Saturday, February 17, 2007

Tapering for trials

I was asked if or how to vary training the week leading up to trails...

There are 3 trial days. Assuming that you are on a good training program or just training well you should be making weekly gains. Thus you should be able to produce the best results on your last test.

Your training works in a simple cycle of breaking down muscle and rebuilding it. The way to taper (alter training to get quick gains) is by resting more and working less (more rebuilding and less breaking down) but by resting more you break the breakdown/rebuild cycle. Thus the taper gives a quick boost to your performance but delays your long term gains (in this case by a week or so).

My suggestion is to keep up your training in order to get great results in May. If you feel the need to back off some, do so in areas that do the most muscle damage - ie weights, high intensity intervals and super distance (2hrs+) work. Also if you dont do mini tapers it builds a mental focus which can help to improve performance.

Dont do time trials or other race simulating activities the week leading up to trials. If you need to practice a race plan break up the distance into short blocks with lots of rest.

"(Success) is not something you force, its something that comes naturally with time"
- new Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin in a recent interview.

No comments: