The Power of Change
by Jan Hugo Svendsen
Last month I ended up with Marilyn McDonald as my new coach after being guided by Gordo for three seasons. What's different?
From my point of view there is a lot of power in a change. Gordo build me up carefully with a big base and with a focus on:
He also made me ready for my first Ultraman and taught me how to survive when things went epic on my mind and body. One key was the ability to train on a daily basis and keep it rolling from week to month to year. For my 2011 season I ended up with 750 hours total with a core week of 12-15 hour and a big build up before Ultraman. Averaging 12-15 hours may not seem like much, but it's a high number when you look at the total for the year. Without my consistency it would not have been possible to crank up going into my big race. If I add bit of smart planning on daily basis I will also hit that 750 hour number for 2012. Gordo and EC taught me how to do it.
But now I have a new coach. What's changed?
My good friend Sue Aquila made the same coaching change as me. She said it wisely:
“My best description would be that Gordo built a really big house and Marilyn is now doing the interior decorating. She is renovating and seeing where we can make additions. I won’t give away the secret sauce but I can say my hard workouts are really hard and my easy workouts are really easy. 'Volume' continues to be high.”
One thing I noticed with my new coach was that to be able to rock my key sessions I have to go easy on my recovery days. There is no room for anything else. I feel faster, better and stronger with the new training regime, but it took me some time to get my head around some of her harder workouts. My body started to adapt after four weeks, but more importantly I think the big house Gordo built up made it possible for Marilyn to decorate and move things around a bit with the harder sessions. There are still some workouts that cause my head to spin and it is not always easy to get through them, but with Marilyn it seems like the keys are:
It could be that I don’t have the big picture yet, but that is how it feels so far.
So what's the main difference between these two great coaches? I don’t think there is any major difference. Gordo did the base and Marilyn therefore has the possibility to do more of the "fun."
The main difference so far has been in my own motivation -- with the coaching change, my training took a bit of a new direction and reinvigorated me. And there is a lot of confidence in the fact that I still belong to EC and that Gordo still keeps an eye on me!
And for those wondering, I'm back racing UM UK in September. Why? With some of these sessions from Marilyn, I keep asking myself that question as well. I guess the answer will come to me soon.
Jan Hugo is a Norwegian triathlete and longtime EC team member. He finished second in the inaugural Ultraman UK.