In Our Corner: David Shapiro

In Our Corner: David Shapiro

David Shapiro is a long time Endurance Corner athlete coached by Marilyn Chychota who follows a different track than most other EC athletes. David is non-competitive with a focus on endurance cycling and general health. We took some time to ask David some questions to get to know him a little bit better.

Where do you live?
We live in Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia, having moved here a few years ago from the U.S. after retirement.

What’s your athletic background and what is your current athletic focus? You’re not a triathlete like most other EC team members.
Until recently, I did not do much focused athletic activity. I don’t do triathlon myself, but I support my spouse, Sharon, who is also an EC athlete coached by Marilyn. I’ve been riding for the last three or four years.

What does your current training look like?
It varies considerably based on fitness, injuries, travel and spouse events. I typically bike two to four times per week, swim once per week, and balance with gym/core work periodically over a few weeks.

You’ve faced some challenges over the years. Can you share some of them?
As a recreational athlete, I’ve been injured a few times, one of which required a back surgery. Moving between countries has also been tough, as well as renovating houses and apartments and changing jobs a few times. We’ve also helped our daughter with overseas moves. Also being an actively supportive spouse of a triathlete has its own challenges. I’ve found that having perseverance and a willingness to try things that are out of my comfort zone has helped me move past challenges.

What has been successful and worked well for you in your training?
I’ve increased my strength and confidence in my cycling ability, achieving many goals that I never thought possible, including 100 mile events, back to back 100 mile rides, riding Mt. Hotham, nine days of riding in challenging conditions in Columbia and completing the bike leg of a half ironman as part of a family team event.

What is the biggest thing you’ve learned that has surprised you?
I am a better rider and athlete than I realized. I guess I underestimated what I have been able to achieve for a guy in his mid 50s, who did almost no sport for 20 odd years and that I can actually achieve a lot more than I expect.

What works well in your coach / athlete relationship?
Openness, flexibility, honesty , understanding my quirks and how to get the best from me without ever making me feel uncomfortable. My coach has a great understanding of life, and the issues that can come up along the way. She is always willing to listen and adapt programs to help try to keep me on track. She is able to balance my program with that of my spouse, so that even if we are at totally different levels, we can be out at the pool or on the road or gym at same time if needed

What does training and sport bring to your life athletically and personally?
As I don’t compete in triathlons like most other EC athletes, I use Marilyn to keep me fit, healthy and challenged. It makes me feel positive about myself and brings me closer to my family as these are sports that we all participate in at different levels

Any closing thoughts?
It has been a real pleasure to work with Marilyn over the years. She is part of our family and genuinely cares and supports us in times of success but also when challenges/issues/injuries come up. She is more like a life coach at times rather than just an athletic coach.

Categories: Lifestyle

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Endurance Corner

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