How long have you been involved in triathlon?
My addiction to triathlon started in 2011, I reluctantly entered the Rossendale Triathlon, I say reluctantly because even though I could ride a bike and had started to do a bit of casual running I had to learn to swim, pretty much from scratch. Garrie was one of the main organisers behind the Triathlon and as we were sponsoring the event he thought it was a ‘good idea’ for me to enter, I still can’t forget everyone looking at me as I rolled up with race number 1, trust me it was no indication of the result. Anyway I learned to swim (of sorts) and eventually completed my very first Triathlon, the rest as they say is history.
Why did you decide to get a coach?
The thing about Triathlon is that everyone you meet that has completed a race, whether it’s a sprint, olympic, middle distance or IronMan has got so much advice to give and that can be a good thing, however, I wanted to improve and heard about people training from books, but also heard them complaining they weren’t making the gains they wanted. I spoke with Garrie and asked if he’d train me as I knew I would need a flexible plan and also more emphasis on certain areas so having a coach seemed to be the best option for me.
How did you come to hear about Peak XV Coaching?
We’ve worked together on quite a few projects .
What was the discipline you needed to focus on?
Swimming mainly and some running, I started off doing the breaststroke as this was to me the easiest stroke to learn from scratch, however Garrie soon had me learning the crawl and this has improved my swim times significantly, especially during the longer races, he worked hard on my swim coaching and got me to knock 23 minutes off my second IM swim
What were your goals for 2015?
Complete my fourth IMUK, compete in a few trail marathons and triathlons
How did the coaching you received help you achieve your goal?
The coaching I received made me be disciplined and prevent doing myself a mischief by over training!
How would you describe the coaching support that you received?
The coaching I receive from Garrie works around everything I need it to, the plans take into consideration work and home which helps you keep on track, if at any time you don’t understand anything or need to change your plan for whatever reason then you can just Text him and he’ll sort it out. He can be a bit blunt sometimes but you’ll get used to him.
What were your goals for 2016 ?
To do the Windermere X Triathlon and also hoping to complete my 5th IMUK 2 weeks after
Did you achieve them?
Yes I completed one of the toughest triathlons and managed to breeze my way through IMUK two weeks later.
Darren has a great work ethic. In fact when coaching Darren it’s a case of ensuring that he doesn’t overtrain. So far he has managed to maintain a high volume training load without any serious injuries. Early on in our coaching relationship it took a while to get the message across that more is not always better. In fact having a rest day wouldn’t mean that he lost all his fitness. This measured approach to his training plan has meant he has been able to complete each of the Bolton Ironman events.
Whilst Darren’s full on attitude to training (where generally the more effort you put into it the better the results) has helped his cycling and running, his swimming required a different approach. One which realised that learning to swim needs patience and time. Like a lot of new swimmers Darren was often bombarded with differing advice from a wide variety of people. This led to confusion and a weird hybrid of a stroke. With a few Peak XV Squad Sessions Darren was able to focus on 3 or 4 key things to correct his stroke and this led to a marked improvement.
For 2016 Darren has taken on the ambitious challenge of 2 challenging Ironman Distance races within 2 weeks!