Professional Cycling Coach
Kenneth Lundgren comes from an athletic background, wrestling for 4 years at Pequannock Township High School, one of the state’s top programs. The team’s motto was “TOTAL COMMITMENT,” and this hard work ethic was ingrained in his blood, leading to success on the mat. However, during his senior year he broke his thumb, forcing him to miss the rest of the season and even the beginning of the baseball campaign. To stay active, he picked up a tennis racquet and found an ability to play the sport.
During college, Ken dedicated much of his free time to playing tennis and competing in tournaments. With aspirations to play professionally, he took his training to the next level. “I can vividly remember deciding to buy a road bike to increase my endurance,” Ken said, “a yellow Trek 1000. The bike changed my life forever...”
While living on the William Paterson University campus, he would ride to the Ridgewood Racquet Club, where he was a teaching pro, give lessons and play, then ride home at night, “three racquets stuffed into this old Marine knapsack, wearing these poofy Adidas pants and Nike tennis shoes. Those were the days!”
Shortly thereafter, Ken won two consecutive tournaments, crediting his core routine and bike regimen for part of his success. However, his riding had increased so much that there was a definite shift of interest – he had an undeniable affinity for cycling. Consequently, competitive tennis took a backseat. As one of the state’s top players, he decided to focus more on teaching and cycling.
Ken caught the bug: he was riding faster, riding longer, his physique slimming down, his energy level peaking. His weight dropped from 178 to 160, and he was now enjoying those long climbs up to the dorms. He even took Exercise Physiology courses at school, beginning to read up on the sport. Later that year, he started doing large group rides with other cyclists, getting involved in a new community.
He was hooked and remembers that summer as his favorite: “I was a senior in college, out for summer break. I had never felt so strong before. I didn’t think about the future. I just rode my bike. Everywhere. Every day. All the time.” Within a year, he joined Westwood Velo, a local cycling club, and participated in some beginner road races, taking 4th in his first road race. Bike number two was purchased soon thereafter.
After college, while attending graduate school, Ken decided to train and compete more seriously. He won 8 of his first 10 races. During this time, he became a true student of the sport, keeping a diligent training diary, learning the scientific approach to the sport, experimenting with different training programs, reading training books, and pouring through online journals and websites.
By late-fall, Ken took a break from the bike. While away, his studies increased. He continued to read up on what the experts had to say and became especially interested with healthy performance diet plans. How do the best train? And why? He kept diligent notes on everything he read and began to create his own ideas and principles...
A few years later, Ken began riding again. At first he rode in a very unstructured manner, just enjoying the bike and racing again. But in the second half of the season, he started following his own training systems and the results began to appear.
From word-of-mouth, Ken began coaching two athletes who wanted some guidance and direction. He said if he was going to coach, he’d do it right, paying incredible attention to detail, communicating regularly, and creating personalized training programs. He especially didn’t like how many training companies over-charge, don’t communicate much with the athlete, and seem to pump out black and white programs better suited for the masses and not the individual.
After a month, Ken was thoroughly surprised: he enjoyed coaching much more than he thought he would. The athlete’s success was his success... A few more athletes soon asked Ken to help them, and he realized he might want to focus more time coaching – he lives for the sport, understands the science behind the training, and loves helping people. Ken aced the USA Cycling Level 3 Coaching Exam and began pouring more energy into his company, Elite Endurance Training Systems.
“Training programs just aren’t blueprints,” Ken says. “You have to look at an athlete’s background, at their strengths, their weaknesses, at their goals and objectives, and you pump this information into a personalized training program that’s geared for maximum efficiency and, hopefully, wide success.”
Kenneth Lundgren is a member of the Northeastern Hardware Cycling Team, competing against professional cyclists. Latest result: 15th in the Pro/1/2 Harriman State Park Road Race. The team is coached by legendary Jim Grill, former National Junior Team Coach. The team manager is Mike Rosenhaus, a former National Junior Team member and Junior National Pursuit Champion who remains one of the area's strongest and most successful riders.
Following a structured training program using a power meter, look for Ken to be competitive in the Time Trial Cup Series, while peaking for the State Road Race, State Time Trial Championships, and the National Time Trial Championships.