Writerly Post from the Coach

Lucy and I at Madoo Conservancy

Lucy and me at Madoo Conservancy

My very dear friend has asked me to do a writerly post for her and I’m honored to do so. Sande’s book The Sweetness is going to be one of those books that people start telling you to read. Inspired by personal family history, this work of fiction is a new tale surrounding the Holocaust that is both tender and tragic. So thank you Sande Boritz Berger, author of The Sweetness for inviting me to blog today. The Sweetness was a semi-finalist in Amazon’s 2010 Breakthrough Novel Awards and will be published September 23, 2014 by She Writes Press. You can learn more about Sande at: http://sandeboritzberger.wordpress.com/ Pre-order The Sweetness at Barnes & Noble.

What am I working on now?

I’m working on my first non-fiction book entitled TriStyle – ‘the body, mind, spirit approach to finding your best self’. I have the proposal and some chapters done and it’s evolving. This book goes in tandem with my coach certification that I’ve been working on with the Coaches Training Institute (CTI) in NYC since January. Together, both my coaching and the book envelop my philosophy which is about figuring out what you want to do and then ‘trying’ whatever it takes to get there. Flopping on your face is part of the process and something I’ve done many times!

How does your writing about this differ from others in this genre?

Since I’m an avid triathlete (sponsored by Trisports.com), my book straddles both the sporty genre of triathlon as well as inspirational. I truly believe that the mind is the 4th discipline to the triathlete and important to anyone looking to accomplish something. We all have that saboteur in our heads telling us that we can’t or that we’re not good enough or smart enough, but if we can recognize that monster we can accomplish great things. My goal is not only to write for the sporty woman, but for all women (and men too!) that and looking to believe that they can.

Why do I write what I do?

Even when I give myself permission to quit, I always find that I need to write and share my personal experience. If I can help even one person to be less afraid or to try something that scares the heck out of them, then I’ve accomplished something. My mom always said that the best things to read are the things we are the most afraid to write, so I try to think of that when I’m writing. The past winter I scared the crap out of myself and bombed an audition but it was a powerful experience. I wrote about it and had it published in the East Hampton Star and of course it’s called The Audition.

How does my writing process work?

I’m a binge writer and write the best under deadline or duress. I’m trying to get away from my old school method of writing in a notebook and then copying it into the computer. (Because you and I both know that I have lots of notebooks and less in the computer!) Now I’m trying to write it on my laptop or iPad and then print it out. I often edit with a red pen (old school again!) and try to be that brutal schoolmarm and rip myself to shreds. I started this blog over a year ago to see if I could write regularly and it was a wonderful and fun exercise that I’m continuing on a less regular basis but still trying to keep my readers engaged.

Now, with my coaching business, Fourth Discipline Coaching and Consulting, I’ve also started tweeting at @ecmccourt which is a different kind of writing and must be very directive. If you or anyone you know is interested in coaching and wants a sample session to see if we jive, please direct message or email me at rizabiz@aol.com with the caption Coaching Sample and we can set it up.

And introducing . . .

Today I’m happy to introduce you to writer and blogger Mary Crow of the blog View From the Path Train. Mary received her B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College, where she studied poetry with Marie Howe. She studied in Paris for a year at Jussieu Université Paris VII and l’Université Catholique, including with the semiologist Julia Kristeva. She worked for the Campbell Corner Poetry Prize Competition for several years, sponsored by Sarah Lawrence College’s philosophy department, and interned at Counterpoint Press in Washington, D.C. Mary is also is a coach who specializes in creativity, career transitions, and health and wellness. Her background ranges from corporate to entrepreneurial. She worked for over 13 years in marketing research for magazines such as Parents, Traditional Home, and Every Day with Rachael Ray. She is an organist, pianist and singer at various churches and currently studies with Dr. Barbara Thomson in Westfield, NJ.

Check out Mary’s blog: http://www.marywcrow.wordpress.com/

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Running in NYC

Running around the reservoir in Central Park is one of my favorite things to do when I visit NYC. Since January I’ve been coming in for intensive coach training with CTI, this was the first time the weather cooperated for some pre-workshop outdoor fun.


I wanted to keep moving since I’m tapering for Eagleman 70.3 this weekend, but I also love to experience the everyday energy. I could not believe how many people were running, biking and walking at 6:30am!


I do try a morning run in every city I visit because it’s an energy that’s unique and oftentimes special. A favorite was an early morning run around Notre Dame in Paris. NYC makes me feel a part of the city.

What’s your favorite away from home run?


Posted in Ironman, Running, Sports, travel | Tagged , , , | 14 Comments

Fall Down? Get Up and Make it Count!

Fall down? Get right back up and try again because you never know how it’s going to end up. I tripped and fell hard myself last weekend and my knee is scrapped up like it used to be when I was a little girl. Who knows? Maybe I ran better with the blood running down my knee? Or maybe it just shifted my mojo? It didn’t hurt so much and by the end of the run and I was running at a better pace the whole time. It’s good to get the falls out of the way before race day! And now I know I’m prepared for my race at Eagleman 70.3 next week in Cambridge, Maryland!

Next time you fall, remember the girl in this video and try to get back up!

Video | Posted on by | Tagged , , , , , | 15 Comments

Is distance running bad for your health?


Before embarking on endurance events, it’s important to get a checkup to make sure all your parts are in good working order. I’m a firm believer that healthy living, eating, exercise and otherwise contributes to longevity and health. We only get one body, so we’ve got to do the best we can to take care of it!

Originally posted on 90in9:

My dad inspired me to run my first marathon. Now he’s trying to talk me out of doing another one.

The problem is all the buzz lately about the potential long-term danger of “chronic” endurance exercise. Marathoning in particular has been linked to surprising levels of arterial plaque – more so than in a sedentary control group – in this study published in the March/April issue of Missouri Medicine.

The problem appears to be “oxidative stress,” which is what happens when an overabundance of free radicals produced over long periods of exertion begin to overwhelm the body’s supply of antioxidants, according to this piece on active.com. Now, with the popularity of endurance events at an all-time high, runners and triathletes are being advised to scale back on weekly mileage.

Not surprisingly, Amby Burfoot of Runner’s World has a more relaxed take on the issue. He notes that this study looked…

View original 384 more words

Posted in Ironman, Running, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments



I know it’s just the beginning of the season, but who are you counting as contenders to this year’s Kona Royalty?

Originally posted on Sykose Extreme Sports News:

Port Macquarie, Australia  (May 4, 2014) – Two time IRONMAN 70.3 World Champion Melissa Hauschildt produced her trademark run to claim victory on debut at the Toyota IRONMAN Australia event today in Port Macquarie.

Hauschildt surprised many after exiting the swim only just over a minute down on Lisa Marangon. But out on the bike and the expected dominant bike leg wasn’t there with Lisa Marangon asserting her dominance on the race early on.

Melissa Hauschildt wins Ironman Australia on debut - Photo Credit: Delly Carr

It took Hauschildt until the 25km mark on the run to pass fellow Australian Lisa Marangon who led all day and held on for second to record her best result over the distance.

Hauschildt’s last minute decision to enter the event after dominating the 70.3 distance paid off.

“I decided to do this only three weeks ago and had two weeks off before that,” said Hauschildt.

It felt amazing crossing that line that was the toughest…

View original 629 more words

Posted in Ironman, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Inspiration: Pushing Beyond Limitations

“Every single one of us — woman, man, gay, straight, disabled, perfect, normal, whatever — everyone of us must be the very best of ourselves.” Caroline Casey

How do you push past your limitations?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Boston Strong

Photo by TIMOTHY A. CLARY/Getty Images

Photo by TIMOTHY A. CLARY/Getty Images

“Boston Strong, Boston Strong, Meb Stong, Meb Strong!”

That’s what Meb told himself over and over as he surged ahead of the pack in a bold and aggressive move that had him a minute ahead at one point.

“Today was not just about me,” he said. “This was Boston Strong. I did it for the people.”

Who inspires you when you’re running?

Posted in Running, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Making Your Own Carbohydrate Gels


Making your own gel is an awesome idea even if you are not spending a fortune on them. I’m curious to tweak this recipe as well! Thanks for the great idea from All Season’s Cyclist!

Originally posted on All Seasons Cyclist:

Ingredients For Making Your Own Carbohydrate Gels

Ingredients For Making Your Own Carbohydrate Gels

Last a fall I was out on a long bike ride with a friend of mine when he asked me how much money I spent a month on the carbohydrate gels I use. It was a question I really hadn’t thought much about before, but after doing a few quick calculations in my head I was shocked. Most of the carbohydrate gels I use are organic (a word usually synonymous with expensive), and during most of the year I go through 30 packs a week which comes out to $180 a month (I am so glad my wife never looks at the American Express statements). After I got home I decided to see if I could find a way to cut my expenses by creating my own carb gels, and at the end of this article you will find a few recipes…

View original 831 more words

Posted in Food, Ironman, Running, Training | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Great Coaching is Inspiring!


I consider myself a bad weather gym person because once it gets nice I prefer to go outside. But this winter, for example, when we had over 80 days with freezing temperatures I was more than reluctant to go outside, I just didn’t do it. So, I go to the gym and I get inspired by my friend’s energetic spin class and this boot camp class designed by Webby. With my work schedule I can only manage the 5:45am hour workout on Wednesdays with Webby most weeks, which many think is crazy. But this young guy is gutsy and inspired, so much so, that you can actually seize the energy he puts out which wants to make you do better, get stronger and be happy.

He wrote “The Motto” and put it up on the wall at the gym. I loved it and asked him if I could share it because not only do I think it fully embodies his passion (which is contagious, I might add) but is truly words to live by and not just in the gym. So thank you Webby for helping me push myself and always making it worth it to wake up at the crack of dawn, even when it’s snowing and in single digits.

I’m going to read this when I get down on myself that I’m not fast enough or good enough because I’ll know that this is when I need to dig deep into myself. This embody’s Ironman or really every-man/woman who tries to push their limit. Please read this awesome post and let me know how it inspired you!

Falling down sucks! It gets to the point where you start to that that’s where your supposed to be. So many things, people, situations will trip you, push you and hold you down! And the only thing you have is the view of the stars and the question you ask yourself: what’s your limit? Sometimes when I look out into the water I see the only thing that makes sense, it’s funny because 85% of the ocean isn’t even discovered but I guess that’s how my life can relate!

Sometimes it’s the things we don’t see or don’t know that makes the most sense, and discovering your next step always seems like a process. You’re not alone, but when you feel alone know this: character is built when no one is watching. You already know what you want to do, you don’t need any clichés to reach, you don’t need anyone to fly, you don’t need a God damn thing to dream, the only thing you need is heart. And I promise you one thing whoever reads this; no one is ever going to take that away from me.

So as you lay down watching the stars or looking out into the ocean of the unknown tell yourself this: sky’s the limit and I’ll swim across the ocean to get there.” Webby


Posted in Ironman, Quotes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Creative Workouts

My quads are still hurting from the awesome and steep hike of Koko Head Crater in Oahu. My heart rate was high as I pushed at a good clip. The view was almost as good as the workout!

What are some of your creative workouts?



Posted in Ironman, travel, Triathlon | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments