Brendan completed his debut Marathon in 2:15 and...

10.17.16

Congrats Rob! Second overall at the U.S. Open...

10.17.16

Congratulations Lucus Kesterson for completing you...

10.17.16

Three ECo athletes nailed their races at Ironman...

10.10.16

If you are interested in taking your athletic performance to the next level - whether that next level is beginning a training program for the first time, improving your personal best time, winning your age group, or turning professional - you came to the right place.

Joe Company, PhD founded ECo in 2010, but prior to this he coached at the high school and collegiate level, worked with Olympic training programs, and worked with a number of high-performance athletes, scientists, researchers, and coaches.  Joe began consulting endurance athletes in 2002, but as he evolved in his education and experience, he wanted to make his expertise available to more people.  ECo is the product of Joe's experience.

Endurance Company coaches and partners are carefully selected to provide quality coaching, teaching, information, and advice. All ECo coaches provide a valuable combination of education, practical experience, and knowledge in Joe's training philosophies.  Endurance Company coaches apply these key principles to provide unparalleled, customized training programs for all abilities of athletes. 

Our mission is make your training and racing experience as rewarding as possible. The goal is to help you become a healthy, successful, complete athlete by providing a training plan that helps you reach your goals while maintaining balance in your life.

In addition to custom training plans, we offer laboratory bike and run VO2max and lactate testing as well as 'field testing' for bike power. These tests allow unparalleled optimization of your training plan.

It is time to take the guesswork out of your training!

 

Philosophy
Philosophical musings about all things training, racing, life...

Nutrition
Nutrition just might be the 4th discipline.
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Scientific articles to maximizing your endurance.
Training
Specific workouts to enhance your performance.

 

  • RT @MKovacsPhD: Athlete with no fear. Love this... https://t.co/enswqkhzOL 13 hours 46 min ago
  • RT @sweatscience: 45 years later, Ryun, Lindgren, Schul et al. head back to Jack Daniels' lab for more testing. Fascinating stuff: https://… 13 hours 49 min ago
  • Another Monday shout-out to #ECoAthletes! They continue to impress me with their improvement… https://t.co/H7jXEvpP8H 20 hours 57 min ago

Endurance Company's ATHLETE MASTERY PROGRAM focuses on teaching and empowering children to learn fundamental skills that will serve them in any sport and serve them for their entire life.

 

 

 

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Measure to Excel

In the January 26-27, 2014 Wall Street Journal, Bill Gates wrote an article titled, "My Plan To Fix The World’s Biggest Problems – Measure Them!"  The take home message was:  without feedback from precise measurements, any progress is destined to be “rare and erratic.”  Gates writes, “You can achieve incredible progress if you set a clear goal and find a measure that will drive progress toward that goal.”  

     By making measurements, we are able to identify a problem or weakness, construct and implement a plan to fix this problem or weakness, and repeat measurements to see if the plan is working.  Without precise measurements, how could you identify a problem?  And how would you know if you were making any difference?

     Now, I’m not trying to fix the World’s biggest problems, although one could argue that inactivity is one of The United States’ biggest problems.  My job is to maximize performance and to help folks reach their athletic potential. Therefore, I investigate every means to improve performance, which includes using as many measurement tools as I can.

     While I ultimately rely on my gut and intuition to guide an athlete, I believe in data-driven decisions.  I encourage my athletes to use available technology like GPS, heart rate, power meters, and recovery analysis software.  I insist they upload the data so I can analyze it.  I rely on this data to set clear goals and make informed decisions to help them reach their goals. 

     I recently attended a meeting where we spent two days discussing how to apply science and technology to lead to improved athletic performance.  This meeting highlighted the vast array of tools that are currently available to collect and analyze data.  But the meeting also stressed the challenges in applying this data to a training program in a practical way.  There was way more information presented at this meeting than I can summarize in this article, so here are some of the take-home messages:

 

1. We can measure A LOT of data, but is it useful? 

     The challenge lies in translating data into performance by making sense of the data we can use and filtering out unnecessary data we can’t use. 

     Data doesn’t mean anything unless you know what it means!  This is where the coach helps the athlete; the coach does the interpretation and filtering.   This isn’t to imply that interpretation is easy.  The amount of data we collect is overwhelming and can be difficult to analyze.  Now there are complex analysis tools that often require computers and advanced algorithms.  Still, analysis tools are still decades behind our ability to collect data.

     We also need to be careful when interpreting the data, especially for athletes.  For example, normal clinical values don't compare to elite athletes. Two examples: 1) rugby players’ muscle damage markers after a game are similar to 3rd degree burn victims, and 2) markers associated with cardiac damage are elevated for 72 hours after a marathon.  If a physician looked at the data and didn’t know that the patient was an athlete, they may conclude they are dealing with a burn victim or a patient who just suffered a heart attack, when in reality, they are dealing with an athlete who just finished a competitive event.  

 

2. True progress is quantified only if we collect data over time.

     Technology is constantly being developed to understand how the athlete is responding to stress (training).  It is important to incorporate labs tests along with field-testing to repeat measurements on a particular marker (40-yard time, VO2 max, resting heart rate, etc.). These markers serve as useful data for the coach AND targets for the athlete to work on (goals).  The coach’s job is to apply stress to the athlete and hope that over time "that" particular marker improves.  And, the best way to determine if you are improving is to compare measurements of various markers over time. 

Athlete Performs -> Coach Observes -> Performance is analyzed -> Coach plans -> Coach Executes -> start over with Athlete Performs…

 

3.  Know the learning style of the athlete and teach (coach) to their learning style.  

     Everyone learns differently.  It is the coach’s job to educate the athlete appropriately.  The more the athlete knows and understands the training and the technology, the better chance for success.  This includes educating the athlete about tools and gadgets that enhance data collection and convincing the athlete to use these tools in training. 

     With the amount of information and technology available, the only competitive advantage you can gain is to learn faster than your opponent.  The willingness to learn and adapt to these tools may be the difference between getting a Kona spot and being off the podium. 

 

4.  Adherence is a major obstacle to data/technology.  

     This is true for athletes as well as coaches.  A coach cannot make precise measurements if the athlete doesn’t use available technology.  On the other hand, an athlete can make lots of measurements, but it is wasted if the coach will not use the data to maximize the training.

Until recently, coaches relied solely on perception. 
     Coach:    “That guy is working hard” 
     Trainer:   “How do you know?” 
     Coach:    “Look, he is sweating and breathing hard.” 

     Now coaches work with numbers/data/outcome measurements and compete with other coaches to show that “their” coaching method is the best.   This is a win-win for the coach and athlete.  Coaches are able to quantify their training strategy, and athletes are able to benefit from the coaches desire to improve the athlete’s numbers. 

 

5.  Athletes need feedback to continue participating in providing data.  

     Without feedback, why would the athlete go to the trouble of using a power meter, wearing an accelerometer, or filling out questionnaires if they never see the benefit?  My job as a coach is to not only collect and analyze the data, but also to explain the data to the athlete so they can begin to, as Bill Gates said in the Wall Street Journal, “set a clear goal and find a measure that will drive progress toward that goal.”

     With all of the improvements in performance knowledge, it is crazy not to take advantage of science and technology.  The data-driven, coached athlete gains a HUGE advantage.  The athlete doesn’t need to spend their time learning about the technology or interpreting the data.  They put their trust in the coach and put their time into the training.

 


Endurance Company LLC
Joe Company
(573) 326-9618
joe@endurancecompany.com


 

 

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