As coaches, we like to know the process. Our purpose is to bring an athlete from point A to point B, from start line to finish line. The beauty in that seemingly simple goal is that the process gets to look different for everyone.
I have athletes ask me all the time how they can get faster, or stronger. No matter who is asking, what their goals, are, or what context they’re asking, I respond the same.
Why do you want to get fit, why do you want to break 20 minutes in the 5k? Why did you sign up for an Ironman? When you can identify your why, the rest becomes much easier to execute because your purpose has become clearer.
You see, I can write you workouts all day long that center on pace, reps, watts, laps, etc., but you aren’t going to want to do them if you can’t turn back to your why.
Your why dictates your willingness to be up before the sun. Your why is what pushes you to go harder, do one more rep, swim one more lap, push the pace on that last mile.
In contrast, as athletes, we like to know why we’re swimming five days a week or what the purpose behind threshold bike intervals are. It is never a bad idea to ask why. Your coach has a process, there is a method to that madness. I have gained much insight as an athlete asking my coaches “why?” over the years. Now, as a coach, I love the investment behind my athletes asking me why.
So much weight is carried with such a simple and short phrase. Three letters that set the course of your goals, the purpose behind your path, the purpose behind your training, and fuels the passion behind your drive.
Know your why and strive for it daily! Keep putting in the work!
I found myself staring at my bike this morning for what would be my fourth ride of the week. Due to a laundry list of reasons, the majority of my time these days is spent on the bike trying to build and maintain as much fitness as possible for when I have more variety back in my training. Yesterday, my ride was rough, I was tired, and I barely got it done.
The problem is, today I had zero desire to spend another few hours on the trainer. I was frustrated with yesterday and I knew I needed a break. It’s also that awkward time where things need to start ramping up for the impending triathlon season, but with my current situation, I’m limited in my ability to do that. There are only so many hard rides a triathlete can handle in a week.
So, instead of suffering through another grueling trainer session, and in lieu of a rest day, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and do something that would not only strengthen me as an athlete, but relax and calm my mind.
I started my session with a dynamic warm up relying solely on bodyweight. I then preceded to partake in a pilates workout that wiped the floor with me. As endurance athletes we are very good at going in straight lines for long periods of time. We often neglect areas of weaknesses because, while they make us faster, they aren’t “essential” to our ability to complete swims, bikes, and/or runs throughout training. Additionally, for some athletes, time is such a motivator. My workout this morning was only a half our which is significantly less time than I typically spend training in a day, but it was a packed session that I was glad was only a half hour.
Not only did I get a killer full body strength workout in this morning, I enjoyed it. I got to take a break from the bike while still being productive as an athlete. There are times in every athlete’s training where they just need a break. It’s absolutely okay to shake things up because the last thing we want is burnout.
I can carry on with my day feeling like I’ve accomplished good work towards my goals while knowing that tomorrow I will likely feel much better about getting back on the bike.
In the continual search for passionate people who are willing to go above and beyond for their fellow man/woman, some people rise above in every category.
Coach Ray Delahoussaye exemplifies the traits that are found in great leaders. Dynamic communication skills, patience and a deep understanding of their craft.
He is always quick to step up and answer the call of the Mind Right tribe. From the incredible video work, to hosting data analysis parties at his own home to help athletes understand the why and how of what they are doing.
These are just a few of the reason Coach Ray is a cornerstone in the Mind Right tribe and our NEW Director of Athlete Relations!
On a more personal note, a big thank you to Coach Ray for his years of trust and support in me, my vision and the need to ask him the same thing 4 times because I forgot. Love you bro!
Mind Right Endurance coaches are here to address the many question, issues and topics that endurance athletes encounter all the time! Check them out and share them with your friends!