Coach Profile - Ciaran O'Grady
Jan 17 2017
Ciaran is our longest running coaches, and is also the Head Sports Scientist, running our Rider Performance Lab at Cadence. Over a series of posts we will be letting you know more about the people whose expertise we rely on; here is Ciaran;
I started cycling after needing to do some form of sport for the Duke of Edinburgh award, so I popped down to a local cross-country mountainbike training session run by VC Deal, and was immediately hooked. My dad had raced for Ireland and competed in the professional circuit and so cycling was always a part of my life but up until this point it was always as an occasional hobby. Boy has that changed...
Martin O'Grady (Right) - Irish Championships
Since then, I've raced regionally, nationally, and internationally in road, mountainbike, cyclocross, time trial, and hill climb events, with many wins and lots of good (and bad) experiences. I still race with a south-east registered team; Adalta Race Team, where I compete regularly throughout the year.
My main passion is sports science and coaching. I signed up to study Sports and Exercise Science at the University of Kent in order to make me a better cyclist - little did I know that was the exact same reason which led the Head of School, Prof. Louis Passfield, to do the same! So a few years and two degrees later I'm currently working towards obtaining my PhD in Sports Science, specializing in individualizing training for endurance performance, in addition to working as a coach and sports scientist here at Cadence.
Yeah, I like to watch re-runs of Belgian Classics whilst planning training sessions...
With me as a coach, you'll get to know pretty quickly that I really like data. I track most things, and really make an effort to convey this to my athletes. The optimal use of data can take away several headaches that are usually encountered by either athlete or coach, and can be used to really delve into how each individual responds to their training in different circumstances. As my PhD topic suggests; a lot of what I do involves composing a training plan around each individual. Generic template plans work up to a point; after which there is a necessity to individually prescribe training and coaching in order to see continual progression.
Testing athletes in our labs can be so much fun!
I coach about 40-50 riders at any given time, and in doing so I have developed my coaching methodology to be highly efficient whilst still enabling me to get to know my clients and actually have meetings with them! My athletes range from those looking for elite race performance to those who simply want to get fit; with quite a few in the middle who target big sportives and are currently looking at doing their first race or Time Trial. It's exciting being able to interact with riders as they grow and develop as athletes, and with me as a coach I treat everyone as an athlete.
I enjoy spending time on my bike, especially with my girlfriend Freya Rawlins (also a badass racer), and will likely be doing some of the same training sessions as you from time to time. Some of my athletes interact with me on social media, which I find quite amusing when I see their pain-faces on my phone as I'm cooling down from my morning intervals. We all love cycling here!
So going forwards, my goals as a coach are to continually strive to grow and become a better guide in the process of training and athlete development. I want to really push the data-led side of coaching that I currently do; better using power data and the tools which I collect and analyse training. Thanks for reading!
Book a FREE initial consultation with one of Cadence Performance's coaches and we'll help you assess you current approach to training and give you some great tips to maximise your time on the bike. Initial Consultations are FREE, last for roughly 40 minutes and take place at one of our locations or via a Skype call. To reserve your consultation, select a date and time from the calendar below.
If you have any further questions regarding your booking, don't hesitate to call us on 020 8676 8825.