Jay Palmer – Chicago Running Coach

5.00 out of 5
(4 customer reviews)

From: $75.00 / month and a $19.00 sign-up fee

Coach Jay Palmer supports busy people to achieve their running goals using a smart and comprehensive training approach.



Coach Jay Palmer knows what it’s like juggling family, work and running and he’s here to help you train with the time and the energy that you have, whether you’re just starting out or taking training to the next level. Jay also offers in-person sessions, reach out below to get started!

Contact Jay

LEVELS: Beginner, Intermediate
TYPES: Road, Trail
DISTANCES: 5k/10k/Half Marathon, Marathon, Ultra
TRAINING PLAN: Individual, customized training plan
COMMUNICATION: Unlimited email, unlimited text, unlimited phone
RESPONSE TIME: Within 24 hours
LOCATION: Bolingbrook, IL
IN-PERSON SESSIONS: Yes, meet within a 10 mile radius of zip code 60490, such as in Naperville, Plainfield, and Romeoville. Reach out below for more info!


I coach people, especially busy professionals, who are new to running as well as runners who are ready to go to the next level. I take a comprehensive approach that incorporates cross-training, stretching, nutrition, hydration and time for recovery, rest and living life.

I specialize in:

  • Coaching new and intermediate-level runners who are 40 years of age and better;
  • Developing a comprehensive training plan that incorporates core strengthening, stretching / flexibility / yoga, hydration & nutrition, and rest & recovery
  • Leveraging data to help make smart decisions.


I take a smart, incremental, and comprehensive approach to running:

  • Step one is to set a goal: for example, to complete a 10k.
  • Step two is to design a plan that builds incrementally toward that goal with 3-4 week “micro” phases of building up and recovery, gradually moving the runner to race day. Each “micro” phase includes a variety of distances and paces, all calibrated to achieve the goal.
  • Step three is, as we approach race day, to decrease running and increase stretching, cross-training, and rest. This step allows the body to reap the benefits of training while minimizing stress and risk of injury.

Core principles that shape my coaching decisions are:

  • Setting goals: begin with the end in mind
  • Creating a smart plan: every run has a purpose
  • Incremental execution: long runs build on short runs; fast runs build on slow runs
  • Balance: cross-training and rest & recovery help us manage the increased demands that running puts on our bodies
  • Listening to the body and tweaking the plan as needed: it’s better to be undertrained than overtrained
  • Grit: mental fortitude helps power us through long miles
  • Hydration and nutrition: we can’t outrun a bad diet
  • Injury prevention and remediation: we won’t run well if we’re not feeling well


Since 2017, I have coached adult runners one-on-one as well as in groups, including diverse groups of charity runners (Team World Vision) training for the Chicago Marathon. My runners have achieved goals such as going from “Couch” to 5k and then completing a full marathon as well as running setting PRs in races such as 10ks and half-marathons.

I have over two decades of team leadership in the corporate world. I recognize when I need to take an assertive approach providing direction and guidance to my team members. But I am also an active listener and take a collaborative approach in all I do.


I am a husband and father first as well as a running coach who has a regular job and tries to stay fit and healthy. So I understand the needs of busy professionals who would like to incorporate running into their lives. I value diversity and welcome any and all runners who would like me to serve as their coach.

I am analytic and incorporate data-based decision-making into my coaching; objective data such as heart rate and splits as well as subjective data such as how the run felt to you.

I am also an active listener and value my relationships including my coaching relationships. I want to hear your insights and perspectives as much as I want to provide direction and guidance to support your running.

I’ve lived in many parts of the US and in the southwest Chicago suburbs for over 17 years. I started running in my 30s and haven’t stopped.

When I’m not working, coaching, or running, you can find me cycling and enjoying Italian and Mexican food.


Hal Higdon has greatly influenced my philosophy of and approach to coaching. In addition, from Coach Jack Daniels I have incorporated the principles of a) targeted stress, meaning simply that we want the stress to be in the “sweet spot” that is productive for improving running strength and efficiency, but not overwhelming; and b) specificity of training, meaning that every run (every day, for that matter) has a purpose: whether it’s long, slow miles to build endurance, quick repeats to fire fast-twitch muscles, or rest days to allow the cardiovascular system to recover and to allow muscles to build.


I started running in 2008 with a 5k challenge through my local YMCA. I was hooked! From there I built up to a 10k and a half and then a full marathon in 2010. Since then I’ve run a variety of road races – including the Chicago Marathon five times – and trail races and ultra-marathons.

The one that I enjoyed the most was a trail ultra in Wisconsin where my goal for the race was to enjoy the experience. I walked when I wanted to walk and ran when I wanted to run. I ran 50 kilometers and felt like I could run 50 more! It was an awesome day!


Road Runners Club of America (RRCA)


  • 5k: 20:22
  • 10k: 44:36
  • 10 miles: 1:09:43
  • Half marathon: 1:43:01
  • Full marathon: 3:26:17
  • 50k: 7:08:42
  • 50 miles: 10:54:55


Finding a coach who is a great fit for you is really important. We encourage you to email your coach prior to signing up so you can connect, communicate, and ensure a good athlete/coach fit.

Give us a brief history of your running, and this can include what distances and/or races you’ve run, how long you’ve been running, any past or present injuries, if you’ve worked with a coach or a specific training program before, etc.
Any short term or long term goals?
Describe your ideal coach/athlete relationship.
Any questions/comments for Team RunRun or the Coach in general?



4 reviews for Jay Palmer – Chicago Running Coach

  1. 5 out of 5


    Have been working with Jay for a couple of months to get ready for a marathon. Not only do I get quicker and fitter faster than I could’ve imagined, but also if I have any injury and a mild concern, Jay will quickly alter the plan to fit my current needs. For me he is a perfect coach. 10/10

  2. 5 out of 5

    James Tracy

    About halfway through a 6 month set, and I only have amazing things to say. As a growing runner, I wanted to be mindful of proper habits and what it would take to reach the next step. Coaching with Jay has helped me achieve that. He’s very responsive and patient with my millions of little questions and concerns, and it’s given me a ton of confidence. While my goal wasn’t necessarily to get faster, I’ve been able to cut my sprint speed by a minute and a half per mile, in just 3 months. That’s your proof that this coaching is working! Thanks Jay!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Martha Herrera

    I reached out to Coach Palmer when I got injured training for the Chicago Marathon. As a beginner runner, I did not know how to get back to training after receiving physical therapy and being out for six weeks. From the very beginning Coach Palmer was rather helpful asking me how I got injured and what I had done to recover for him to develop a training plan that worked for me. He developed a detailed training plan that fit my needs. My goal for my first marathon was not to get injured in the next two months leading to the marathon and still finish under the cutoff time, and Coach Palmer training and coaching helped me achieve just that. I cannot recommend Coach Palmer’s coaching/ training enough. If you are looking for a coach who listens to your needs, yet keeps you in check for a successful progress in your training, Coach Palmer is the person to look for.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ratul Maiti

    I worked with Jay during my preparation for Chicago Marathon. First of all, I chose Jay as he is an excellent runner himself and his experience working at the corporate level made me comfortable as he coaches using valid data and how to optimize based on current running performance as well as past history of running and injuries. Before I worked with him, I always used to run at the same pace but Jay gave me the confidence to try out interval sessions, fartleks, tempo runs well above my my goal pace. He is a great listener and worked with me to develop a plan that is sustainable for me and at the same time will give me confidence to execute the plan. Jay was always available and would respond promptly via text, email or phone calls. I would highly recommend Jay if you would like to achieve any specific goal during your marathon training or even afterwards.

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