Spend Time to Save Time
by Gordo Byrn
[Editor's note: A version of this article also appears on the TrainingPeaks blog.]
In business, I’m constantly looking for ways to spend time to save time. I spend my time learning how to do repetitive tasks more efficiently. As a consultant, I’m conscious of every shift, click and keystroke. Little changes, multiplied by the millions of shifts, clicks and strokes we will do in our lives, can be powerful.
I’ve been guilty of taking pride in my inability to learn how to work more efficiently. Obviously, I wouldn’t rationalize my pride in that manner. Rather, I would tell myself that I am carefully handcrafting my work. In reality, I was spending hours and hours, repeating myself in an inefficient manner. Today, I’ll share the coaching hacks that have freed me from my screen.
My second screen is a 13-inch monitor, which I use to view my athlete's annual planner, a Google doc, where I can see his or her races, travel and week structure tips on a single page.
I use an Apple Magic Mouse (wireless) with a full size (wired) keyboard.
This hardware set-up saves me hundreds of hours each year. I value my work time at $100 per hour so the payoff is huge.
Even if you are coaching for minimum wage, you cannot afford to waste time with inefficient workflow. Time is best spent meeting your athletes’ needs, educating yourself, sharing your knowledge or elsewhere in your personal life.
My total library extends to 500 workouts but that doesn’t matter. What matters is being able to quickly apply the correct workout, to the correct situation, in a way that an athlete can execute.
Most coaches are overwhelmed with the task of getting their library logged digitally. Here’s what I recommend:
In one month, you’ll have your key workouts from your favorite sport entered into your library. Move onto the next sport, then the next.
As an example for cycling:
Remember that the way your sort your library isn’t important. What matters is being able to quickly apply an appropriate workout in a way that the athlete can execute properly.
Remember to place the session type in the workout title so you can use search box to quickly locate the session.
Time spent customizing your basic template is far more valuable to your team, than time spent repeating the same workouts from memory.
The purpose of creating templates is to free time for value creation when you’re not “dragging boxes” on TrainingPeaks.
It takes times to learn these hacks but the pay off is huge. You’ll end up with a better product delivered to you team and have more time to focus on the areas that create value in your business, and your life. Read my personal blog for tips on how I structure my larger life.
Remember to ask your team what you do best. Very few of us started coaching to drag boxes across a screen!
Gordo is the founder of Endurance Corner. You can find his personal blog here.