Periodisation is the key, the key to racing fast!

Cyclists, runners and triathletes are masters in training, training big volumes and sometimes training hard. Or training big volumes too hard? A lot can go wrong approaching your season. And after all, does it really is necesseary to go in ‘overuse’ all the time?

No, is the answer! Periodisation is the key to your season. I always refer to the ‘elastic-story’, which our athletes will know.
None of our athletes approaches his or her season without a ‘masterplan’, without this ‘masterplan’ no season or no long-term racing career will be good and no performance will be there.  Putting together a macrocycle with my athletes is something I do from the very first day we started coaching athletes. The holistic approach towards a full year with Resting period, racing period,… is part of the key.

I sometimes hear that topperforming athletes, even amateur (AG) athletes are training 20-30h/week for example in Ironman. Well is that true? And is that an approach in which you can put in enough variation and specific racepreparing impulses.

If we look at the graph underneath you can see a 13h AVG training on annual base is fairly enough to get qualified to Kona (Ironman Hawaii), take AG podium and put down a sub9 Ironman.

13h avg

If you approach training with a vision an AVG of 13h on annual basis is enough to race hard, also in Ironman racing!

 

Of course there’s no ‘general recipe’ for all athletes, every athlete has need to different impulses, volumes,…not everybody gets in full shap with 12h avg, some need more. The approach to your athlete/cyclist always is a personal approach with an eye for his history and future goals.

Variation, variation in volume, variation in impulses, variation in mentally loaded periods, variation in food,…variation that’s what you need to have during a whole year of training to peak at the right moments. Underneath you can see an annual graph of an amateur, full-time working triathlete who already qualified for Kona, won several du/triathlons and this year was 1st amateur on the duathlon world champs, 1st AG in Challenge Roth in 8h44 and won a Long distance duathlon in France. This athlete had an annual avg training volume of 15h, with no extreme peaks in volume. The athlete chooses not to go on training camp, but to spend vacation to racing and family.

These 3peaks are like hammers on the block in the end…

Hans jaar

Periodisation:  whether you are professional or amateur…all starts with a plan to be at your best at the right time!

 

The sauce on your spaghetti is not about the volume of the tomatoes, it’s about the spices…and some will get a very hot pepper from me!

Our athletes continue preparation towards 2018 and build smart…to perform better!
Tomorrow groupsession #2 is on, this will be a ‘reversathlon’ which we will enjoy till our first cramp of preparation!

Ciao

 

Jesse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About being fast off the road and on the road…about honest and hard workers!

In times of social media in which some sportsmen sometimes look like world champions on their FB,twitter and other Flickr pages there are also sportsmen who simply work, train and perform as champions with the results on raceday… Something to think about maybe…Let’s call them the silent snipers…

This weekend was the first weekend our athletes actually had some bigger goals leading up to the season!

Our cyclocrossman Klaas had 2 tough weeks behind him, after a crash with his bike he suffered of his back. 2weeks of taking good care of it and alternatively working resulted in 7th place last weekend but this weekend…the race was in his own community. Motivation and training smart made him step up on the podium! Which of course started the weekend well!

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I always liked those CX photos, those races are more than a battle against others and yourself…but also some bikewrestling is involved in it!

This morning early wake-up call for Tom in France, Liévin hosted a crossduathlon on the race course of the former world cup cyclocross over there. His 2nd B-race towards his first goal in March was not an easy one with a short night on raceday. After a good run off the bike he moved up towards 3rd position and his first 2017 podium! Peter a bit later got 16th in the tri race!

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Tom gets 3rd in France, in preparation for his trip to England where he will make his ‘Brentrance!’

In this time of the year we are quite happy with 2 athletes on the podium in 1 weekend…but your athletes don’t realize +/-200podia/year with only 2 podiums per weekend…so it were Els and Bart who showed not only  ‘offroad-specialists’ can win offroad!

It was Els who got first in the short offroadduathlon of Sint-Niklaas (Belgium), while Bart got 2nd in the masters race!

Some of our long distance triathletes were ready for their first real test of the year, the Louis Persoons Memorial. A half marathon on a hilly course. The midwinter goals were set and it ended up very well! After Hans his fast half marathon 2 weeks ago it were Jan, Jens, Adrian, Bart and Wim who did what they had to do!

With 4 of our athletes in the top 12 of the race, we can’t say we weren’t there…

Jan (1h15), Jens (1h17) and Adrian (1h20) finished within 1h20. Bart just outside of it and having a good test towards his Rotterdam marathon!

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5athletes racing in Genk today, 4 within top 12 and fast they were! With Jens and Adrian 2youngsters are preparing a fast tri season! With Jan and Bart 2 experienced athletes showed they’re still there!

Meanwhile our cyclists have a few weeks left to enter their season, with tropical temperatures of +/- 15degrees ‘hotter’ than last week training runs smooth and ready…they will be!

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One of our cyclists dared to shorten his long ride 3’16″…but we’ll forgive him 🙂

Train smart, perform better,

Jesse

 

A weekend with ups and downs!

Past weekend began great, but it had a big down also….

but first the positive news!

On friday our athletes had the right feeling and were  capable of racing for the medals!

In Lommel (UCI1.18) Jef was the first to go into a breakaway, the peloton didn’t let them go and so it was Svenne who once again went in the breakaway! They were off and averaged almost 44km/h on  this 85K criterium. In the last loop it was Svenne who went for the win, but some of his concurrents came back and so he was outsprinted and got 4th in this fast race! Hans and Tony, both in full preparation for  the national triathlon championships did a short preprace. Hans got 2nd in the Lakeparadise triathlon with his team and Tony raced for the win in duathlon Herentals and finally got 4th.  Meanwhile Gwendolyn became 2nd in Wenduine 10miles!

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Hans vdb

On Saturday Germany was the place to be,
Joeri did a very good race in the XTERRA German tour, Schalkenmehren by getting 11th overall!

Anthony was riding on the Nurnburgring (Rad am Ring) and was out for a topperformance…till he flatted and had to chase the main groupe. After a soloride of 100K he managed a 26th place! Now getting ready for the Tour de Namur (UCI 2.12 – stagerace)!

GuydbOur young cyclists also had fire in the legs today!
Dries (U23) could ride the post-Tour criterium and was outsprinted by John Degenkolb (Ger) and Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita)http://uitslagen.dewielerbond.be/Kalender_Uit…/Uitslag.aspx…

DriesM

Robbe and Quinten (Juniors) have both made a long way already to where they find themselves right now. Both were in the breakaways and dared to‪#‎attack‬. Robbe was in the right breakaway and finished 7th in Tourinnes, Quinten was in a little group behind the leaders and took 16th! Both are first year juniors! Already looking forward to next season!

Meanwhile our oldest male athlete Guy realised again another Ironman70.3 finish! In Hungary he was capable to get his revenge for the flat tyres in Ironman Luxembourg! Now looking forward to Ironman Vichy and Turkey!

Sunday had to become another beautifull day, and it was…only it ended with an accident…

Our athletes are hammering hard, we  get used to it…despite that, we don’t forget it’s no evidence! Dedicated and hard work comes before the output and visibility!
In Ironman Maastricht (Holland) Patrick (25 AG – 10h02), Pieter (18AG – 10h14) and Toon (12h05) realised each for themselves their best IM result ever! The road towards a long race is also something to remember and be proud of!

In Bridgetown (Canada) it was Heather who astonished on the olympic distance by coming into T1 as first overall athlete, she left all male athletes behind her! Heather could hold her spot on the bike and during the run and took the win back home!

On the long course (Half Iron) Corey advanced Allan during the swim and they both came out of the water in the front. The swimcourse was in a river into the current!

COrey NP

Corey and Allan both did what they had to do today and paced the race well. The weather was not easy as it was a warm day and drinks were not always easy to grab 😉!
On the run course our athletes are fast enough to fight till the end!
Corey won the party, and it was Allan making the day complete by finishing 2nd and once again confirms his high level he’s on for the moment!

 

In Oostende (Time Trial) Jan did 2 races, first he did the 13K ITT with racebike and later that day he rode the 26K ITT with Time Trial Bike! It resulted in a 3rd and 8th spot in the Masters race!

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After all these great results we checked our phone and saw less prettier news…Hans was involved in a frontal accident during a Timetrial…a broken shoulder has ended his 2016 season. Once again it makes us realise we must enjoy every moment of training and racing. Also the tough ones, also the flat tyres,….always look forward and fast forward!

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www.trainsmartperformbetter.com

Jesse

As a coach you must always look 2steps ahead…

Our athletes are now almost all approaching their 2016 season. Our cyclists have already some weeks of racing behind them, our triathletes already did some prep races and are now close in entering their first real game!

2016 began very well for our athletes, in the first 2 months  of the year 26 podium places were realised in road cycling, CX cycling, XC running, road running , triathlon and duathlon! It’s really crazy, you should think…well that’s nice if you realise this in a whole year. Well…that’s a misunderstanding. Those races were all won in global preparation towards our athletes real racing season.

The one thing that we can say is that we (athletes and coach) are on a good way towards a top 2016, but let’s talk about that in late december of this year.

Our triathletes are getting slightly more nervous for their season, a lot of (Half) Iron distances will be raced this year. Ironman South Africa (Sam-Cai-Pierre) will kick off triathlon season, that same day Ironman70.3 Florida and 111 Portocolom (Spain) will be battle scene for our athletes. From that point on Ironman’s 70.3 Nola, Lima, Mallorca ,… will follow soon. You never know the result of a race before the race, the only thing u can  answer is: “are you prepared well?” I can say our athletes who will race that day and later that period will be prepared well. They have put in the energy and let’s see what comes out. A first race of the season always is a question mark.

Afstand pr week

Training more and more volume is not the best approach towards competitive racing. Volume needs a balance with rest and the right intensity.

Past winter was a busy winter, a winter in which out athletes and myself have made time for evaluation and thinking forward and fast forward. Setting up a plan for each athlete is thé way to approach a good season, never think week by week, Never think month by month. But think from a global view and let that view fit in to an athlete’s life-work balance. On the groupsessions we noticed very determined athletes who will race very passionate. To our cyclists I always say, if you don’t know the feeling of going into the breakaway and just sit and wait…you will never win in style. To our triathletes I say, go out there with the knife between the teeth and use your strong points to be the best you. And never(!) drop out of race, it’s the finishline u need to chase…as fast as possible!

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Brooke winning Irondistance Vitoria-Gasteiz last year was one of the highlights in her career. As a coach you live up to these events with your athletes. Every athlete finishing an extraordinary race deserves the deepest respect!

 

I love looking forward and fast forward,

 

Jesse

Testing, some love seeing the numbers…but it’s about working with th numbers!

This period of the year, is definitely a period athletes need to plan a lactate test. Especially for  athletes doing a regular cycling/running/triseason (march-october) Because a test can give us a view into the way to approach the athletes’ body, shape and future (short and long term) goals.

Many athletes make the large mistake to hunt down certain numbers, they look at the maximum output and not below, they chase a high HR , pace or wattage at their max level. Well, let that be a very wrong approach (especially in mid-winter).If u don’t have experience and know-how in evaluating tests, please stay far away from it. You can only abuse at that moment…

As we speak, we are testing athletes very intense for over 8years now and many of these tests are in my database. From Pro cyclists, Pro triathletes, Amateur world champions in duathlon and triathlon to absolute beginners in these sports.

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For me as a coach, lactate testing also gives us a very nice view on an athletes’ macro-evolution (evolution during several years), or seasonal evolution. It can reassure us after a big block of training to look if we are ‘scoring’  around the same lactate profile as we did in earlier and SIMILAR training/racing periods. It can gives us the info to put the cherry on the big cake of training towards Championships. Or it can simply say: “Hey, that athlete really has work to do at certain points”.

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Never forget testing is done to work with, ‘just’testing is useless. Training healthy always has to be the number 1 priority! If you don’t train on a (short-long term) healthy way you shouldn’t even be training at all!

 

Click here to see one of our athletes suffer on a running test

Train Smart, perform better,

Jesse Van Nieuwenhuyse