Athlete Spotlight – Katie Greenfield
Performance by 3 Athlete Katie Greenfield wins AG at Cairns Ironman, sets a new PB and is off to Kona
Like any coach I enjoy working with committed athletes that are looking for a breakthrough. Endurance racing is often a cruel mistress and the hardest thing to understand for the committed athlete is that more is often not better. Once consistency is not an issue, the 2 key things that will generally make a difference is to focus on your weakness, and to train as specifically as possible towards your goal event. Far and away, the biggest problem I see people make with endurance racing is they do lots and lots of loooooooong stuff mostly with friends. If you are looking to complete, then that is absolutely fine, but if you want to compete, you have to bring a lot more focus than that.
Since working with Katie over the last 9 months she has won her AG at both the 70.3 and Ironman distance, going from strength to strength and finding a new confidence in her racing ability that had previously been lacking. She has been at the forefront of a “breakthrough” style of online coaching that I have been developing, helping focused athletes that may have plateaued in breaking through to the next level and achieving results that they know they are capable of.
So, what did we change?
No wasted sessions
Often once the athlete understands the path and the purpose of each session, the QUALITY of that session increases giving the athlete and Coach the desired training effect. This is crucial when coaching athletes online, because feedback is limited it becomes important that they are crystal on what the session involves and how it fits in within the overall plan. You can do a lot more with a lot less once you condense the plan and remove the fluff. Breakthrough results do not have to be all consuming affairs.
What are the weaknesses?
Like a lot of good AG athletes, Katie could ride all day. Big aerobic capacity from her years of endurance racing previously so the miles aren’t an issue. It’s the pace and the structure that were, so within 5 hour rides there was a lot of over geared work and a lot of 70.3 race pace work.
Sample session (one of my faves)
30 min easy riding – Z2
20 mins at 70.3 power and 60rpm
10 mins at FTP and open gearing
Roughly 120km here give or take and when done over terrain similar to what you will race on, this sort of session done twice over a good 12 week build-up will give you a lot of confidence.
Turbo once a week
Make it your friend and get comfortable being VERY uncomfortable. I do not know a single successful long course triathlete that doesn’t have a “pain cave” that they go to visit often. These are your honesty sessions, and will also help you dial in your position on the bike.
These are somehow a contentious issue with some people believing they are overrated which I don’t understand. You are training to be a better runner WHILST FATIGUED. It is crucial that you learn great technique and efficiency whilst tired. Running in a triathlon is not fast running, even the pro’s aren’t running fast, they are running STRONG. It is a massive difference in the way you approach running. A brick once a week is CRUCIAL and was the overall difference in her performance and her ability to lead wire to wire at Busselton 70.3.
There are other things, but I don’t want to bore you shitless and every athlete is different. I have developed programs for fun runs, marathons, ultra’s, all distances of triathlon, and stage races for cyclists and there are many factors that remain the same within these endurance events.
Interested in a breakthrough? Then shoot me an email to discuss your endurance racing goals!.