Exercise Physiologist and Running Coach: Joe McConkey

MS - Injury Prevention and Sports Performance, IAAF Level V, USATF level III (endurance), NASM-PES, NASE, AMR
(Sessions held in Brookline, Boston, Cambridge, and Charlestown.)

 

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Joe specializes in injury prevention, deducing and correcting causative factors to repetitive motion injuries, and improving performance for endurance runners competing at distances from the 800 meters to the marathon.   Joe holds a masters degree in Exercise Science, is a certified USA Track and Field level 2 Coach (endurance), and has over 16 years experience as a competitive athlete and running coach. His top runners have included ISL and NEPSTA champions, NXN and Footlocker qualifiers, USA Junior National Champions in the 1500 and 3000, Olympic trial qualifiers for the 10k and marathon, and National level masters runners in the 800 and 1500.  His accolades, such as the NECC Cross Country Coach of the Year and Best of Boston's Top Running Coaches (as voted by Boston Magazine), are a product of his dedication and belief in each of his runners, no matter what level he or she may be. Joe's coaching principles are influenced by Arthur Lydiard, Joe Vigil, Bob Larsen, Renato Canova, Jack Daniels, Scott Christensen and many other national and world class coaches. Joe's expert biomechanical and gait analysis is often sought after by local New England runners, as well as elite runners and coaches throughout the world, including Florence Kipligat, Ibrahim Jelian, runners of the American Distance Project, and Dr. Yilma Berta of the Ethiopian Athletic Federation.

After coaching teams at the club and collegiate levels*, Joe now dedicates his efforts to designing more efficient and comprehensive programs for individual runners.  His approach combines carefully crafted customized running programs with clinically supported techniques to help prepare the athlete for fast, high intensity endurance running.  Joe's expertise on bio-mechanics and postural distortions related to repetitive motion injuries has him regularly presenting at hospitals, rehab centers, running camps, and club events throughout the year. His methodologies, training approaches, and contributions to the running community have been featured in Running Times, Runners World, Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Metro Sports, and numerous local media outlets throughout New England.  

*Prior to BRC, Joe was the Mens and Womens Cross Country Head Coach at Newbury College, as well as the head coach of the Harvard Running Club and the Cambridge Running Club.

Track and Field/Cross Country 

Joe coaches individual youth, high school and post-collegiate athletes looking to excel in their respective events, ranging from the 800 meters to the 10k. Though his top athletes have competed at national and world championships, his coaching style and attention is given equally to those who are striving to be their best - no matter what level that may be.

Marathon Training 

Many of the runners Joe works with are marathoners, with most training for or trying to qualify for the Boston Marathon.  His balanced programs (regarding speed, strength and endurance), emphasize improved neuromuscular facilitation, assist with developing mental strength and strategies, and help guide the athlete over pre-existing barriers and on a path towards new achievements. Joe's marathoners have completed marathons throughout the world, including:

Arizona Rock'n'Roll Marathon, Austin Marathon, Bay State Marathon, Baltimore Marathon, Breakers Marathon, California International Marathon, Cape Cod Marathon, Chicago Marathon, Columbus Marathon, Detroit Marathon, Disney Marathon, Dublin Marathon, Eugene Marathon, Frankfurt Marathon, Hamburg Marathon, Hartford Marathon, Honolulu Marathon, Las Vegas Marathon, Long Beach Marathon, Maine Marathon, Marine Core Marathon, New Jersey Marathon, New York Marathon, Nike Women's Marathon, Philadelphia Marathon, Portland Marathon, San Francisco Marathon, San Diego Rock'n'Roll Marathon, and many more.

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more on Joe
Joe's coaching philosophy
Joe works with elite coaches and athletes in Kenya and Ethiopia
Boston Globe article on Joe
Joe's athlete interviewed after historic run
A visit to Stowe Running Camp




Testimonials from Joe's runners

"Best running experience I've had yet...I can't believe how much I enjoyed personalized coaching routines. Additionally, coming off of an ankle injury, I can't believe how much having a coach to talk / e-mail with helped me. I will definitely continue w/this service." - Amy Occhialino

"Joe was always available by phone or email to answer a question or patiently listen to my complaints about random soreness or anything else. With Joe's help, I was far better prepared for my last marathon and even turned in a negative split. I wouldn't consider training for a marathon without Joe's help." - Stuart Woodring

"My overall experience with the Boston Running Center has been fantastic. I especially appreciate the rigorous and high quality training schedule that Joe put together for me. Despite the difference in fitness levels, Joe treats each one of his students seriously and sets challenging expectations for them. Unlike most trainers / bootcamp type programs that I've worked with in the past, there was nothing watered down about my experience at all, which is unique. I feel very fortunate to have worked with you guys, as it is rare to find people nowadays who still value hard work, quality, and commitment to the sport. " - Yvonne Tai

"Once again, I can't tell you how much I appreciated all your help and intstruction.  Not only am I a stronger runner, but I'm a much smarter runner for having worked with you.  I'll continue to recommend you to my friends and family." - Reuben Levy

" Joe did a great job helping me to meet my running goals! I felt better racing than I ever have. Joe was also VERY quick to respond to any questions and/or concerns I had along the way. The one-on-one sessions were great and were just the right challenge! I also began to look forward to track workouts instead of loathing them as Joe inspires the confidence one needs to do these workouts!! " - Meg Nelson

"I would like to thank Joe for all he did in preparing me for 2 marathons. The first one I was injured before I went to see him. I believe I had about 12 weeks to get ready at that point. I had a good running base and had injured my calf. He took the time with me and went over my injury and my options. I ran Boston that year (2010) in my best time. This year he spent 20 weeks getting me prepared. What an excellent service. I would recommend it to anyone. He is always there for you. A simple email with any questions are answered promptly and professionally. I would advise anyone who is interested in achieving their goal as a runner to contact the Boston Running Center as a starting point. You won't be disappointed." - Steven McGlaughlin

"My experience with Joe McConkey and the Boston Running Center was terrific. My favorite things about being coached by Joe were 1) his menacing workouts that you don’t think you can do, but he knows you can do, and after you do them you feel amazing, 2) his will to tap your untapped potential to produce a PR nearly every race, and 3) his personalized training regimens that really were unique to me. I was lucky to be coached by him and my experience with the Boston Running Center was outstanding. " - Julie H

"Joe's coaching style is excellent. He pays attention to details, provides thorough analysis of problem areas and creates workouts that consistently challenge me and help me to improve!! Thanks!" - Edwina Nowicki

"I had a successful and enjoyable marathon training.  I got faster, stronger and developed a much better running form.  I look forward to training with the Boston Running Center again in the Spring." - Ellen Lyons

"By working with Joe Mcconkey at the Boston Runnig Center, I've become a faster, stronger, smarter, and injury free runner. Joe's workouts were customized for me and my goals and together we created a game plan which enabled me to achieve my personal best marathon, a 3:46:16. I will work with the BRC and Joe again to acheive my next goal and I would highly recommend him to other runners." - Chris Lafratta

"Joe was very intuitive as far as my needs as a runner and end-goal results. He diagnosed problems in my stride and form within minutes of our first meeting. In 16 weeks I went from running 2-3 miles twice a week to averaging 25-30 miles a week." - Tim Rogers

" I always had a great workout during the one-on-one sessions!  Pushed myself harder than if I was doing it on my own.  I appreciate how flexible Joe was to change workouts due to travel, sickness, etc." - Abby Mitchell

"I just wanted to say thank you for helping improve so much on my marathon time. Just by training with you I was able to shave 17 minutes off my previous marathon PR and Qualify for Boston. Thanks again, your guidance really made the difference. " - Mike M.

"The log is simple and straight forward though very comprehensive.  It is extremely user friendly and packs a lot of analysis tools. The strength training helped develop and maintain specific muscles to compliment the running. The customized workouts were specific and efficient, never felt like I was wasting my time.  The comments were informative and motivating. The one-on-one training sessions were great high intensity workout.  Appreciated the feedback during the sessions.

During my time training with Boston Running Center I noticed a great improvement in my agility and speed.  I felt well prepared for the NY 1/2 and full marathon, received not only training schedules and advice, but also courage and confidence to race well.  I look forward to continuing to see improvements." - Deborah Rifken

"The weekly prescribed workouts I received were excellent. I have been very pleased with my experience." - Olivia Janus

"Working with Joe, I’ve increased my speed, endurance, and refined my running form all while remaining injury free.  His personalized training schedules challenge me and have helped me achieve my initial goals of competing in a 5k and 10k and put me well on my way to achieve my ultimate goal of running a marathon." - Alex Dippold

"I am sure you hear this from all of your other runners, joe, but whatever it is worth, I think that you are very talented at what you do and trust it. I am very appreciative to have the opportunity to be coached by you. Sometimes I lose perspective that I only started running one year and one month ago and realize my expectations can be very high, you do a great job at keeping thongs grounded :) EVERYONE has been commenting on what excellent training I obviously have had for this marathon. This is a testament to you. :) - Danielle C.

"Thanks again for the training program; I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your training program and your working with me. I shaved some 7-minutes from my PR to get under 3-hours, which I never could have done without you!" - Ted O.

"Joe's coaching is terrific. I couldn't have asked for more. He helped me accomplish my goal in a way that was manageable for me. Thanks Joe - by helping me run the Boston Marathon you really changed my life. " - Arden R.

"I think Joe is an excellent coach and is extremely knowledgeable. He has taught me a lot. He is also very patient when answering All of my questions! :) " - Rachel Kalinsky

"It's been great working with you the past few months. Thanks so much again for all you have taught me!" - Amy G.

"This is a heck of a product. I really enjoy working with Joe, and strongly recommend him to others. Access to Joe's expertise provides good value for the money. " - Jason S.

"The training helped me recover much better from the marathon this time around (6 days vs. 14 days).  The NYC Marathon was rigorous and difficult, but I survived and managed not to hurt so much because I was better prepared physically.  This is greatly due to the training." - Ella B.

"This service has been great. Joe motivates me to keep going with this and without his help i would have a really hard time staying on track." - S. Dass

"This program was perfect for me. The workouts and notes were always pushing me and Joe always had my best interest. The past year with my friends, family and others that would compliment me on my running and speed, I would refer to you as my phenomenal coach. Even when other trainers tried to give me tips, I would tell them I am all set, I already have a coach/trainer!" - MaryLuz M.


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