As you contemplate the possibility of competing in your first triathlon and imagine the effort upon you to achieve this goal, you may feel slightly disoriented. You’ve met people who have done it with coaches and others who succeeded on their own. At this stage, you might be telling yourself that since you’re not a professional athlete, a training plan from a quality coach isn’t what beginners need.
You also breakdown all the expenses necessary with starting triathlon and try to figure out what investments are to be prioritized. When you focus on why you're doing this, well, it should be for the fun and love of the sport and the ability to develop skills transferrable to recreational participation or performance racing.
Here are four ways beginner triathletes benefit from working with a pro trainer to devise a training plan to successfully jumpstart your new challenge!
1: A Training Plan Will Help You Set Realistic Goals
Experienced coaches understand how to work with your past and current training experience. They are able to understand where you are and how you can realistically achieve your goals in a way that is sustainable.
It is not uncommon to find athletes jump into a new sport with great enthusiasm only to get burned out quickly because they are not pacing themselves. In the likes of early overtraining, some athletes can experience injuries early on if they are not optimizing their recovery and learning how to train with correct technique.
Your coach is there to support you with the challenges along the way and will help devise a plan that enables you to learn how to train effectively.
The importance of their guidance is imperative as it allows you to train with meaning and maximize your potential.
2: A Training Plan Will Help You to Learn How to Train
Movement and form while training make a world of a difference. An experienced coach is able to provide meaningful feedback that allows you to execute movements to build the desired strength without risking injury.
Understanding how to position your body in the water, how to optimize your form on the bike, and how to work with timing in running are elements of training that often require the help of someone else to correct.
Imagine swimming thousands of meters a year with poor technique. How would you know what to change and how you could have been more effective in doing all those meters?
Especially when motivation is high, people can overtrain in the beginning. There are tons of variabilities to consider, how muscles develop, how ligaments and tendons develop at the same time, how sleep changes etc.
You may be able to coach yourself to success, however, it is a really significant undertaking to think you can manage all the elements of your training and preparation alone.
The ability to get advice and understanding the process your body is going through is crucial to progress.
Experienced coaches understand how the training timeline works. How to plan a week, a month and a season. Their evaluation of the bigger picture helps make the daily goals meaningful and helps you build accountability.
3: A Training Plan & Coach Will Help You Build Accountability
Early on, beginners don’t always associate accountability as a topic that concerns them. Their pressure to perform is not on anybody’s radar…
Well actually, accountability is essential to the success of beginners. Imagine spending your free time and resources making five leaps forwards then two leaps back from taking a few days off and then more from feeling guilty.
Experienced coaches understand how to maximize your potential by planning and understand the setbacks life brings.
Having someone that is invested in your success and wanting to keep you on track will help you build consistency.
4: A Training Plan and Coach Will Help You to Prioritize
Knowing what to prioritize when you’re beginning is not easy to navigate. How often should you train, what sport and skill should you develop first, and what equipment investment is necessary at first?
Often, beginners feel overwhelmed by the purchase of an expensive bike deemed necessary to perform. If one has little experience with a state of the art road bike, maybe investing in a training plan and technical coaching to improve efficiency is more beneficial. It will allow you to build the skills necessary to enjoy the sport sustainable long term. Performance should come into play when your foundation has already been built.
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