Looking for a coach

A light bike doesn't replace good fitness.

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by Kermithimself

Well, looking for a coach that understands power training, and uses Training Peaks software. Location is pretty irrelevant. Anybody got any to suggest?
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by mrfish

Happy to share experiences:

I am doing an IM70.3 next year with no triathlon background, so needed someone good to help me go from weekend cyclist to someone able to swim, do a hard weekend bike ride and then run a half marathon. I realised that choosing the right coach would help me more than cosing the best bike, so decided to invest the money in the coach and training rather than just buying a tri bike and visiting the local pool a few times on my own.

My approach had a few steps:

1. Write down my needs:
- Not too expensive
- No formulaic X phone calls per month limits
- Not too many athletes
- Real tri experience, with some demonstration of solid personal / coached athlete results
- Some coaching experience, ideally a formal qualitifcation of some sort
- Returns my initial phone call / emails reasonably promptly
- Coaching can be German (I live in Switzerland) but some English would make things easier
- Able to tell me clearly how he / she would work with me
- Able to explain his training philosophy
- Able to diagnose my likely strengths / weaknesses based on some basic history
- Focus on measurement so I can see progress, ideally using trainingpeaks or similar
- Ideally local. For me this is important as I'm quite new to swimming and running, so have a lot to learn. If you're already an experienced cyclist (10+ years, club participation, many types of racing) then you probably have the techniques you need. If not then I would not underestimate this.
- Group training - Indifferent. Long distance tri is an individual sport, and I need to fit training around work and family so I will rarely manage to join a group. But for road racing I'd say this is very important as "chain gangs" and such like are a great way to build technique and cycling group riding experience

2. Make a long-list
I reached out to a few people and also emailed coaches from local tri clubs. Things may be different where you live, but the people I reached out to either did not respond or were not very helpful, probably because I don't know many people who do triathlons. Most effective route was to look at the Trainingpeaks list of coaches. I researched a few of those who were focused on Triathlon, either nearby or from my home country. I quickly ruled out "celebrity" coaches who charge $$$ for a small slice of their time.

3. Narrow down the list
I sent out a short email to about 10 coaches describing my goal of doing an IM70.3, my sports background, what I was looking for in a coach and asking whether they could help. About half did not write back, 3 wrote back quickly and 2 were slow, without any excuse. The slow responders and non-responders were elminated. I was surprised to find that there is little or no correlation between the quality of the coach's website and their responsiveness.

4. Finalise your selection
I swapped emails with 2 coaches, then did a 30 minute call with each one and thought both would be able to help me. However, Coach A was consistently easier to deal with, e.g. said he would call at 4pm, called at exactly 4pm or emailed me that he would be a few minutes late. Coach B was also vague about pricing. Eventually I found that there would be a lot of add-ons, and that his fee would be double Coach A. So then I met Coach A in person and after that we were both fully comfortable to work together.

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by Zoro

Kermithimself wrote:Well, looking for a coach that understands power training, and uses Training Peaks software. Location is pretty irrelevant. Anybody got any to suggest?


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by AED

What are your goals, cycling experience and average time on the bike (week)?

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by stuka666

mrfish wrote:Happy to share experiences:

Nice post mrfish :)

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by Sarvesh95

My team is currently being coached by the Peaks Coaching Group, based in USA, who have great coaches and also great online training programs.
For more info - www.peakscoachinggroup.com

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by DirtyTester

Have a look at this: http://www.TrainerRoad.com it's brilliant! Start by downloading the program to your PC/Laptop etc and then subscribe which will cost you $10 per month or you can do a years worth saving you $20. Then all you need is your turbo trainer (you tell the program which one you have) a speed/cadence sensor on the rear wheel, and an Ant+ dongle for your PC. The program knows what power is required in order to spin the trainer at any given speed etc and as such it can give you a power reading, cadence, speed and heart rate if you wear a monitor. There are over 400 different training sessions from 20 mins to over 3 hours!! plus free training and it will also give you a continuous training schedule if you want.
Give it a look, I have and it's great fun, very precise and structured and above all it's loads cheaper than hiring the services of a pro' coach. Nice and simple to set up too (good for me!)

Hope this is useful to somebody,

If you think that you CAN do something, or if you think that you CAN'T do something, either way, you'll be right!

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