Thursday, August 27, 2015

Triathlon Research Coaching Clinic - Day #3

Day #3 at the Triathlon Research coaching clinic was (sorry Lance)... "all about the BIKE!"  We were led by Shane Eversfield of Zendurance Cycling.  Shane is an ultra endurance athlete (many Ironmans, the only person to do an Ironman with Power Cranks, has done a triple Ironman, ultra marathoner, and plenty more!), a Total Immersion coach, owns Zendurance Cycling, and does it all from the central principle of Zen and being more in touch with your own body than any parameter that gadgets can measure.

However, before we started with the bike, a group of us went for an open water swim.  Up at 5a to leave at 5:15a!  You can tell we all look wide awake!

We arrived to the swim site and it was still quite dark when we signed in.

The sun was j-u-s-t coming up as we went out into the water to start.  And it had risen over the trees by the time we finished.

To one side we had the sunrise.  To the other, we had the mountains.  Gorgeous!!


Back at the hotel, we got a quick breakfast and headed into the conference room for an overview of the bike.  Today was going to be a lot of outdoor work, but we had to go over the basics and set up what we were going to do later.

In the morning session, we went out into the parking lot and worked on a number of tips and drills.
  • Athletic Pose
  • Cycling Dilemma
  • Saddle Silence
  • Single Leg Drills
  • Double Leg Drills
  • Turns
  • Slaloming

Then in continuing with our coaching education, we broke into groups and rotated through the above points teaching one another as if we were running our own clinic; making assessments, adjustments, going through cues and helpful tips. 

When we were done, we rode over to the eNRG Performance Lab for lunch thanks to Chef Adam and Kelsey.  Delicious yet again!

Inside, Shane continued going over topics concerning the bike. 

We then headed out to give some practical feel to the ideas we just learned.

In the Ken-Caryl Valley, we worked on hill repeats.  We focused on the athletic pose, saddle silence, body alignment and positioning, adjustments to position to address muscular changes, and methods of climbing.  Not only did the elevation have our heart rates spiking, but the repeats were tough thanks to the expertise of Bob Seebohar picking the locations.

After the second session, we had roughly 2 hours before dinner.  My training schedule listed a 75 minute building long run.  I fully admit that I was nervous about this workout at altitude, but I headed out anyways to see what would happen.  I also did an experiment and took a packet of Generation UCAN, a complex carbohydrate source, before the run.  It turned out to keep me plenty energized.  If only it alleviated the affects of altitude. 

I headed out through the Ken-Caryl Valley...

Took a turn off the roads onto the Coyote Song Trail in the South Valley Park...

And quickly discovered that it was both beautiful and rather hilly!  These were not the types of "trails" I'm used to in CT.

Littleton, Colorado

Simsbury, Connecticut

At the end of the trail, I found a warnings posting of Rattlesnakes.  Good thing I don't run with headphones.  

I can't say I hit my run targets on that run (I did while going downhill!), but it was good to get out for the run.  It also solidified some of the points from earlier in the day and yesterday concerning focusing on the neural system instead of the metabolic and/or mental systems. 

Things are already getting put to use!

It wouldn't be Coaching without some homework.

Before bed, we had another opportunity to put the material to use - two homework assignments.  The first was an analysis of our run weaknesses, what the root cause was, how to address it, and our perspective on the video analysis software.  The second was a similar analysis of our own and our partner's bike weaknesses, the root cause, and how to address it.  As always, the more we can repeat the analysis methods and receive feedback from other coaches, the better we can be.


1.  Do you run on trails, road, or both?

2.  Do you have any specific weakness or strength on the bike?  

3.  How in tune with your own body do you feel you are?  Can it be improved?  How can you work on it?


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