Introducing Coach Dan

Dan Blankenship

Today we introduce “Coach Dan.”  I met Dan when I joined the marathon training team to run my “first” 26.2 race.  Dan is joining The Race Before Us to provide regular tips for runners, especially novice runners and those eager to get off the coach and run their own first 5K or 10K.  These running tips and programs for novice runners are part of the mission of the 501(c)(3).

Based in Richmond, Virginia Dan Blankenship (“Coach Dan”) has been coaching for over thirteen years.  He is a USA Track and Field Certified Level II Endurance Coach and a Certified Personal Trainer.

Dan is currently the Head Coach for the YMCA 10K Training Team and the Sports Backers 8K Training Team in Richmond; and has also coached for the Sports backers Marathon Training Team.  Dan is a member of the Richmond Road Runners Club.  For the last 20 years, he has been active in the running community – founding the “Keep It Movin'” organization that established running groups for the homeless and using local race training to mentor less fortunate youth.

Dan’s professional coaching experience spans across various endurance level training, including long distance running, winter conditioning, and strength, core training for races ranging from 5K to marathons. He frequently organizes various runs in the greater Richmond area and has served as a motivational speaker on health and fitness.   Dan’s greatest passion is helping others to lead healthy lifestyles and to reach their fitness goals.

Dan is also an accomplished athlete. In high school he was a top-ranked hurdler athlete, although a knee injury in college prevented him from continuing in his NCAA dreams.  Nonetheless, Dan never lost his passion for running – having completed numerous 5k, 8k, and 10k races as well as 13 half marathons and 19 full marathons.

His unique coaching style draws from his own experience and the knowledge he has gained over the past 13 years of coaching.   He strives to motivate each athlete to live their best life and reach beyond their comfort zones.

Dan is also a successful business and technology executive, having served in key leadership roles at PricewaterhouseCoopers, IBM, and Dell.  He is currently employed as a Strategic Planning Executive at Oracle.  Dan has a B.S. degree in Accounting, holds several certifications including a CPA, and has an M.B.A. in Finance from Virginia Tech.


Tomorrow Coach Dan will give us some perspective on the great sport of running and the phenomenal rise in the popularity of the sport – and, more importantly, the “boom” in the participatory nature of the sport.  Thereafter, look for periodic “tips” on all aspects of running and on getting into the “race.”

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  1. #1 by Shellie on November 7, 2013 - 12:24 pm

    Thanks, Bruce!! I look forward to Coach Dan’s tips!

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