Megan Smith – Pittsburgh Running Coach

4.67 out of 5
(6 customer reviews)

$77.00 / month and a $19.00 sign-up fee

20% off your first month! Experienced collegiate coach providing a holistic and individualized approach to training with speed, strength, and injury prevention.



Megan Smith specializes on the track, she has 6 years experience at the college level at NCAA DII/DIII and NAIA schools, having coached 400 m-10k runners plus cross country, sprinters and jumpers, along with race walkers and a marathoner.

*** 20% off First Month of Coaching – Coupon Code: 20percentoff ***

Contact Megan

LEVELS: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
TYPES: Road, Track, Trail
DISTANCES: 5k/10k/Half Marathon, Marathon
TRAINING PLATFORM: Training Peaks Premium
TRAINING PLAN: Individual, customized training plan
COMMUNICATION: Unlimited email, unlimited phone, unlimited text
RESPONSE TIME: Within 48 hours
LOCATION: Pittsburgh, PA


  • Long Distance Training
  • Middle Distance Training
  • Speed Training
  • Strength Training
  • Injury Prevention/Come-back
  • Form Analysis
  • Breathing Exercises
  • Individualized Training
  • Race Strategy


There is no one size fits all training program that will work for everyone. I like to have an open dialogue with each runner to make sure I am customizing the training program to fit each person’s needs. Each runner’s mileage will be a gradual progression based on what they need and can handle safely without injury. No matter what event you are training for, all training programs will typically involve components from both the aerobic and anaerobic systems that progress throughout the training cycle from the base to the top of the pyramids within each system, with the amount of each varying depending on the event training for and the phase of the training cycle. In addition to more traditional distance training, I also have experience using a breathing-based training system that I am able to teach to anyone interested in learning it. Strength training is an important part of training for injury prevention, so each program will include some element of that based on the needs and experience of each runner. I try to emphasize quality over quantity and I like to teach runners things they can do to find “safe seconds,” little things you can do on top of running to get faster without actually running more.


  • 6 years at the college level at NCAA DII/DIII and NAIA schools- primarily coached 400 m-10k runners plus cross country, also coached a few race walkers and a marathoner and helped with sprints and jumps. Assisted with pole vault one year. Colleges I have coached at: Concordia University Chicago (IL)- NCAA DIII, University of the Cumberlands (KY)- NAIA, Grove City College (PA)- NCAA DIII, and Lake Erie College (OH)- NCAA DII.
  • 1 year at the high school level in Minnesota- coached cross country and was head sprints/field event coach for track, also helped with distance and middle distance for track
  • 8 years experience as a strength and conditioning coach- 6 years for my college teams, 1 year for my high school teams, 1 summer as an intern at a strength and conditioning center for youth hockey players
  • 6 years experience coaching a variety of other sports for both youth and adults at the recreational level
  • 3 years as an alpine ski instructor and 1 year as a junior race team coach, 1 year as a middle school Nordic ski coach


I am originally from the Twin Cities area in Minnesota where I graduated in 2011 from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, and have moved around the country the past 6 years coaching college track with stops in Chicago suburbs of Illinois; rural Southeastern, KY; western PA; and Northeast OH. I usually spend a few months a year in Minnesota, so I am available in multiple locations throughout the year. I have been involved with track and cross country running for 17 years now as an athlete and coach and am very passionate about the sport and enjoy both competing and helping others achieve their goals. Most of my post-collegiate years have been more focused on coaching than competing myself, as I was injured for most of 2014 which resulted in a hip surgery (torn labrum) in 2015 which has resulted in a slow recovery since then. I am finally to the point where I can train somewhat consistently and do some modified workouts, so I am excited to try to get back into training and racing again this year after a long break. During the winter time, I am an avid alpine ski racer in a competitive recreational league, specializing in the slalom event (also compete in GS regularly and Super G and Downhill on occasion). I also enjoy rock climbing (I used to compete in this as well), snowboarding, Nordic skiing, hiking, softball, ultimate frisbee, boating, and photography (and really any sport or excuse to be outdoors.) Personality wise, I am a very fun and outgoing person with a good sense of humor and a love for sarcasm. As a coach, I am a strong communicator with a thorough attention to detail and a passion for doing everything I can to help my athletes reach their goals.


I mostly just rely on my extensive background in exercise science and knowledge of the different energy systems along with my own running and coaching experience to write my workouts. I don’t really follow anyone else’s training system/philosophy too much, but some coaches that have had some influence on me or my training programs include my high school coach in MN, Jeff Lindlief; my college coach at University of MN, Gary Wilson; the head coach at Grove City College, Sean Severson. Sean Severson taught me a unique, effort based training system using breathing patterns to monitor one’s effort that is a useful tool for certain types of training. I don’t use the breathing based training exclusively, but am open to teaching it to anyone who’s interested in learning it. You probably will find some elements of training from Arthur Lydiard and Joe Vigil that I use as well.


Post-Collegiate Running, 2012-Present: (raced only a few times recreationally from 2014-2018 due to injury/recovering from surgery)

  • Won the Run for the Swamp 5k at Lake Erie College in Painesville, OH, 2019
  • Won Camp Titan 5 Obstacle Race at Buck Hill Ski Area in Burnsville, MN, 2012
  • Finished runner-up at Rice Street Road Mile in St. Paul, MN, 2012
  • 4th place individual finish at NIRCA Great Plains Cross Country Regional at Iowa State University in Ames, IA, 2012
  • Team runner-up at NIRCA Great Plains Cross Country Regional, 2012
  • Competed in cross country in 2012 and track in 2013 with “The University Running Club” at University of Minnesota
  • Set club records with “The University Running Club at University of Minnesota in the outdoor 200 & 400, 2013

University of Minnesota NCAA Division I Track & Field, Middle-distance, specializing at 800 meters, 2007-2012:

  • Varsity Letter Winner, 2012
  • Recorded four top 20 finishes at Big Ten Track and Field Championships (3x in the 800- twice indoors, once outdoors and once in 600 indoors)
  • Recorded fastest 800 meter time for the Gophers during the 2012 outdoor track season (2:11.03)
  • Ranked 61st out of all US college women in the 600 m run during 2010 indoor season
  • St. Mary’s University outdoor track facility record holder at 800 meters with 2:13.96 set in 2009
  • Team was two-time Big Ten Conference Indoor Team Champions (2008 & 2009)
  • Held Minnesota state record for 21 year old women in the road mile with 5:20 set at the TC 1 Mile from 2010-2016
  • Qualified for USATF Junior Nationals for Outdoor Track in the 800 as a red-shirt competing unattached in 2008

University of Minnesota NCAA Division I Cross Country, 2007-2011:

  • Varsity Letter Winner, 2011
  • Two Time Big Ten Conference Team Champions (2007 & 2008)
  • Awarded “Coaches Award”, 2012
  • Competed for 4 years, recording a personal best time of 23:29 in 2011 (red-shirted and did not compete in 2008)

Eden Prairie High School (MN) Track & Field, 2004-2007:

  • Earned 4 varsity letters, 2004-2007
  • Earned 8 MSHSL Class AA All-State Awards, 2005-2007
  • 2007 NSSA All-American with 6th place finish in 4xMile at 2007 Nike Outdoor Nationals, also finished 8th in 4×800 & 36th in 800
  • 2007 MSHSL Class AA 800 meter & 4×800 m state champion and junior nationals qualifier, also finished 9th in 4×400
  • School record holder in 800 meter (2:11.87) (has since been broken) and 4×800 (9:09.31), ranking #8 in 800 & #2 in 4×800 all-time for high school girls in Minnesota history at the time in 2007
  • Recorded times ranking #74 nationally in the 800 and #11 in the 4×800 relay for high school girls
  • 2006 MSHSL Class AA State 3rd place finisher in 800, 4×800, & 4×400
  • 2005 MSHSL Class AA State runner-up in 4×800 & 4th in 4×400
  • Three-time All-Lake Conference, 2005-2007
  • Section 6AA Champion in 800 (2006 & 2007), 4×800 (2006) and 4×400 (2005 & 2006)
  • Lake Conference Champions in 4×400 (2005) and 4×800 (2006 & 2007) setting new conference record in 4×800 (2006 & 2007)
  • Team won True Team Section Champions (2004 & 2005) and 3rd place team finish at True Team State (2004)
  • AAU Junior Olympics 800 meter State Champion (2004 & 2005) and National Qualifier & Competitor in 400 & 800 (2004)
  • Holds meet record for the intermediate girls 800 meter run for the AAU Junior Olympics Minnesota State Track Meet with 2:21.25 set in 2005 (tied for oldest record still standing today)
  • Team MVP (2006 & 2007), Rookie of the Year (2004), Gold Baton Award (2005)
  • Team Captain 2007

Eden Prairie High School (MN) Cross Country, 2004-2006:

  • Three-time All-Lake Conference selection (2004-2006)
  • Section 6AA team champions & state qualifiers 2004 & 2006
  • Team finished 3rd at MSHSL Class AA State Championships in 2006 & 5th in 2004- best individual finish was 34th at state in 2006
  • 2006 Lake-Conference team champions, 5th place individually
  • Team MVP, 2007


  • Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Kinesiology, University of Minnesota, 2011
  • Minors in Coaching and Sports Management with a Coaching Certificate from University of Minnesota, 2011
  • Masters of Business Administration in Sports Management from Concordia University Chicago (4.0 GPA), 2015
  • Completed 32.5 graduate level credits towards an M.Ed. in Applied Kinesiology- Physical Education Licensure +DAPE and Health endorsements at University of Minnesota (did not complete degree or licensure), 2012
  • USATF Certified Coaching Certificates: Level 1; Level 2 Endurance; and Level 2 Sprints, Hurdles, & Relays
  • USTFCCCA Advanced Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach (meets NCAA requirements for certified strength coaches)
  • American Heart Association Adult CPR/AED
  • Completed Team USA SafeSport Training
  • Conversational level Spanish language


  • 60 m: 8.58 FAT – (3/5/2006- USATF Minnesota Association Junior Olympic Indoor Track & Field Championships @ University of Minnesota Field House, Minneapolis, MN)
  • 100 m: 13.41 FAT – (7/26/2011- USATF Minnesota Summer Meet #4 @ St. Louis Park High School, St. Louis Park, MN)
  • 200 m: 26.7 (ht)/ 26.97 FAT – (7/13/2010- USATF Minnesota Summer Meet #4 @ St. Louis Park High School track, St. Louis Park, MN)/(5/10-/2006 – True Team Sections- @ Hopkins High School, Hopkins, MN)
  • 400 m: 57.2 (relay split)/ 59.29 FAT – (2/18/2012- Parents’ Day Open @ University of Minnesota Field house, Minneapolis, MN) / (5/10/2006- True Team Sections @ Hopkins High School, Hopkins, MN)
  • 500 m: 1:16.24 FAT- (2/4/2012- Meyo Invite @ University of Notre Dame Field House, South Bend, IN)
  • 600 m: 1:34.63 FAT- (2/27/2010- Big Ten Indoor Championships @ Penn State University Field House, State College, PA)
  • 800 m: 2:11.03 FAT- (5/12/2012- Big Ten Outdoor Championships @ University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI)
  • 1500 m: 4:54.09 FAT- (4/21/2010- Hamline Twilight Meet @ Hamline University, St. Paul, MN)
  • 1600 m: 5:09.5 FAT – (5/15/2007- Lake Conference Track & Field Championships @ Eastview High School, Eagan, MN)
  • Mile (Track): 5:10.5 (relay split) – (6/15/2007- Nike Outdoor Nationals @ A & T University, Greensboro, NC)
  • Mile (Road): 5:19 (chip timed) – (5/12/2010 – TC 1 Mile @ Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN)
  • 2 Mile (Road): 11:47 (split in a rd 5k) – (7/22/2009 – Torchlight 5k @ downtown, Minneapolis, MN)
  • 2 Mile (XC): 12:28 (hand timed) – (8/22/2009 – Eden Prairie High School Alumni XC Race @ Round Lake Park, Eden Prairie, MN)
  • 4k (XC): 15:01.20 – (10/3/2006 – Victoria Lions XC Invite @ Chaska Par 30 Golf Course, Chaska, MN)
  • 5k (Road): 19:04 (chip timing) – (7/22/2009 – Torchlight 5k @ downtown, Minneapolis, MN)
  • 5k (XC): 19:23 – (9/15/2017 – Luther Invite @ Luther College, Decorah, IA)
  • 6k (XC): 23:22 – (10/20/2012 – NIRCA Great Plains XC Regional @ Iowa State University, Ames, IA)


Athletes I’ve coached over the past 7 years have accomplished:

  • 77 school records
  • 68 All-Conference awards (36- 1st team, 32- 2nd team) + 29 All-Conference Honorable Mention awards
  • 7 collegiate All-Region runners
  • 1 NAIA All-American- women’s 800 7th place indoor track
  • 8 national qualifying performances as head event coach- 2 males in XC (1 NAIA/1 NCAA DIII); 1 female in XC, 600 m (DNC) & 800 m (7th) indoor track, 800 m outdoor track (9th) (NAIA); 1 male in marathon in outdoor track (NAIA); 1 female 200 m dash (NCAA DIII)
  • 25 Eastern Conference Athletic Conference (ECAC) qualifiers- (collegiate east coast regional championship)
  • 1 cross country conference team title- Grove City College men won the 2017 President’s Athletic Conference title and ended rival’s 7 year conference win streak
  • 21 individual/relay conference titles
  • 3 Conference MVP honors- (High school female for outdoor track and college male for cross country and outdoor track)
  • 3 high school state qualifiers
  • 2 high school All-State awards
  • 1 high school Section champion and 1 runner-up
  • 88 marks making the All-Time Top 10 Performer’s List at Grove City College (over 2 years with both men and women)
  • Coached 4 teams to their highest ever team finishes at conference meets


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Midstate Massive 100 Race Report – 10/9/21

6 reviews for Megan Smith – Pittsburgh Running Coach

  1. 4 out of 5

    Dylan Hupp

    I initiated my coaching relationship with Megan as I sought out to run a sub 3:30 marathon. I had never trained or ran that far of a distance before, so I wanted a coach to provide me with guidance and structured feedback along the way. As someone that loves a challenge and a huge proponent of cross training, Megan fully supported my goals/vision and structed my training plan to the most optimal approach. She was extremely receptive of feedback of programed workouts, and tweaked the plan if I had issues or negative feedback towards any certain thing. Her knowledge and guidance gave me the foundation to run a 3:14:20 marathon, and I 100% believe without her coaching I wouldn’t have been as successful by myself.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tricia Fisher

    Megan is great. I’ve had lots of random things come up (health issues, work trip, minor surgery, etc) and she is always great about changing around my schedule and activities to what my life will accommodate and to train at the correct level. I have often given up in the past when this many obstacles come up but she’s kept me motivated and positive about continuing to train how and when I can.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Edward Pauli III

    Megan has been great.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Christopher Foley

    I have been having a great experience with Megan. She has incorporated all sorts of fun workouts into my calendar, answered all questions immediately, and made the various adjustments I needed without any trouble. The results have been great–my fitness is high, I have zero aches and pains, and I am absolutely confident that I will continue to see improvement with this training program. Strong recommendation here!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Alex E

    I signed up for coaching because I was struggling to get out the door without my running buddies during the pandemic. I was not consistent and would have some high mileage spurts of time mixed with some weeks of zero mileage. Megan has kept me largely consistent and has helped keep me motivated not only through Covid but through the winter too (which has always been hard for me). She also sends strength workouts that I can do at home. The running workouts are usually pretty fun to me, especially speedwork. If you are on the fence about signing up I say just do it! Megan is also extremely knowledgeable and has had a ton of experience as a coach and also as a runner.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn Tu

    I started our coaching relationship with a hip injury which is still ongoing and not resolved, so our experience has been focused on rehab and getting me to a point where I can run again. Her experience with my type of injuries has been extremely insightful and her training plan has proven to be a tremendous help to getting me to a point where I could do some running. I am not yet where I would like to be, but I feel confident that with Megan’s assistance I will get there in the coming months!

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