The Endure EQ by Excel Endurance

Endure EQ 027 | Using SET to level up your life

published2 months ago
3 min read

Hello Reader,

Welcome to Vol. 027 of The Endure EQ.

Every week you'll get a deep dive into a topic related to endurance training, maximizing your potential or reaching peak performance.

Let’s jump in.

Using SET to level up your life

Sustainable training is all about levelling up your training and performance.

Broadly speaking there are 3 level that we bounce between with training, racing and life

  • Injury/Illness
  • Wellness/Health/Sustain
  • Peak Performance

As you progress with your training you move up the levels, when things happen you can slide back a level.

Each level requires a different focus for your training.

As you begin your journey of training in a more sustainable way it’s important to remember that you cannot skip levels in the process.

You must progress from where you are, as each level lays a foundation for the next level of training.

The common patterns for triathletes

Working as a coach and physio I have seen many patterns with triathletes (and endurance/non-endurance athletes in general).

Here are the most common patterns:

The Burned-out Triathlete

This is the athlete that starts with a little bit of an injury, works through that builds there training, crushes a race but doesn’t have enough of a foundation to maintain their training.

They eventually fall back to the injury level before beginning this process all over again.

The Revolving-Door Rehab

This athlete is constantly suffering from an injury. They probably has a standing appointment with their physio every 2-3 months for something new that pops up.

They are building too quickly and dropping back down, then building again.

The spend more time doing rehab than actually training.

The Sustainable Triathlete

This is the athlete that realizes they can train differently. They have identified the key drivers of sustainable and health focused training.

Because of this they are always 20 weeks out from a peak performance.

They have a massive base built that allows them to adapt to new races and then return right back to baseline.

Levelling up

When you look at these profiles above, which one seems closest to your last 1-2 years of training?

Which one do you want to follow?

As athletes it’s easy to get caught up in the races and events but we also have to remember to take time for out overall health.

Find a level of training that sustains your energy and health.

One that emphasizes longevity.

Here’s exactly what to focus on as you progress through the levels:

Injury and Illness

In this phase your primary goal is to get out of this zone.

Build your healthcare team around you to support you in overcoming your injury or illness.

When I think of healthcare teams this might be a rehab professional, physio, massage therapist, primary care provider, specialists or more.

The best way to approach this is having a team by your side.

As you begin to sort out that process your training should focus on building health habits:

  • Sleep
  • Nutrition
  • Life schedules
  • Stress management

Set these up so as you level up you have a foundation of health.

Sustainable Training

This is the phase I hope every athlete can remain in for life.

It’s not the reality, sometimes we slide backward.

But the longer we stay here the better our overall health and potential in races increases.

In this phase, the goal is integration with your life.

Building the specific habits of training:

  • Cover all endurance zones
  • Strength training
  • Recovery

This training will sustain your health and endurance performance.

It puts you in the place of always being 20 weeks out from an event. Meaning that with a few specific blocks of training you could take on every race out there. You level up your sustainable training into performance based focus.

This is because you have built the habit of training.

Peak Performance

This is the final level.

And some athletes may not reach this (or even want to reach this).

But for those that do this is your personal peak performance. Not someone else’s peak performance. You are going after the hardest event you want.

In this level you build on the habits of training already established.

You will want to crank the dials of volume and intensity to tailor your training to your goals. This phase of training is usually challenging as you get more and more specific. That’s because peak performance is meant to be hard.

But if you don’t have a foundation of sustainable training then you will quickly fall down the levels.

Every new athlete wants to jump right to this level.

You need to spend time on each.


  • Each level of your athletic potential will require a different focus.
  • You cannot skip steps along the way without sliding backwards.
  • Once you figure out how to be in the sustainable zone do everything you can to stay there.

Thank you for being here!

- Chandler

When you’re ready here are 3 ways that Excel Endurance by Chandler Scott can help you:

  • Join our free community: find more resources, ask questions, and share workout ideas. Join Community
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  • 1-1 Coaching: Take your training to the next level with 1-1 access to Chandler. Coaching Request

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The Endure EQ by Excel Endurance

Welcome to The Endure EQ by Excel Endurance. Every Sunday you'll get a deep dive into a topic related to endurance training, maximizing your potential or reaching peak performance. If you like what you read here join today so you never miss an issue.