This year I agreed to work with my first triathlete. She is 28 years old, started her own business and is a bundle of energy. She also happens to be a very talented athlete. We first started working together about 8.5 weeks ago. I asked her to stretch her boundaries a bit and come over to the “data” dark side.
It turned out to be a very dark side for her. Way too dark. She is not comfortable using data as a parameter and was soon frustrated and discouraged by the process. How did she express this frustration? She disappeared. I stopped getting updates and thoughts on her training. I realized that I was not the right fit for her and offered to step aside for a plan that better suited her needs and travel schedule.
She immediately responded with a resolute no and an explanation about what had happened inside her head. She asked me to reassure her. I realized this is one of those moments of truth for her and for me. I responded the only way I knew how. I wrote two lines:
How do I teach her to reassure herself?
*I help her to learn to read the signals of her body.
*I help her to understand the difference between work and stroking our egos.
*I help her to successfully push her limits just a bit farther away. All those bits eventually equal bytes of improvement.
*I help her to understand that backing off is about getting ready to do more work.
*I help her to understand that training is not just a piece of your life but about how you are going to choose to live your life.
*I encourage her to find the strength from a session well done and use that strength to build a pillar from which to leap.
Reassurance is really about embracing the confidence of having done the work and being prepared for the challenge. I am happy to say that she is starting to find the confidence and embracing the bits. Today I saw a more confident woman and a woman with a big byte.