31 December 2016

Staying true to the plan

Staying true to the plan.

Easing back into Summer training.

With 2016 closing off, my thoughts looking towards 2017 revolve specifically around the plans that I have been mapping out over the last 2 months as both a runner and coach. Why some might ask?

* Plans require goals, goals require effort and effort requires programming. An effective plan will periodise the effort, load and training optimally to ensure those goals are met.

Parkrun with my kids has been great for enjoying running.
* Having a purpose for each run gives direction. For example today during parkrun I had to work just as hard mentally as physically to stick to my session and not get caught in the “race”. While some might disagree, my goal for Parkrun is not to win but to develop as a runner and today’s session required float (periods of running below effort) and the benefits of completing session’s like these to plan will be far more important than becoming undisciplined and chasing the “race”.

* I develop my programs around the individual athlete and making sure each runner is at a low risk of injury and likely to succeed in their goals. Carefully programming based on ability, lifestyle and runner goals is vital in ensuring these two things happen.

Parkrun tourist at Stockton
* Planning often requires runners to remain disciplined. From losing the ego in a hard training run ensuring you hit the session brief to saying no to the impromptu group run on your rest day, planning allows the runner to develop discipline. This will be beneficial in their goal events as they will have made sure they had been true to the program and themselves in the build-up to any big race.

* Making sure running is fun and motivating as well as challenging and rewarding will keep both my athletes and I running happily. Rather than setting a program generic to most I try to make things crafted to each individual and their situation. This keeps things interesting for me as a coach and allows on-going adaptation to occur within the runner.

First tri of my adult life was an experience.
* There is no hiding in running, you get feedback on many levels from your finishing time to the photos posted on Facebook. Having a plan to give you as a runner the best shot at getting a PB, a finishers buckle at UTA or that awesome photo running along the cliffs in an STS at Kamay will lessen the chance of disappointment along with adding to the journey towards achieving that particular goal.

I have had a solid year of developing my base as both a runner and coach. I have learnt many things and I have also reinforced the things that I believe in as well. My individual performances were not at the level I have achieved in the past but with a plan now in place I certainly will be leaving nothing uncovered in the desire to get back to that level consistently. My coaching was definitely a real positive across the year, with no DNF’s, several UTA buckles, podiums, places and course records achieved across my athletes. They all had a plan and to their credit they believed in that plan and achieved their goals.

Photo Credit

- Kel Gibson
- Bathurst Parkrun
- Stockton Parkrun