With many events canceled or postponed, virtual training sessions can provide a source of revenue for race directors and their staff. Ready to offer your services digitally? Get started with this quick how-to guide.
Do Prep Work
Before you get started, determine how you’ll deliver the training sessions. Will you post workouts and mileage logs via sites like TrainingPeaks or Final Surge? Through emails or texts? Alternatively, you might consider holding weekly strategy sessions over phone or video. Whatever option you choose, make sure you set it up ahead of time and plan for any roadblocks.
Announce Your Services
Thanks to your race’s Instagram and Facebook pages (you do have those, right?!), you can take advantage of an existing audience. Offer the virtual training as a way for runners to stay motivated until races return. And while capitalizing on your race’s current fans can be a great place to start, consider creating separate social media pages for your training business. Keeping things separate can make it easier to target the right demographic.
Appeal to Diverse Budgets
To attract a wider variety of clients, offer different tiers of training. For runners looking to save money, a basic 12-week training plan to build endurance or speed might be appealing. For clients with a bit more money in their pockets, consider offering personalized mileage logs, tailored speed workouts and phone call check-ins.
Deliver Personalized Coaching
During a normal season, most runners would have a race (or three) on the calendar. But with the uncertainty of COVID-19, many runners are finding themselves adrift. Tailor your training to the individual needs of your runners. Some may thrive on higher mileage and challenging workouts while others may want to build a solid base or stay injury-free. Every runner is unique and by offering tailored training, you’ll be able to retain clients no matter what the future brings.
Consider Additional Offerings
If you have expertise in complementary activities, such as strength training or yoga, live or on-demand sessions might be a great value-add. If you’re not in a position to teach these activities, consider teaming up with an experienced fitness professional. If they host a weekly yoga class for your clients, you can give them a cut of your fee (or free run coaching). And think outside the fitness box–your clients might find sessions led by physical therapists or nutritionists beneficial as well.
With races and group meet-ups on pause thanks to social distancing, runners are looking for ways to stay inspired and excited. In addition to offering workouts, consider finding ways to boost morale. Plan virtual races or other challenges (e.g. a run streak) for your slate of clients. Or schedule camaraderie-building activities like virtual trivia nights or happy hours. Embracing a “team” mentality for your virtual clients can help everyone feel less alone.
Eventually, races will return and your personal training client base can be a great starting point when event registration re-opens. Consider offering clients a discount or free race entry to spark interest.