Why do I need a coach?

Having a coach is a significant step beyond following a ‘one size fits all’ training plan which you found on the internet:

  • Focus: A coach can help to plan a training programme to meet the specific demands and goals of your chosen event(s). By identifying your individual strengths and weaknesses, the programme can be tailored to help you develop your strengths and address any weaknesses.

  • Efficiency: A coached training programme is the most effective way to use your limited training time. You don't need endless training hours to improve; a coach can help you to train efficiently in the time you have available.

  • Motivation: For some people, having a coach helps with motivation, as having an external eye on your performance means you will complete sessions that you may have skipped otherwise.

  • Support: A coach can help you deal with problems, injury, illness and other issues that may hold you back.

  • Confidence: A coach is there to recognise your potential (even when you don’t!) and help get the best out of you as an athlete.

  • Expertise: You may not have the time to spend hours reading about the theory of athletic performance and how this is best optimised. A coach is there to be the expert so you don’t have to be, and can focus on your training and the rest of your life.

In summary, having a coach makes you part of a team!

I am a triathlete/ duathlete – can you help me?

Yes, we treat the bike split of a triathlon in a similar way to a time trial, producing much improved times and better overall results. Training for the bike leg of your event will be tailored to fit in with the rest of the training you are doing. Even if you already have a triathlon coach, they are often from a running or swimming background and some additional focus on the cycling side can be beneficial. Remember, you do spend either almost half, or more than half, of your time on the bike during a triathlon.

Do I need a power meter?

No, you don't need one, but in recent years power meters have become much more accessible to individual athletes. Anyone can now have access to their output power on the bike in real time, and also analyse this data afterwards. They are probably the single most useful tool available that will help you improve your performance, both by training more effectively and by pacing your races (under certain circumstances) more effectively. If you don't have a power meter we will use a combination of heart rate, speed and perceived exertion to guide your training, although all of these are subject to variations that make pacing more difficult. In particular heart rate is a useful guide to effort levels, although it is influenced by temperature, tiredness, hydration and stress/excitement so this needs to be borne in mind.

What is included?

The provided training programme is planned to work around your needs, work and family commitments and training time available per week. You can get in contact whenever you want via email, text, messenger or phone. You can get feedback on your daily training when needed with everything you need to support you and help you reach your goals.

How do you track my training plan progress?

We use Training Peaks to set your training and monitor your progress. As part of your package a basic Training Peaks account is included free of charge (premium accounts are included with Silver and Gold coaching packages). You will receive your planned sessions on Training Peaks, but if you need to change something just let us know so we can adjust the plan accordingly.

How much does it cost?

Coaching packages start from £50 per month, with a three month minimum coaching period, plus a £75 startup fee to cover the initial consultation and assessment. There is a 20% discount for St Ives CC members. See the Services page for more details.

What happens when I sign up?

The first step is to fill in an information form which covers your current training, goals for the future and information about your existing lifestyle and non-cycling commitments. We will then schedule an initial consultation which includes an assessment of position on the bike and current fitness. The consultation also includes a discussion of cycling goals, around which we can then build your training plan.

Once the plan is in place, the scheduled workouts appear in your Training Peaks calendar, and you get a green light in the calendar when you complete the session as scheduled. If you have key events coming up, the plan can be tailored to allow you to peak for the event and optimise your form at the right time.

On an ongoing basis, we will review your progress against the plan, retesting your fitness where necessary and adjusting the plan as your fitness and goals progress.