which training peaks metrics should you actually care about?
Maybe you’ve noticed (or maybe you deliberately ignore) the acronyms and corresponding numbers that appear within your TrainingPeaks app: TSS, CTL, ATL, and TSB. What are these metrics, and should you care? About all of them? None of them? Some more than others?
Coach Alison dives into all those questions in her Triathlete Magazine article.
TL;DR version: don’t dwell on the absolute value of TSS (training stress score) for individual workout; instead, focus on your CTL (chronic training load) as a proxy for how your fitness is progressing.
what to read / watch / listen to:
Read/Listen: Many athletes deal with mental blocks specific to different situations. The book “The Brave Athlete: Calm The F*ck Down” By Lesley Paterson and Simon Marshall addresses many of these situations in a workbook style to help you overcome and ultimately excel in your mental game with training and racing. You can listen as an audiobook as well!
Watch: “Wild Life” Documentary by National Geographic is a great feel-good watch about how the founders of major outdoor brands sell and leave everything to build National Parks all over the world. They have to overcome much opposition but continue to stay firm in their beliefs and goals.
athlete win of the month:
Coach Julie: Carol Fletcher
Two months ago, Carol Fletcher stumbled upon Coach Alison’s article, “Yes, There Is A Technique to Pedaling A Bike” which caught her attention. Eager to work on her biking, she shared the article with me. We decided to work on improving her technique. Over the course of the past six weeks, Carol has shown remarkable dedication, consistently engaging in various drills, meticulously evaluating her dead spots, and specifically focusing on her left leg. I’m thrilled to report that her efforts have paid off splendidly. Her Functional Threshold Power (FTP) has surged by 10 watts, and her overall efficiency has experienced a remarkable boost. Carol’s progress is truly commendable, and it serves as a testament to her hard work and commitment. We are eager to see her bike split at Oregon 70.3.
what makes us better:
Coach Alison: H.A.L.T.
Dr Allen Lim of Skratch Labs discussed this technique in a newsletter, and he learned it from someone who used it with their kids. So first off, I really REALLY wish I’d heard about this when my kids were little. But also it works great for adults. Maybe especially for tired, hungry (even hangry) triathletes.
Here’s how it works: when things feel hard or just aren’t going well, ask yourself if you are Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired. Many times the root of what’s going on will fall under one of these headings, and knowing what to tend to makes turning things around much simpler.
did you know?
Coach Shana: July means it's Tour de France time
When July gets here, not a lot is getting done around my house except training for triathlon and watching the 2023 Tour de France! The men’s event runs July 1-23. The women’s Tour de France Femmes follows July 23-30. Besides the obvious entertainment factor, I find there is always something that I can apply to my own endurance sports world – whether it’s technical, mental or nutrition/hydration.
Last year’s winners Annemiek Van Vleuten and Jonas Vingegaard will be back on the start line for 2023 to defend their titles against deep fields of riders. It should be good watching! Race coverage in the U.S. will be on NBC via their Peacock Premium with a few other options as well. See this article for info.
Leading up to the 2023 TDF kick-off, I’m watching the Tour de France: Unchained series on Netflix. Fascinating recap and behind-the-scenes look at the personalities, teams, and tactics of the 2022 race.
meet a COACH:
Coach Darbie resides in Springville, UT with her husband Mason, her son Miles, and her dog Rio
- Favorite race: Any Triathlon in St. George because I love the challenge of the terrain and weather.
- Walk-out song: Because You Move Me by Tinlicker & Helsloot
- 3 Words that family/friends would use to describe you: Driven, Selfless, Competitive
- Worst style choice you’ve ever made: I had my hairstylist put grey highlights in my hair when I was 19 and I did a pool workout 2 days later and it was gone. It looked cool for 48 hours.
- If you could have an unlimited supply of 1 thing for the rest of your life, what would it be? Unlimited physical therapy and massages