Joe Vigil

Dr. Joe Vigil

Olympic Coach, Exercise Physiologist, Author

Joe Vigil was the head coach at Adams State College for nearly 30 years. While at Adams, Vigil's program produced 19 NAIA Team Championships, 87 individual champions, and 425 All-Americans – and Vigil himself was named NAIA Coach of the Year 14 times. In 1992 his Adams team won the NCAA DII championship with a perfect score of 15 points, the only cross country shut out ever achieved in a collegiate national championship competition.

Vigil's post-collegiate success is equally remarkable and includes work with US Olympic Medalists Deena Kastor (Bronze – Athens) and Meb Keflezighi (Silver – Athens). In recent years he coached Brenda Martinez to a bronze I the 800 at the 2013 IAAF World Championships and Boris Berian to a #1 800m ranking in the US (1:43.34). In Cross Country he coached two athletes who each won 8 senior cross country titles – Kastor and Adams State Alumni Pat Porter.

For eight years he served as Chairman of the Coaching Education Committee for USATF (then TAC), and he was designated as a Master Coach by USA Track & Field in 1997. Dr. Vigil is one of the co-founders of the USATF Coaching Education program. He is extremely proud of the fact that twenty-five of his former runners have coached in the collegiate ranks. Dr. Vigil has presented for the IAAF, the USOC, and USATF in 16 countries and five continents.

Dr. Vigil has served on 17 international coaching staffs including the World Cross Country Championships (7), the Pan American Games (4), the World University (2), and the Olympic Games (2). He led Team USA to team medals in the IAAF World Cross Country Championship on three occasions, earning two silver and one bronze medal. In 1999 he was inducted into the USTFCCCA Hall of Fame. In 2005, he received the "Doc" Councilman Science in Coaching Award from the USOC.

Dr. Vigil has published his own book, Road to the Top, that details his systematic approach to distance training that produced on of America's greatest distance running programs.

Speaking Topics

  • This presentation deals with critical zone applications in training to achieve a specific result as opposed to more generalized training where the goals are to increase physiologic variables over time. This presentation will specifically outline how critical zone training was applied to the regimens of Rio Olympians under Coach Vigil’s tutelage. It will also show coaches how to apply the same principles to their teams no matter what level of competition.

  • Coaches must understand necessary and foundational concepts which enable athletes to get the most out of their training. Skilled and knowledgeable coaches know that running is only one component of a successful training program. This presentation will outline these components of training as well as identify the 6 most common mistakes athletes make when training.


Tom Schwartz

Coach Thomas "Tinman" Schwartz

Tom "Tinman" Schwartz is a USATF Level 1 coach with over 27 years of experience coaching runners and other endurance athletes on how to improve their performance. Coach Schwartz is a lifelong student as well as an educator. He earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in exercise science, a master’s degree in business administration, and is currently at work on his PhD. He added additional practical experience over years working as a Physical Education teacher at the high school level. Coach Schwartz is a frequent contributor to and other running blogs, where his training advice is widely sought by an enthusiastic audience of dedicated athletes.

Through his business, Tinman Endurance Coaching LLC Tom Schwartz has coached 600 runners in the past 27 years. His most famous current charge is Andrew Hunter – National Indoor Mile Record Holder and Footlocker National Champion. "Tinman" as he is known on numerous running forums has coached at the university level and advised numerous university and junior international coaches. A competitive runner himself for 26 years, he will present on Maximum Oxygen Consumption Training and Maximum Lactate Steady-State Training.

Speaking Topics

  • Performance in distance running is related strongly to an athlete's highest capacity to consume oxygen, called the VO2 max or VO2 peak. The letter "V" is for volume and "O2" is for the oxygen consumed. VO2 max, used hereafter, is measured per minute, and the total amount of oxygen measured in liters is divided by the athlete's body weight in kilograms. A "good" VO2 max for males and females is 60 and 50 mL/kg/minute. Values for elite males and females are near 80 and 70.

    Training volume and intensity are the two main factors that influence improvement of VO2 max/peak. Using typical training methods, VO2 max and performance speed may increase by 15-20%. However, well-crafted training may double the rate of improvement.

    The Presentation Goals: Students will learn (1) the definition & meaning of VO2 max, (2) how to calculate VO2 max from field tests or race results, and (3) how to design effective VO2 max/peak workouts.

  • Performance in distance running is strongly related to the maximum lactate steady-state speed (MLSS). Both fatigue and blood lactate rise exponentially when the MLSS is exceeded. A training goal is to increase the speed of the MLSS; the result is improved distance racing performance. The MLSS speed can be improved through targeted training.

    The Presentation Goals: First, the MLSS is defined. Second, two methods of calculating the MLSS from field tests and race results are described. Third, learners are taught how to design effective MLSS workouts and include them in training plans.


Dr. Bill Pierce

Dr. Bill Pierce

Professor of Health Sciences

Dr. Bill Pierce, Professor of Health Sciences at Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina is the lead author of Runner's World Run Less, Run Faster (2007, 2012) and Runner's World Train Smart, Run Forever (2017). More than 150,000 copies of RUN LESS RUN FASTER have been sold, including German and Portuguese translations.

Pierce is co-founder of the Furman Institute of Running and Scientific Training (FIRST). FIRST promotes running as a healthy physical activity by providing training based on scientific principles and research. Thousands of runners across six continents have used the popular training programs to record personal best times in 5K, 10K, half marathon and marathon races.

Pierce, listed as one of 10 marathon "supercoaches" by Runner's World magazine, has made hundreds of presentations on fitness, wellness and running. He and FIRST have been featured in articles in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Business Week, Men's Journal, Runner's World and many other newspapers and magazines across the country.

Pierce was a successful collegiate half miler. He has captured awards in the majority of his more than 250 road races, including 42 marathons with a best time of 2:44. He was a highly recruited two-time all-state basketball player who attended Davidson College on a basketball scholarship. While at Davidson, he played on nationally ranked basketball teams.

Pierce was graduated from Davidson College with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science in 1971. He earned a master's degree in Sport Studies from West Virginia University and a doctorate in physical education from Virginia Tech.

Speaking Topics

  • Based on the FIRST (Furman Institute of Running and Scientific Training) philosophy of training with purpose, this presentation includes how to use the “3plus2” training program. Three quality runs each week with two cross-training workouts are the foundation of the breakthrough FIRST approach. The three runs – track repeats, tempo run, and the long run – are designed to work together to improve endurance, lactate-threshold running pace, and leg speed.

    Having a specific goal for each training run is a hallmark of the program. The "training with purpose" philosophy favors quality over quantity, intensity over frequency, fast running over the accumulation of miles. The FIRST training program differs from the typical running program not only by its emphasis on intensity but also by building in more recovery time between running workouts.

  • If you want to develop habits and a training regimen that will allow you to continue running when your peers are shuffling along or spending their parked in front of a TV, you need to understand how the aging process affects running. Understanding the physiology of aging can help us develop physical and mental coping strategies to modify our training and expectations.

    Not being able to run can have serious health consequences. Once you become inactive, the beneficial aspects associated with aerobic physical activity are lost. Weight and waist size increase. Cholesterol and triglycerides increase. You lose stamina and muscle mass. This presentation focuses on how to maintain those healthy benefits associated with running and longevity by being a lifelong runner.


Dr. Russ Pate

Dr. Russ Pate

Professor in the Department of Exercise Science

Russell R. Pate, is a Professor in the Department of Exercise Science in the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina. He has held several administrative positions including Chair, Department of Exercise Science; Associate Dean for Research, Arnold School of Public Health; and Vice Provost for Health Sciences. Pate is an exercise physiologist with interests in physical activity and physical fitness in children and the health implications of physical activity. He has published more than 300 scholarly papers and has authored or edited eight books.

His research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Heart Association, and several private foundations and corporations. He heads a research team that is currently supported by multiple grants from the National Institutes of Health and from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He coordinated the effort that led to the development of the recommendation on Physical Activity and Public Health of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American College of Sports Medicine (1995). He served on the U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (2003-04), the U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory Committee (2007-08), and an Institute of Medicine panel that developed guidelines on prevention of childhood obesity. He currently serves as Chair of the National Physical Activity Plan Alliance. Pate has served in several leadership positions with the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), and in 1993-94 served as that organization's president. He is a past-president of the National Coalition on Promoting Physical Activity. In 2012 he received the Honor Award from the American College of Sports Medicine.

Speaking Topics

  • Pate's research team has been studying physical activity behavior in children and youth for over three decades. In this presentation he will address basic principles for introducing kids to distance running in a way that both enhances their performance in the near term and supports their long term adoption of a physically active lifestyle. Consideration will be given to children's physical and psychological developmental patterns and to inter-individual variability in adaptations to endurance training.


Keith Scruggs

Keith Scruggs

CSCS,*D, USATF-Level 2, USAW Sport Performance Coach

Currently, Keith is a PhD Student, Adjunct Professor, and Sports Performance Coach at the University of South Carolina. Prior to South Carolina, Keith served as an Assistant Sport Performance Coach within the Sport Physiology & Performance Department at the US Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid, NY under Dr. Brad DeWeese. While at the OTC, Keith assisted in supervising the Speed & Strength development and athlete monitoring of Olympic, National, and developmental team athletes representing Team USA in the following sports: USA Bobsled & Skeleton, USA Luge, USA Karate, USA Canoe & Kayak.

Prior to his stint at the Olympic Training Center Keith pursued his Master’s in Kinesiology – Physiology & Performance from East Tennessee State University under world renowned Sport Scientist, Dr. Michael H. Stone. While attending ETSU Keith served as a Graduated Assistant in the Sport Sciences Lab and with Sports Performance under the supervision of 2x Olympian, current NCAA Record Holder, and Master’s Strength & Conditioning Coach, Meg Ritchie Stone.

Keith started his coaching career at the University of North Carolina - Asheville where he served as an Assistant Sport Performance Coach working with all sports under Dr. Brad DeWeese and Joel Williams. Before coaching at UNC-Asheville, Keith was also a Bulldog student-athlete as a member of the Track & Field team where he competed as a thrower.

Speaking Topics


Keith Scruggs

Dr. Toni M. Torres-McGehee

Associate Professor and Graduate Athletic Training Program Director

Dr. Torres-McGehee is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Exercise Science at the University of South Carolina. She is currently in her 5th year as the Director of the Graduate Athletic Training Program. Dr. Torres-McGehee oversees ~46 Graduate Athletic Training Students who provide athletic training services within the University and the local community. Dr. Torres-McGehee’s research interests include eating disorders, body image, female athlete triad, sport nutrition, and prevention programs for collegiate dancers, collegiate athletes, and military personnel. She has publications in the Journal of Athletic Training, Research Quarterly, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, and Perceptual Motor Skills. She has been working with the Athletic Department’s Performance, Health, & Wellness Team for the past 10 years and is currently the liaison for the National Athletic Trainer’s Association for the Female Athlete Triad Collation. She is also the lead author on the upcoming National Athletic Trainer’s Association’s Position Stand on the Female Athlete Triad.

Speaking Topics

  • This presentation will provide clinicians and coaches a practical approach for identifying athletes with low energy availability (through food and fluid consumption) and with or without an eating disorders. Preliminary data on low energy availability and hydration status will be presented to provide recommendations for nutritional deficiencies, monitor safety trends for eating disorder behaviors, general health, and weight management policies. Recommendations and guidelines to better prepare coaches, athletic trainers, and healthcare professionals in creating a team infrastructure to incorporate interdisciplinary collaboration for prevention strategies, early detection and management of low energy availability with or without an eating disorder in athletes will also be discussed.

Andrew Allden

Coach Andrew Allden

Running Summit Director

Coach Andrew Allden has thirty years of experience coaching distance and middle distance runners at the NCAA Division I Level (SEC, ACC, Conference USA, & Big South) and elite level l (USA Championships, the World Championships, and the Olympics). A collegiate and elite coach since 1986, Andrew coached at the: University of Georgia, University of North Carolina, Tulane University, University of South Carolina and Coastal Carolina University. He served as Head Track and Field Coach at Tulane and Coastal Carolina. In 2013, he accepted the women's cross country position at the University of South Carolina, beginning his second tenure there. His accolades include being named "Coach of the Year" in the Southeast Region, the Big South, South Carolina, and North Carolina. He has coached more than a dozen All-Americans, more than 50 NCAA qualifiers, and 3 Olympians. In 1996 Andrew directed the Distance Practice Track at the Atlanta Olympic Games. Andrew's international coaching experience includes serving as the Assistant Coach for the Men's Distance Events for the US at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in 2004.

Andrew is very involved in USATF Coaching Education. Over more than 18 years in coaching education Andrew has directed USATF Level I coaching schools that have helped educated 2000 coaches. In addition, in recent years Andrew has worked with Coaching Education for the North Carolina Justice Academy, the University of North Carolina, Equinox, and USAT.

His direction of the Running and Speed Summits is an outgrowth of his work with coaching education and his personal coaching education journey. "I try to learn a little bit about my sport every day," says Andrew. His attendance at many conferences and clinics in recent years inspired him to bring together the best-of-the-best in one place for one dynamic weekend of learning.

Dave Pavlansky

Dave Pavlansky

Running Summit Co-Director

A career educator and coach, Dave Pavlansky has experience as a collegiate football coach, award-winning high school cross country and track coach, and as a high school English teacher. He has just finished his 28th year at Boardman High School in northeastern Ohio. Dave's interests in speed and athletic development were sparked early while working in the mid-1980's with the football programs at Miami (OH) University and Youngstown State and continued when he transitioned to track and football positions at Boardman.

After serving a decade as an assistant, Dave became head coach of Boardman's boys' track and cross country teams in 1999. During his 12-year tenure as head track coach Dave's teams won 6 league titles and 7 district championships. Twice named OAT&CCC District 1 Boys' Track Coach of the Year, Dave's teams produced individual Indoor and Outdoor State Champions, numerous All-Ohio athletes, and two Nike All-Americans. Nationally, Boardman athletes qualified to compete in 14 Nike Indoor or Outdoor Championships from 2001-2011, earning two Nike All-American awards at Boston's Reggie Lewis Center in 2009.

From 1996 - 2004 Dave initiated and directed a string of Speed/Hurdle Development camps at Boardman featuring legendary coaches Loren Seagrave and Brent McFarlane. In 2007, he was among 10 sprint coaches selected nationwide by the USATF to attend the Emerging Elite Coaches' School in Orlando, Florida.

In 2007 Dave also received the Fred Daffler State Coach of the Year Award for Boys' Cross Country. He currently serves as meet manager for the Northeast Ohio Regional Cross Country Championships and is also meet manager of the Boardman Spartan Invitational - one of the largest cross country events in the nation.

Dave served nearly a decade on the staff of Team Ohio, the state's Midwest Meet of Champions senior all-star team, fulfilling capacities from assistant coach to state-wide coordinator of both the Men's and Women's teams.

Dave is USATF Level 2 certified in Jumps, Endurance, and Sprints / Hurdles / Relays. He currently serves USATF as Regional Coordinator for Coaching Education in the Midwest/Mid-Atlantic and in 2016 received USATF’s Ron Buss Award for distinguished service to coaching education.

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