The basic skills of communication and evaluation are highly valuable, when it comes to the coach-athlete relation and how strong a bond they will get during the training process.
First of all, simple communication skills like……
Rating the perceived exertion after a training session (e.g. on a scale from 1-10 in Training Peaks).
Indicate how the training felt on your body physically and mentally (e.g. with a ‘smiley’ in Training Peaks).
Give a short but precise post-workout comment.
…….makes a huge different on how your coach understands what’s going on during the training process.
One thing is what the data shows, another thing is how you fell the training strain on your body. Putting the data and the feel together provides a much deeper understanding of what is going on in the moment, how to plan forward and adjust along the way.
Second of all, self-assessment is a very important tool for an athlete to check-in frequently with the body physically and mentally. Thus, feel and consider the physical responses to different training loads, and how the body mentally copes with the training stress.
Further the act of evaluating and rating a session just after it has been completed is a good way to finish of the session and conclude:
Did everything go as planned and with the intended outcome, or did something go wrong?
Did you learn something new or gained some insights?
Maybe you finally found the way to execute a specific set of intervals correctly, or your energy intake did help you to maintain intensity (and not to bonk) during a long ride.
So make sure to learn from your training sessions. Make a note and take the knowledge on to the next session. By doing so, you will gain awareness, knowledge and insight into your training process and how you cope, learn and respond along the way!
Make the skill of communication and evaluation a fixed part of your training regime. Then you will excel even more as an athlete.
Your coach will thank you big time, as he/she gets valuable information that goes beyond the data!