Viewing 19 posts - 1 through 19 (of 19 total)
  • Anyone used a coach/trainer, feedback appreciated
  • Premier Icon Mbnut
    Free Member

    Thinking about seeing if I can push my levels up a bit.

    My current levels are not bad but not good.

    I’m getting on a bit and I’m still improving, would like to continue doing so for as long as possible.

    So I’m thinking coaching might give me some focus and both raise and extend my game.

    Any feedback on your experiences would be appreciated.

    I’m not well off so need to be sure before I part with my hard earned


    Oh, thinking trail/Enduro type riding.

    Edit I’m thinking more physical, mental than skills training days.


    Premier Icon krixmeister
    Full Member

    Currently using one, for the last year or so, and has made a HUGE (and positive) difference to my training and performance in recent races. For me, it was having the accountability and structure. Usual caveats – you have to find a coach you like, and of course agree with him/her what you are hoping to achieve.

    Premier Icon vdubber67
    Free Member

    Disclaimer: I’m totally biased here, as I run a cycling coaching business.

    That said, I have been coached myself for about 10 years now as well. The single best investment I ever made in my cycling, especially if you are going to race a bike. Being coached myself encouraged me to get qualified and begin to coach others.

    Whether coaching is right for you personally is another matter. It 100% depends on what you’re trying to achieve when you say ‘get better’.

    Is that faster, stronger? Happier?

    Whether coaching will work for you will depend on the coach too.

    Best advice would be to be clear on your goals before you speak to anyone.

    I won’t do a shameless plug for my business, but drop me a line on if you want a link to my site.


    Premier Icon jamesmio
    Free Member

    Yes. And yes – highly recommended.

    I’ve had a few days coaching over the years, but by far the best were with Jess @ RideLines (Innerleithen) and Frazer McCubbing down here at Ae. Both brought my riding and confidence on leaps and bounds with one session each so I’d imagine regular sessions with the same coach would work wonders.

    *Disclaimer – Frazer’s both a mate and a client, but having been out on a coaching day with him, I’d recommend him regardless.

    Premier Icon Mbnut
    Free Member

    Thanks for the replies.

    As someone that has always advocated riders to invest in themselves and not just there kit by getting skills coaching I am pretty set on going ahead with this.

    My only concern is that it might take the joy out of riding but I think that is something I’ll just have to gauge as I go and make choices accordingly.

    I’m based in the SE and would welcome any recommendations.


    Premier Icon johnw1984
    Full Member

    In no way does it take the joy out of riding. If anything, it enhances it! Did a day with Jedi a couple of years ago and it was a real eye opener.

    I’d only been on a bike for about a year and was getting more confident and learning, but that day really started me on a better path.

    Going to book another one next year and make a weekend of it down south.

    Premier Icon sharkattack
    Free Member

    Can I hire someone to drag me out of bed, dress me in my stupid MTB outfit and drive me to a trail?

    I think that’s what it would take to get me back out there at the minute.

    Premier Icon Eddie Fiola
    Free Member

    Ive used a coach for the best part of 20 years, it is definitely worth doing. It means when you ride a bike you have a purpose rather than just junk miles.
    Although it can be expensive and they make you train your weak points (so the bits you hate) It makes a huge difference to your riding but it made me a solo rider as i was doing specific things so too fast for some rides too slow for others.

    Good luck

    Premier Icon dakuan
    Free Member

    Are you talking about gym training then?

    If so, yes it will make a drastic difference….if you commit to the work in between the PT sessions. Around 3 hours a week in the gym, no more if you are new to the gym, you’ll burn out / get injured / not see the benefits, maybe a bit more if you are used to it.

    If you are newish to the gym, you probably dont need a cycling specific program, general strength and conditioning will be fine. Seeing the PT weekly for the 1st month is good to get on top of you form and all the movements you’ll be doing on your own. 2nd month you can see the PT once every other week while you do the workouts they set for you. After that you can go down to monthly. Personally I like to do every other week as i push myself further that way.

    Other things to bear in mind:

    It’ll take weeks and months for the full benefits to come through. There are no quick fixes.

    Your diet is as big a factor as anything else. Its not like you need a nutritionist to go with it, but if you are on the beers and burgers all the time you’ll get less out of it.

    Initially, a big uptick in training will *reduce* your cycling performance. Your body will be tired from the shock of it all (see earlier comment about over training). Don’t worry, when you do get used to the training volume, you’ll really really notice it.

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Full Member

    What sort of level are you coming from? If you’re racing at the moment, training on zwift or TR here and there but want to step it up then a coach makes perfect sense. If it’s more you’re weekend fit then a coach might still work, but it would be taking a large step that you could prob make on your own (by racing and getting on zwift etc).

    Think you need a particular race series or event as a target as proper structured training on the bike is miles too hard to just do for the sake of it.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    I’m often tempted, then read done of of Kryton’s posts about how he’s going to drive a couple of hours to a venue for a race, pay entry fees and then take it easy as his coach says it’s a long-slow ride day. That’s just doubling down on the costs and skipping the part that’s supposed to be the reason you’re doing it for!

    Premier Icon ferrals
    Free Member

    I’ve often thought about it, but I’ve always assumed you need a power meter to be able to follow coached training plans properly.
    If you havent done so already I’d be tempted to try and self coach uing one of th BC plans or Zwift/Trainerroad. Trainerroad now have a ‘train outside option whihc gives you suggested RPEs if you dont have a power meter or – I think – a way of sending the required power to your garmin to follow outside

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    I’m often tempted, then read done of of Kryton’s posts about how he’s going to drive a couple of hours to a venue for a race, pay entry fees and then take it easy as his coach says it’s a long-slow ride day. That’s just doubling down on the costs and skipping the part that’s supposed to be the reason you’re doing it for!

    Thats not all the time though, thats so I can stay in a race environmentent, practice my prep before it matters and measure how effective my Zone 2 is against the race crowd.  It also provides a purpose and drive to finish the allotted time.   I do this – and other people could – without paying for races either.  Part of the race process is being super cool and organised at the beginning to remain unflustered.

    So here’s my take which varies from the above a little.

    Yes it gives you purpose, outside objectivity, accountability and often the coach much more effort, fatigue, nutrition and planning experience than you have.  You will become fitter and stronger and this makes a huge difference more easily measurable against your day to day mates – don’t fall into the coaching=places measure trap that I did, because there are many many variables to where you place in a race.

    You can still “enjoy” social rides and training rides depending on you’re mentality.  I admit to whinging a lot on here, as I’ve been through my journey, but like any kind of internet review you will likely see here more “bad news” than good news.

    Finally, I learned only recently that coaches are a dialogue not a monologue.  There are stresses in your life other than training stresses that will affect your performance in workouts; your coach is not in the room with you, does not know how you feel physically or mentality – its important to communicate with your coach telling them this.

    In my example, in the last 2 years we found out I wasn’t suited to the races I was doing (XCO) and have changed training an events to longer distance success.   I recently dictated to my coach I needed more ad hoc ride time off road, that high carb wasn’t working for me, and I need some weight loss to feel comfortable – guess what, 4 weeks into a new plan and I’m having great results in all of that.

    Lastly, I haven’t experienced the explosive new me that others allude, my progress has been more gradual but I am lighter, stronger and have greater endurance than I used to have – it works.

    Premier Icon scud
    Full Member

    For the winter to get stronger and raise FTP with some HIIT work, if you have the discipline to go to the gym 3 times a week and turbo (or on bike) twice a week, then i would recommend this:

    12 Week Mountain Bike Training Programme

    It is hard going, but i feel a lot better for it, then if you still want to improve look at a physical coach in the spring/ summer if you have specific race goals?

    Premier Icon Mbnut
    Free Member

    Lots of great replies there… thanks for taking the time to write them.

    Going ahead and looking forward to the challenge.


    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    It is hard going

    Is a good point, with a coach there’s never really an easy session so be prepared for that – he says about to go out in the howling wind for 3 hours….

    Premier Icon Mbnut
    Free Member


    I go out in all sorts….. heading out now too.

    It needs to be tough, easy bores me.

    Premier Icon gravesendgrunt
    Free Member

    Shame I didn’t stay in Wales another day,I don’t think you would of be bored 🙂

    Premier Icon mccraque
    Full Member

    When I did the SDW double in the summer, I got some great advice from Dan @ Progressive Cycle Coaching ( ) – really decent coaching and a really good guy too. Worth a shout if just to talk through your goals and ambitions and take it from there.

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