Q&A on Intensity within LSD Rides, Finding a Coach, and Coach as Teacher, with Rab Wardell

Coach and pro cyclist Rab Wardell helps us answer questions on adding bouts of intensity into your LSD rides, how to find a coach at your level, and how much a coach should serve as teacher.

Rab Wardell on the West Highland Way

Our guest coach for this episode is Rab Wardell, owner of Wardell Cycle Coaching, who competed at the mountain bike marathon world championships for Team GB in 2021 and, in 2020, set the fastest known time (FKT) for the West Highland Way in the Highlands of Scotland. (Check out the film West Highland Way: Rab Wardell’s Record Attempt, which was selected for the prestigious Banff Film Festival in 2021.)

Rab helps us answer questions on whether adding some intensity to your long, slow distance rides are detrimental to training adaptations, how to find a new coach when you feel you’ve reached your limit with previous coaches, and how much a coach should teach his or her athletes the scientific purpose of training and individual workouts.

Mixing intervals into long rides 

This question comes from Stuart Hardy of Addlethorpe, UK. He writes:

“Are there any detrimental effects to dropping Seiler Z3 efforts into the long slow rides (which are two to three hours for me)? Essentially, this would mean riding easy on the flat and hitting the short punchy hills (1-5 minute) we have around me hard.

Basically, I would be either easy or all-out in the same ride. I suppose the question is: Does going into VO2/Anaerobic during a long aerobic ride cause the body to change its mode of operation and shift energy systems, thus negating the benefits we’re striving for by riding for longer (i.e. FatMax/aerobic capacity)? Does it shift the body towards glycolysis and it doesn’t revert back between the efforts?”

Finding your level of coach

This next question comes from Beth Frankel of Hilo, Hawaii. She writes:

“When I started cycling seriously five years ago at the age of 22, I found a coach that I liked working with and who was also relatively new to the coaching field. We seemed to click and he has been a great partner in my progress. But now I feel like I’ve reached his limit, and therefore, mine. I’m a Cat. 3 getting decent results, but I want to take it up a level.

As I look for my next coach, what are the things I should be looking for? What are the questions I should be asking myself, in terms of what I need? And what are the questions I should be asking the potential coach to understand if he or she can meet those needs?”

Psychology of coaching

This question comes from Dana Parker in Bristol, Tennessee. She writes:

“My coach and I have had some differences as of late as to how she should deliver certain messages and plans to me. For example, while she wants to ‘teach’ me how and why to do certain things, I just want to be told what to do. I have a lot going on in life, and the last thing I want to do as I prepare to head out the door to do intervals is to read an email about some scientific principle or physiological mechanism. Just tell me how hard to go, how long to go, and when I can call it a day.

Is there something I can do to help her understand that the ‘why’ isn’t always important to me? Or can you convince me that the ‘why’ is more important than I think it is? Or do I just need to find a new coach?”

Episode Transcript

Chris Case 00:12
Hey everyone welcome to another episode of Fast Talk your source for the science of endurance performance. Today we’ve got Ryan Kohler in the studios in Boulder, Colorado. Trevor Connor, you are up in Toronto, Canada. We’ve got Rab Wardell, he’s actually in Manchester, but originally from Glasgow- or you live in Glasgow, I’m not sure where you’re originally from.- And I am in Niwot, Colorado. So welcome, everybody.

Rab Wardell 00:43
Thank you.

Ryan Kohler 00:43
Thanks, Chris.

Trevor Connor 00:44
Great to have you on the show.

Chris Case 00:52
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Who Is Rab?

Chris Case 01:46
Just to give a little backstory, Rab and I haven’t really stayed in touch all that much over the past five or six years. But we met at a mountain bike stage race in Israel of all places, had a great time there. Lo and behold, he is on the show because he’s not only raced at a lot of different levels, had a lot of different coaches in his life. He is a coach himself, coaching athletes of all different levels. And He’s the owner of Wardell Cycle Coaching which is a bit in its infancy, but he wants to grow it. So Rab, thank you again for joining us. Maybe give folks out there a little bit of a deeper dive into your background, if you would just briefly.

Rab Wardell 02:33
Certainly, I’m not known for being able to keep things brief, but I’ll do my best. Yeah, I’m 36 years old from Scotland. Mostly I would classify myself as a mountain bike racer, mountain bike rider, but I have ridden across a variety of disciplines crossroad, and I’ve ridden to UCI level, and mountain bike World Cups, and UCI road races such as your turbos is a good example and I’ve raced cross in Belgium. I have been a cycling coach since I was 21 years old. So 2007 I started coaching, I’ve worked through a number of Federations, including Scottish cycling, British Cycling, and I’ve also done work for the UCI, as a coach and as a coach educator as well.

Chris Case 03:23
Excellent. Yeah, and you just finished up marathon worlds on the mountain bike and had a great experience there.

Rab Wardell 03:30
Absolutely. It was an incredibly hard race, kind of pinching myself that I was back in racing at that level as well. But yeah, fantastic race really enjoyed it and I kind of wet my appetite as well as coaching athletes so I may well want to continue racing at that level myself. Yeah, it’s all good fun.

Chris Case 03:51
Well, let’s jump into the questions. This one comes from Stuart Hardy he’s in Addlethorpe in the UK. Rab, how far are you from Addlethrope right now? I don’t know where Addlethrope is.

Rab Wardell 04:05
Neither do I. I’ll have to find out for you.

Should I add High-Intensity Efforts Into Long Rides?

Chris Case 04:08
Okay. You Google that, while I read the question. Okay, so Stuart here he writes, are there any detrimental effects to dropping Seiler zone three efforts into the long slow rides? -Which are for him two to three hours in length.- Essentially, this would mean riding easy on the flats and hitting the short punchy hills,- which he’s defining as one to five-minute hills we have around here- and doing those hard. Basically, I would be either easy or all out in the same ride. I suppose the question really does going into VO2 or anaerobic during a long aerobic ride caused the body to change its mode of operation and shift energy systems, thus negating the benefits we’re striving for by riding for longer, ie fat max aerobic capacity. Does it shift the body towards glycolysis and then it doesn’t revert back between the efforts? Given this is a bit of a physiology dive, Trevor, do you want to start things off?

Trevor Connor 05:17
Sure, I’ll start out with answering the question about glycolysis. First, remember that your body, your cells, your muscle cells aren’t either doing glycolysis or doing aerobic metabolism. As a matter of fact, you have to be producing energy through glycolysis in order to be able to also produce energy through aerobic metabolism, because the end product of glycolysis is necessary for the Krebs cycle, which is the first stage of aerobic metabolism. So don’t think of it as Oh, I’ve got glycolysis going, therefore, my aerobic system has shut down. That’s not the way to think about it. Really, from a physiological perspective, all that’s happening when you’re hitting those punchy hills really hard, is you’re starting to recruit more muscle fibers, you can bring in more of those 2x muscle fibers, which really can’t work aerobically and are going to produce most of their energy just glycoliclly. You’re going to bring them in they’re going to do some work and then when you’re recovering, you’re going to go back to using the more aerobic fibers. So it’s not an either or that’s not the way to think about this. And those more aerobic fibers, they’re certainly going to be recruited and doing both glycolysis and aerobic metabolism during those efforts they’re just not going to be producing that much of the energy.

Chris Case 06:43
Very good. Rab what would you add here or how would you answer Stuart’s question about throwing in some hard efforts some as he puts it, Seiler zone three, so high-intensity efforts into his long rides. Do you tend to stray away from that? Do you use those types of rides effectively at certain times of the year? What would you say?

Rab Wardell 07:08
I have a feeling Stuart maybe knows the answer to the question he’s asking or what. It’s definitely going to have an effect on the effects of what you get from the ride. It’s a question what is the objective of that ride? Why are you doing it? Is it a fat max aerobic capacity, or you’re looking for an aerobic adaptation, or you’re looking at your training that fat max zone and becoming more fat adapted. There are one to five-minute hills but how frequently are we seeing this because it could potentially be if you’re riding up and down every hill, It kind of sounds like it’s almost turned into a bit of a Strava hunt. Kind of ride were I’m just going to go ride around find local hills and ride as fast as I can.

Chris Case 07:52
Did you Google Addlethorpe? Do we know the terrain he’s talking about?

Rab Wardell 07:57
He’s in East Yorkshire, right on the coast of England. So it’s not a million miles away from where I am but yeah, you can certainly hit some hills that’s for sure. To be honest, it sounds to me like the goal is to do an aerobic endurance ride- like a base ride- my question is why do you want to do that? Again it’s what are you training for? What racing are you training for? What time of year is it? if it’s your winter base ride I probably say that Yeah, you’re gonna see some detrimental effects to that. And again, it’s kind of dropping Seiler zone three efforts into long slow rides, I would certainly question it. It’s something I often find with riders almost when you’re wanting to do these aerobic endurance or aerobic conditioning rides as you’re trying to slow these riders down a lot and finally get him to stay in the zone. So yeah, I guess that would be my instinct is I would recommend to not drop in Seiler zone three efforts in the long slow rides

Chris Case 09:07
Well it sounds to me like you’re suggesting he knows the answer that he shouldn’t be doing this but he wants to do it because it’s more fun.

It May Be More Fun But It Is Not Beneficial

Rab Wardell 09:16
Yes, it’s loads of fun.

Trevor Connor 09:19
I get that from athletes all the time. They are looking for that reason to say well I’m going out doing a slow easy base ride but -and pick your justification but they ultimately go- But yeah, I’m just throwing in a couple of efforts, you know, just one 10 minute climb.

Rab Wardell 09:35
The thing that I would suggest is maybe to think you’re working on the actual discipline of the ride and the training execution. So if you do have an outcome that you’re looking to achieve, which is your aerobic adaptations, then it not be the most fun. And you know, you might want to ride up the climbs faster and race your friends because that is a lot of fun. But again where does it fit in the big picture? What is it you’re hoping to achieve? You know, if you’re not training for a race, and you don’t have any particular performance or outcome goals that you’re looking for, do what you want. Like go have fun, go ride up the hills. But if you’re training for something, you almost question why do you want to do that?

Chris Case 10:26
Ryan, you coach a lot of junior athletes, I wonder if this is also an issue with them where they just don’t necessarily understand or care and they want to go hard at times, because it is fun. But have you developed any tricks to make them understand the importance of sometimes you just have to go slow, because that’s the adaptation you’re looking for?

Ryan Kohler 10:48
Yeah, this sounds exactly like their typical ride. They have this idea of going out for an LSD type of ride, but the first Hill comes up, or the first rider that passes them, and it’s all over. So yeah, I think I fully agree with what Rob said, is, we need to question these things and just know what the purposes are. But with, juniors going back to that question, yeah, I think they have a tendency to just want to always go hard. And the beauty of it for them is that they pretty much can for quite a long time- longer than we can, at least,- For a while, they just keep bouncing back. So it sort of feeds that forward for them to keep doing it. But one thing that I’ve found that helps is when we can get them to understand some of the structure and actually teach them how to do the high-intensity sessions properly, then we can properly get them tired, where they understand the value of these easier, longer rides. And I found that it takes a few tries, even a whole season. But now, some of the older riders on the team I’m working with, when we do an easy ride, they come back and they’re like, Oh, that was great. It was so easy. That’s what we needed. And so now they have that appreciation and understanding of why we do a long steady ride like that. So yeah, I think it’s just helping to figure out, why you’re doing what you’re doing. But then if there is that difficulty, making sure that the training is arranged in such a way that they can ultimately learn, and really just feel why you do these rides like that.

Chris Case 12:33
Hmm. I mean, I really like that. Because, in some ways, it’s not the point of polarize not necessarily to- well, in some ways it is I think- You do your hard sessions very hard to get the most out of them and you do your easy sessions to get the most out of those, but also to set you up for success in the hard rides, if I have it correctly.

Ryan Kohler 12:57
Yeah, and I’ll say they’ve made a lot of mistakes along the way where they’ve done the LSD type ride over the weekend. They know we have practice on Tuesday, but then they’ll come in just completely fried on Tuesday, when I asked why they’re like, Oh, we rode up in the mountains, three hours yesterday. And I know that wasn’t an easy ride. So you know, they make those mistakes. But I think as they do that, they sort of need to make those because it helps reinforce why they have the structure they have built-in there. And then over time, they work it out and figure out how to how to train.

Rab Wardell 13:31
You know, there are definitely examples where riders will learn how to train and they learn from their mistakes, and they learn from doing that. You know that a hard ride the mountains wasn’t what was prescribed or what they should do. But there are so many riders out there that will do this forever. You know, they will ride hard forever. And they basically want to ask the question over and over and just wait to find someone that says Yeah, sure. That would be good just do that. they’ll just keep going who can I ask? Someone’s gonna tell me that just riding hard all the time is the secret. But, I think you made a great point in saying that you want to try and educate the riders and knowing that to see the improvement that they want to make. this is the best-case scenario for training, it’s been proven, there’s lots of papers on it, there’s lots of data on it, there’s lots of great riders who will tell you have to do it. It just doesn’t feel right, riding a good quality, low-intensity training ride feels too easy. It doesn’t feel like you’re training hard. And obviously it definitely takes a lot of time to do that to accumulate that time zone and to accumulate that training time. That really is a case of beginning learning to trust the process and having faith in the sessions that you are doing and realizing that it will take time and that can sometimes be difficult to swallow as well because if you’ve done 12 weeks of low-intensity training and you don’t feel like you’ve maybe come on that much. And then you start riding hard on some hills and it’s like you’re maybe building on top of the foundation that you’ve built, and you get fit really fast. And you go, oh, man, I should have just been doing hard hills for the last 12 weeks, I’ve just wasted all that time. Whereas actually, the reason you are as good as you’ve become is because you’ve done that foundation work. Having a coach or a training plan that you really have faith in and you trust and you believe in. Then execute it as well as you can and trust that process. You know, learn from that experience as well and reflect on it too.

Trevor Connor 15:41
I’m going to give a brief physiological explanation of why this really isn’t that beneficial if you’re looking for performance gains. So we’re just going to do a physiological cost-benefit analysis. And if your primary purpose is go out and do a long, slow ride, and you’re throwing in a few punchy, really hard hills, you’re probably doing them pretty infrequently. If you’re doing them a lot like you’re doing them back to back and thrown in a whole bunch of punchy hills, well, you’re not doing a long, slow ride, you’re doing an interval workout. So that’s something completely different. And if that’s the case with this person, then you need to reevaluate the purpose of that ride. Because you’re not accomplishing the purpose. So I’m thinking of this more as you’re going out and doing a two or three-hour mostly slow ride with three, four-punchy hills in it. Remember, the whole principle of training here is to produce a training stress in a particular systems, that’s sufficient to spark an adaptation. If you’re just throwing in a few of these punchy hills, that’s not enough to produce a training adaptation. So you’re really,- unless you’re absolutely brand new to the sport.- But if you’re an experienced athlete, you’ve been training for a little bit, you’re going to get no adaptive response whatsoever from those efforts. But what you are going to get from those efforts is some damage and fatigue, which is going to mean that it’s going to take you longer to recover from that ride. So if you look at the physiological cost-benefit, you’re adding a whole bunch of costs with zero gain. So that is about the worst cost-benefit analysis you can get.

Rab Wardell 17:21
Excellent, very well put very well put.

Chris Case 17:24

Trevor Connor 17:32
Hey listeners, we started a bi-weekly series on our website that we’re calling FTW or free this week. Every other week, Fast Talk Labs will release one story for you, our listeners to enjoy. We’ve already released cyclocross skills and drills from Coach Grant Holicky, our workshop on the training peaks performance management chart, info on chronic training load, and best features of Strava training peaks and Garmin Connect. Free articles and videos are waiting for you at fasttalklabs.com. Join today at our free listener member level to enjoy this content.

What To Look For In A New Coach?

Chris Case 18:14
Well let’s move on to our next question. This one comes in from Beth Frankel. She’s out in Hilo, Hawaii. And she writes, when I started cycling seriously, five years ago, at the age of 22, I found a coach that I liked working with and who was also relatively new to the coaching field, we seem to click and he has been a great partner in my progress. But now I feel like I’ve reached his limit and therefore mine. I’m a cat three getting decent results, but I want to take it up a level. As I look for my next Coach, what are the things I should be looking for? What are the questions I should be asking myself in terms of what I need? And what are the questions I should be asking the potential coach to understand if he or she can meet those needs? A lot to unpack there-I think- Rab, I’ll start with you. And I don’t know if the categorization system in the UK is the same a cat three is cat one being… Yeah, same?

Rab Wardell 19:12
Yeah, it’s very similar. We don’t have cat five we started four and go to three, two, one, elite. So that’s yeah, similar process of scoring points and making your way through the categories.

Trevor Connor 19:28

Rab Wardell 19:29
So cat three is progressed up a tier from cat five?

Trevor Connor 19:33
Yes, definitely correct.

Rab Wardell 19:34
Yeah, and five years as well of cycling and being coached as a cyclist as well. So certainly beginning to gain some experience. I think one thing to touch on is I think it can be a good idea to change coach, especially if you’ve been working with the same coach for that amount of time here.- Five years is quite a long time.- And I also want to say that you as a coach, if an athlete that you’ve been working with for five years wants to change coach just try not take that personally. Working with the same athlete for five years is fantastic. But you know, there’s maybe a good chance that they’ve gotten from you what they want to get or what they’re able to get. And I remember listening to much darker talk about this- another podcast plug, apologies- but much darker, says he should change your coach almost as often as you change your accountant. But I think he’s saying that when you start working with a new coach, the new coach wants to impress you, they’re motivated to start working with a new athlete and a new client and they might bring some completely new ideas to you. And also, you’ve got the motivation of when a new athlete working with you, because it’s certainly my experience, when you start to work with a new athlete, you can tell that that athlete is really motivated, they’re bought into the process, they are ready to work with you they are ambitious and they want to progress. I would say if you’re the coach, don’t take it personally, and if you’re the athletes certainly question it and think could you get more from a new coach, it could be a new coach within the same coaching business, or in than the same company. So this is definitely worth considering. And I think the things that you want to be looking for- Certainly, it sounds like the race experience or the coach’s experience, if you’re reaching his limit,- you want to find a coach that’s used to working with riders with a higher ability level than you. Purely because if you’re working with a coach that coaches cap twos, cat ones, pro riders, they can bring a whole lot of new information and new practices to you. And you also might find out is that you have been doing some, -you’re following some- really good coaching principles and some really good practices. And it’ll give you confidence on what you have been doing as well as maybe it will increase your confidence that you do know a little more about what you’re doing. And it just going to take that little bit of extra time and maybe make some tweaks as you move forward. So answering that what should she be looking for, I guess, is a more experienced coach, with athletes who are potentially getting good results and are racing at a high level. And in terms of asking what you need, I think you may need to question what you felt your previous coach wasn’t able to deliver. And then go look for that in a new coach. You know, it sounds like race experience is likely to be that.

Chris Case 22:53
Trevor or Ryan what would you add to answer this question for Beth out in Hawaii?

Ryan Kohler 23:00
So I think one piece that stood out to me was, what are the questions I should be asking myself in terms of what I need, I think that’s a pretty critical one. And that’s something that would be worth taking the time to research. And when you’re looking for a new coach, if those are truly unanswered questions, then I think even posing that to a potential coach would be valid- to say, Hey, I’m not sure where I need to go next. Is that something you can help me develop? -And I need to plug Trevor’s gap analysis, I think we’ve got that webinar on that one. But something along those lines where a coach can just start a discussion with you and just ask questions. And I think, help you find out those areas of, what are not only strengths or weaknesses, but what has worked well, in the past? What hasn’t worked well? How do you prefer to communicate? What do you respond best to, in terms of even personality types? I think there’s a lot of things like that you can go into with a coach, so I think just trying to identify some of those needs, if you can find someone that has that ability to just engage in the discussion, I think that would be a pretty big thing to find out in a coach. And then I know, personally over the years with athletes that have contacted me, sometimes just the simple question of like, Hey, what’s your approach to coaching? What do you do? And sometimes I found that, at times, I’ve been stumped by it. I was like, Oh, wait, how do I describe that? You know, that’s always a good reminder, as a coach to make sure you have that always fresh in your mind and figure it out. Because I think that’s a valid question. And another important question is just to ask the coach, what’s your approach? Who do you like to work with? How do you work? I think that can give you a lot of insight into what the relationship might look like if you were to work with that person.

Chris Case 25:04
Trevor, what are your thoughts?

Trevor Connor 25:05
This is such an interesting question. And I almost have as many questions back. Where I landed- I’ll try to give you a shorter version of this as I can- First of all, we’ve talked about this on the show, but I’ve always seen an athlete’s career is having four stages. The first stage is that you’re brand new. And that’s almost the most fun stage because it doesn’t matter what you do, or how dumb you train, you’re gonna get stronger, because you’re brand new to the sport, and there’s nowhere to go but up. So that’s stage one. Stage Two is getting exposure to a higher level, and it’s more mental stage, where you generally get beat up, and then you make that decision of, do I want to get to that level, or am I happy where I’m at. If you get through that and decide you want to raise your level, you start getting into this third phase, which I call the learning to train and race more perfectly phase. Which is perfecting how you train, looking at all the ways you can improve your form. And you come out of that phase, into the fourth phase, which is what I call the champion phase, where you really know how to train right for yourself, you’ve really maximized everything, and now you’re just looking to be at your very best. The reason I bring that up is, she’s a cat three, so you could say that she’s potentially already learned a lot of things and is doing a lot of things right with their previous coach, and just needs to improve on that. So she’s in the perfecting phase. But there are a lot of athletes who are pretty talented, who get to that cat three-level doing everything wrong, where they’re actually more in that phase one and just natural talent got them up to to a cat three. And in order to improve, they have to fundamentally change how they’re training. And that has a big impact on the sort of coach you pick. Because some coaches have a system and when you hire that coach, it doesn’t matter how you trained before you’re now working with their system, their approach to training. And that happened to me when I was a cat three, I went to the center in Canada and Houshang fundamentally changed the whole way I trained and it made me a much better cyclist. But she’s already figured out a lot of things and is doing a lot of things right, You don’t want to throw that out. You’d want to work more with that type of coach who’s going to treat it more like a dialogue and look for the opportunities with that athlete. And I just don’t know which one she is so it’s hard for me to answer.

What Are Some Different Approaches Of Coaches?

Chris Case 27:37
Well, very good. I mean, I like all of the answers you guys have given it speaks to the vast experiences you’ve had. Which makes me want to dive into this next question. Because I think it’s also a very interesting one, also about the coaching aspect, and the psychology of coaching between athlete and coach. This one comes from Dana Parker. She’s in Bristol, Tennessee. And she writes, my coach and I have had some differences as of late as to how she should deliver certain messages and plans to me. For example, while she wants to, quote, teach me how and why to do certain things. Sometimes I just want to be told what to do. I have a lot going on in life. And the last thing I want to do as I prepare to head out the door, to do intervals is to read an email about some scientific principle or physiological mechanism. Just tell me how hard to go, how long to go. And when I can call it a day. Is there something I can do to help her understand that the quote Why isn’t always important to me? Or can you convince me that the Why is more important than I think it is? Or do I just need to find a new coach? So Rab, do you want to start with this one as well? This is a very interesting question from my point of view. It gets into that realm of psychology that I bet every coach deals with at some point or another some probably are more comfortable with it then than others. What would you say here to Dana?

Rab Wardell 29:18
I thought it was a really interesting question. It’s a funny one, because a lot of people do want a coach because they simply want to be told what to do. They want to take the guesswork or the thought out of the training and they basically want to schedule to follow, which I think can work. I think it can work quite well for some people. I think it sounds like Dana has already fed this back to her coach, but if not. I think that’s the first thing that will really need to need to be done. Feedback on what they’re looking for as an athlete, what their expectations are. And I guess, to be upfront with that, in my opinion, I think it is great to learn about what the principles, the scientific principles, of the training and the physiology of what you’re trying to achieve what the goal of the session is, and how that fits into the cycle. I think that’s a great thing to be able to learn. But I also understand that a lot of people have a lot going on, and they don’t necessarily even care. So yeah, I think that’s the big thing. I also think the communication between an athlete and a coach is really important. It’s something that I always look for, it’s something that I kind of pride myself on is that I do have very regular contact and a scheduled call weekly with everyone that I coach. It is about trying to create that rapport and that relationship with the rider. So you can get honest feedback back and forth, and not just hear the positive things, but also hear the negatives so that you can make those changes. But yeah, I mean, I’m actually really interested to hear what the guys think, on this one, too.

Chris Case 31:27
Yeah, Ryan, why don’t you chime in here?

Ryan Kohler 31:30
It almost sounds like Dana’s coach is trying to, -or maybe not trying to,- but is almost over educating her in a way. It almost seems like she’s just getting too much education from the coach. If this has already been fed back to her coach, then maybe the discussion needs to be. I want to learn something about physiology about the why about all of those things that you’re trying to teach me. But potentially, it’s, it’s, it’s happening too frequently is what I’m getting from this one. So I wonder if through their communication, they can set up a time to say, Hey, 90% of the time, I just need to be told what to do. So I can get out, get it done and move on to the next thing in life. But if it’s like like Rob said, maybe it’s a weekly phone call, or you know, every two weeks or something, whatever that timeframe is maybe they can work out some sort of arrangement to say, hey, let’s, let’s give ourselves 3045 minutes every month, every two weeks, whatever it is. And then that’s the time where maybe Dana finds those things that are important that she wants to learn about. And she can get that information at that time. But the rest of it, the coach would just need to understand, hey, just tell me what to do. So I don’t know if they can find a happy medium. And I think every coach is different, where you’re gonna find coaches that don’t do well with the just telling me what to do. Honestly, I don’t if an athlete tells me that I won’t coach them. So I want more of that engagement. So I think it just needs to go a little bit deeper in, in the conversation to figure out if they can come up with a happy medium. And then yeah, if not, then maybe time to unhitch your cart from that horse and find another one, and move along.

Trevor Connor 33:15
So my answer to this question is Yeah, I get it. I agree completely with what both you just said, which is it sounds like this coach is being a little overboard and a little heavy-handed with it. So maybe the coach has to back off and read their athlete a bit and read their interest. The only pushback I will give is, I do feel strongly that athletes who are of the philosophy of just give me the plan, and I’m gonna do it I’m not gonna think about it aren’t taking responsibility for their own training. And I do think every athlete needs to take responsibility for their own training. You don’t have to be an exercise physiologist, there are decisions you need to make out on the road that aren’t in the plan, because no plan is perfect. So you might have intervals one day and go out and start to do them and have to make that decision of maybe today is not the right day to do this. And if you don’t have some understanding, some understanding of the why, some understanding of the underlying physiology, or at least how your body works, you can’t make those choices. So sounds like the coaches is heavy-handed but I am gonna say to this athlete, you do need to take some ownership of this and you do need to learn.

Rab Wardell 34:32
It really sounds like the match of athletes to coach isn’t working and also which was touched on before is the coach is likely not to be getting the job satisfaction out of coaching this athlete that they were looking for. Sure they may be a little over the top and heavy-handed, But one of the things I really like about coaching is almost working as part of a team. With the athlete or the team of athletes, I would almost suggest something like getting off the peg training plan. You know, save yourself some money, you’re not gonna get as good a service. But if that’s what you want, just get off the peg.

Chris Case 35:06
Well, very good, guys. It’s been a pleasure. Rab, thank you so much for joining us. I’m glad we could connect after all these years after meeting up on the trails of Israel. Thanks for joining us.

Rab Wardell 35:19
No problem at all. And it was great, as I said before, I’m a listener, as well. So keep up the great work, and I’ll keep tuning in.

Trevor Connor 35:30
Great to have you on the show, thanks for joining us.

Rab Wardell 35:33
My pleasure. My pleasure.

Chris Case 35:37
That was another episode of Fast Talk. Subscribe to Fast Talk wherever you prefer to find your favorite podcast. Be sure to leave us a rating and review. The thoughts and opinions expressed on Fast Talk are those of the individual. As always, we’d love your feedback. Join the conversation at forums.fasttalklabs.com to discuss each and every episode. Become a member of Fast Talk Laboratories at fasttalklabs.com/join and become a part of our education and coaching community. For Rab Wardell, Ryan Kohler, Trevor Connor, I’m Chris Case thanks for listening.