If there was a quiz question asking if triathlon or running was an individual sport, then the expected answer may well be a definite ‘yes’! Triathlon and running are undertaken by individuals, over various distances. There are the options for relays (for triathlon, these may be different individuals undertaking the different components or individual relay team members undertaking all three disciplines on a rotation) but ultimately both are a test of an individual against the clock or fellow competitor.
Whilst a triathlon or running event is dependent on the performance of an individual, the preparation for an individual to get to that point will have taken support. The support during preparation and training may well be a family member accepting ‘time away’ but this still leaves the athlete to undertake the training ‘alone’. Training alone can be a fantastic escape from the stresses of work and prepare athletes mentally. However, training with support can convert a training session from a ‘got-to-do’ task to a completely different ‘rich and enjoyable’ task.
At Tri and Run we consider the support of our athletes a top priority. The support may be in the form of regular ‘catch ups’ (using various ways including virtual sessions) whereby elements of the training are shared as well as the ‘add-on’ elements of tips and shared experiences, such as group virtual S&C sessions. Where possible we (Tri & Run coaches) include face-to-face sessions for supporting both training and events of our athletes. These training sessions can be on a 1-2-1 basis to target specific areas for example supporting our athletes to develop confidence in a skill, such as a cycling technique, or working with athletes on developing their running technique.
At Tri and Run, we now have regular group training sessions – this followed our first highly successful group event (A grand day out, blog). Such group training sessions allow our athletes to experience new skills (such as off-road running) and an opportunity to share experiences between coaches and athletes. Training with others can provide that much needed company to push yourself out of your ‘comfort zone’ and give individuals confidence, which is lacking in a solo environment. This new-found confidence can then aid the athlete in progressing their training, converting a ‘got-to-do’ solo training session into a recognised beneficial training session and developing the mental as well as physical aspect of the session. Other skills (such as map reading) and alternative areas are also included in our group sessions. This provides athletes with skills and confidence in other areas, widening the options for future training sessions.
At Tri and Run, we think of all our athletes as members of our team – we’re in this together and supporting individuals in achieving great things.