10 days ago I attended the Training Peaks Endurance Coaching Summit in Boulder, Colorado. As usual they had some excellent speakers and below are some of the gems of information that I picked up. I don’t have enough space here to give the full context, so maybe I’ll do that in future posts but if you need more then just post your questions or comments below or one my Facebook page HERE

Dr Stacy Sims – author of ROAR

“Women are not small men” – obvious but often overlooked by coaches, men, some women and most research

Protein and post training nutrition – females need 50-100% more than men after hard training

Post menopause, female athletes should probably do less LSD training and more LHS (Lift heavy shit). This will help them gain more muscle mass and reduce body fat.

Low carb/high fat is much less effective for female athletes

Christie Aschwanden – author of Good To Go

Recovery – many of the current popular methods are based on sketchy research. Often they work due to ‘placebo’. Maybe inflatable boots are effective because they force you to lie still for 30 minutes, and this alone could have as much benefit as the massage they’re providing,

Sleep is by far the best recovery tool. Don’t invest money in ‘product’ until you have this sorted.

Best measure of recovery – resting heart rate, HRV? Neither. They are both good but the best is Mood or Motivation to Train. E.g if you feel tired or lack motivation to train, try getting more rest.

Andy Blow Precision Hydration

Application of science is not binary.  Drink to plan, or drink to thirst?  Both will work but you must have context.  The same person might need a different hydration prescription depending on the environment, duration, and history.

Ryan Kohler – Managing Energy in Endurance Athletes

Low Energy Availability (LEA) is inadequacy of energy intake to support range of functions for optimal health (this comes first…always) and performance.  It can affect all athletes, not just those with disordered eating.

Carbohydrates are important (more so for females – see notes above for Stacy Sims)

Multi session days can be especially challenging.

Weekly planning of work, training and nutrition might be required for those with complex timetables.

Eney JonesSwim Coach

“Find a swim style/stroke that works for you”.  IMHO, Swim Smooth and TI both work well but maybe too rigid for many swimmers.

Alex Hutchinson – author of Endure

“Curiously Elastic Limits of Endurance” – or “what limits us?”

Brain sets the limits – how do you overcome the decision to slow or stop? Manipulate this by creating a good environment.

Harness the pack – often you can run faster/train harder around others

Rest your Brain – 90’ in front of PC creates as much fatigue as 100 drop squats. Before key sessions/events consider ‘mental taper’ as well as ‘physical taper’.

Build Your Belief – Motivational self talk really works (although you must have the physical tools as well). A carthorse can’t talk himself into being a racehorse.

Smile – think Chrissie. Lucy Gossage, Natascha Badmann – all prolific winners, all smiling. Try it. The effects are way better than scowling.

Corinne Malcolm – Staying Cool

Performance drops in the heat. When temps increase from 11 – 24c (50-75F) marathon times for recreational athletes can slow by 10%.

Proper acclimatisation takes 7-10 days, but 75% takes place in first 4-6 days.

Many ways to do this without living in your racing environment, but none are perfect.

Sauna protocols work well and maybe better than heat chamber (where training intensity is compromised) email me for more details on sauna protocols if you need them.