[Nick's Training Manual] Lesson 4: If you don't follow a plan, you can easily trash your legs for weeks.

[Nick's Training Manual] Lesson 4: If you don't follow a plan, you can easily trash your legs for weeks.

One of the most common questions I get is: how do I actually use Stryd to guide my training?

So, today I want to discuss how to choose a power training plan. When you are training solo, it's sometimes difficult to stay motivated and accountable. This becomes even more important as you balance training with a full-time job and other responsibilities. A training plan is a solid first step. The good news is that finding a training plan, especially one that incorporates power, is easier than ever. Stryd's PowerCenter is free and is a great place to quickly get started with a plan. Simply go to Stryd's homepage, scroll to the bottom, and select a plan for your event.

There are also some great plans around the web. Jim Vance, who wrote the book on Run Power, has multiple training plans that have enabled Ben Kanute to become one of the fastest triathletes on the planet. Other options include D3 Multisport Power Plans, Peter Lijten Power-Based ½ and Full Marathon Plans, and 80/20 Run Plans. Feel free to email me at anytime and ask me about these or other options out there.

A couple important things to remember as your choose and work with your training plan:

Log Your Data. In order to follow a training plan, you need to log your runs. There are a number of platforms that do this well. One good example is Final Surge, which is free for athletes. Stryd now automatically syncs your run power with Final Surge, making it that much easier to manage and analyze your runs.

Training Plans Aren't Set In Stone. If you travel or get sick, your plan needs to change as well. If you have a coach, then work with your coach to update the training plan so that you don't feel like you're playing catch up. If you are coaching yourself, then use your best judgement and prioritize your health and rest, rather than worrying about lost fitness. It is much better to get to the starting line 70% of max fitness and at 100% health, rather than the opposite.

Don't Start With Too Much, Too Fast. I made this mistake just a couple of months ago. In college, I was able to bike 360 watts for 20 minutes on little sleep. Prior to moving to Boulder, I had taken 6 months off from cycling. Eager to get back into it, I did a 1 hour FTP test and managed to inflame my patellar tendon. This is true for running as well. The day I moved to Boulder, I jumped in a 10k and ran 36:24 at the Fortitude 10k, a day after driving 15+ hours from Oregon and not running for a month. While the time was nice, my legs were trashed for weeks afterwards. Both of these cases demonstrate the importance of 1) having a training plan and not winging it and 2) starting with the right amount of volume and not overdoing it at the beginning.

So, there you have it. There are some good training plans out there that will enable you to hit your goals.

For those of you that have used a training plan to hit your goals, what are some things you have learned from following and adjusting a training plan? Shoot me an email at nick@stryd.com, so I can share the best knowledge with the rest of the Stryd Community.

In my next post, I will talk about how you can quickly analyze your workouts in PowerCenter and the Stryd mobile app.

Have a good rest of the week.