JP updates us on his latest adventures in triathlon: coaching! Let's find out how it went...
My good friend, Lauren, contacted me last year to talk about coaching. I thought she was asking for recommendations but she actually wanted me to coach her. At first, I was just flattered. I was blushing all over the place like a middle school girl. But when I got down to it, I was pretty nervous. I wanted to do things the right way and deliver on my end of the bargain. She was targeting Ironman Arizona and I felt I could set her up for a good race. I am not quite sure I would be a good coach for certain things, but I was confident that I understood at least how to get properly fit for Ironman and also felt I could explain race execution which was learned from both nailing it and botching it on my own. I also know Lauren really well. This was pretty important as I had a good understanding of her strengths and weaknesses. Sounded like a good situation so I was all in... but still nervous.
The first thing we did was set up some goals. We then spoke about race scheduling, how to approach training, what has worked for her in the past, and what we wanted to focus on. We set about ticking things over in training. I was throwing the kitchen sink at her in terms of workload. The workouts were really tough, mind numbing in some cases, and pretty intense but she was nailing the program. Obviously we were cautious in the parts of the season where the worload was highest, when she got sick, and always kept a pulse on how she was responding to the training. She just kept it rolling, stayed injury free, consistent, and committed. It was really freaking impressive. I basically set up a program that I'm not sure I could have done myself and she nailed it to the T.
Race day came and I was super confident in her fitness and our prep for the race. We had gone over the race so many times it was ridiculous and I knew she was set up for a BIG PR, but it was down to execution. Ironman is such a crap shoot. So many things can go wrong in so many different areas. I had no idea what was going to happen. I posted up on my computer, locked in and focused for a long day staring at a screen. Game on!
She set out and cruised the swim. She was a collegiate swimmer so I knew she was comfy when she came out in 1:00 flat. We had done enough swim training for that to be totally under control. Onto the bike. I was glued to my computer.