The beauty of working with Training Peaks is that it allows me to log in to an athletes diary at anytime and keep up with progress and/or responses to workouts. This only works if the diary is up-to-date, and the post workout comments are filled in. This doesn’t mean the athlete needs to put something in the post workout box every time, only when there is something that I need to know, otherwise I assumed that all is OK. The important fact is that the diary is filled in on a regular basis and comments added where necessary.
Here is a breakdown of the information that I like to see recorded:-
Duration of session, distance covered, time of day, weather conditions (for outdoor sessions if extreme), physical responses (RPE, Heart rate, power outputs, Pace etc) some brief thoughts about your performance and how the session went.
Comments may include – felt really good on main set, had to focus on last 2 reps to hold cadence.
HR on finishing each rep was 162/164/165/167/168 which is about where I’d expect. Felt I could have pushed harder so will bear this in mind next time.
Further data can be recorded such as Power, Speed, Pace or any other measure you feel will be beneficial, or that we have agreed to work with. There is enough detail here to raise any questions from me if need be, and the athlete has something to look back on and compare as they progress through the season.
LIFESTYLE - As well as training information I also encourage athletes to keep other information such as…
Hours of sleep, quality of sleep, stress levels, motivation to train, muscle soreness, general fatigue levels.
Training peaks will allow the athlete to record all this type of data and much more.
Using these daily metrics in conjunction with the training diary provides a bigger picture, not just of the training that the athlete has completed but also their physiological responses to it.
Some athletes don’t like to keep a training diary. That’s a personal thing but this is a missed opportunity to progress and develop as an athlete. If you were to keep a record of your training in the manner described above (and a simple pen and paper will do) it will help you with the following.
- Record what you have done and how you responded
- Provide clues as to what worked and what didn’t.
- Give you an insight into how training and lifestyle interact
- Allow you to work out what was the cause of an illness or injury
- Give you a basis from which to develop future training plans
I’m not aware of many athletes that could remember all of that information, so whether you choose to use paper and pen or an online programme you will get a much better insight to your training and a much better tool for future development.
Train hard but keep it fun....and safe J