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Whilst in our view this is nonsensical, it is, however, understandable. The tangible nature of a new rig is just that, tangible – you hand over cash for a sweet bike and then ride away with it. This is in direct comparison to engage a coach to write your program. This process requires a lot of trust and perceived value from the athlete before they commit to outlaying any more money on a training program.
While the bike might give some ‘instant speed’, it is the investment in a quality training program that will result in the significant and long term gains an athlete is desirous in achieving. In short, if you are on the right training program with the right coach, the gains you will see in yourself and the attainment of your goals will soon be very tangible.
The importance of a truly customized program is significantly understated and is unfortunately rarely implemented by coaches.
Every athlete is different, and this should reflect in your training program. If you are wanting to reach your potential whatever that may be, ensure that the program your coach is setting you is entirely suited to you and putting your goals first. Too often coaches have a handful of precedent 12/16/20 week programs that are given out depending on an athlete’s current level of fitness and labelled as “custom”. This quite frankly, is not doing your goals any favours.
Take this example - two athletes, who in the unlikely event have the same goal time for a particular race and have a similar level of fitness, would presumably would be on the same standard program. If, however, you take a more detailed looked at the athletes, you will see that they will undoubtedly have different strengths and weaknesses (within each discipline), different training thresholds, different recovery rates for each discipline, different training histories, mentally have different breaking points and importantly have different work/family commitments. It then begs the question, how could it be possible that these two athletes be on the same program? If they are, it is to their detriment.
Each athlete’s program is unique to that individual and can simply not be replicated from others.
The program needs to be ever evolving as well. As you improve in one area, the program needs to adapt quickly. If you are fatiguing in a particular aspect of the training, the coach needs to be on top of that and amend the program (day, week & month) accordingly.
A truly individualised training program will take into account all of these factors and evolves to ensure that the athlete has the absolute best chance in reaching their potential.
So next time you are considering jumping on a program or if you are already on one, make sure that program is putting you and your goals first. Ensure that everything in the present is geared to reaching your absolute potential in the future.