRRC during registration.  Participants must be 18 or older to register.

In-Person Component:

Anyone registering for the in-person component must follow the health and safety protocols listed below AT ALL TIMES.  In-person sessions will be scheduled for the long run only.  Registration is limited to 100 participants total with a maximum of 10 runners per pace group.  We will start from two locations with half going to one location and the other half to another.

Prior to each in-person run, participants will be required to complete a health questionnaire via Google form and show it to the coach when checking in.  This will be used to ensure participants are healthy prior to the run and for contact tracing should the need arise.  A completed health form is required to participate.  If you are unable to complete the questionnaire, you will not be permitted to run with the group.

Please read the following guidelines carefully prior to registering, as they are non-negotiable.  All guidelines are subject to change as we learn from our experiences.  These protocols are new to everyone and we appreciate your patience and kindness with our volunteer coaching staff at all times.

General Guidelines & Expectations:

  • Do NOT participate if you are feeling ill, have a fever, or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19.
  • If you are in a high-risk group, please consult with your physician before registering.
  • Do NOT engage in traditional forms of physical contact (handshakes, high-fives, hugs, partner stretching, etc.)
  • Do NOT engage in close group pictures/selfies. Always maintain a social distance of at least 6 ft.
  • Do NOT spit or “nose rocket” your nose in public – bring along tissues, a small towel or hanky if you need to get rid of some snot during your run/walk.  If you must spit, do so away from other participants and in areas without foot traffic.
  • Do NOT share personal items such as hydration, energy gels, towels, etc.
  • Participants are encouraged to wear a face covering while running.  Face coverings are required anytime participants cannot maintain social distance.
  • Participants should self-carry personal hydration (bottles/packs) and use fountains for refills only.
  • Participants who fail to comply with these protocol and are found to be creating risk for themselves or others, will be asked to exit the group and may result in removal from the program without refund.


  • Instructions, including workout location & start time, will be sent via e-mail to each group directly prior to the workout.
  • The link to the health questionnaire will be sent via e-mail & must be completed, presented to a coach and approved by the coach prior to each workout.
  • Staggered start times of 5 minutes will be utilized between each pace group.  Runners will be directed to remain in their cars until their start time or the previous group has departed.
  • Social distancing signage will be used to maintain 6-ft. distance and participants will be assigned a marking in which to stand.
  • Face coverings are required at all times prior to the start of the workout.
  • Pace groups will be sent out from fastest to slowest to ensure distance between groups.
  • The recommended group run formation is diagrammed below.

During the Run:

  • Face coverings may not required to be worn during the workout however, they should be kept with you at all times and worn when social distancing cannot be achieved (i.e. waiting at a traffic light or a water fountain).
  • Adapted group formations should provide at least six-feet between each participant.
  • Should your group stop during a workout, all participants should step off the path/trail at least six feet and maintain a social distance while stopped.
  • Groups should be respectful of others on the trail/path and understand there may be a heightened sensitivity from other trail users. Give other trail users as much space as possible and avoid “swarming” (splitting your group and passing others on both sides). Participants should refrain from engaging in negativity with other trail users and should your group need to pass, do so respectfully and in a face covering.


  • Social distancing must be maintained during any post-workout stretching.
  • Do NOT engage in traditional forms of physical contact (handshakes, high-fives, hugs, partner stretching, etc.)
  • Please do not linger and socialize following the workout. Participants will be asked to return to their vehicle as quickly as possible and leave the workout location.

Cost/Premium Info: Online registration is $50.  Total registration will be limited to 300 participants (100 in-person and 200 virtual).  Program registration fees are non-refundable for any reason.  By completing your registration, you agree to these terms. There will be no premium included with registration.

*** PLEASE NOTE *** If you signed up for the in-person component, you may switch to all-virtual if you wish.  However, those who register for the virtual component MAY NOT attend in-person workouts due to gathering limitations.  We are unable to grant exceptions.

Program Staff:

Head Coach/Director: Tom Brennan


Date/Time: Saturday, January 9, 2021 at 12:00 Noon

Location: Zoom Meeting ID: 970 4323 6819; Passcode: 203169

Program Dates: Saturday, January 9, 2021 – Saturday, April 24, 2021

Workouts/Pace Groups:

  • Coaches will choose locations that provide large open spaces for groups to spread out and maintain pre-run social distance.
  • Routes will be chosen based on their ability for the group to maintain proper distance from others.

Pace Group Information: The workout intensities will be based on your own level of fitness developed from your recent race times and training level.  Instead of pace groups, this program divides runners up into three groups, based on distance of long run and weekly mileage.  The groups are as follows:

  • The Red program is for runners whose long run is between 4 to 6 miles and weekly mileage is between 10 to 15 miles per week.
  • The White program is for runners whose long run is between 6 to 8 miles and weekly mileage is over 15 miles per week.

Note On Weather:

We are like mail carriers – rain, sleet or snow, we will run regardless of the weather.   It may rain, be hot or even snow on race day, so it’s helpful to have trained in adverse conditions.  However, we will cancel workouts if there is lightning or if conditions are unsafe for participants.

If you have additional questions, please contact the coach directly at speed_development@mcrrc.org.

Communication Methods: We will use a private, online group to facilitate communications. Everyone will be required to join this group to participate in the program. Instructions on how to join this group will be provided by the Program Director.

Disclaimer: The program director reserves the right in his sole discretion to refuse admission to the program or dismiss any individual from the program whom the program director believes is unsuited for running the specified distance, or is unable to meet the demands of the training schedule, or is disruptive to other program participants.  Those individuals will be denied entry into the program or dismissed from the program as appropriate.  The program director also reserves the right to limit the number of participants in the overall program or in individual pace groups.  MCRRC has a No Refund policy. Program registration fees cannot be refunded due to injury, schedule conflict or any other reason.