What’s Your Return on Investment (ROI) with Your Training Plan?

Posted on 28 January 2016

How often do you think about your return on investment (ROI) with respect to your training plan and goals? We may know our return on investment from college tuition spend, mutual fund portfolio, non-financial time with a favorite non-profit organization, mentoring a child, but consider evaluating your training plan for your given sport with respect to ROI may be impactful to change/shift for better results.

I have coached and consulted with athletes for over 25 years with regards to training for specific endurance events and in many cases an over-riding question is “what can I adjust to improve my personal performances”.   There are always the key questions related to the overall plan, periodization, MAF training (maximum aerobic function – Dr. Phil Maffetone), LSD, intervals, peak weeks, taper, on and on!


Consider looking at your training plan no matter what phase or season you are in and just focus on the 1 to 2 key workouts above anything else on the weekly calendar. With my coaching clients, we always adhere to a pattern of two KEY objectives for the week, which always has a positive impact on the training ROI:

1.  Complete 80% of all workouts for the week (stuff happens in life and for most individuals, completing 80% will enhance success of the target goal).

2.  Complete the 2 most important workouts for the week even if you miss several other daily workouts. This is not always the long run or the long bike – it might be a strength session, short aerobic run, short brick session, long interval, etc.

So many times, we all have unrealistic expectations – training 20-25 hours a week for an extended period of time is extremely difficult to balance especially if it’s not our profession! Consider the potential benefit of not always having the most important workout of the week being the long slow run or bike. Even if the Long, slow distance training incorporates a set of fatigued intervals or increased pace it may not provide the best ROI to your goals.

Insanity is not just the P90X interval based workout – as we have all heard so often it’s best described by Einstein’s famous quote “Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. Consider making one change not 50 changes to your training plan that will have a ROI impact.

For example, a strength session to improve power on the bike with plyometric exercises for an extended period of time (and not missing for example a 2x a week goal) will have positive ROI – short amount of time and increased strength. This could include a set of just the following – 2 sets of 10 each:

  1. Rim Jumps
  2. Standing Broad jumps
  3. Tuck jumps
  4. On-Box Jumps
  5. Ankle jumps

I love hearing the questions and do my very best to answer them all in a timely manner. Keep them coming and I hope I can offer you some ideas to increase your training ROI!



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