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Using progression in your strength training


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  • TA的每日心情
    2013-10-6 06:23
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    發表於 2015-2-25 11:34:04 | 顯示全部樓層 |閱讀模式

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    Using progression in your strength training

        By Jason Fitzgerald
        Published 2 days ago

    Share46 Tweet34 2 1

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    [The role of strength training in triathlon]

    Most runners know that to get faster, their workouts have to gradually get more difficult over the course of a training cycle. This concept is called progression and helps runners achieve new levels of fitness as their bodies adapt to higher workloads.

    But many runners don’t follow the principle of progression for their strength workouts. They do the same core session year after year, or always stick to a similar series of exercises in the gym.

    Running the same workouts at the same pace isn’t the best long-term strategy to improve and get faster, so why do many runners never implement progression in their strength workouts?

    After coaching hundreds of runners, my experience is that most runners simply don’t care that much. We want to run, not lift weights! But overlooking this crucial aspect of your training is leaving extra speed on the table and increasing your risk of overuse injuries.

    Instead of letting your strength stagnate, let’s discuss the goals of strength work and how to properly implement progression in the gym.

    The Goal of Strength Work for Runners
    Many runners misunderstand why they should be lifting weights. The most common mistake is lifting for endurance by doing high reps with short recovery intervals.

    Instead, runners should lift for strength—or the ability to lift more weight (rather than lifting for endurance or hypertrophy). By getting stronger, runners will improve their efficiency, muscle fiber recruitment and power.

    These adaptations have distinct benefits for distance runners, allowing them to impart more force into the ground and run faster. The hormonal response of lifting heavy, including increased testosterone and human growth hormone production, can improve recovery and ultimately the ability to tolerate higher workloads.

    Lift for strength by following these rules:

    Each exercise should be limited to 4-8 reps per set

    Lift so that the final set is challenging, but don’t lift to failure

    Complete 2-3 sets for each exercise

    Take 2-3 minutes in between exercises to ensure ATP (the main energy source for the cells in your muscles) is replenished

    Use free weights (not machines) and focus on basic lifts that maximise muscle fibre recruitment like squats, dead lifts, bench press, cleans, lunges, and pull ups.

    Following these practices will ensure you’re maximising strength gains from each workout.

    Start General, Then Get Specific
    If you’re new to strength training, it’s not a smart idea to jump into a series of heavy dead lifts on day one. Instead, follow the first rule of progression: start general.

    General strength forms the foundation that allows runners to progress to more advanced lifts in the gym. Start with relatively simple core exercises like planks, oblique twists and side planks. Exercises performed on the ground in a prone or supine position are more general than those performed standing up, since running is a standing activity.

    After 3-5 weeks of consistent core workouts, you’re ready to progress to more advanced exercises. A valuable way to bridge the transition from bodyweight core exercises to difficult gym workouts is by starting with a medicine ball workout.

    Medicine balls are a helpful strength tool that can be used as the next logical step after bodyweight exercises become too easy. The same exercises you’ll soon be doing in the gym—like squats, dead lifts, and lunges—can be done with a medicine ball.

    After another 3-5 weeks of combining general strength and medicine ball workouts, you can progress to more advanced lifts in the gym.

    Strength Training Tips to Remember
    Now that we know to start general with bodyweight exercises, move to medicine ball workouts and finally transition to weight lifting in the gym, we can fine-tune our approach to strength training with these 3 rules:

    Lifting is secondary to running. Strength work should enable and support your running, not detract from it. If running workouts are compromised by gym sessions, reduce the intensity so you can maintain the appropriate volume and intensity on workout days.

    Skip the bicep curls – and any other body-builder-centric exercises like tricep extensions or calf raises. Focus on movements, not muscles, by doing the exercises discussed earlier in this article. By maximising muscle fibre recruitment, you’ll get a bigger hormonal response that will aid recovery and strength gains.

    Lift on hard days. Too many runners schedule hard strength workouts on rest days or after an easy run. Instead, lift after your long run or faster workout to stimulate additional fitness adaptations.

    Lifting is as much about benefiting from neuromuscular adaptations as muscular adaptations. By lifting in a pre-fatigued state, the body learns to work hard when it’s low on glycogen and still clearing byproducts from the running workout.

    This principle fits with the philosophy to make your “easy days easier and hard days harder.”

    The best runners are often the strongest runners. By implementing a sound strength program within your training cycle, you’ll realize all of its benefits: enhanced recovery, a faster finishing kick, increased strength, reduced risk of injury and improved running economy.

    Plus, you might enjoy how much better you look!

    About the Author: Jason Fitzgerald is the head coach at Strength Running, one of the web’s largest coaching sites for runners. He is a 2:39 marathoner, USATF-certified coach and his passion is helping runners set monster personal bests. Follow him on Twitter @JasonFitz1 and Facebook.

    Read more at http://triathlete-europe.competi ... E6TOgecy2oK6X0Hx.99


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      發表於 2015-10-11 00:05

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  • TA的每日心情
    2013-10-6 06:23
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     樓主| 發表於 2015-2-26 14:52:09 | 顯示全部樓層
    I’m training for my fourth marathon and a few half marathons this year. I’ve read about breaking up the long run into two segments in one day, and I wonder if that would work for me. I’m the mother of three, I work, and like all parents, I’m challenged with getting all my training in during a very hectic weekend. What are your thoughts? ~Kara

    There are many ways to train for long distance running, but the key is to develop a schedule that fits into your lifestyle. The great news is marathon training allows for plenty of flexibility, and it can be fun to tailor a custom plan to you and your family.

    The idea of breaking up a longer run into two segments over one or two days isn’t a new one. Ultrarunners commonly use this strategy of back-to-back long runs to simulate running on tired legs and to accumulate long run mileage over an extended period of time to allow for less stress to the body.

    Splitting up your long run not only allows you to complete your mileage, but it can help you run with better form throughout the distance. We all have a fatigue threshold at which our endurance ability fades and our form starts to deteriorate. For instance, if you’re able to run 6-8 miles right now and went out to run 16 miles, you’ll likely begin to break down between 9-10 miles.

    But just because we can do something because our mind lets us doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. Pushing through while fatigued can cause aches, pains, and potentially injury when secondary muscles take over to compensate and keep us moving.

    When you break your long run into two segments in a day, you have a recovery period that allows you to start up again with somewhat fresher form to finish the last 30- to 40-percent of the long run. To break up your run, complete about 60-percent (or so) in the morning, and then finish the rest in the afternoon or evening.

    For the purpose of your marathon training plan, you could go with a few fun options. I say “fun” because anything that fits your life like a glove causes less resistance so you end up smiling a lot more and complaining a lot less.

    First things first, your midweek miles–or anything that isn’t related to your long runs–can be optimized to two runs. Since you are a seasoned marathoner, you can plug in quality runs like intervals, tempos, or hills for two days per week and get in the quality rather than focusing on 3-4 runs during a busy week. Make the most of these days by pushing a little harder in intensity.

    If you have more time for workouts during the week, add cross-training (cycling, swimming, elliptical, class at gym) and strength training (yoga, pilates, weight training). If you don’t have time for more workouts, incorporate a short, 15-minute strength and flexibility routine after your two core runs during the week. This will go a long way in keeping you healthy and balanced as you train.

    For your long runs, I’d suggest planning a buffet of options within your season because it will optimize your time and preparation and give you the flexibility you’ll need to coordinate with your calendar.

    Think of it as a rotational progression in long run mileage, where you run one longer run all at once, one broken into two segments in one day, and one cutback long run at a varied pace. Sound fun? It can be because every week is a new adventure, and more importantly, it trains the body in a multi-strategic fashion.

    Here is how a typical 20-week marathon training plan could be created for a busy person’s schedule:

    Week 1: 9 miles

    Week 2: 10 miles (6 miles a.m. + 4 miles p.m.)

    Week 3: Cutback race simulation (6 miles: 3 miles easy effort, 2 miles moderate effort, 1 mile hard)

    Week 4: 11 miles

    Week 5: 12 miles (7 miles a.m. + 5 miles p.m.)

    Week 6: Cutback race simulation (7 miles: 4 miles easy effort, 2 miles moderate effort, 1 mile hard)

    Week 7: 13 miles

    Week 8: 14 miles (9 miles a.m. + 5 miles p.m.)

    Week 9: Cutback race simulation (7 miles: 3 miles easy effort, 3 miles moderate effort, 1 mile hard)

    Week 10: 15 miles

    Week 11: 16 miles (10 miles a.m. + 6 miles p.m.)

    Week 12: Cutback race simulation (8 miles: 4 miles easy effort, 3 miles moderate effort, 1 mile hard)

    Week 13: 17 miles

    Week 14: 18 miles (11 miles a.m. + 7 miles p.m.)

    Week 15: Cutback race simulation (8 miles: 4 miles easy effort, 3 miles moderate effort, 1 miles hard)

    Week 16: 19 miles

    Week 17: 20 miles (12 miles a.m. + 8 miles p.m.)

    Week 18: 10 miles

    Week 19: Cutback race simulation (7 miles: 3 miles easy effort, 3 miles moderate effort, 1 mile hard)

    Week 20: Marathon!

    [Please note: This particular mileage progression is geared for a seasoned marathoner who has covered the distance and who is currently running 6-8 miles of their long run. It can also be modified for newbies, lower mileage, and advanced runners as well.]

    I’m currently coaching a busy, married father of two who travels weekly and is training for one of the toughest ultra races in the world, the Comrades Marathon in Africa. I have him on two weekly quality runs (hills, tempo, or intervals), strength training, and a alternating long run progression that is challenging enough to prepare his body to race the distance competitively, yet flexible enough to fit his life schedule and not miss a beat with his wife and kids.

    It works when it fits your life, and all it takes is a little creative planning and faith in something a little different than the average training plan. Make it yours, and you’ll conquer your marathon and amaze your kids!


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      發表於 2015-10-11 00:06
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