Sunday, March 29, 2009

first race effort of 2009... done

Today I dropped in a local San Diego race called “Super Seal”. It was a tough go as it really was one of the first race specific efforts I have had for the season. Remarkably the bike let me down a touch here but I tried not to panic. I pedaled more for cadence then I like to and tried not to panic. My plan going in was to run well and attack the first 2 miles and worry about the last 4 later. I did, and was running well, but most of the first 2 miles deep sand which was really tough to run in. By the end of the run I was just a bit out of gas and fell to 5th.

These are times when it is important to not over react. I tell my clients all the time, stay focused on your goals. Super Seal was not a goal of mine this year yet the competitor in me has trouble at times dealing with the results of those efforts.

I have athletes that I swear have the shortest memory of anyone. I will receive emails saying they have incredible workouts followed a couple days later by ones that do not go very well at all. The email that follows is usually something like “what is wrong with me, I feel like I am not making progress”. After a short conversation they remember they ARE, and they realize we do not peak for every workout.

All in all it was a great race today to be a part of and it was nice to see some new faces on the race course. Chicago got 5 inches of snow today so if I were home I think things might have been less fun anyway.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Spring and Power

Spring is finally here and in the Chicago land area it looks like we may actually get one this year! Normally we go from winter to flood season then about 6 weeks of summer then back to winter. Here is hoping for the best.

We had a fantastic camp last week in Arizona. Complete with talks from Joe Friel, underwater analysis from Jim Vance, run technique with Tom Manzi, and Bike handling and other skills from Rob Kelley. All the campers reported learning a tremendous amount of information.

One of the things I still find curious is when we take the time to explain to the participants how to use TrainingPeaks correctly so we can actually grab and analyze their uploaded files correctly how amazed they are with the type of information we can provide them. There are so many cool new things to buy each year as athletes it is easy to get carried away. I believe the best investments you can still make though are power meters and speed distance watches. Every athlete I coach really enjoys seeing the changes they are able to make with these devices. Furthermore, each one that has purchased these has improved hands down.

I just spoke with one of my best friends and training partners yesterday. He wants a new bike but is on the fence about getting a power meter. He currently has but drastically under utilizes a power tap. We spoke about his options for power meters ad I had to spend some time convincing him that he would benefit far more from making every workout count versus having a really cool new bike. It is a tough sale, but I think I got him to come around.

In fact I believe so much in the power devices I have come up with incentives for my athletes that start with me to buy them. In many cases I waive part of my fees so as to free up some of their cash to purchase these. I explain to them we are in this for the long haul together and I am willing to invest in them as athletes if they are. I guess you can say I put my money where mouth is on this subject.

Enjoy your spring training, good luck to everyone starting to race! Be safe out there.