Posts in Training
Learn from your past to get fitter and faster

When I start working with someone new I always spend some time learning about things they have done so that I understand what has worked for them in the past and what hasn’t worked so well. I thought it would be useful to explain how I go about this so that other people can learn from my experiences.

So, how do you learn from your past to get fitter and faster? Look at hard data first, heart rate, power, pace and any associated comments, don’t rely on memory at least initially.

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Do I need a training camp to get fitter?

In my experience, there are pros and cons to going on a training camp. I thought it would be useful to spend some time thinking about these and doing some research to help evaluate the best way forward.

So, do I need a training camp to get fitter? No, you do not need a training camp to get fitter for cycling or running and in some cases, going on a training camp can be worse than staying at home.

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Use a Wattbike to get faster at long distance cycling events

Many of the endurance cyclists I work with have found that incorporating one or two Wattbike sessions into their weekly training has paid dividends and added interest to their training. I thought it would be useful to write an article on the subject and explain how this works.

So, how do you use a Wattbike to get faster at long distance cycling events? The most effective way to use a Wattbike is to work on the higher intensity fitness

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How should I recover from an ultra-endurance event?

I have been increasingly involved with athletes taking part in ultra-endurance events such as the Transatlantic Way, Transcontinental, HT550 and even a successful Round the World Record attempt. These events put huge demands on competitors’, both physically and mentally and I thought it would be useful to write about my findings on how best to recover from these long ultra-endurance events.

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How to train for cyclocross and ultra-endurance cycling

Some of the endurance cyclists I work with like to do cyclocross in the winter to keep fit, add some interest and enjoy a new challenge. One of the athletes I work with wanted to learn more about the background of the training I am setting. I wrote a lengthy explanation by email and thought the ideas might be useful to others, so I have included the details here.

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Font Romeu Nature Trail

Font Romeu Nature Trail former Killian Classik is a great weekend of racing with a bit of something for everyone!

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How much Should I eat during a trail race?

Chatting a to a running friend who had completed her first 3 Peaks Race in the UK, her own experience resonated so much with my own; she hadn’t got her food intake right and felt she could have run far better had she fuelled better. As general guidance most articles and books I have read advise 30g to 60g of carbohydrate per hour, or 100 to 300 calories per hour if you prefer. However, there are many variables that come in to play

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How do I become a Fitter, Faster, Better Cyclist or Runner: think better, perform better?

Chapter 7: Think better, perform better: Here are some practical techniques in sports psychology that can be used to make real gains in performance. Try asking yourself a couple of questions: What proportion of your performance do you think is due to your mind? What proportion of the training time do you commit to training your mind? My guess is that there will be a discrepancy between the two answers…

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How do I become a Fitter, Faster, Better Cyclist or Runner: the longer term plan?

Chapter 6: Longer term (phased) training plans: Once you get into your sport more and more you may start to think about goals that are further in the future. For example you may have done some competitions this year and think it would be good to see whether you can do better next year. To meet these longer term goals it is a good idea to make a longer term plan for success.

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How do I become a Fitter, Faster, Better Cyclist or Runner: weight, diet and nutrition?

Chapter 5 - Weight, diet and nutrition: The subject of this chapter involves three related concepts that are important to consider if you want to take part in competitive sport. Whilst you won’t achieve sporting success as a direct consequence of your weight, diet and nutrition, it is certainly true that not eating properly will reduce or even negate your chances of success.

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How do I become a fitter, faster, better cyclist or runner (Chapter 1)?

Chapter 1: How do I become a fitter, faster, better cyclist or runner: The basic principles of training for sport are simple and needn’t be complicated. Some of the theories are complicated but it isn’t necessary to understand these to achieve amazing things. What I want to do is produce a simple guide to training and competing that is accessible yet provides the basic requirements for an athlete at any level.

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How does a power meter on a bike work and how can you use it?

Understanding how equipment works is both interesting and useful so I thought I would write an article explaining how bicycle power meters work and how they can be used, including some practical ideas about how to train with power if you don’t own a power meter.

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Can Hypnosis Help Me Achieve my Performance Goals?

I was first introduced to the concept of hypnotherapy in sport by John. John had used hypnosis with several clients to good effect, included Karen Darke (pictured above). John and I used the technique to enable me to become more focussed and positive when racing. I used the skills we had practised in hypnosis to good effect during the Dentdale Run in 2012 going on to win the ladies race, something which I never thought possible. It was this positive effect of hypnosis that inspired me to go on and become a qualified hypnotherapist myself in 2013. So yes, hypnosis can help you have a more positive mindset and achieve performance goals.

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What Does a Heart Rate Monitor Tell You?

One question I often get asked is ‘how do I use my heart rate monitor?’ or ‘what are heart rate training zones?’ or ‘how do I set and use heart rate training zones?’. With this in mind, I thought it would be useful to write an article on what a heart rate monitor is used for, what you can learn from using one and perhaps more importantly, how can a heart rate monitor benefit your exercise and training?

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Can Vegans be successful mountain runners?

As a vegan mountain runner I often get asked about my diet. With an increasing number of people turning to a plant-based diet, I thought this would be a good topic to discuss here.

I have been vegan for five years; I train nearly every day in the mountains on my doorstep and run mountain races regularly

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