It is test time. No cheating, no looking at each other's work. You will not get a redo, this is pass or fail.
It is time to have a little pause and gain some perspective and insight with our week ahead of assessments. As most of you will be well aware, we don’t put massive weight or emphasis on these sessions, at least in terms of defining success of the programming. They represent a chance to pause and gain perspective. How is fatigue? Where is my maximal steady state right now? How has my training been going?
I like these checkpoints quarterly, but the perspective should elevate well beyond the three mini-assessments we repeat each time. There is no better example than the concurrent performance challenge we are hosting currently, all anchored in the supporting habits. Putting context around your journey, and looking for insights can arrive from multiple areas. The assessments are a piece of the puzzle. With these in mind, go into each with an open mind, and I encourage you to review the video to gain my insights and perspective on assessment week generally. With this in mind, a few important elements for this week of assessments:
- Embrace the fireworks. To celebrate July 4, we are mapping over the traditional run assessment to invite you to run a 5km time-trial or local race this weekend. As I am asked annually whether ‘you celebrate July 4th in Britain’, I will get on board and ask all Purple Patch athletes globally to have fun and hit a 5km running time-trial this weekend. A good chance to let rip on the running speed, and see where it is at.
- Join me live for the bike assessment. Last quarter we tried something. I coached a ramping protocol live bike FTP assessment on the video-coached class. I had no idea how it would go, but you know what? It is fun and empowering. It was a cracking session, and high value to attendees. We nailed it, and will do it again. If time and schedule allows, join me for the bike assessment this Thursday (7 am PST).
- No VOD for the bike assessment -- yet. I will be recording the session -- but we don’t have a Video-On-Demand FTP assessment yet. It is a toughie to record, with no fixed ‘ending’, so we are working on it! Regular programming for that session -- if unable to attend live.
- We transition to using -- over building -- core fitness. You may not be at your prime race fitness yet, but the general programming now transitions from ‘building physiology’ toward ‘building race readiness’. For the well-trained athletes, who have been consistent since the turn of the year, we typically see a flatlining of maximal steady state at this part of the year. What improves is resilience, and the percentage level of that maximal state that you can hold for an extended (race duration) period of time. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking a stubborn FTP level is a sign of inactivity on other physiological and muscular resilience needed for high performance.
We would love to hear how it all goes over the coming week, and get primed for a fun 5km best effort over the July 4 weekend. I will be chugging along as hard as I can, looking like a donkey dipped in cement as usual. Joining me?