Getting fitter is about balancing training stress with recovery. Far to many athletes believe training volume should be limited by the risk of injury and rarely consider the recovery cycles required for the body to compensate which make us stronger and fitter. The primary recovery is through sleep. Read More
There are a number causes of cramping while swimming, and basically they are the same ones that cause cramping with most other sports and forms of exercise: electrolyte loss, conditioning and unnecessary tension. The most common of these when it comes to swimming is unnecessary tension. Unnecessary tension, like plantar flexing, is an involuntary action that is unnatural. The body will attempt to correct this unnatural position, causing a cramp. Read More
Efficiency and technique are the most under rated aspects of triathlon by most age group triathletes.
When working with athletes on technique change I sometimes get the immediate feedback that what I am proposing does not feel right, it feels awkward, odd. Quite often I find the athlete dropping back to the “comfortable” technique believing good technique should feel right immediately. Read More
Training is the investment of time to improve results.
There are four basic components in endurance training:
- Aerobic training – 80% to 85% of training time in Zone 1 and lower Zone 2 (MAF)
- Force Development – 5% of training time (Maximal Strength – Zone 5+)
- Durability training – 10% to 15% of training time (Zone 3 – 4)
- Technique – Integrated into training and active recovery
- Recovery – Active recovery + 7.5 hours+ sleep average per night.
Any training session should be targeting these adaptations. The only session that have benefits if you have muscular fatigue are durability and active recovery.
Know what your session is targeting and stick to the plan. If you can’t nail it, go home and use the recovery time, don’t dig a hole!
I put this pdf together to assist self coached athletes in building structure into their programs. It assumes some basic knowledge of periodisation and experience in balancing training and recovery.
Many athletes see learning to tumble turn in the pool as a waste of time as there are no turns in an open water swim. The reason to tumble turn is not about speed, pace or achieving a better pool swim time. It is about developing good breath techniques necessary for a sustained open water swim. My view is that the shorter the pool the more reason to tumble. Read More
Recently I did some analysis on an athlete’s sodium loss and cramping issue reminding me of an issue I had a couple of years back.
I had a sodium test done out of interest, even though I did not have a cramping issue. The recommendation suggested I take significantly more sodium than the norm due to my high sodium loss. I implemented this in my next race experienced severe cramping. In review we established my sodium intake was too high slowing my water absorption and causing bloating.
The issue was that the sodium test report did not show a relationship between exercise intensity and loss rate. My test was done at threshold pace, however my race was a 70.3 performed at close to aerobic intensity (Zone 2). Read More