Coach Rants: Follow the plan.

Wildflower bikeThe conversation goes something like this:

Athlete: “I had a lousy race. I’m injured. I’m feeling tired. I’m not getting faster.” [take your pick]

Coach: “Ok. Well, let’s review what you’ve been doing in your training. How did that ten-mile run go last week?”


Athlete: “Well, actually . . . I ran twenty.”

Coach: “You did what?”

Athlete: “Uh, I ran twenty miles.”

Coach: “But your plan said ten.”

Athlete: “I know. But I felt so good that day!”

There’s a reason the athlete felt so good up to that point. They had followed the plan. They had had adequate rest. They had not unintentionally performed back-to-back high-stress workouts.

The percentage of injuries/burnout/poor race performances that could have been avoided had the athlete followed the plan is a cringe-worthy number.

So as we begin a new race season, let’s review common practices that sabotage a well-designed training plan:

  • Going longer/farther than indicated
  • Adding more workouts than indicated
  • Going harder than indicated
  • Doing unplanned races
  • Doing any/all of the above and not telling the coach

I suspect that legions of coached athletes could check off multiple sabotaging practices on this list.

Tell me I’m not right.

We write your plans to ensure your workouts are of the proper duration, intensity and frequency, and that you have adequately scheduled rest to help you achieve your athletic goals and do it injury-free.

So, if in doubt, keep it simple. Follow the plan.

4 thoughts on “Coach Rants: Follow the plan.

  1. Peter Ney

    Hey, what about slackers, such as myself. Bill, I took a day off, again:) The next session should be Athlete Rants!

  2. Peter Ney

    Well, ok, got me there. But, never go beyond allotted time during workouts. Tried that a few times when I wasn’t with you guys. Didn’t go so well. But, I do feel the slackers should have a voice. We all have our inner-slackers, should have seen me during collegiate workouts. Spent half the time on the bottom making bubble rings. I was the master:)

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