My Metaphorical Workout Toolbox
One of the most valuable items I have as a coach is my workout toolbox. This is a listing of all the workouts I use as a coach and notes about when, where, why and how to use each to its maximum effectiveness.
I have a rather large toolbox and am always seeking ways to improve and expand it. I am constantly reading, thinking, analyzing and talking with other coaches and runners about the various tools used in training. But I am also picky about what is in my toolbox, so I have some very stringent criteria that must be met before a workout is added. Before a workout is added to my tool box I must have a thorough understanding of:
- The basic physiology of the workout – what systems does it work and how
- When to use the workout
- How to best execute the workout
- Any variations of the workout and how do they differ from each other
- How effective is the workout at producing results
The sources for workouts are almost endless. It is bound only by resources and imagination. The sources of the workouts currently in my toolbox include: personal experience as a runner, experiences as a coach, the experiences of friends and colleagues, through reading articles, books and research reports, by talking with other coaches and runners, and hours of research, analyzing and brainstorming.
I am also not afraid to tweak workouts once they are in the toolbox. I am always seeking ways to improve them and make them more effective or identifying new variations to be used in certain circumstances. As new information or research is available, and as experience with each workout grows, I may modify or expand a workout in the toolbox or add a new workout. I think my toolbox has been through the fire and proven to be extremely effective, but I am never satisfied with that, I want it to be even better and will always work to make improvements to it. As a coach I want to have the most effective, bad-ass toolbox in the business, so I can be the most effective coach I can possibly be at helping runners reach their goals and maximum potential in the sport.
Organizing the Toolbox
My tool box is organized into 2 tiers. The first tier is general workout category based on the primary purpose of the workout.
Then under this first tier is a second tier based on the prevalence of the workout in terms of how often and when it can and should be used. This tier is broken up into:
- Staple Workouts
- Breakout Workouts
- Specialty Workouts
Sharing My Toolbox
On August 1st, I will be launching a new retail page to my coaching services and resource website mprunning.com. On this page I will be offering to share a substantial piece of my toolbox with you, and in a detailed way beyond what is found on my websites or blog, through a product entitled:
Coach Hadley’s Workout Toolbox
This offering will include:
- Detailed notes, instructions and tips on the top 18 workouts in my toolbox.
- Training pace charts so that you can easily determine the correct pace ranges to use for each workout based on your (or your athlete’s) current fitness level
- All organized on to 8” x 5” note cards, laminated, so they can easily be taken to workout sites to be used and referred to.