Well March is out the way now, the clocks have gone forward and its time to think about serious racing.
Personally its always been the start of my own season, and that was bad enough (!), this year with an increased group of cyclist & triathletes that I am looking after the stakes are WAY higher! Waiting in on race day for results is way more nerve racking than anything I ever did!
I have to say though its been worth it, probably half the group have now raced thsi season and we have seen some great results.
In the USA Chris O’Keefe , a RAAM veteran and ultra marathon cyclist, but also majorly time constrained racer has had a great racing start. Chris has been with us for 3 months, we have been focusing his limited time on intense, sub threshold efforts so he can race well in the hilly 200m race series he has been aiming for. 2 weeks ago was the first ‘test’ the Solvang Double century. Chris put in a HUGE PB of almost an hour and was easily hanging with the leaders until an unfortunate timed natural break saw him lose touch. We came away with loads of learning’s, and positive to carry into the next races.
On the UK road Race scene Jon Roden (pictured above) kicked off in a 3/4’s race on Easter Sunday. Our work on protecting his AWESOME print and building his through the zones power really paid off with him being in the mix right to the end and securing a creditable 6th place overall.
On the UK Time Trial scene, Mark Haynes has started well in a ’15’ last weekend, putting out some great numbers – in March – which bode very well as we look to build but also work together on his aerodynamics in the coming days.
Peter Hooper, who was second in the UMCA 12hr World Championships last year too has started well. He has been ramping up the training with some huge volume, but still managed to pull out an excellent ’10’ in the YCF 10m TT in Yorkshire a couple of weeks ago.
Bex Rimmington (pictured in the main shot) hadn’t raced her bike since July last year. She raced her local North Lancs 10m TT on 31st March – and won by a clear Minute plus – this on the back of a structured endurance build, we haven’t done ‘real speed work yet’! Brilliant!
The best thing about this for me as a coach is ‘seeing’ in numbers & results the fruits of all our hard work. I have spent the afternoon reviewing athlete files for teh last month, i produce a monthly summary to identify what has gone well, what is an area of opportunity and our next steps. I find this in-valuable (and hope the athletes do too!) It helps us:
- Validate our hard work IS working
- Sign post the next areas of development
- Review progress V ATP
- Maintain motivation
- Remind ourselves that a few days off, ill, work or family is not detrimental and balancing the mental and physical demands of life are key to our success
I think its important, coached, self coached or however you work that you take the time to stand back and self analyse, be brutal. I remember an old boss who used to say ‘look in the mirror’.. that’s what this is. Sometimes we may not like what we see – but it is what it is. SO how are you going to change it? That is where the development comes and where the magic begins to happen!
Overall for me, its a great start to the year for the guys and I am really looking forward to us building on it as the season moves on.
Andy (going slowly!)