TrainingPeaks Co-founder Dirk Friel on Coaching, Artificial Intelligence, & the Future of Endurance Training (Ep.127)

Endurance training has come a long way from handwritten logs and fax machines, and we owe a lot of that progress to web-based platforms like TrainingPeaks. Founded in the late 90s by endurance coaches Dirk Friel and his father, Joe Friel, TrainingPeaks has helped modernize the way athletes can track, analyze, and plan their training. Today, the platform is used by everyone from recreational runners preparing for their first 50k, to cyclists in the Tour de France. So we sat down with Dirk to hear more about how better data leads to better performance; machine-learning and artificial intelligence; growing up with a world-renowned endurance coach as father; and a whole lot more.


  • What is TrainingPeaks? (4:38)
  • Thoughts on coaching (6:55)
  • Expanding TrainingPeaks to cover multiple sports (9:59)
  • Coaching as a family business (11:42)
  • TrainingPeaks users: athletes vs. coaches (16:53)
  • Data & endurance (20:42)
  • Artificial intelligence (23:13)
  • What Dirk learned from his dad (29:08)
  • Power meters & performance (34:20)
  • Podcasting (37:10)
  • Dirk’s skimo success (39:43)
  • Tech trends in the endurance world (42:45)