Meeting Gale Bernhardt

By Courtney | 1 Rookie Mark »

There’s a whole different world out there for me as an athlete vs me as a non-athlete. That world also contains a whole different way of thinking.

As a child, when going to baseball games with my family and especially my great grandmother (who loved the Dodgers) I knew the famous players, the ones that were always spoken about. Those are the ones every kid wanted to grow up and be like, those are the ones who’s autographs we wanted.

It wasn’t until recently, this week in fact, that the thought of the coaches behind the athletes even entered my mind. It’s kindof amazing that this kind of thing escapes you. It used to be that an athlete was great because they were great, I couldn’t describe it, they just were, that was my non-athletic way of thinking. Now as I’m growing into this role of being an athlete, the thinking that comes to me is “behind every great athlete is a great coach” (I mean, if the coach isn’t great they get fired, right? just like in the movies?)

Well tonight, (thanks to Mari paying attention to email sent out by the Bolder Boulder peeps) I got to meet and listen to Gale Bernhardt as she answered any questions we had.

Me, Gale Bernhardt, Mari

Gale is a renowned Olympic athlete trainer and I learned so much from her. People had great questions and that lent to her giving us great answers.

I learned the concept of the negative split; which is to start out going slower than you think you ought/want to in the beginning half and then plan to finish fast.

I learned that carb loading the night before an event isn’t exactly ideal. (Like duh *eye roll* where’s all that food the next morning…)

She talked about tapering training the week before an event (which would require that I had really been training in the first place, but still, I listened and got an idea of what I have to do to go from running a 10k to biking 75 miles 6 days later).

She talked about what to eat the morning of an event and when to eat it (which will depend on each person, like for me, protein before an event doesn’t bother my system, but for others it may).

I asked her what she tells her athletes when they’re getting discouraged during training. She turned around and asked me what was discouraging, I kindof hung my head and straight up said “I hate running” and gave a little giggle. She told me to get a dog or to find someone to run with. One of the other girls said that running with someone made all the difference for her. That she too used to hate running and now she enjoys it, but now she runs with someone.

I’m so glad that Mari was paying attention to what was coming through her inbox because I saw the “3 Days 13 Hours Until the 30th DICK’S Sporting Goods BolderBOULDER” email and just kindof shrugged it off. Skimmed over it and didn’t think much of the information that was in it. I mean, I’m running in the Bolder Boulder, I’m in the KBCO wave, and it starts at 8:15 or something, what more did I need to know?

1 Rookie Marks On Meeting Gale Bernhardt

  1. Hi _____,

    I represent Timex watches, and came across your blog featuring this article mentioning Gale Bernhardt.

    I thought you’d be interested to know about to know about the renowned triathlon coach Gale Bernhardt’s most recent endeavor. She is currently participating in a joint project with Team Timex. She, along with Ironman Hall-of Famer and six-time Hawaiian Ironman Champion, Dave Scott, is offering her knowledge and experience in triathlon training all levels of consumers at

    Through the website, Gale has provided three plans from which to choose, including two for sprint training and one for Olympic distance. All of Bernhardt’s plans offer a balance between training for the next big event and life off of the course.

    As you may already know, Gale Bernhardt has been training athletes for over 24 years and has had many of her prospects achieve championship status at both the Olympic and National levels. She has a BS degree from Colorado State University and is certified as a Level I coach by USA cycling as well as a Level II coach by USA Triathlon. Gale’s personal experience training athletes includes her selection to coach for both the men’s and women’s triathlon teams at the Pan American Games in 2003 and the Athens Olympic Games in 2004.

    With her intense past filled with skill and experience, Gale provides thorough training plans that are applicable to everyone from novice to Olympian.

    Thank you for your time and please don’t hesitate to contact us with any additional needs. Be sure to check out Gale’s training materials at


    ...said Amanda Rothstein on July 18th, 2008

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