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I have the same goals as you. Several years ago while also in the East Bay I looked for a coach. I signed on with Wenzel Coaching who had a guy in the East Bay. Never met him. I then signed up with Carmichael (CTS) Never met him. Then signed on with Endurance Mill Valley. Met them and they worked great but met the trainer less than 3 times. The point here is the location does not matter. Trainers don't like working in person. They like to send you work outs over a web site or e-mail. You really can't even pay someone to do rides with you. I have tried 3 different programs and CTS twice. I would say they are the best for the money. But unless you do the work by motivating yourself the coaching is a waste. Just go ride watch what you eat and have fun. Coaching is for guys without weight issues. I may get a coach again when I want to take it to the next level.
 

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http://www.coachthomas.com/

Thomas is out of Mtn. View. Depending on what level of coaching you sign on for he does ride with you. He had two of his clients come out with us on our weekly ride in JMP. Most of the coaching is done over the internet and emails. The nice thing about a coach vs. downloading a training plan from the internet is the coaching. He is constantly checking your progress and training and makes adjustments along the way while offering feedback.
 

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Oh whoa, haha. Just read this.

If you're completely new to all this stuff, a face-to-face relationship with a coach is best, but more expensive and there are some coaches out there who are better / more experienced than others. I can't give you a solid recommendation for an east bay coach, unfortunately. If you don't mind going across the water, check out Endurance PTC.

I used to work with a coach over here, his prices were low, but it didn't work out great for me although another friend has done well with him. PM me for details.

Last year I focused on cyclocross, and got training plans & testing from Clark Natwick of Endurance PTC. It wasn't coaching, it was a cheaper alternative where every three months I'd go to Mill Valley or San Francisco where Endurance PTC has offices with lots of sports testing equipment. I'd do some supervised performance tests, fill out a questionnaire, sit down with Clark (former national cx champ many times) and a sports physiologist and go over my progress, my upcoming goal races, then Clark would mail me a pdf file containing workouts and goal races for the next three months, telling me exactly what to do each day. I train on the road with a power meter and on the dirt with a heart rate monitor, so I'd follow each day's instructions and "just do it." This worked really well for me, and I learned a lot from Clark. FWIW I did a fair amount of running for cx training, and also in the base portion of this year's build-up for TransRockies.

What I do now is get a canned training plan from Lynda Wallenfels. This year I'm focusing on endurance mountain bike racing. I got a lot of info from the testing I did with Endurance PTC, and now do my own self-testing every month via a test protocol in her training plan. (It's the classic FTP test from the Andy Coggan / Hunter Allen book, if you're into wattage-based training.) Her plans are inexpensive, focused on mtn bike racing and I really like the "homework" model of reading the plan in email or on the http://trainingpeaks.com web site every day, doing the work, then logging it either manually (gym work, yoga, etc) or uploading it (if it's hr or wattage data) on the site. It's great to be able to go back and look at what I did last time, what I did this time, etc. Lynda has a forum on her site, and you can ask her coaching-type questions, and she answers them. It's for the benefit of all the athletes that use her plans, rather than a single athlete - coach relationship, and she's very generous with her knowledge. Her palmares are very impressive, as are those of her partner Dave Harris. I'm looking forward to meeting both of them at TransRockies.

I'm also jonesing for the new Powertap disc-brake hub. *sigh* If only I were rich!

Morgan
 
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