Sunday, June 14, 2020

Six Rhythms Training.

If your goal is to maximize your performance, then you have to optimally train all the muscle fibers that are active and contribute to performance during the event you choose. 

The only way to train a muscle fiber is to overload that fiber. A fiber that is not being overloaded will not adapt or improve.

In order to overload a fiber, you have to fatigue that fiber. Fatigue = overload.

Not all muscle fibers are fatigued at the same time. Different fibers have different fatigue rates. Slow twitch fibers fatigue at a much, much slower rate than Rapid A fibers. Rapid A fibers fatigue much slower than Rapid B fibers.

Furthermore, not all fibers of the same type are exactly the same. Instead, fibers of the same type vary widely in their contractile properties. For example, the average for Slow Twitch Fibers are slower, weaker, but more durable than the average for Fast A fibers. But that's just the average. There are Slow Twitch Fibers that are slower than the average Slow Twitch Fibers, others that are Average Slow Twitch Fibers, and others that are faster than the average Slow Twitch Fibers. In fact, there are some slow twitch fibers that are as strong and as fast as some Fast A fibers.

The same thing also occurs in the other types of fiber. In other words, there is a continuum of contractile properties (a bell curve) in all muscle fibers: from slowest to fastest, from weakest to strongest, from most resistant to least resistant.

The continuum of resistance found in its fibers varies from a few seconds to several hours. In other words, you have some fibers that tire in seconds, some that tire in minutes, and some that take hours to fatigue.

The amount of time it takes to train (i.e., overload) a specific fiber depends on the individual characteristics of that fiber. For example, a fiber that can contract for an hour before becoming fatigued will be minimally overloaded during an exercise that lasts for a few minutes.

Therefore, training (i.e., straining) all of your very different fibers (or as many as is practical) requires the use of a wide variety of training loads.

Train all your fibers.

For runners in distances between 100 meters and the marathon I suggest 6 different training / session rhythms in order to train as many fibers as fatigue as practical.

The 6 training rhythms:

1. Marathon pace
2. Half Marathon pace
3. 10k pace.
4. 5k rhythm.
5. 2k rhythm.
6. Sprint rhythm.

These 6 training rhythms will train as many fibers as can reasonably be trained.

Optimally training as many fibers as can reasonably be trained is the path to maximum performance.

Marathon pace training = long runs (20 to 40 kilometers) performed at easy to moderate intensity. This work maximizes the weakest but most durable Slow Twitch Fibers.

Half Marathon pace training = medium-long runs (12-20 km) performed at moderate intensity (a pace a little faster than the marathon pace). This work maximizes average slow twitch fibers and slower Fast A fibers.

10k training pace = medium distance runs (8-12 km) conducted at a moderate to moderately hard intensity. This exercise maximally trains the fastest Slow Twitch fibers and the average Fast A fibers.

5k training pace = shortest distance (3 to 6.5 kilometers) runs conducted at a moderately hard intensity. This work trains the above-average Fast A fibers and the slower Fast B fibers to the maximum.

2k training pace = short distance (1.5 to 3 kilometers) runs conducted at high intensity. This work trains the fastest Rapid A fibers and the slowest Rapid B fibers to the maximum.

Sprint training = very short distance (100 meters - 1,200 meters) sprints / intervals performed at very hard intensity. This work maximizes the average and above-average Rapid B fibers.

All of these 6 workouts cannot be done in a single week - the intensity will be too high and will likely lead to overtraining.

All 6 workouts can be done during a 2 week workout program. Here is an example:

Week 1: Sprint Session, 5k Session, Half Marathon Session.

Week 2: 2k Session, 10k Session, Marathon Session.

Week 1.

Monday: sprinttraining
Wednesday: 5ktraining
Saturday: half marathon training

Week 2

Monday: training at 2k pace
Wednesday: training at 10k pace
Saturday: training at Marathon pace

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