Running Coaching

Our Philosophy


“Sharing the science, art and love of movement for a lifetime of sustainable and optimal performance.”


Our philosophy towards coaching at Mountain Abandon is a multi-faceted approach. Firstly, we aim to bring you the latest and most accurate science of sport. This applies to all areas of training - the way you eat, sleep and think is just as important as the way you move! Mountain Abandon’s coaches are continuously self-educating to ensure that their athletes have access to the best science-based guidance available.


The second component of our philosophy is the art of coaching. All the science in the world cannot design a training plan that is congruent with each individual’s schedule, work-life balance or training history and goals. The emotional aspect of training also falls under the art of coaching. Whether you prefer the drill-sergeant or cheer-leader coach, it will always take a human to listen, understand and motivate you when training gets tough. No number of automated computer comments are ever going to replace the emotional support and accountability role of a good coach.


The third aspect of our coaching approach is based on the love of movement. Mountain Abandon originates from a desire to move freely in nature, and aims to share this passion with others. Basically, everything comes down to a single simple conclusion – if you do not enjoy your training journey then your energy and time could be better spent elsewhere. So above all else our coaches promote a fun outlook and sustainable training process which prioritises athletes’ long-term physical well-being. To perform your sport at the highest possible level is an amazing achievement, but to move optimally and comfortably in your chosen discipline and environment until an old age is perhaps a greater accomplishment.

What We Offer

Trail Running

For all levels, from beginner to elite. Everyone has to start somewhere and so did we! 

Mountain Running

Our true passion... Learn to ascend strongly, descend like a pro and love mountain running as much as we do!

Ultra Running

Whether it's trail or mountain, the further you move the more you see. With the right guidance anything is possible!

Our Coaches

Mountain Abandon currently has two qualified coaches available to athletes – Nicolette Griffioen and Pierre Jordaan. Both are competent and experienced athletes with a passion for science and a love of teaching. Athletes interested in coaching with Mountain Abandon are free to contact us to arrange a phone call with either or both of our coaches before deciding with whom they would like to train. At Mountain Abandon we believe that a good personality match is an integral part of a successful coach-athlete relationship, so read more about our coaches, contact us to arrange a phone conservation, or fire us with email questions and we’ll be happy to answer!

Coaching Platform


Xhale Coaching is our current choice of training platform. Xhale was initially designed for triathletes as a simplistic, minimalistic and intuitive platform to schedule and record training. Essentially a digital version of a modern day "training diary" or "notebook", it maintains a clear focus on basic training metrics without overly-complex analysis. At Mountain Abandon we are not sold on algorithms that make predictions on an athlete's performance. For us it’s about developing a relationship with our athletes that allows for optimisation of not only the physical, but the mental and emotional as well.


Check out TrainXhale


Training Programs


In line with Mountain Abandon’s approach to a lifetime of sustainable and optimal performance, our long-term goal for our athletes is for them to gain sufficient knowledge, experience and confidence from our coaches to enable them to “go solo” in their training.


For this reason, we offer three training packages. With both the Full Package and Accountability Package your coach designs you a training plan. The key difference between the two is the amount of communication you'll have with your coach. With the Full Package your coach will initiate regular and frequent communication to follow up on your key sessions and day-to-day progress. The Accountability Package assumes you're looking for a coach primarily to ensure that you complete your sessions and so communication is as-needed rather than on a regular basis. With the Mentored Package athletes are responsible for designing their own training plans. The mentored athlete's coach will still regularly review their schedule, advise on possible adaptations and monitor their progress. The mentored athlete's coach is a great sounding board for runners that have been previously coached and feel competent in designing their own plan.

Full Package

Personal coach

Weekly training plan designed for you

Unlimited communication

Continuous review and adaptation of training

Full access to Xhale training platform

Discount on skills days and training weekends

R1250 per month

Accountability Package

Personal coach

Weekly training plan designed for you

Limited communication

Weekly review and adaptation of training

Full access to Xhale training platform

R950 per month

Mentored Package

Personal coach

Weekly review  of your self-designed training plan 

Unlimited communication

Assistance in goal setting and achievement

Full access to Xhale training platform

R750 per month

* Discounts available for couple coaching packages. Please contact us for more details.