I’ve been doing triathlon for more than 10 years and have previously worked with a coach as an athlete for 2-3 seasons. In 2017 I coached myself to an Ironman personal best after a 6 year break. Before triathlon I trained for half marathons and marathons. As a teenager I raced competitively at dinghy sailing representing GB and being part of the UK Youth Squad for a number of years.
I am also a full time professional triathlon coach and have coached athletes one-to-one for more than 5 years. With all this experience and knowledge – I know how to train, I know what hard work is and I know how to plan a programme. So why would I need a coach and how would it help me?
As an athlete I’ve had a great season and have the bit between my teeth to be faster for next year and wasn’t really sure what I needed to do next. As a coach I was looking to refresh my coaching practice and update my knowledge.
I also strongly believe that learning from experience, and going through what athletes I coach go through makes me a better coach and is a great way to learn. (For the large part I have done every single workout that I give to my athletes at some point in the season).
At the start of September I started working with a more experienced coaching team to help me as an athlete, and also help my learning as a coach.
After just 10 weeks of training I am 3% faster in the pool (bike testing still to come). I started this bock of training just 2 weeks after finishing a very successful Ironman season so I was already starting from a good fitness position and didn’t expect fitness gains to come so quickly. Relatively speaking I am also a fairly competent swimmer so I always expect speed gains at swimming to be fairly small. I am always super chuffed to be faster, but 3% faster is fantastic.
What I have learned in these 10 weeks is:
- I need to train harder.
- A coach makes me more accountable so I get more done.
- I’ve got more training done because someone else is telling me what to do
- I’ve got more training done because its removed my habit for overthinking which often gets in my way
- I’ve got more done because I don’t want to have to give my coach lame excuses – and I realise how often I made excuses to miss sessions.
- I have trained harder than I ever thought I could – because someone else is watching. I don’t want to seem weak!
- I can cope with more training than I thought I could – I realise my own limitations were getting in the way
- I’ve trained in a different way using training methods I didn’t think were relevant to me. Turns out I was ready for it and the variety has helped my fitness but also made it more interesting
- Hard work is actually fun and I am actually tough enough to train so hard I feel sick!
- Having support from my coach makes training more fun and gives me more confidence and knowledge. Having someone to talk to, learn from and ask questions about really helps me to enjoy the training more and make it more effective.
- Outside input and a fresh view of my injury has already helped me to make progress in fixing it.
- A happy confident athlete is usually a faster athlete
- I am so inspired for the season to come and excited to see what I will be able to achieve.
Whatever your goals and experience, most athletes could benefit from working with a coach.
I still have a few spaces left for the 2018 season so get in touch.