How This Colorado Coach Trained to Crush an Olympic ‘A’ Standard Marathon Time

From Runner’s World
By Hailey Middlebrook

Andrew Epperson ran 2:13 in Beppu, Japan this month to qualify for the Trials a third time.

Even when the temperatures dip below 20 degrees in Fort Collins, Colorado, Andrew Epperson heads to Colorado State University’s outdoor track at 6:30 a.m. to warm up before the sun rises. The 28-year-old marathoner, who works as an assistant cross-country and track coach for CSU, sets off around the snow-lined oval, picking up the pace as he begins a long tempo or speed intervals.

He finishes his workout around 9, just in time to meet the team for morning practice.

“I think my training reinforces my coaching, because I understand the ups and downs of practice and racing,” Epperson told Runner’s World. “I’m just as excited to run as the people I recruit.”

Epperson’s enthusiasm for the sport has paid off tremendously in his races. Earlier this month, he finished Japan’s Beppu-Oita Mainichi Marathon in an Olympic “A” standard time of 2:13:11, shaving nearly four minutes off his personal best. Helping push him towards a PR was a speedy field that included Morocco’s Hicham Laqouahi, who won in 2:08:35.

“I had a lot of fast guys to run with,” said Epperson, who placed 18th overall. “We really lucked out on the day and the conditions. The course was flat, the sky was clear, and even though the final 15 miles were along the ocean, there was no headwind.”

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