run coaching


Do you have a running goal you’d like to conquer? Whether you’re training for your first ever 5k, hoping to qualify for the Boston Marathon, or tackle a trail race, we can help you be the best runner you can be! 

Working with a coach takes the guesswork out of training and provides structure and progression. A sound training program reduces risk of injury and puts you in the best position to reach your potential. One-on-one coaching guidance empowers you to get the most out of your training sessions and races.

We specialize in coaching:

Image Credit to Claus Andersen, Athletics Canada

Under Jess’s expert coaching, you’ll gain more than just speed, endurance, and Strava kudos; you’ll develop a deeper understanding of effective training and performance skills.

What To Expect:

Each run coaching program at Grit Coaching is thoughtfully created based on your personal goals and limitations. Here’s what you can expect:

With Grit Coaching, you receive more than just a training plan-you gain access to Olympian-level coaching guidance covering everything from injury recovery tips and pacing strategies to mental skill development. This comprehensive support ensures you show up to the start line with confidence!

Coach Jess in 'GRIT' athletic attire confidently poses with crossed arms.


jess o'connell


Jess O’Connell, a 2016 Olympian and a 15-time national team member, brings a rich blend of professional running experience and academic knowledge to Grit Coaching. In addition to remote coaching, Jess also coaches track and cross country at the University of Calgary. 

Passionate about crafting training programs for runners at all levels, Jess finds equal joy in aiding elite athletes to achieve podium finishes and in helping beginners surpass their own expectations. 

Jess prioritizes recovery and wellness in her coaching and believes that patience, consistency, and FUN leads to incredible results.

how it works

Embarking on your personalized coaching journey with Grit Coaching is straightforward and simple. Here’s how we guide you towards your next personal best:

Number 1

Questionnaire & Book A Call

Fill out our questionnaire via Google Forms and provide background to information on your goals and training history. Then, you’ll be prompted to schedule your first meeting effortlessly using Calendly. 

Number 2

Initial Consultation call

We’ll use this initial phone or zoom call to get to know each other and ensure we’re a good fit. This initial consultation is your opportunity to discuss your goals, challenges, and preferences, laying the groundwork for a great coaching experience. This call is free – there is no obligation to sign up!

Number 3

customized plan

Based on the insights from your consultation and questionnaire, we craft a customized training plan that aligns with your individual goals, lifestyle, schedule, and current fitness, ensuring that every aspect of the plan is tailored just for you.

Number 4

ongoing support

Your journey doesn’t end with receiving your plan-we’re just getting started!. We provide options for ongoing support, feedback, and adjustments to your plan as needed, ensuring you stay on track, overcome challenges, and continuously progress.

Pricing Plans For Runners

$115 USD / MONTH

$150 CAD / MONTH*

basic run plan

What's included?

*Terms and Conditions apply
*CAD + GST per month

$140 USD / MONTH

$180 CAD / MONTH*

silver run plan

What's included?

*Terms and Conditions apply
*CAD + GST per month

$170 USD / MONTH

$220 CAD / MONTH*

Gold run plan

What's included?

*Terms and Conditions apply
*CAD + GST per month

want to include a custom strength program to complete your training?

Pricing Plans For RUN & STRENGTH

$195 USD / MONTH

$250 CAD / MONTH*


What's included?

*Terms and Conditions apply
*CAD + GST per month

$250 USD / MONTH

$300 CAD / MONTH*


What's included?

*Terms and Conditions apply
*CAD + gst per month

$300 USD / MONTH

$375 CAD / MONTH


What's included?

*Terms and Conditions apply
*CAD + GST per month

Not sure which plan is right for you?

We can chat about it on our initial consult call!

They’ve taught me not to be so hard on myself and to work just as hard on my mental health as I do on my training! They have truly helped me find my JOY again!! I’m finally training and racing HAPPY and I’m so excited to be working towards another big goal but this time without putting so much pressure on myself! Jess and Faye are the real deal!!! Their coaching and training is so much more than just running miles and lifting weights and I’m so grateful that our paths have crossed!! Are you looking for a trainer??? Reach out to Jess and Faye! I promise you won’t regret it.

Melissa Talbert ULTRA Runner

I can't recommend Grit Coaching highly enough. When l was looking for a new coach, I had a few priorities: someone science focused who wouldn't just program to the latest fitness trends, someone who would be flexible and get me "adventure ready" if and when my goals shifted (especially during Covid!), and someone who would be nice and fun to work with. Jess and Faye have been all that and more. With their training, I've had some amazing experiences including completing my first 100K and my first multi-day ultra challenge, I feel prepared and excited to tackle whatever races come up next, and most importantly, I enjoy my training every day!

Caroline Staudt ULTRA Runner

After qualifying for the Boston Marathon, I struggled with injuries for several months and became concerned I may not be able to compete in the race. At the recommendation of my physiotherapist, I reached out to Grit Coaching and I couldn’t be happier. In 6 months with Grit, I went from not running at all to hitting a PR in Boston! Jess and Faye provide thoughtful, science-backed, programming that's personalized to my needs and schedule. I've learnt so much from them and can't wait to hit my next PRs with them in my corner. ​

Johhny T Runner

Jess O'Connell

Coach Jess in 'GRIT' athletic attire confidently poses with crossed arms.

Though Jess spent much of her free time growing up competing in Irish dancing, once she hit the track, she never looked back! As a specialist in the 5000m, she boasts a personal best time of an impressive 15:06.66. Her accomplishments include competing in the 2016 Rio Olympics in the 5000m and formerly holding the Canadian national records for the indoor 3000m and 2 mile races. Jess’s career is further highlighted by being a 15-time Canadian national team member across track and field, cross country, and road running, a four-time National Champion, a Pan Am Games silver medalist, an NCAA Division I All-American, and achieving a personal bests of 32:22 in the 10km (road race) and 4:30 in the mile.

Jess has always been “nerdy” about her training, which shows through in her impressive academic background. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from West Virginia University and a Master’s degree in Exercise Physiology from the University of Calgary. As a CSEP-CEP (Clinical Exercise Physiologist) with a High-Performance specialization, Jess holds the highest level of certification available in Canada. Jess also holds NCCP Performance Coach certification for endurance events. She applies her vast athletic experience and educational background to her role in Grit Coaching, and also serves as the distance track and cross country coach at the University of Calgary. 

Jess’s commitment to sport extends beyond her personal achievements, as she actively works to inspire and uplift the next generation of athletes. She has passionately volunteered for Fast and Female, an organization dedicated to empowering girls and young women to remain active and engaged in sports, and has served as the athlete representative on the board of Athletics Alberta, the provincial governing body for track and field. Jess believes that balance, health, and FUN are essential for longevity in sport, and she loves sharing her love of running with others.


Coach Faye in 'GRIT' athletic attire confidently poses with crossed arms.

Faye’s journey in athletics is marked by dedication and impressive achievements. Throughout her high school and university years, she was deeply engaged in running, competing for the University of Calgary’s track and cross-country teams. Her standout moments include earning the “All Canadian” cross-country status and participating in the 2008 Olympic trials for the 5000m. After obtaining her Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, Faye embarked on a career as a personal trainer, where her passion for fitness and a healthy lifestyle became a source of inspiration for her diverse range of clients.

Transitioning from competitive running, Faye soon discovered her next athletic passion: obstacle course racing (OCR). Her strong foundation in running and strength training quickly propelled her to success in the OCR world. Faye’s talents were recognized in 2016 when she joined the Spartan Pro Team, and her athletic ability was furthered with a bronze medal at the Spartan World Championships.

Continuing to compete among the elite, Faye has consistently demonstrated her skill and tenacity in OCR. She has secured two 4th place finishes at both the Spartan North Americans and the Spartan World Championship. Her record of Spartan podium finishes over the past decade showcases her enduring excellence in the sport.

Beyond the thrill of competition, it’s the OCR community that deeply resonates with Faye. The opportunity to travel, share her passion for fitness and adventure, and connect with an array of positive, inspiring individuals fuels her year after year. Faye embodies the essence of the “work hard, play hard” ethos, living it to the fullest in both her professional and personal life.