If experience is the best teacher, then the best teacher is the one with the most experience.
ABOUT YOUR COACH
Mark Allen is the 6x IRONMAN Triathlon World Champion, and the first winner of the ITU Olympic Distance World Championship. Over the course of his racing career he maintained a 90% average in top-three finishes and won an unprecedented twenty-one straight multi-sport events over all distances and disciplines. He was named Triathlete of the Year six times by Triathlete magazine, and Outside magazine dubbed him "The World's Fittest Man." Allen was inducted into the Ironman Triathlon Hall of Fame, the USAT Hall of Fame and the ITU Hall of Fame. Recently he was voted "The Greatest American Triathlete Of All Time" in a poll conducted by the IRONMAN organization, as well as "The Greatest Endurance Athlete Of All Time" in a poll conducted by ESPN.
HOW WE COACH
After 30 years in endurance sports, and having won every major title in triathlon during that time, I can say that there are two things I know to be certain. The first is that you can't do it alone, and life is a lot more complicated today than when it finally occcurred to me that I needed a coach in 1988. The second is something I think is far more important than what you put in your training log, or what your placing was at the end of the day. It's the experience of completing a challenge, of finishing what your started no matter how many times you had to start over. That's what you'll remember long after the ink is faded off a t-shirt.
Before I took my first steps in training each season I would map out where I wanted to be at the end of it. That had two levels. The first was to pick my key important races and lock them into my calendar. In general I would have three main races that I would target. One would be an important triathlon in the last spring that really got me back into training. Many years this target was the Nice International Triathlon in early June. The second would be another key event in the middle or later part of the summer that was another key destination that I would peak for. It was usually a shift in gears and targeted a high profile Olympic distance event. The third and final race that I would target was the biggest race of my season in the fall that would be in the back of my mind the entire way through the season. For me this was always the Ironman in Hawaii.
To read the new "40 STORIES" series about 40 of the most personal and compelling stories told by the athletes who were there go to: http://blog.markallencoaching.com