When the idea for creating Peaks started to form I had a clear view in my mind of what it needed to encompass. After years in amateur sport I felt I had learned the hard way, trial and error, many, many mistakes costing both time and money, so I was keener than ever to try to help people succeed but avoid the pitfalls that I and others had invariably fallen into.
It was clear to me that there was so much more to succeeding within my chosen sports than just, to use the old saying from Eddy Merckx “Pedal harder!” I had for years succeeded to a degree because I had taken to heart something I read in Chris Boardman’s first Autobiography, he said (and I am paraphrasing here) “Cycling is 98% hard work and 2% talent”. I thought, I can do that! I know how to work hard, I haven’t got much talent but I bet I can out ‘work’ people. To be honest, it worked ok… and I found it was applicable to anything. When I started Triathlon – I couldn’t swim the crawl, but I taught myself, from a book by the poolside, and I worked and I trained and I worked on the stroke. I am never going to be a natural swimmer having not got the hours in as a youngster but I was competent, comfortably able to get under an hour for the Ironman swim.
All this taught me 2 things:
Firstly, ANYONE can do it – IF you are prepared to focus, put the work in and maintain the consistency and intensity required. I am an avid reader, particularly on sports psychology and that of the Champions and best in all fields. What is abundantly clear is ‘talent’ comes from practice. In many circles, the ‘10000hr’ rule is often quoted as the minimum needed to become an ‘EXPERT’. But I hear you cry, what about (for example) Tiger Woods, he is naturally gifted, winning from year dot… Of course, but then when you look deeper, you see Tiger was on the courses at barely 2 years old. His young malleable brain was picking up the habits and techniques of a Champion before most of his competitors. It is true that genetic or physiological advantages definitely help – the huge hands and feet that Michael Phelps has, or the biggest lung capacity ever measured of TDF 3x winner Greg Lemond… but ‘hard work’ is a bedrock.
Secondly, BUT (and I am in fear of slightly contradicting myself here!) there is more to it. Addressing EVERY variable in our control that will affect your specific race is critical – if you don’t, your competition will! Let’s take an example in cycling. Lets say you can put out 400w for 20mins when sat high in your saddle on your road bike. Great. BUT an athlete who can put just 300w out and has a fantastic aerodynamic position WILL go faster, simply because he needs less ‘energy’ to cut through the air. He is creating a much smaller ‘hole’ in the air. Chris Boardman was one of the first to truly ‘get’ this and it was as a huge par tin his success in the 1990’s when UK cycling was in a sorry state compared to now.
So, all this brings me back to VIEWPOINT. What is it? From my experience I have deduced that to succeed you need to address, understand and master the following areas:
• Training and coaching
• Diet – day to day and training/race day nutrition
• Bike fit – biomechanical & aerodynamic
• Kit – understanding and access to the best components to support the race
• Mental preparation – how do you ‘cope’ with training/race & life stress?
• Racing strategies – what to race and when and HOW to race
• DNAFit – understand YOUR genetic make up and how it may give you a dietary and training edge
Over my career, and that of many of my competitors, we have accessed sources from all over to meet these – you have a coach, you have a bike fitter, you have a nutritionist, you may have a sports psychologist help you and someone plan (or help you plan your races). In this ‘traditional model’ YOU are the HUB. YOU organise all this.
But, when you think about it – are you the expert to be able to do this?
Have you the time to visit, liaise and interact with all these different people – after all you work, you have a family, your life is non-stop!
What if someone else could be that hub – that is the crux of Peaks Sports Consultancy and VIEWPOINT. Peaks will be your hub. Able to help and support you in all these aspects. Help you avoid making the same mistakes we did and saving you time and money in the process.
It sounds such a simple idea when put like that! Let’s hear what one of our clients, Jon Roden has to say about it:
“I had been training hard both in the real world and on Zwift and started to look at my plans for 2018 and decided I needed help if I was to achieve my goals.
I am running a massive charity ride ‘Ride for Tommy’ in April 2018 in honour of our son who was born prematurely and died from Sepsis in 2017. This is a huge motivator for me to be in the best shape I can be to be able to complete the ride and honour his memory. (see https://www.facebook.com/ridefortommy2018/ for details).
Also in 2018 I have decided to target some key races within the Army cycling circuit, as a full-time soldier the army is a massive cycling supporter and has produced some great champions such as former CTT ‘Best all rounder Capt Ryan Perry in 2016. As a soldier I know I have massive mental resilience, however, the loss of our son is my main driver and it helps with the grieving process. To empty myself through Andy’s sessions.
I know Andy Jackson from riding and racing together in the ZWIFT racing team, Innovation Cycling. I approached Andy to help build a training and lifestyle program to help me achieve my goals. My training lacked structure and lacked some shape which I knew I needed if I was to do what I wanted in 2018.
After the initial consultation and discussion with Andy about my goals and aspirations I opted for a VIEWPOINT package, that incorporates everything I need to deliver my goals. Andy has formulated for me a detailed annual (macro season) plan that will be built to target my key events. This includes an annual training plan and full race planning for my season.
On a 2 weekly cycle Andy uploads the next set of traininginto my TP account, based on my feedback and how I have done on the previous block. These sessions are then downloaded into ZWIFT or onto my Garmin to ensure I hit them bang on.
Andy is always available via the messaging app within Training Peaks and feedback on sessions and we can discuss what went well, what may need some help with and how generally I am feeling. There is also a program of strength and conditioning to supplement my cycling training.
As a VIEWPOINT client I have access to a full suite of recipes to enable me to tailor my diet to ensure it is supporting my training and we have also scheduled a bike fit where I want to ensure that I can get the best fit to generate the power needed, but also work on my road aerodynamics, that may just give me an edge in key races!
Andy is always available for advice on kit and key riding hardware, from power meters to bikes and wheels – and as he also is an owner of www.evo2max.com I know I can access great discounts on a new bike and other equipment.
What I also find a great help is that Andy is there to give me advice or a ‘pep’ talk when things don’t go so well – maybe I am tired or had a heavy day with work – this is a great help to me to ensure I keep an eye on the season goals.
I know that for to succeed this year its about so much more than just ‘training sessions’ and the support I get from Andy at Peaks will help me achieve my goals in 2018.”