Coach's Column - Creating a Training Program and Deciding if Hiring a Coach is Right for You
Question: How do I set up a training program for the
upcoming season and when should I consider hiring a coach to help me reach my
Answer: Step one in setting up your training program
for the upcoming season, is to write your goals on a calendar. Then rank the
importance of each goal, A, B or C. Next give each week a training theme, e.g.
rest week, race week, threshold week, VO2max week etc. Finally, fill in each
day with the daily training details needed to get you to your goal event ready
to rock your race.
involves more than simply following a training plan. Self-coach athletes often
find success for several years then land on a performance plateau by following
the same plan repeatedly. A coach will bring in new ideas and fill in missing
links to push a self-coached athlete up to the next level.
asked my own LWCoaching.com athletes for
the athlete perspective on the advantages of having a coach on their team.
is the most valuable thing I do for you as your coach?”
is what they have to say:
You give me the roadmap to meet my goals. I
do not have any knowledge of how to train smart to meet my goals nor do I have
the time to learn them. I have 100%
confidence in your knowledge and experience so all I have to do is open the
emails and follow the training instructions. You hold me accountable and even when you don’t say anything I hear you
in my head when I race and train and want to do well for you. I’m sure all your athletes say that…
Structure of both proper training
at the proper time and forced rest. Knowing you are looking at my training
files is accountability that is very needed for me to push so hard.
Listen to me, and have empathy
when needed and a firm hand when that is called for too.
Planning my training schedule
leading up to big events is THE most important thing you do for me. Having you
review and comment on my race/nutrition plan before a big event is very helpful
to me as well. You also give me the answer I "need” to hear and not the one I
"want” to hear when I ask about doing a hard group ride or a local race that
doesn’t fit into my schedule. These are
things that would derail me if I didn’t have a coach.
Putting me on a schedule and
giving me structure! Knowing when to
work me and when to rest me.
Tell me what to do to be fast.
You have confidence in me and my
racing and in your plan. That gives me confidence in the plan and my racing as
a coach’s perspective, here are ten advantages I can give you as your coach.
coach will be that voice on your shoulder during training that holds you
accountable to put in the work needed in order to reach your goals.
certified experienced coach will teach you why you are doing a specific workout
and accelerate your learning curve of how to train properly.
3, Time Management
coach will save time in your busy schedule allowing you focus on your real life
tasks while training accurately.
a coach you can avoid training mistakes.
objective eye of your coach will pick up details you don’t see in yourself that
are key to performance.
self-coached athletes are great at training hard but need a coach to tell them
when it is recovery time.
7, Data Feedback
coach will analyze and interpret your training data and provide feedback to set
new challenges and targets to achieve.
coach will push you to new challenges and achievements you didn’t think were
coach will keep you on track when training interruptions like illness, poor
weather, goal inflation and business travel come up.
coach will connect you with expert resources in related fields that will
improve performance such as a sports nutritionist or physical therapist.
Wallenfels is a Category 1 certified USA
Cycling coach. She coaches mountain bike, cross country and endurance athletes
to personal bests and national championships. Lynda has been coaching off-road
athletes for 16 years and racing professionally for 18 years. Contact her
through her website for information on mountain bike training plans, coaching
and consulting at LWCoaching.com