Individual Coaching

I am now taking on a small number of athletes for one-to-one coaching and support. I have two main packages on offer: Train and Race. With either package you’ll benefit from:

  • An agile plan – Knowing when not to stick to the plan is as important as sticking to it. We’ll work together to make sure your plan always works for you and is as structured or unstructured as necessary
  • Race knowledge – I can help you with what is really important to get you up there in the races — be it a local league or a Superprestige
  • Skills and efforts sessions – This isn’t just about your ‘fitness’ — we’ll work together on your skills, flow and explosive efforts too.
  • Taming the numbers – As a world-leader in computational engineering and optimization, I know when to take ‘the numbers’ with a pinch of salt. It’s good to use some analytics but I’ll make sure you don’t become a slave to a piece of software.
  • No more taking a knife to a gun-fight – You’ll know your setup is bang-on for each race with unparalleled advice (or I’ll even do it for you with the Race package).

Just got one race in mind? There’s also the Three Peaks package (running up until September – sometimes literally)!

Please email me if you’d like to discuss your coaching needs and the packages I have on offer: alex@howtorideabike.co.uk

I am also running holiday clubs for kids (please see link in menu).

Train, Race and Three Peaks packages

Train £95/monthRace £140/monthThree Peaks £80/month
Meet to develop your aims, goals and objectives
Detailed, flexible training plan with structured and unstructured training sessions to fit around your life and goals (delivered to you via the ‘Training Peaks’ tool)
Weekly feedback sessions (in person or, e.g. Skype) including race debriefs, training plan finessing and race mentoring
Monthly cyclocross skills and efforts sessions (1-2-1 and small groups as appropriate)
Course-tailored pre-race bike preparation* and planning

*Race package bike preparation

  • Gear adjustment and choice for upcoming course
  • Brake adjustment/bleed
  • Wheel trueing
  • Derailleur hangar alignment
  • Tubular glueing or tyre changes for upcoming course
  • Checking and replacing worn parts (parts charged at cost):
    • chain
    • chainring
    • sprockets
    • bottom bracket, wheel and headset bearings
    • jockey wheels
    • brake pads
    • cables
    • derailleurs
    • bar ribbon

Up to 48 bike preps per year (max. 2/week). Athlete’s personal bikes only! Does not include suspension servicing (just checking/adjusting pressure).

*Three Peaks package bike preparation

A dedicated Three Peaks specific check-over and setup for your bike(s) for the big day!

A bit about me…

I have been riding and racing bikes for over 25 years. I started off with a mountain bike but quickly moved into time-trialing on a borrowed bike and soon after got my first cyclocross bike. This was a hand-me-down from MTB and cyclocross legend Tim Gould. I was fortunate to grow up in Derbyshire among the UK’s (and world’s) best mountain bikers, from whom I learnt much of what makes me the rider and coach I am now. Not just training and race-craft, the little things too – like taking a spare undervest to change into at the café!

As a relatively late developer, I wasn’t particularly successful at racing until around 20 years old, when I reached the dizzying heights of reserve for the World Cyclocross Championships (while it’s great to see strong, young riders performing I’m well-aware that, for some riders, later success can be born from less focus on results at an early age). It was a little before this, at the age of 18, when my love affair with the Three Peaks began. I have now completed this race 19 times, with 3rd my best finish so far, as well as winning the U23 trophy twice. 

There is always tension between education/work/relationships/family/health and training/competition. My interest in engineering and research, coupled with illness, took me out of racing for a while. My engineering and optimisation methods have been published and cited many times, and have been used in areas as diverse as developing satellite structures, Formula 1 racing, and equipment and training for Olympic athletes. Lecturing and nurturing countless students through their final year dissertations and PhDs has also taught me a lot about getting the best out of people.

Engineering is meeting objectives by developing solutions to problems, given the available resources and limitations. It is about coupling analysis and pragmatism. This is exactly what coaching is too! They key is not only to identify appropriate objectives and resources, but also where analysis (e.g. heart rate and power) are useful and where pragmatism (what works or is possible) comes in.

Research isn’t just about reading books, neither is it just about having your own ideas. It’s also about seeing everything that’s out there and how it might be used and enhanced to solve something or create something. That’s coaching too!

I have authored two engineering textbooks and so it then made perfect sense to write a book about my main passion: “The Cyclocross Bible”. As the name implies, everything you need to know is in there! You can’t learn everything from a book though, and that’s why I’m offering my services as a coach. 

I’m hitting my own goals and helping others hit theirs by combining the training I’ve learnt from the best with more modern periodised and power-based methods. We are not machines though! We get the best results when recognising how training and racing interacts with our lives and our health, and how our bodies change over time (due to both training and ageing).

I look forward to helping you find and reach your goals! 

Dr Alex Forrester MEng PhD