The Individualized Training Approach

About this episode:

In this week’s episode, Adam Pulford interviews two of his athletes DJ Brew and DJ Battle. They discuss how Adam approaches each of their training and individualizes how he coaches Brew and Battle to get them to their goals and athletic potential.

Episode Highlights:

  • Understanding your athlete phenotype
  • How to fit in training in a chaotic work schedule
  • Understanding how two athletes have a similar FTP, but produce anaerobic power differently
  • Why your coach should be individualizing your training


Stay in touch with the DJ’s:

Listen to the episode on Apple PodcastsSpotifyStitcherGoogle Podcasts, or on your favorite podcast platform

Thanks To This Week’s Sponsor:

Stages Cycling

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Episode Transcription:

Please note that this is an automated transcription and may contain errors. Please refer to the episode audio for clarification.

Adam Pulford (00:00:01):

Welcome back or welcome to the train right podcast. I’m coach Adam. Pulford your host for the cycling centric side of the show. I’ve never interviewed my own athletes before, so I don’t know exactly how this is going to go, but I do know that we’re going to cover some interesting data. We’re going to talk about the individualized approach to training, and we’re going to have some fun while we do it. So today’s guests are DJ brew and DJ battle. Welcome to the show guys.

DJ Battle (00:00:28):

Well, welcome aboard. Thanks for having me.

DJ Brew (00:00:30):

Yeah, exactly. Good to be here.

Adam Pulford (00:00:34):

A little confusing for those listening, unless we specify because both of you have the same first two names, but let’s simplify and go for DJ brew. You’re going to be brew battle. You’re always battle. So it’s pretty straightforward. But now that we got that settled, a lot of people in the DMV region around Washington DC here, they know who you are. You’re, you’re kind of famous local legends, but can you tell our audience a little bit more about yourselves and brew? I’ll start with you first. Just who you are, family job category. I mean, you tell us who you are.

DJ Brew (00:01:08):

Yep. So I’m DJ, uh, father, uh, I’ve been married for 12 years now have a five-year-old son. I’m a police officer in Montgomery County for the Maryland national capital park police. And I’m a cat one cyclist and aspiring DJ because of DJ battle. So I’m still workshopping my DJ name. So it’s coming soon. Right now. I’m close to settling on DJ the DJ. So we’ll see how that works out.

Adam Pulford (00:01:43):

Why do people call you DJ let’s? Let’s let’s hear that

DJ Battle (00:01:45):

First. It actually stands for Donald Jr. Is my dad’s still here. So I don’t want to use the name Donald, so I’ll just stick with DJ for now. Perfect.

Adam Pulford (00:01:58):

Perfect. No, no. The reason why the other DJ is here, he is, his name comes from somewhere else, but battle tell us, uh, who you are, how you got the name DJ and anything else about,

DJ Battle (00:02:09):

Yes, indeed. I am Angelo battle, which is my birth name. I go by the name of DJ battle, which is for those that don’t know, I’m a disc jockey on a circuit in the Washington DC area. And, um, I’m a family man. Of course, I’m a father of two, a little son and a little daughter. And I’m also a full-time police officer in Washington, DC currently assigned to the SWAT scene. I’m a category four racer aspiring to be a cat, one racer and DJ. And I have a little trade off. He’s going to teach me how to become a better racer and cyclist. And I’m going to teach him how to beat a second. The, this kind of world competent, a very close second. So yours truly DJ bag. I’ll take that. I’ll take it.

Adam Pulford (00:03:08):

That’s awesome. Well, as you guys can see, I mean, we get a lot of similarities going on. We’ve got family guys, both police officers living in the same area. They’re actually both on the same team, which is DC Velo, um, that they race on both considered themselves sprinters, which we’ll get into here in a minute. They both consider themselves DJs. Right. Um, and they’re both racing, a lot of crits, circuit races, all this kind of stuff, but they are super different. Um, and like I said in the intro is like how I interact with him, how I communicate with him, how I ride with him. Like there is that too is very different. So brew, let’s go back to you because you’re kind of almost a brain child of this episode because we want to talk about some of the numbers as well as the process. Um, and so those numbers let’s just call them stats. What is DJ bruise stats when it comes to on the bike performance metrics and stuff that you and I talk about?

DJ Brew (00:04:03):

All right. So Taylor, the tape, um, five, nine, basically, uh, five, nine weigh, uh, 75 kilograms or all you weirdos. Um, I’m 170 pounds for the Americans. Uh, my FTP, my power FTP is 340 Watts. My VO two max is 66. Nilo liters per kilogram for the minute, right? Yep. Okay. That’s what I wanted to make sure I said that, right. Uh, my current CTO is 102 TSS for the day about, um, I average anywhere between 10 to 15 hours of riding time a week. Um, I do consider myself a sprinter. I think I’ve always considered myself a sprinter. Uh, my max or my P max sprint powers, 1741 or 1,741 Watts. Um, I’m a cat one, like I said, and I’m racing age 39, but I’m 38. Yep. That’s still to take for me.

Adam Pulford (00:05:12):

Awesome. Now battle. Um, you want to share some of your stats?

DJ Battle (00:05:17):

Of course, I will tell him my tape DJ battle coming in at five 10. My body weight is 75 kilograms. And that’s for you Americans. That’ll be approximately 170, 171 pounds. My power FTP currently is two 45, two 45 Watts. And my VO two max is approximately 51 milliliters per kilogram per minute. My current CTL comes in at around one Oh two TSS per day. And with my schedule and family life, I average between eight to 12 hours of a weekly volume on the bike. Um, um, I would consider myself more of a all around her. I’m a sprinter. If you allow me to be around for the sprint, my, my sprint, my sprint Powell, I produced ethic. My highest was about 1250. And I will not tell you guys if that was uphill on the flats. My race category is a cap for my race and age and my real life age is coming in at 45 years old.

Adam Pulford (00:06:23):

Awesome, awesome. Well, Hey, I caught a little, uh, coach typo in there. Currently your CTL battle is sitting right around 76 to 80. So that was a little typo there. And I think the, the main thing I want to showcase in that is like battle. This guy’s busy, right? This goes on the shooting range when I was texting him earlier, wondering if he got the outline that I sent for him today, he’s like, I’m a little busy, but yeah, I got it. So he’s running a little bit more or a little less volume than brew on most, um, most weeks, which kind of brings that CTL down, but he’s, he’s fit as a fiddle. So don’t, don’t let that CTL, uh, skew things in your, in your, in the listener’s brain. Um, well, that’s awesome. So those stats, I mean, there’s a lot of stats there, but the reason why I want to share is to say, you know, on the outset, just as human beings yet similarities, you start looking at those stats or some big differences there. Okay. And we’ll talk about some of those differences, but first let’s talk, let’s go kind of go back to the DJs here. Let’s talk about goals are a battle. So when I’m talking about goals as a bike racer and on the bike, what are your goals? Yep. Back

DJ Battle (00:07:31):

To my goals, my primary goal is to stay up right on a bike and actually finish races. And, um, uh, for those that don’t know, I took a pretty bad spill back in March, 2020 and a Crip. So now that I’m back up and ready on a bike, uh, like to finish these races in a good top 10 to top five, if not win the race and also like to commit myself and sacrifice myself for the betterment of any of my teammates that could finish and, or win a race.

Adam Pulford (00:08:03):

I love it. Love it. And you mentioned, uh, before in your intro too, I mean, you want to, you want a cat up as well, right?

DJ Battle (00:08:10):

Definitely. Definitely, definitely want to be catching up very soon. I have a couple of friends that I’ve met that kept it up pretty quick. Uh, no everybody’s lifestyle is different, but I’m definitely aiming the cat up real quick, successfully,

Adam Pulford (00:08:24):

Successfully. That’s it. So team player cat up and keep the, keep the rubber side down, uh, brew. What are your goals look like?

DJ Brew (00:08:34):

All right. So I have a couple, two different types of goals from when I have like completely selfish goal of winning a national championship. I don’t care what it’s in. It could be in the amateur field, like masters or whatever. Um, I’ve come very close a couple of times in, in the masters at 30 plus. Um, master’s so, um, definitely would like to, to break through there. Um, I still feel like I’ve, I’ve had a couple of top tens in the, uh, amateur crit nationals too. So I feel like I’m close. I could still be competitive there. So definitely that’s one thing that I’m, I’m kinda knocking on the door of. That’s like my completely selfish school, but ultimately I think my overarching goal, um, with this sport is just to learn and give back as much as I possibly can. Um, I’ve seen guys in this sport that they just have so much longevity and they know so much that I’m trying to just be a sponge, even, you know, being a cat one, you kind of feel like, you know, everything, but I don’t have that attitude.

DJ Brew (00:09:46):

It’s like, I I’m just absorbing as much knowledge as I possibly can so that anybody I meet that wants to know something, I can start dripping out as much knowledge as I can in those people. So I want to make the next DJ brew better than I was, or I want to make the next person that joins DC Velo better than I could’ve ever been. You know? So that’s, that’s, you know, that’s ultimately, my goal is really just to give back to the sport as much as it’s given me for the last 11 years, I guess.

Adam Pulford (00:10:23):

Yeah, yeah, no, that’s, that is super cool. And I think that, like, I think our listeners would also appreciate hearing how each of you came to the bike and brew. Just kind of like, because you’re saying I want to share so much of what this sport has given you. I mean, what were you doing before you were racing?

DJ Brew (00:10:43):

I was running, I was a runner before I’d started riding and just getting out of college and still looking for that competitive outlet. Um, I started running, but running is just so kind of solitary, you know, I’ve ran with my wife sometimes, but a lot of times, you know, you just running by yourself, log-in miles by yourself. And I would always ride where the group rides would be. So I would ride at me hour run at Haynes point where the noon ridar is the evening ride is, and I would see the groups of cyclists, like flying past. And in my mind, I’m always in, they look like they’re having way more fun. And so I just started, you know, I got a bike joined in and the community here was just so welcoming and I started meeting lots of people right away. And I knew it was just, it wasn’t that I wanted to be doing the sport. It was that I wanted to be in the culture of being like a cyclist. Like when I ran, you know, I didn’t hang out with other runners. It was just, I just ran to exercise. But when I started riding bike, it was becoming more than just exercise. I wanted to be in the culture. I wanted to shave my legs. I wanted to wear the spandex. I wanted to hang out for an after call for coffee afterwards. I wanted to have coffee before I wanted to hang out at the bike shop. I wanted to buy.

Adam Pulford (00:12:13):

Yeah, you’re living your dream now. That’s exactly what you do.

DJ Brew (00:12:19):

Yeah. That’s basically how I came, came into it. Really. I didn’t think I would, I didn’t even know racing existed when I first started riding. I just thought it was just like a culture thing. But

Adam Pulford (00:12:30):

Then how old were you when that happened?

DJ Brew (00:12:33):

Probably 22. 23. Yeah.

Adam Pulford (00:12:39):

Yeah. And you were throwing some javelins around before

DJ Brew (00:12:41):

That? Yeah. Throwing javelin in college basically. Yeah.

Adam Pulford (00:12:46):

Interesting. Yeah. Well, I mean, so the reason why I bring that up is like also to just kind of showcase is like, you haven’t been, you know, you haven’t been on a bike since you were a junior, you picked it up late, you know, late in the game. And, um, you know, to have that vision of giving back as much as the sport has given you, I mean, that’s super cool. And part of that is, is, you know, this little mentorship program that we got going on to the other, the other DJ here. So battle what brought you to the sport or brew just like capture you, threw you on the Madonna and go for it. Wow.

DJ Battle (00:13:19):

Kind of, sort of. But, uh, I’m going to try to shorten my story up because it’s, it’s, it’s an interesting one. I started actually with some coworkers and some friends and we did a, what I call it a standard weekend warrior ride on the weekend ride on the trail to George Washington house. I think my first ride was like 33 miles. We stopped every six miles to drink a gallon. And then after the 33 mile ride, I think I slept for three days. But, um, during that whole process of riding a bike on a trail, we were actually parking at Haynes point ourselves. And at that one of those moments that we were parking there, I kind of did the same thing DJ brew did. And I seen a ton of cyclist out of nowhere, one to eat. And I’m assuming it was a Thursday evening, cause it was a lot.

DJ Battle (00:14:09):

And out of that, uh, mint meeting down there, I met some guys from another team in a, in the area and they just basically, uh, invited me out to other group rides and I just kind of fell into it that way. And during that process, I met DJ brew. I always heard about him from the get go. And I was getting people were confusing. He and I together because of the DJs. And then they would see me, uh, from my work capacity and was confusing us a lot. So be honest, which I kind of took that on. Like I was him and then they figured out, I wasn’t, once I got dropped deception time, you got to read it, got to it till you make it sometimes that’s it man. And so on after that, I actually met him in real life and we kind of clicked and it rolled over to me actually meeting you actually too.

Adam Pulford (00:15:01):

That’s right. That’s right. Yeah, no, that’s, that’s super cool. And I think I would be remissed if we don’t talk a little bit about Haynes point because it is kind of the, the meeting sector of lot of, uh, athletes in this area. So brew, tell us what goes down at Haynes.

DJ Brew (00:15:20):

Are we allowed to talk about what goes down in Haines,

Adam Pulford (00:15:24):

Proper response. That is a proper response. We put a pin in it there. I think

DJ Brew (00:15:29):

The videos are out there. So if you show up at noon, Monday through Friday, you’ll find out real quick.

Adam Pulford (00:15:39):

Well, it’s, it’s mysterious folks and I, you know what, w w we’ll keep it a mystery and we’ll, we’ll, uh, we’ll leave it hanging in the, in the ether like that. So

DJ Battle (00:15:49):

I’ll say this about Hanes. The location of Haynes point is, uh, a us national park located within Washington DC. What goes on at Haynes point at different times and different days are, or relative.

Adam Pulford (00:16:05):

That is, that is a true statement for sure.

DJ Battle (00:16:09):

Some people meet at Hayes point at different times within a 24 hour period, maybe six, six in the morning, maybe 12:00 PM, maybe 6:00 PM. All different time slots are not created equal.

Adam Pulford (00:16:26):

Yes. Now we’re getting very whimsical with it, with all of this, uh, there’s bikes involved people. You can, you can go search more, but for right now, let’s move on with this podcast. Um, battle. When, so I’ve been working with brew a little bit longer than you, but when it comes down to like communication between you and I, I mean, how would you describe our communication? Like, am I up in your face all the time? My, are you talking to me daily? Or are we texting or how does this communication thing work? Uh, we

DJ Battle (00:16:55):

Definitely talk or communicate, I should say, weekly, a weekly and biweekly for the most part. And I think for me, it’s probably me bugging you more than you bugging me because I’m so I’m so into this from the learning perspective that I’m always calling around and bugging the people that I look up to and to the cycling, uh, primarily what I call the proven people within cycling, because a lot of people from what I see have things to say, but I like to talk to the proven people, Fazio style, your, um, your mannerisms, your behavior. I like it. I identify with it. I came out of the military. So I do kind of at some points need, or like the drill Sergeant type mentality. And that helps me learn a little different, but everybody’s different. But for, you know, you don’t do no yelling. If you, if you did yell at me, I probably, it wouldn’t bother me at all, but I liked your style.

DJ Battle (00:17:50):

It’s very relatable. And that’s also one of the reasons why I actually selected you as my coach, because of, because of your style. Yeah. Yeah. It was just, I I’ve I’ve I did a little bit of homework on, y’all watched you on social media, uh, check out and understand your, some of your background, some of the, uh, pro circus, you came through it through a mountain bike. So now I just didn’t fall on you and take you because DJ recommended you when DJ recommended you. I did a little bit more homework on you and I, I watched you a little bit down fight club, and I said, this that’s, that’s the type of guy I can learn from because you were actually doing it.

Adam Pulford (00:18:28):

Yeah, that’s awesome. That was not the response that was actually England for, I, I, I seriously thought brew was just like, here do this.

DJ Battle (00:18:36):

And that’s how it happened. No, it got to the point where I think personally I was, I do book brew a lot prior to me, even he hooked me meeting you. But I think some of the things I was asking brew from a, from a certified coaching standpoint, I think he understood, it was probably better for me to, for him to introduce me to you and then see if you, and I would, uh, merge something together, but it’s cool. But DJ DJ gave me a ton of advice and he still does, but you give it from a, uh, certified coaching standpoint.

Adam Pulford (00:19:08):

Yeah. And that sort of, I’ll say this too, just, you know, for our listeners in terms of how I communicate with each of them is for battle. A lot of it just like keeping it simple because that’ll, I think that you, you mean you read a lot, you’re talking to a lot of people. And so to kind of filter down the fluff from the good stuff is just like keeping it very simple and direct, um, general education in awareness to when we’re, you know, thick into a group ride and you’re going cross-eyed is bringing awareness to the fatigue that’s sitting in and getting on wheels, you know, that kind of stuff.

DJ Battle (00:19:42):

Exactly. And also if I can add that, that was also a key component of me selecting you as my coach is because I can actually ride with you and, or you can ride with me, meaning we actually ride with each other. You can watch me, you can correct me. You can give me tips along with just looking at my data. So you can, you can merge everything together from a data standpoint and from actually Sam you’re on the bike.

Adam Pulford (00:20:07):

Yeah. And I’d say that’s, that’s one thing that I really appreciate about the, this area in particular and in why I decided ultimately to work with you guys too. It’s like, um, you know, being able to ride with somebody and then work from afar. It’s, it’s one of the more effective ways to do it, in my opinion. Definitely you can do. I mean, clearly I’ve got athletes I’ve never met before and it works. It’s fine. But it’s like, in terms of the effectiveness, that’s, that’s kinda where we’re at. But, um, but yeah, I mean, that’s kind of how battle and I do it, uh, brew, uh, when you and I are talking, I mean, what kind of language are we using? Is it any different than what battle was talking about or how do we do it?

DJ Brew (00:20:48):

I mean, it will probably sound like a foreign language to battle out as they, because we use all the acronyms, all audio, I think. And it’s one of those things it’s kind of funny. It’s like, even you could kind of see the difference in relations. I think what it boils down to is that because battle’s newer, he’s at the, what, um, status of the relationship, like what should I be doing? You know, or when should I be doing this? Like, just give me, what should I be doing? All right. I’ll do it. But now I like, we’ve been working together long enough. I know what I should be doing now. We’re at the why it’s this way, why it works this way? Why is it mapped out this way? Because now, like, I think we’ve worked together long enough and having, you know, where my interests are now that you know, okay, I can go into the weeds with him and it won’t be, it won’t be confusing.

DJ Brew (00:21:50):

Like he, I, I know like it will know what I’m talking about and how it’ll relate to, you know, what we’re actually doing. And you get buy-in from me. If I I’m the type, I think I’m at the point now, like you build rapport with me if I know, you know, way more than do. But if I had, if you were like dumbing, everything down and it was like, just, you know, did 20 by 20, 20 by 20, okay. Then I’ll be like, this is stupid. Like, okay, let’s move past, like start explaining it to me. So not only do you give me what to do, but then you also go into, this is how it works with your system and how, you know, if you look at your chart, this is why we see this going on here is because for the last three weeks, we’ve mapped it so that this is increases. So this decreases in that, I think that’s what I really appreciate is like, I want to see everything that’s happening along the way. Like not just what I’m doing for that week.

Adam Pulford (00:22:52):

Yup. Yeah, no, that, that makes a ton of sense. And I’ll say this to you and it’s not to say, I mean, it’s not like pulling battle down at all. I mean, it’s like that guy, in fact, just before you hopped on, I was like, I was like, Hey, uh, battle, like your FTP and your FRC are some of the highest has been since your little, your little crash. And he’s like, yeah, yeah, I know. I can feel that, you know? And, and he’s like getting it. Whereas I think for you, like when I first started working with you, you know, I started simplistic. Like I would normally do with athletes. And I was like, Oh man, this guy, this guy knows that he knows the definition of FTP. He knows TTE. He, like, I just explained if RC a week ago, he gets it. And okay, now let’s talk about like glycolytic capacity and how that relates to a sprint performance. Right. And so when, so we can go like deeper into the terms in the concepts and get more individualized, you know, with you and battles, like getting, and it’s super exciting. Cause like whenever I call him, I’m like, okay, I got 10 minutes, ends up being 20 minutes, you know? Cause I’m getting excited. Cause he’s learning. And I’m like, okay, well I got, I can’t not, I can’t stop talking now and not tell him about this. You know,

DJ Brew (00:24:00):

Everybody gets there eventually. Like once you, I think ultimately that’s where a coach client relationship should go. Is that it eventually to get there anyway, like now we’re speaking the same language. It builds that symbiosis to like, okay, now we’re moving as one. Like are that’s when you know your client is like, okay, you’re starting to get it. It’s not that you’re just shutting off your brain and becoming a robot and letting me do the work for you. It’s like, okay, now you’re involved in a process. You see what’s going on now. And it also makes the relationship more valuable for the both of you too.

Adam Pulford (00:24:37):

Yeah, yeah. A hundred percent. And I do want to like, just jam in here. This is not to be like a selling point for coaching or anything like that. My like my main approach here is like, if you have a coach like put, push them on education and push them on being individualized, because you want to go deeper into your training, you want to layer your performance so that you’re always getting better and your coach should be doing things on the background of their own education. They’re learning to see how they can maximize your performance. So if you have any coach out there, keep working with them, but keep pushing them. And if you’re a self coached athlete, you got to do that yourself. You got to go out there and get the education and understand how FRC and FTP or an anaerobic and a threshold mechanism works in your body.

Adam Pulford (00:25:24):

As you build throughout the year, whether you use training peaks or, or uh, today’s plan or something else. I mean, whatever system you’re working, be engaged and go deeper. So I just wanted to say that before it gets like too like salesy or one way or something like that. So I just wanna, I just wanna put that out there. Um, but that being said, we talked about w so we all ride together too, sometimes on DJs group ride on, on Saturdays bruise group ride on Saturdays, um, other times other points around the city. Um, but brew when you and I ride, what is it like

DJ Brew (00:26:01):

So fun as it’s always, it’s so fun riding when, with someone that you consider your equal, because Jan, you basically get to play like you, like, you know, if you come home smash, like you had the funnest ride ever, not that you’re never going to get on a bike again. You’re like, when can I ride with this guy again, sorta smash. Like, and that’s the thing, it’s one of the, when, when we ride, like, because you know what I can do and I know what you can do. Like we can, yeah, we can do it without worrying really about the it’s very freeing because you’re like, Oh, you know, I’m about to get a good workout today. No. So yeah, that’s basically what it boils down to is that, you know, and because I get the added benefit of having done that with my coach. So it’s like, you know, Hey, you know, I’ve, you know, that, to me, that is just as valuable as anything else, but I mean, just the, the friendship we have built with each other and just being able to go out and smash it and have your wife and make us delicious breakfast burritos afterwards. It’s awesome.

Adam Pulford (00:27:15):

That’s it? That’ll now that this little COVID-19 thing is going to, like, it opens you up for the Saturday post ride burrito session. So, so when you and I ride what’s that like that’ll, well,

DJ Battle (00:27:30):

For me is interesting mesmerizing and, uh, S uh, interesting suffer Fest. Um, um, I’m kinda like in a matrix when I ride with you and DJ, because for me personally, I like riding with people that are stronger than me. And I’m more visually watching you guys find your cadence, your gears, your body language. I’m literally recording you guys in my mind and trying to mimic you guys when y’all are not around me, um, is very interesting to see how y’all move. Y’all bikes, comfortable, comfortably, how you eat, how you drink on your bike, I’m recording everything. And I’m trying to duplicate it at my level. And then, uh, when you guys put me in a hurt locker or the Sufferfest, and y’all go up the road, even when I’m dropped from you guys, I continue to duplicate you guys until we regroup. But, uh, it’s a very good, priceless learning experience to ride with people that are proven and better than me and that I’m actually learning from. So I actually call you my coach and I called DJ my trainer. So it was like two different things like any other sport. You’ve got your head coach, then you got to train and staff being, no, I ride with DJ more often. BNR ride with DJ more often. I consider him more of my training staff. And I consider you more. My coaching staff,

DJ Brew (00:28:55):

I’ll say this about battle too, is because even though when we get to ride, I get to play. But even when I ride was battle, I get to play too, because I’ve done the one ride and I get the plate in like, kind of like the evil mean DJ sort of way, because I’ve done a rye with battle where I purposely add it to the root heals because I wanted to break them. And I even told him this, like after the ride, like when we’re almost done, I was like, yeah, I was just trying to get you to quit.

DJ Brew (00:29:33):

Well, not quit ever. He might slow down. There is no quit. So that, and I think that’s, that was kind of like what, uh, where I got the enjoyment out of that is because I was like, sit on everything. I was like, Oh, I noticed the was around the corner. Yeah. We gotta make this right up here. Let’s go. And then I would just look back and I’m like, but I literally told him that to his face. Like, I didn’t let it go. I was like, I actually told them that I was like, yeah, I was just trying to see if you could break.

DJ Battle (00:30:17):

I definitely remember that day too. Definitely. Remember that day, it was like a 70 mile ride. I posted up in a 30 mile ride. It ended up being a 70 mile ride. We’re like 6,800 feet of elevation. And I will admit, I will admit this too, because you, and I appreciate you doing it to me. Like I said, the background of where I come from, like, I’m totally all for that. Like, that’s what I like. But, but what I will say for the listeners is everybody has a breaking point, but I don’t have equipment. And if you can understand the difference between those two, you’ll pull more out of yourself within your cycle and journey.

Adam Pulford (00:30:57):

Yeah. That’s huge battle. Like that is probably the best way to verbalize it. And I’ll say this too, like a battle. He executes on that. Like every time we don’t go hard every day, obviously he takes rest days. This might be turned into a rest day for each of them because they’re sacrificing their training time, their little training window to do this podcast. But like when it’s, go-time both these guys, they don’t back down. And it’s, that’s one thing that I do respect about them. And it carries on into their, uh, into their racing carries on into their work life carries on into their family life. Like, they’re go getters, man. And that’s, that’s how they walk, you know? And I, so I appreciate that about you guys and, and, uh, man, don’t have a quit button. Love it. Battle. I love it. Um, one last thing though, uh, brew did remember that day where I rode with you and Todd and I was in the grass. I think that was it. That was the worst I’ve ever seen you. Did you, did you do that same thing that you did to battle? Were you like, Oh man, Todd let’s listen. Cause we, we both

DJ Brew (00:32:05):

Moved, messed up that day though, because I remember when we started, we were just, I don’t know if he was just so happy to be riding their still good, but we started on their ride way too fast. We were, I was gonna say, yeah, it was one, it was a ride where he met us halfway through and we were flying and I was like, well, I think we were just so about it. The weather was beautiful. I mean, we had good company and then we also knew Todd would tow us the rest of the way back. So, but yeah, we were, yeah, I think every, we were all feeling it. I think Todd was the only one that got stronger as the ride went on.

Adam Pulford (00:32:58):

Turn that up for our listeners. I mean, we’re just sharing training stories now, but Todd’s a professional Ironman, a racer and he’s, he’s tough. And I was like, yeah, totally just be warming up at hour four. And that’s shortly thereafter. I was cramping in the grass. Yep. Um, battle any, any closing thoughts on that before we actually moved to our applicable information for this podcast?

DJ Battle (00:33:22):

John did great with that one. I’m not going to comment on it.

Adam Pulford (00:33:28):

Okay. Yes, yes, yes. It was a battle played for a little while, but then he wasn’t playing anymore. Um, so again, upload back to like the main concept of this thing is it clearly we’ve got a community here that loves to ride bikes loves to have fun, but we love to get after it. And what I do with these guys is very different from day to day. And so from the field testing in the race data standpoint, as well as just the, on the bike stuff with battle, you always had a good pop. Okay. Uh, he knows, and he can use it when he’s fresh. However, I found out that through field testing and then in the group rides, he was lacking just general fitness and threshold, as well as knowing where to be on wheels. And so that little pop, that sprint, um, that he had, which was like, it would sometimes get me, cause I was like, dang, that guy, that guy can go, but it was, it was almost an effective, you know, it wasn’t as effective as it could have been if he had better overall fitness. And if you could get on those wheels, so battle, um, from, I don’t know where we started from maybe a year and a half ago or something like that. Would you say that that is true. And what have you learned throughout the process?

DJ Battle (00:34:41):

That is definitely true. Um, I I’ve, that is definitely true. I was definitely was lacking the general fitness and um, what I also understood from your teaching and DJ, uh, training me per se is I was misusing my efforts throughout most of these group rides that I was, that I participate in. And, uh, once I understood that better along with the trainer plan, you put me through that definitely made me a smarter and fitter, uh, within these group rides. And now back to be soon racing.

Adam Pulford (00:35:17):

Yeah, yeah, no, that’s, that’s it. And it’s like, uh, and it doesn’t matter how good your sprint is, right? It’s like, if you don’t know how to ride a bike, it’s just worthless. Right. I

DJ Battle (00:35:26):

I’m a firm believer of, I don’t care what your sprint is. If you don’t make it to the sprint, you can take, pack your sprint up and send it back home. Yeah. And that’s, and what, I think a lot of people at my level misunderstand that everybody wants to sprint, but it’s no good if you’re sprinting for 36 place. So the race is always up the road, even on a group ride. And that’s what I’m also learning through DJ and yourself that you gotta, you gotta be with the front group to even make it to the sprint.

Adam Pulford (00:35:58):

Yup. Yup. And so when you first started working with me, were you kind of like, how would you identify your phenotype? Would you say that you were a sprinter or Hill climber? Or what, what would you identify with?

DJ Battle (00:36:08):

I, I would say identified as a sprinter because that’s what the general population in the cycling community said I was, but I don’t, I don’t think my data or my, my smarts was that of a sprinter. And once I got what you guys, I started to understand it for one, I didn’t even know how to sprint far as where I was supposed to hold the handlebars or how was supposed to maneuver the bike. So again, it was taking information from people who weren’t proven and, or didn’t know, but they were calling me a sprinter and then it wasn’t lining up with sprinting because I wasn’t even making it to the end of the group ride to sprint.

Adam Pulford (00:36:48):

Yup. And have, I dunno, has your sprint gotten better over the past year? Oh, it

DJ Battle (00:36:52):

Definitely has gotten better. I think I can consider, and I’m not bragging on myself cause I got a long way to go. But I think at any on demand I can crack out at 1100, 1200 watt sprint, which is not much in a cat window, but it’s, I think as much for a cat four level, a true cat food. Yeah.

Adam Pulford (00:37:13):

Respectable for sure. So have we, I mean, do we do a bunch of sprint workouts to make that happen, do

DJ Battle (00:37:19):

A bunch of sprint workouts and I learned to like them,

Adam Pulford (00:37:25):

But I’d say, I’d say this cause I, I am kind of leading you a little bit. What would you, would you say we do more threshold workouts or more sprint workouts?

DJ Battle (00:37:34):

I do more threshold workouts.

Adam Pulford (00:37:36):

Yeah. Yeah. And that’s kind of, it’s kind of where I was going with that it’s like with, I think I remember like one conversation with you is like we just had like a lot of tempo, a lot of tempo. And then a lot of, we do a group ride every once in a while and then a lot of threshold, a lot of threshold, a lot of threshold and all of a sudden Powell, like those sprints were just happening in the group ride when you wanted it to. Yeah. And in my point in like trying to showcase that it’s like, we just need to raise the aerobic tide and the functional threshold power and you’re able to sprint when you want it to it actually enhanced. Right. Exactly.

DJ Battle (00:38:11):

Because as you took the words right out of my mouth.

Adam Pulford (00:38:15):

Awesome. Awesome. Um, so kind of going back to Bruno and that guy I will say is too, and this is very like cricket centric, circuit racing kind of flat sea level area around here. So to frame it up for our listeners, the sprints do mean a lot around here. Okay. And those who know how to do it like brew. Um, it’s, it’s, it’s crazy when you see it. And so when I was riding, when I first moved to DC, I was riding in a group and I knew nobody, but I saw this guy who could like out sprint the field in huge groups, 70 to a hundred people at a time. And he just go whenever he wanted to and just cry, it was just putting meters into people. And so he never had, he was a true sprinter. I knew that. And he always had a knack for being where he should be in the Peloton or to use it.

Adam Pulford (00:39:06):

Right. However, through once we got together and got on the same page through field testing and race data, I could see where the opportunity was, which was similar to battle. And it was in raising his functional threshold power. And that was a huge advantage. It was a robotic development that really got them there too with a lot of volume. We’ll talk about that here in a second. Um, but the thing is, is his tactics in conjunction with that sprint has made them into, this is like crazy machine that I can’t wait to where we can get back to racing. So, you know, DJ brew I’ll use last name. I mean, what did you learn through that process? And would you say that that was true?

DJ Brew (00:39:51):

The process is true. And I learned that there was many holes to what, you know, I, if you, if you had have asked me before, I think I actually started working with you. I, you know, I would have thought that I was a pretty complete racer, like an in my mind I knew like there was some things that I could work on, but I didn’t know how to work on those things and have it benefit the totality of my cycling. So I knew I needed a higher FTP, but I didn’t know how, like how I could do that. Other than by doing two by twenties or getting a power meter and paying attention to power. It was like I had the power meter, but I didn’t know really what I was doing with it. I was like basically to power meter, which is just to see what kind of sprint I could crank out at the noon ride, you know, it wasn’t really helping my development.

DJ Brew (00:40:54):

And then when I started working with, you know, after the first little bit of testing, it was like, man, it’s like this, this curve is just so lopsided. And it basically just reflected back to me what I was feeling and Reese’s, and in certain situations anyway, where it was like, man, any, anything over, you know, 60 minutes or 60 miles I’m done. Like, I can’t, there’s like, like battle with saying, what’s the point of having a sprint that just great. It’s like, you’re cramping at mile 50 and you can’t even make it. The last 15 miles of the race is like, well, you know what? Like, I I’m missing something or, you know, just not having fun and erase because I’m waiting for the sprint to use my, like my strength. So I’m just going to ride in the field and wait for the sprint.

DJ Brew (00:41:45):

It’s like, this is, I didn’t pay, you know, 45 bucks to just ride circles for 59 minutes to play for one minute. It’s like, no, I want to actually go to a race and have fun. Like I want to try and go and move and be up there. Like they, you know, there, there are races where you’re like, okay. Um, like, like my team is playing this sprint. We want the sprint. I need to be ready for a sprint. That’s a different thing. But if a racing’s also fun, like it should be the expression of what you’ve done up until that race day. Not just like, okay, I’ve done all this work on my threshold and know my sprint. No, my VO to now at this race, I’m going to pigeonhole myself into just being a sprinter. Like I don’t get to do any use any of that stuff I worked on because I’m just waiting for the last 200 meters. That’s not fun. So I think I, you know, what, what it has opened for me is that now I can have more fun when I go to races. Like, and I can also still sprint like that. And I think that’s the thing. That’s what has helped me realize is that I didn’t lose anything on the top end, but I gained a lot that I was missing leading up to that.

Adam Pulford (00:43:02):

Yeah, yeah, no, that’s that’s right. And I remember some conversations too, and then watching you race, it was, you know, people, people knew that you’re just going to sit in for the field sprint. Right. So attack, attack, attack. They try to get a break going so that it would neutralize you. Right. And so I remember talking to you about, Hey, we need to get that threshold up so that you got more arrows in the quiver. And when we first started working together, you were around two 90, 300 FTP. Um, and there’s also a metric called TTE or time to exhaustion, which is how long you can hold FTP. And so immediately worked on developing a long brew, could hold that. And it was right around 40 minutes and we got it up to around 50 or 60 minutes. But then, you know, we eventually built it up last year to around three 53 55. So when we’re talking about adding 60 Watts to threshold on a cat, one racer, I mean, it really changed him, you know, and it changed the way that his style of writing and he had a lot more arrows to go in. And then, you know, when he’d show up to races, didn’t matter who go, he could do whatever he wanted. Ultimately it was an increase in the fun factor for him.

DJ Brew (00:44:09):

Yes. Yeah. Cause then it was also exciting, like to see, see wattage’s that you, you know, two, three years ago there were like, seem like they were unattainable, but now you’re riding as you’re riding at those wattages for 20, 30 minutes at a time like, Oh, this is not as, this is not that bad. So it’s kind of fun seeing that kind of progress. And it also makes things like riding on the train or fun or more fun because you’re like, are, you know, if I get a VO workout, I can do this wattage for four minutes. I can do this. I could do this for three minutes and there’s not as much of a stressor as it would be. You know, if you don’t work on those things.

Adam Pulford (00:44:54):

Yeah, totally, totally. And to hear him say that folks, that’s, that’s a big deal. It’s not like he likes to ride his bike outside. Um, but to that point brew, I mean, how did we do that? Was it, did we always just do two by 20? Or what, what kind of workouts did we do to increase FTP and aerobic?

DJ Brew (00:45:11):

Yeah, no, I think for, for me, for one, it was getting in the longer rides and that’s, and I think that’s what, uh, I loved about your style of coaching is that you, you mixed in enough structure with what I actually like what I need on paper versus like what I need mentally and what I need, like physically. So it w it was just the melding of all that together. So we did like, you know, like at the base, like my endurance is what was kind of suffering. Like, you know, that the bottom of that pyramid is where I was the weakest. So it was like, anytime I can go out and do, if I get time to do four and five hour rides, like do that, that’s do that endurance. But then we were also doing, you know, I’ve never done like intervals at three minutes and four minutes and five minutes.

DJ Brew (00:46:11):

And I mean, literally you got me to do my first 20 minute interval. Like I, and like, in my mind before that was like mind blowing. Like, I, would’ve never thought that you could do your, you know, do like a 20 minute interval that I can crazy, but that’s what we did, but it’s like, we’ve done that multiple times. So it’s like working those longer, longer into rules, as opposed to being like, all right, your sprinter, we’re going to go out and do like, you know, 2020s, like 20 seconds sprints, like all day. Like we, we might do those, but it’s not as much as, as a sprinter would probably be asking for, you know? And, and I’m fine with that. Like, I don’t think that is gonna make me a worse rider because I’m not sprinting as much as I used to because I can feel myself getting stronger, you know, on the other end of the spectrum. So,

Adam Pulford (00:47:13):

Yeah. And how, how long was like the longest threshold interval that we you’ve done this year?

DJ Brew (00:47:19):

We did an hour, right? That was exactly. And you know, and it’s like, I’m telling you, it’s crazy. Just like you psych yourself out of like, your mind plays so many tricks on you where you think, Oh, this is an hour. Like, are you crazy? Any, you see the wives you’re like two years ago, I couldn’t do that for like five minutes. It’s like, now you crank that out for a solid hour. And then at the end of the hour, you’re like, Oh man, that’s like, you feel like credible for one, it didn’t destroy me. Like, like I didn’t just spontaneously combust into a ball of sweat or anything, but it, you know, it just makes you feel like you actually making progress. And even if it was just from a mental hurdle of like, man, I didn’t hour, like at that point it was like, you know, I don’t even care what the wattage was. I laid, I literally wrote for an hour. I’ve never done that.

Adam Pulford (00:48:28):

That’s it, that’s it, that’s it. And I think, you know, for, for listeners, I really want them to understand. And it wasn’t like we went from, you know, one by 20 to one by 60 to the next week, it was a progressive development of building you up time and zone out threshold, um, adjusting, you know, life accordingly so that you were mentally, um, fresh enough to handle a physically, um, hard workout like that. So it’s, it’s a progressive thing and you got to, but you have to keep on pushing yourself. Otherwise you’ll just keep on doing Dubai 20.

DJ Brew (00:49:01):

Yep. Yup. Yup. And I think that’s another one of the pluses is that you, I, you did give me time to get there and it was like even eat even though it was on. And I think even for that one, it was on the schedule and kept kind of like, uh, no, I’m not really feeling it today. Okay. If you could get to a next week, try, try and not, you know, it wasn’t like one of those things where it’s on the schedule for Thursday. So you, you got to do that sucker on Thursday because if not, you’re going to mess up the whole next couple of weeks. It was like, all right. All right. Just say like, I want you to be ready for that one. So if you’re not mentally into it, don’t, don’t feel like you got to like kill yourself to get on the trainer only to quit like 15 minutes into it, because you’re just not mentally there. You know? I mean, that’s great. Self-awareness but you could have just not done it. You know, you could’ve done something else anyway, but saving that for like, when you’re truly like you wake up that morning, you’re feeling real motivated and like, you know what, I’m going to go knock this thing out. I’m not even going to think too much about it. I’m just going to get on and knock out the 60 minutes in a row.

Adam Pulford (00:50:22):

Yeah. Yeah. That’s it too. W we’ll get into a little bit more about that in terms of how we navigate, but like, but this is, is, it’s a key workout in we’re going to do it. I want you fresh for it. Then when you’re working with an athlete on being aware and kind of bringing them in, it’s sure we’ll kick it down the road, but you still gotta do it. Um, with battle I know is in this kind of gets into my next segment, which is how each of these guys produce their own power. But with battle, I mean, we’ve done a lot of two by 20 stuff and two by 30 stuff. I mean, that’ll do like those workouts, those long steady stuff.

Speaker 2 (00:51:01):

I actually do like the two by twenties and a two by thirties. I think we even did a one by 45 one time. But what I will say is there is a difference of a two by 20 at, let’s say 240 Watts. And there’s a difference at a two by 20, at 290 Watts. So it depends on which, which two by 20 you asking me about. But I do like them because there’s a road down the street from a neighborhood that’s real. Uh, what I would say, uh, is, is helpful for me to do my workouts on is called Brandywine road. It’s a road that’s about maybe 18 miles long uninterrupted. When I say uninterrupted, no red lights, no stop signs or anything like that. So I go down there a lot and train. So your two by twenties, they are affective to me down there.

Adam Pulford (00:51:58):

Well, did I miss a two by 20, at two 90 that you did that the other day? I don’t know if you’ve done that. I was

DJ Battle (00:52:03):

Just giving an example that there’s a difference between two by twenties for the listener that’s, that’s, that’s, that’s understanding the two by 20. There’s a difference when you change the Watts that I need to be doing a two by 20 yet.

Adam Pulford (00:52:18):

Exactly. Cause it’s two by 40. I mean, that’s knocking on the door to buy 40 to 40 is about battles threshold. And the reason why I bring that up is, you know, he, if we go to 90, he can do two 90, but not for very long, but not for 20 minutes, not for 20 minutes, but in the, in the, where I’m looking at in the data is not only you can identify threshold pretty well. We’ve talked about that on this podcast, before you can do a 20 minute threshold can take 95% of that and estimate an FTP. You can do a one by 60 go find where that threshold actually is set up, be training zones. That’s, that’s very well established. However, once you become more of aerobic in your power production, then anaerobic, okay. That’s when things start to steady out or normalize.

Adam Pulford (00:53:08):

But before when you’re doing anaerobic efforts, that’s where things really changed. And they, they, um, can get into the phenotype of the rider. And that’s where some of this individualized approach really starts to shine through. And so that anaerobic to aerobic crossover point is something that I look at in athletes on a fairly regular basis. You can change it. Um, you can shorten it, you can, um, increase it, but what it actually is, it’s a marker of how you’re producing your power from anaerobic energy system, into an aerobic energy system to frame it up. Most people are kind of between 60 and 90 seconds. And that matches up with your three energy systems that we’ve talked about before. In particular, when I’m looking at this concept to coach people better, I want to know where that crossover point is. And so when I first started working with battle, I was like, okay, it kind of is what it is and I’m going to develop him and I’m going to see what it becomes.

Adam Pulford (00:54:08):

And so where we’re at is, and I know this is like conceptually, it’s a little hard to like map out in your head, but think about if you go from a max effort and you just keep on holding it, how much, or at what point do you become more aerobic in nature? Meaning you’re taking in more oxygen than your burning off muscle glycogen in order to produce that power. That’s, that’s what I’m talking about. And for battle it’s right around 75 seconds, 75 to 80 seconds, which is indicative of an all around her type of phenotype. Okay. And so the main thing with him is, is you taken a look at that and he can what’s, what’s fascinating about that. And what’s good about that is he can kind of go in any direction is we keep on training, he’ll be able to go off into the brakes.

Adam Pulford (00:54:55):

He’ll still be able to sprint in this type of thing. However, when you’re looking at brew in how he produces his power, that crossover point is over 90 seconds, which means he can stay anaerobic for quite a long time. And I mean, at this point, I mean, this is a full tilt out of the saddle sprinting for over 90 seconds. And that’s indicative of a sprinter now to paint this a little bit more clearly, if you take a phenotype like myself as a time traveler, my anaerobic to aerobic crossover point is around 75 or sorry, around 65 seconds. And my FTPs right around bruise. I weigh a little less, but it’s a, what I’m trying to keep up with brew. Let’s just put it this way. I can’t like that guy just out sprints me. Okay. And again, it’s how all three of us are producing that anaerobic power.

Adam Pulford (00:55:50):

That really makes a difference. And so my main point here is if we just use consistent percentages of FTP to create both anaerobic and aerobic training zones, you’re going to under train some people and you’re going to blow out other people. Okay. So the anaerobic training zones that I use for brew are not the same that I use for battle, not even the percentages. Okay. It’s all based on the data impulses that I get. And then I’m looking at trends over time. And then I train that specifically. So brews in a VO two phase right now. And that percentage is different from when I’m training VO, two percentages for battle. Okay. Now, to put this into some terms that we all can relate to, let’s just talk about like pure wattage. Cause we’re all almost the same, almost the same body weight within kind of five or seven pounds. Right. Brew. What did you do on the Hill this past weekend?

DJ Brew (00:56:50):

So yeah, one minute was like seven 47, seven 45, something like that. Yeah. Which was like a max ever like an all time high, one minute power for me. And it’s funny because when I did it, when I did that, I wasn’t, it honestly didn’t even feel like I was moving that quick. Like I was like cranking out any sort of all time high wattage. It was just one of the things. It was like, I’m just going to go until I blew. Like, by the time I, I got to the Tada here, I got my arms were hurting. Everything was hurting, but I mean, I was like, it didn’t feel like I was like going crazy, crazy. Like, I feel like I definitely could have started off like hit it harder, but like, it was, it almost felt like I was slowly ramping up the power and then just kind of went. But when I saw it afterwards, I was like, Oh, Oh wow. You know, cause it’s been a while since I got a gold star. So that was nice. But yeah, I was surprised. Yeah.

Adam Pulford (00:57:55):

Yeah. No. And in battle like your peak one minute power, but by the way, uh, brew came by. I mean like outstanding still that day, I was just like, what the heck? Um, when battle goes full tilt, he’s right around four 80 Watts. And again, they’re around the same body weight with me about five 24. So again, to frame that up, you just, you can see the empirical absolute numbers of how these different, you know, anaerobic bees to aerobic bees are producing their power. And that is a key, uh, difference in the training aspect. Okay. And I guess the main takeaway with all of that is not only to set proper energy, uh, or proper training zones, but then also it plays into the rest of the data in terms of how the athlete is going to handle anaerobic training in anaerobic efforts within a ride. Because, um, generally speaking for sprinters and anaerobic people like brew, they can, they see those anaerobic bursts kind of live in them up. Right. They can just handle so much more usually like normalized power, but DJ or brew. I mean, on a long ride, if you just ride a 200 walnuts, are you going to sprint good at the end of that? Or do you need like a few efforts to, I

DJ Brew (00:59:12):

Definitely need a couple of efforts to get going. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Adam Pulford (00:59:17):

I imagine it’s the same thing with you right now.

DJ Battle (00:59:19):

That’s exactly right. That’s, that’s why I also appreciate the openers that you’re giving me.

Adam Pulford (00:59:24):

That’s true. That’s true. And so I think again, when we’re coming back to, and if you’ve never really heard of an anaerobic to aerobic crossover point, um, and you’re not looking at it in your data, I mean, it would be interesting for you or your coach to look into that and see how it plays into the overall power that you are producing. Because it is a thing to look at in terms of how you produce your power and that’s going to help set up training, uh, into the future, much more successful. Okay. I feel like I was on a coach, like high horse soapbox there for a minute. Sorry guys. But honestly,

DJ Brew (01:00:00):

That’s something I didn’t even know. That was a thing like, you know, even before I got a coach, I felt like I was pretty, well-read like try to be as knowledgeable as possible, but I didn’t, I, that never even crossed my mind that that was a thing I just felt like, you know, if you do a wattage test, the waters that you do, I’ve not said no there’s stuff going on behind the scenes that allows you to produce that wattage. I mean, yeah, obviously you and your muscles are working, but I didn’t think that you could either do that aerobically or anaerobically depending on like, like, which actually trained in how you train it in that that crossover point can move. Like we can train it to where you’re producing. Like one thing you work with me, like being able to produce my power more robotically so that I can go longer, you know, like lasts a little bit longer and deeper into races and still have that anaerobic power at the end. So I’ve, that was completely, that was like a whole new concept that I got the opportunity to learn. Cause I didn’t, I didn’t even know that was a thing.

Adam Pulford (01:01:09):

Yeah, no. So you bring up a good point and it’s, I think it’s great to talk about here because when I, when I tried to get brew to produce his best power, it’s like, just go man, like go nuts and do it. And that means he’s going to have anaerobic contributions to his 20 or 60 or 20 to 30 minute powers. But for battle I’ll control him. I’ll say don’t surge, right? Because right now we’re working on not only his internal pacing mechanism, but also his anaerobic capability is medium. Okay. Which means if he’s burning matches, there’s only a few matches in the magic book that we can, that we can burn. And so trying to learn pacing and also trying to control his matches. That’s where it’s different. Okay. Um, with, but with brew is matchbook is far different. Now then you bring in time trial or phenotype with me, it’s like, okay, me and brew can produce the same threshold power, um, smaller. So power to weight ratio is even higher. However, if he starts throwing in 500, even 500, what like little zingers that’s going to add up, my heart rate will drift up and I know I’m on limited time, but it’s how I produce my power. That’s so crucial. Okay. And it’s lactate production and ultimately fatigue. And then eventually I just have to stay steady or go home in detail, skip sprint, um, battle. Any other thoughts or, uh, um, comments on power production and what we’re doing and how we’re doing it there before we pivot.

DJ Battle (01:02:43):

No, I, I, I thank you. Both of you guys definitely hit the, uh, great key points.

Adam Pulford (01:02:49):

Excellent. Okay. So this next section, as I said, um, brew helped me. Well, both of the, both of these guys helped me to kind of shape this up. This was kind of a brainchild of DJ brew. And, uh, we, he wanted to talk about how we navigate life, how we navigate training when stuff comes up, because as you heard, these two guys are not nine to fibers. Okay. Uh, battle. W what’s your, what’s your typical schedule?

DJ Battle (01:03:20):

Typical. Well, is there, there is no typical, there is no, what are the, what’s the word everybody like to use our routine? There is no routine for me is, is basically I’m on scheduled five days a week, however, I’m on a SWAT team. So we on 24 hour call outs or twenty-five or response, I should say. And then I also have a lady at home and two, two young kids. So nothing’s routine over here just to give you a slight example. Uh, yesterday two days ago, I should say we went out on a, on my day off, we went out on a barricade, a call out at work from 3:00 PM. And I didn’t get home to 8:30 AM the following day. And of course I missed the bike ride that day, but nothing, nothing is routine over here. So I basically commit, and I divide my hours up in the day and try to ensure that I can put the bike into. And, uh, uh, my lady at home is very supportive of that. And, and, uh, the kids, they don’t have no say so right now, but they have to that’s the way to do it. If they want a, if they want a new toys, they got to let me go ride a bike.

Adam Pulford (01:04:36):

That’s it, that’s it. Yeah. And that’s it. I mean, you know, life is chaotic. It’s it’s um, so trying to, and we’ll get into how we do that, but brew, I mean, you any different on that end or what’s your schedule like? Yeah.

DJ Brew (01:04:48):

I mean, I have a little more stability in my schedule and battle, but it still rotates every other month. My schedule changes. So I’m either working 6:00 AM to 2:00 PM or I’m working 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM. And that’s, I mean, that’s a new that’s within a year new schedule than me before I was on like complete evenings, Wednesday through Saturday 1:00 PM, to what I forget, where 3:00 PM, no 1:00 AM is what I was working. So, you know, now at least I get Saturday and Sunday off pretty pre I ain’t nobody calling me out at, on Saturday at one o’clock in the morning to go nowhere. So I do have that, that can be routine for me is that I want am, I’m going to be in bed.

Speaker 2 (01:05:39):

And, and even DJ can tell you it. After one of his Saturday rise where he drug me all up and down, dragging me all up and down Prince George’s County for about 70 miles again. And, uh, literally, literally, literally soon as I got home and got didn’t even get in the shower yet, we got another barricade and I was on my way out the door after DJ just shredded my legs, him and the team. So from a, from a committed standpoint, I just have to be committed to getting better and understanding the cycle and a racing life. And for the average everyday, Joe, whatever your hours may be, or your lifestyle may be, you can do this, whatever your schedule is because mine is maximize hectic chaos. And I make time for at least, uh, eight to 12 hours a week to get on my bike.

Adam Pulford (01:06:32):

So battle when you miss a workout or like, does coach text you or call you and say, thank you doing, why aren’t you doing your,

DJ Battle (01:06:42):

No, you don’t, you don’t, you’re not that, uh, what I would say mean, but even if you did do that, I wouldn’t mind, but you do reach out to me to check up on me, to ask me how, what does my next week look like? Or my upcoming week look like if I can even project it through schedule and I’m on days, I’d never really gotten to a habit where I’m missing like three, four days in a row. So, uh, from, from that perspective, no, you don’t reach out and say, Hey, batter, you missed a day. What’s going on over there. Not that that’s not your style.

Adam Pulford (01:07:16):

Yup. And that’s, and that’s crucial too, because thing is, is like a guy like battle, like he’s got enough stuff going on in his life. There’s no stress going on is he doesn’t need someone hunting him down about, you know, a bike ride that’s supposed to be relaxing. And, you know, there’s, there’s training fatigue and there’s non training fatigue, right? There’s, there’s life stress, there’s all this other stuff that’s like adding up and how you manage it, you know, as an individual or as a coach for an individual, um, each person can handle each aspect a little differently and also a little differently year to year as stuff changes. And so my point is, is like, as a coach, like, I’m not, I don’t want to be a stressor upon people’s life. You know what I mean? But I observe everything and I’m kind of like slowly, like, okay, God in a battle does a really good job of putting in comments about what’s going on, um, in work life, as well as training life and things like this.

Adam Pulford (01:08:11):

So for him and I, the comment section on training, quick text messages and stuff, I mean that that’s gold in terms of, um, what happened. And so then I can adjust or do nothing and let him kind of suss it out on that end because having the athlete know that they need to take care of some stuff themselves, not just coach, right. That has to decide what’s going on. Like if you’re not sleeping and if you just did a 70 mile, if you just worked for 12 hours, did a 70 mile ride and then go back to work, what do you think coach is gonna say, you need sleep at some point. Right. Don’t train more. Um, but you know, to kind of paint that picture a little bit more, um, I mean, DJ, I’ll ask you, I mean, what is, what is the role of a coach in your life? What’s what do I play in your life?

DJ Brew  (01:09:06):

Sorry. Did I say DJ? I meant brew. Yeah. Um, it’s I think it’s basic. It’s that guidance it’s I feel like you play the role where if I’m beating myself up about something that you can kind of talk me down from that ledge or, you know, from that negative self-talk I think is what it is like. So if I do miss workouts or something, and then like, I know at a fault, I’m like, I’m the type of person that Crees routine. And like, with the way my schedule works now, it’s like one of those things, like as soon as I started to get used to one, then the next month comes in my schedule switches. And it is always that like first week of like crap, you know, like missing workouts, trying to figure out the new schedule and then you kind of get the flow and then you start coming back into workouts.

DJ Brew (01:10:06):

Then the next month comes and your schedules, which is now you’re finding the new routine. And it’s like, Oh my gosh. So it’s like, that’s when I feel like, you know, the, the, you start to feel like, man, I suck. Like I miss these workouts. And I think you’re the person that comes in and is like, dude, it’s not that big a deal. Let me know, let me just tell me what’s going on. And we can rework, we like we’ll punch in the workouts. I’ll switch, move some things around. Like as soon as we know, like, okay, this is what you have available. Are you going to be inside or outside? Let’s start there. And then I’ll give you if I know, like you’re stuck inside, I’m not going to say, go and do a four hour endurance ride. I’ll give you like that. You know, one and a half to two hour workout that I know you can do inside on the trainer, because you’re going to be inside on the trainer.

DJ Brew (01:11:03):

So it’s one of those things like a coach works in that ecosystem where you’re not giving me things, that’s going to disrupt my life and add more stress to the training stress that you’re trying to create. Like, and I think that’s weird, which is, has to be a lot smarter is that once you realize that things in your athletes lives that create stress, how can you work within that system to give them the proper amount of stress at the times where their life is not adding to it, to create that group and not like to where those two things are just always in conflict. And you’re now every workout. She gives them add stress to the life because now they’re trying to figure out, Oh, when am I going to do this workout? Oh man, no coach is going to be because I didn’t do this workout. Like, why do I even have a coach? I don’t need a coach. Like none of these workouts ever work. Like I’m not riding the 90 go weeks at a time because you don’t ride because you can’t find it on the ride.

Adam Pulford (01:12:09):

Yeah. Well that’s, that was really well, um, well said, that’s exactly what we do. And I think like, as you’re describing that, when you text me and say something goes sideways or whatever, I always, you know, when, where my brain goes is always like, okay, what, you know, based on what I know of you, like, yeah, what’s a, self-talk going on K kid there. Um, okay. You know, he’s not, I know he didn’t sleep. I know he wrote at 3:00 AM, you know, uh, yesterday in, in, okay, what does he need now? It’s like, it’s either like sleep or just to like a regulation. Right. And so that’s the game that you’re trying to play is just like, okay. And normally it’s like, okay, let’s find, um, let’s find equilibrium and then we can get back to training. And it’s usually like, like that one by 60, if there’s key workouts, I’ll push them down. Right. I’ll push them down. We’ll get there eventually. But it’s, it’s getting back to somewhat of an equilibrium and, and, um, steady state before we can go on, you know, further. So that’s, that’s a really good way to kind of shape that up. Um, then there’s the day I’ll use. I want to use that a couple Thursdays ago, DJ it’s like, we ha we had a key workout and we’re even talking before that, what happened on that day? And I

DJ Brew (01:13:21):

Was like, you know what? I like it. I was excited about it. And like, I already are already talked to you about it. I got the motivation I needed. I was ready to go. I’m like, alright, I can get off work. I’m going to go home, get kitted up. I’m gonna knock this thing out. But already on the way home, I get a text from the misses. Like your son is driving me crazy. And I’m like, Oh, so I texted you back and I’m like, Oh no, we go see what? I don’t know what I’m walking into.

DJ Brew (01:13:51):

So you like, all right, it’s cool. You know, just let me know what happened. Um, so, you know, I get home, I’m still motivated to do his workout. Like, you know what? I’m coming to house and the test, the water, see what’s going on. If everything’s cool. So I get home. Everything’s cool. But then my son is like, daddy, play hot wheels with me. And I’m like, Aw, man, I can’t, I can’t be like, no, he’s got a ride. So it’s those, it’s like finding, you know, having that balance and then being able to communicate with your cousin, like not ain’t gonna happen today, bro.

Adam Pulford (01:14:30):

We go head to flex. Yep. So I got a text, I got a picture on text and it was DJ playing with some hot wheels. I was like, okay, I’ll move. I’ll move the workout.

DJ Brew (01:14:46):

Yeah. It’s like, you know, people, I mean, you could get down, you know, like I, and I don’t know. Maybe some people do and it is funny. It’s like, there’s still a life that happens like out side of riding. And you know, you, in a way, you know, people are like the top athletes is like the cream of the crop tip of the top. There’s no such thing as balanced, like to be up there, something’s being sacrificed. So when people say, Oh, I want balance, but I want to be elite. Is it doesn’t really go, go together. Because if you want to be elite, then you don’t want balance because being elite means that you don’t have balance. It’s like something’s being sacrificed to be at the top. Something’s always going to be sacrificed. So it’s you basically, you’re actually trying to figure out where do I want to sacrifice to get me as close to that middle balance as possible? Like not, I feel like you can be as best. You can be the best version of yourself, which is, I think what people have to push for more than I want to be the best cyclist ever are are, are, well, are you gonna, do you, are you really willing to give what it takes to be the best cyclist ever? Or do you just want to be the best view that you can be at psych?

Adam Pulford (01:16:20):

Yeah. Yeah. I’d agree with that. And in balance I would even go a step further. It doesn’t exist for anybody, right? Both of you guys. I mean, when I observed your guys’ schedules, I mean, there’s, there’s no balance, but there’s, there’s your own unique balance. And so for an elite athlete, they, you want them to find their own unique balance. But what that looks like is usually, you know, no family or, you know, family that’s close, but no like super strong relationships in turn. People are going to have things to say about that. But in general, they’re not taking things on, uh, they stay single for a while, right. To focus on training, do all the things are living at the Olympic training center. They have a specific way that they’re living that is very different from a master’s level racer. That’s my point. But yet when you coach them, when you talk to them, you, you know, it’s not out of balance for what they value.

Speaker 1 (01:17:13):

Right. They’re going for gold. Right. And that’s it. And so for you guys, with family in the bike and all this kind of stuff, you know, somebody who, I don’t know, loves fishing or lows, um, being an arborist or something, it’s like, Oh man, you guys never go fishing and you guys never go look at tree. I mean, what you guys don’t have a life, all you do is ride your bike. Right. But no, it’s the balance that you’re seeking. And that’s where I say balance doesn’t exist. Right. However, when we talk about balance all the time and trying to find balance in, in, in that kind of thing, and that’s the dance that bridge, that’s the, you know, uh, algorithm we’re trying to crack, um,

DJ Brew (01:17:51):

It will be nice to be able to come home and I’m going to ride at the same time every day. And you know, I’m going to have this, this specific amount of time for recovery and I’m going to be able to lay down for the next hour and a half. I do. I mean like bad on me. And like that was sucked. You do a hard ride and then like get called into work as soon as, as soon as you think about to eat some, some wings and hamburger is like, all right, well, I guess it’s ties go time.

Adam Pulford (01:18:26):

Yup. Yup. That’s it. And I think my ultimate goal for each of you is, is to find a rhythm that does work. And we found rhythms before that work with is training, stress, recovery, all this kind of stuff. But then I think the main thing you touched on before is like either the self-talk or do you, I mean, truly the self-talk of when things change, it’s like, okay, this is my deal. Now, you know, I’m going back into work like battle, or I’m just going to hang out with my kid and you know what be in the moment and know that that’s the, those are the cards you’re dealt, you know? Um, w one thing that brew said to me, one conversation was a coach is not an excuse maker. And it resonated with me because I see other athletes out there that say, okay, I can’t go on that cool ride that you guys just invited me on because I had my intervals to do. And so it’s an excuse not to go do that long, cool ride. Not to have fun because my coach said this thing and yeah, you can take, you could take it to one extreme and say, if you’re always doing long cool rides and why are we doing this training thing? But battle I’ll ask you, I mean, is, you know, is the coach and excuse maker in your world, or are you still able to do some cool stuff that you’d like to do too?

Speaker 2 (01:19:42):

Coach is definitely not an excuse maker in my world. Um, I, I don’t even operate in a world where people were excuses, I even acceptable. And that’s just through my current career and all the previous careers that I had before this. So a coach is also not a dictator, but if anybody give excuses is definitely not going to be me, it’s not going to be, and I’m not going to accept excuses from a coach. I don’t even accept excuses from friends and associates. But, um, even, even with that, I think I touched on also like the coach is not a dictator either. Like you don’t, you allow me not allow me. Uh, I, I still had the option to do fun group rides. And like I touched on earlier, I basically send you a text my mostly for the week prior. And, um, if there is a group ride that I’m interested in, I’ll just let you know, Hey, I want to do a group ride next week. And you can weave that in to train and block that you have for me. And then if I can make the group ride for whichever particular day I’ll decide which group ride I can make, because overall, I still need to get back home for my daddy duties. But, um, no coach is not an excuse to make a no a dictator and out. I just don’t do well with people that give excuses in anything.

Adam Pulford (01:21:03):

Yeah. That’s a perfect answer. Um, and I, and I love that about you guys cause brew, I’m guessing same thing on your end. Yes. Yeah. I,

DJ Brew (01:21:13):

It was always funny to me. Anytime I hear somebody make that excuse like, Oh, you know, I, I can’t do the group ride at eight guys. Cause my coach has to be doing this and I just roll my eyes. It’s like, man, it’s like, we’ll kind of antsy you, social coach would be like, don’t, don’t go do that group ride, go do these intervals by yourself.

DJ Battle (01:21:38):

Exactly. I can. I can even, I can. I’m sorry to cut you off. I can even go back to what I first started with Adam. Adam used to throw in my week, my weekly training per say, Hey, go do this group ride with your boys. Go do this group out with your boys. Can you make a defy club? Because if you can make it a fight club, Oh, excuse me. If you can make it to Amy’s point, then I prefer you. I prefer you do Hay’s point as opposed to his workout. I would’ve gave you. So I mean, nah, coach definitely. I, yeah.

DJ Brew (01:22:10):

And you think that they will be able to go back and be like, Hey, you know, is this real fun? Is this real fun ride that I like to do? Like, is there a way we can make this work? Like, can they, can’t you give me something to do within the ride that works within what we’re trying to get out of it. And still, I don’t know if that people use, have sometimes use having a coach to a, they know that when they don’t perform, they can always fall back on. Oh, you know, we’ll, you know, I guess I’m not getting the right kind of workouts that I need to begin. So like, let’s go back and like, let’s go back to the drawing board and like figure stuff out. Like it kinda is like that security blanket for was like, because I know now it’s not my fault. If, if something doesn’t go right. Cause I could always say, you know, I’m just, I’m not, you know, I didn’t get the right workouts. Like we didn’t do the right training to get to this point. And if it feels like it was what happens in people should not ever not be having fun. So if your coach is so rigid and structured where they don’t program in the group that she liked to do, like you might want to give them, look, start shopping around for somebody else. That will.

Adam Pulford (01:23:32):

Yeah. No, that’s it. And it’s it’s I mean, not to say that you should always be doing group rides and not to say as you always be doing intervals, but it’s like the thing you come fight, you find that middle ground, you say athlete, what do you love to do? I love to do this group ride. Cool. Well, would you, would you, uh, you want to do that better? Have more fun. Okay, cool. So let’s do the intervals here or let’s find it another group ride. That’s a loop it’s like a little harder and then that will make you like good here. And, and that’s what we’re talking about is something to enhance the thing that’s super fun for you already. And so, but yeah, I think, you know, not to belabor the point, but it’s like if you’re finding excuses to not do training, not do those, the fun stuff that you truly want to do. I mean, check yourself because that’s not, that’s not what we’re about here. Um, and Gabriel,

Speaker 3 (01:24:22):

The people that I like to race against, see, cause then it’s like, all right, we’ll see if it was worth it. Skipping the fun group ride to do those intervals right now.

Adam Pulford (01:24:34):

Let’s see if it was worth it. Uh, I do see Gabriel in the background DJ and Oh, I would hate to not say hi to him. Hi, thanks for making it on the podcast, man. Ahrens right now. Oh man, you guys, uh, we are going long here. So I I’d say, I mean, is there anything that you, before we wrap this thing up, I mean, is there anything that you want to ask me that you think listeners should know or would want to know about this individualized approach before we close out? Um, okay. I don’t, I mean,

DJ Battle (01:25:26):

I don’t, I don’t think so. I don’t, yeah. I don’t know.

Adam Pulford (01:25:30):

Okay. I D I th I thought Gabriel was actually

DJ Battle (01:25:32):

Going to ask a question. He was just letting me know mommy Kilburn

Adam Pulford (01:25:36):

Beetle. Got it, got it, got it.

Speaker 2 (01:25:41):

I got a question for you, uh, Adam, uh, for the footage for the everyday listener or the new listener. That’s listening to this podcast and actually don’t know who you are. Can you give a brief summary of who you actually are?

Adam Pulford (01:25:55):

Uh, that’s a good one battle. Um, I actually don’t talk about that too much on this podcast. Um, but that’s, that’s a good one. So I’ll answer it. I am a coach and I’ve been doing this full-time for about 16 years and, uh, had an internship on Colorado that turned into a job at CTS. And, and actually, this is kind of the F the F kind of a funny story where I was racing back then. And I was racing kind of everything, including, um, Xterra and mountain bikes and road racing, and our coaching director at the time, Tim polo, who Tim’s is still out there. I think he’s working for the NSCA now, but he told me, he goes, okay, you got a job. You start next week. I said, cool. A world championships are in Maui. Uh, I’d like to go race in, uh, et cetera. So can I delay a week? And he’s like, Adam, now’s, now’s the time where you decide whether you want to be a great coach or a mediocre athlete for the rest of your life.

Adam Pulford (01:27:00):

Okay. Okay. This is, this is, this is what I’m involved in. This is how it is. So I chose coach. Um, I didn’t go to Maui and it’s, I mean, it worked out right. Uh, cause uh, now I went to change it for the world and, you know, I had some pretty unique opportunities. Um, at CTS, I was full-time in office for about nine or 10 years. I took a job as a team director for a professional mountain bike team based in, uh, Southern California, did that for a couple of years. And then I worked on a women’s road racing team called 2016 now 2020 now, 2024. Uh, but I worked with, uh, Nicola and Mari as assistant director and coach to some of the riders on the team. Uh, and then I also worked with the orange seal off-road team in their first year.

Adam Pulford (01:27:48):

Um, and all of that has been super fun. I loved, uh, directing teams and working with professional athletes, but as we transition here to DC, uh, made the choice to focus more exclusively on just coaching and in content creation, which podcasts spun out of that. And like I said, I’ve been doing this for 15 plus years now, and it’s just, I think it’s, it’s like the most fun I’ve ever had doing it. And, uh, clearly I’m working with some really cool people that we can get on microphones and talk about, but battle as, as a good question, cause I’ve never, I’ve never actually told that story on here before.

DJ Battle (01:28:25):

And I appreciate you for answering that question because I know, I know for a fact that people stumble across podcasts and, um, for podcasts that have been going for a while, we still don’t know the story of the person that we’re actually listening to and put in specifically for this podcast, as it, as it replays for the people that know DJ and myself, they might not necessarily know who you are. So I think that was good. And this is a great to tell them who you are.

Adam Pulford (01:28:56):

Yeah, man. No, I that’s awesome. I, like I said, in my intro, I’ve never interviewed my before, so I had no idea kind of which direction this is going to go. And that’s a prime example of that.

DJ Battle (01:29:07):

I appreciate you. I appreciate it. You might have your athletes interviewing you soon. That’s true. That’s true. Let’s do it.

Adam Pulford (01:29:18):

Well, you guys, if you don’t have any more questions for me, I mean, this, this is super fun. Um, we, we covered a lot in the episode and I, you know, we went, uh, zigged and zagged in different rabbit holes of sorts, but in particular, I hope everyone got to understand a little bit more of that. What I call the individualized approach when I’m working with athletes and in how I do it. And hopefully, you know, we’ll at least start a conversation or start some action on their end to go deeper into their training, to start to work through strategies and get more education or have conversations with their coach, um, to do this better. Right. That’s, that’s kinda the end words, um, in that regard. So, uh, any final words from you guys? Or should we just wrap this thing?

DJ Brew (01:30:02):

Yeah, no, like you, you said it like your coach, they, if they do give you the workouts, but it should, the relationship should go more than that. Like it shouldn’t just be like, Hey, put this on paper you do with some of the paper. Like there, there should be an understanding they, they should actually work within your life. Like not just be, you know, this satellite orbiting around it, like sending the information that you’re supposed to do. So like find a way to make that relationship better, make it like actually foster it. Like it shouldn’t just be, you know, ones and zeros through computer.

DJ Brew (01:30:45):

This is a, the wad is X you’re supposed to do. Like a coach is not supposed to allow you to shut your brain off and quit learning. So like, you should always be learning, always absorbing. And I, you know, I was the one thing I appreciate about, you know, my relationship with battle is like, he asks so many questions, but it also helps me as well. It feeds me because it’s like, you know what? I I’ve been a cat one for so long. Like I never really thought about like how you actually get there. I just kinda did it without really thinking too much about it. But I, you know, so how do you explain that process to somebody? Oh, this is a question that somebody legitimately has that I just didn’t think about. Like, so, and, and it allows me to go back and like search myself to figure out okay, you know? Yeah, you’re right. This is, yeah, this is something I should explain this to you. This, yeah. It’s not as easy as just peddling up this Hill. Like you do have to change your gears. Like you do have to adjust like your body position. It’s, you know, it doesn’t all just stay the same. So, you know, he pays it back to me, like when I call him about mixes and it’s like, how does it, how do you, how do you transition to from hip hop to reggae, Tom, how can I make this transition?

DJ Brew (01:32:05):

And I have no clue,

Adam Pulford (01:32:08):

Best way to learn is to teach, you know? And then we all teach each other. And I think it’s, um, it’s, it’s really cool when you’re in an environment and a community like we have out here in DC, like it’s, it’s, uh, it’s so cool to be a part of. So thank you guys for, uh, you know, letting the outsider in when, when I first came in, it’s been a trip to ride bikes with you and, and, uh, help you on your journeys. Yeah. Much respect.

DJ Battle (01:32:30):

I appreciate you. Yeah, you did.

Adam Pulford (01:32:35):

All right guys. Well, let’s, uh, we’ll wrap it there and I’ll put some stuff in show notes to link to all your socials because with your music and things like that, you got a lot of other stuff going on too. So we’ll share to drive some people that way, but for now, thank you again for your time. Really appreciate

DJ Battle (01:32:51):

It. Yes, indeed. Thanks for having me. Bye.


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