As driven, type-A athletes, it is important that we know how to follow a training or race plan, but it also important that we know when to deviate it from it as painful as that is for us. With a perfectly crafted training or race plan before us, this can almost feel unacceptable. Despite this, it is important that we know how to listen to our bodies, provide feedback to our coach, and adjust a training or race plan to ultimately achieve the best results.
You may have heard the saying, “Don’t drive into the lake just because the GPS told you to.” This can also be the case with our training and race plans. Head down, we forget sometimes to take stock and use a little common sense. Look at any professional athlete’s training plan and there will be modifications that were made along the way. Look at my training plan and you will see the same.
In training, this comes in the form of not paying attention to life stressors, small pains that are creeping up, lack of sleep, or diminishing recovery between workouts. It is essential that you communicate these with your coach so that adjustments can be made. This is why we prioritize close communication with our athletes so heavily at Endorphin Fitness – it is the cornerstone of our coaching program. Every plan is a rough draft that will be tweaked throughout the course of training to get the best results possible.
It is much the same with racing. You and your coach devise the perfect race plan but what happens when your stomach is not accepting the nutrition, your body is not dealing with the heat as expected, or a window of opportunity opens in the race to beat your competition? In these situations, you need to be willing to adjust or you risk driving yourself into the lake.
Be driven, be committed, but also be smart.