Dan Lorang, currently one of the best addresses for pro triathletes and cyclists, tells us about his needs for planning and monitoring tools.
He is the coach of Jan Frodeno, Anne Haug & Co. He also trains the riders of the Bora Hansgrohe Professional Cycling Team. With his recent successes, e.g. the comeback after his injury and victory of Jan Frodeno at the Ironman Frankfurt 2019 or the outstanding performances of Peter Sagan and his team mates on the World Tour, Dan Lorang is currently one of the most successful coaches in the field of triathlon and cycling. Regarding the further development of AZUM system, we asked him what his concrete needs are in the area of training & nutrition planning and monitoring.
Which instruments and tools do you use to support your athletes?
How important is the “Training Stress Score” (TSS) used by Trainingpeaks for you?
Dan Lorang: I don’t even work with the TSS. At first I was interested, but then I found out that the effective form or fatigue of the athlete often does not correspond to the TSS from Trainingpeaks. The individual, qualitative feedback of my athletes gives me in most cases much more helpful inputs. The TSS is a very simplified form of stress analysis and can give hints, but in the professional area the TSS is not applicable.
How do you plan your athletes nutrition?
Dan Lorang: We do the nutrition planning outside these tools in cooperation with a specialist. Although the coaches have good knowledge in the field of nutrition, a nutritionist can add value by contributing his knowledge in the form of a feasible nutrition strategy. Being able to plan nutrition in line with training on the same platform – by specialists with appropriate access rights – would be great!
How important is the planning and analysis of carbohydrates / fats based on INSCYD performance diagnostics for you?
Dan Lorang: For me personally, INSCYD is not an absolute must. But if I can plan on the basis of INSCYD, i.e. all energy metabolism data is mapped and then nutrition planning is added, it becomes a very powerful tool.
To what extent do these instruments and tools meet your needs?
Dan Lorang: The use of different tools for planning, analysis, monitoring and nutrition makes an integrated view difficult and time-consuming. In those tools that solve the topic of planning well, the analysis options are often inadequate. The topics energy metabolism and nutrition in connection with training planning are not solved or only insufficiently solved in the platforms known to me. A platform that offers all these aspects integrated or at least connected would be great.
We are working on a solution that will significantly improve monitoring using data from STRAVA. What would be your desired feature in this context?
Dan Lorang: The tool should be detecting anomalies and report them to the trainer. An analysis of the watt/heart rate ratio for different power levels would be conceivable. If anomalies occur in this ratio, this would be an indication for the coach to take a closer look. Such features would be very exciting and would greatly simplify the trainer’s life. In general, there is more than enough data, but the evaluation and meaningful processing of this data material is still unsolved.
Would it be a problem for you if your athletes uploaded their workouts to STRAVA?
Dan Lorang: Well, I don’t really like it when athletes upload everything. But the reality is that they do it anyway. But the activities in STRAVA can also be marked as “private”, then nothing stands in the way of an upload from my point of view.
How important is proximity to the developer to you?
Dan Lorang: It would be good to be able to report needs directly to the developer and know that the requirements are being met. The subject of data security is also very important to me: it must be possible to ensure that the athlete’s data remains private and secured.
What additional features would make your life as a coach easier?
Dan Lorang: We have already discussed the most important features; integrating and connecting planning, analysis, monitoring and nutrition is key. Then a rough evaluation must also be possible while on the move: The platform must work on mobile devices in order to be able to react quickly and flexibly. Last but not least, regular, qualitative feedback from my athletes regarding fewer, simpler criteria is important to me. Additional functionalities such as a simple accounting system or integration with the turbo trainer or Zwift are “nice to have” but not absolutely necessary.
AZUM system is the only platform that integrates planning, analysis, monitoring and nutrition based on INSCYD data. If AZUM system meets your needs, would you use it for your athletes?
Dan Lorang: I will be very happy to test AZUM system extensively in the next weeks. What I have heard so far sounds very interesting and I am looking forward to the upcoming exchange!