Am I correct by stating that workout intensity should increase as I approach my A race? If so, how far out from the race should I "back off" from the intensity?
oh wow... this is a question of philosophy, training background, goals, and personal experience. I'm not even going to touch it but will say the same song and dance that everyone gives and suggest the Triathlon training bible by Joe Friel. He covers just about everything. It's a good place to start. with a little more information about what you are doing, where you are at you might get some more advice from the peanut gallery. Until then, you're looking for "11"... just turn the intensity knob to 11.
Thanks for responding so quickly!
Yep, got the book. Read it and am working towards developing a plan/strategy.
I'm sorry if I was a little vague in my question. I know that the details for each person is different and it depends on someone's fitness level, goals, etc... Right now I'm just looking for some generalities and not speciifics. I know, I must be a geek, but I really like to try and understand "why" I'm doing something rather than to just create a plan without knowing what I'm doing. :-)
I know that intensity should vary. If I kept increasing my intensity every day, for every week, over a 2 month span, I know that I would burn out real fast. But if one were to stay in zone 1 from day one up to race day, chances are that person is not going to perform up to their potential; that they have to increase the intensity somewhere along the way to put some stress on the body in order for the body to respond/react. Is that a fair statement?
Your goals and at what stage your are in, in training should decide your intensity. I split my training into a base period, a build period, and a peak period. In the base period you usually do long work not much intensity (again depending on athlete fitness and race dates) although in the later stages of build try to mix in some intensity nothing to crazy, for example on you endurance ride attack the hill. So the base is to get your endurance up after the offseason if you had one. Then the build period is where more intensity comes in as you are trying to get to your peak fitness. And at your peak training period you should be trying to maintain your peak fitness for your races and build on it slowly.
I am not a coach, although this is what I do and it works great for me. Just dont work in a huge amount of intensity day after day early on in your training, as it could result in injury.
I try to back off the intensity once I cross the finish line. If I let up before then, I don't race as fast. If I keep the same intensity after the race as during the race, well, that's just stupid. Get it? My logic is FLAWLESS.
In all seriousness, when you mention backing off the intensity, are you talking about a taper? (not that type of taper jtrimom) I thought that most plans call for the intensity to stay the same, but the volume to be lower.
you have to decide if you will benefit more from more training or being fresher. if I am fully trained, good base, am strong etc. and I am going to do a full taper for an A race I will put in a week to two week taper. Keep in mind that a taper isn't an "all off" but a slow reduction in workload. if I am under trained I will do less, and if I'm going off the couch I'll do a day or two taper. You taper to give your muscles a chance to rebuild and repair.
It also allows you to replenish/maximize glycogen supplies in your liver and fully rehydrate. it is KEY that you are 100% on top of nutrition during you taper or else you are just taking time off and will not actually help you much. Sleep is the most important the day before the day before the race, and then the day before being the second most important. I use these days to practice transitions, pack race bags, write letters, catch up on house chores, do dishes, go on dates (sorry little to no drinking) etc. Was this what you were looking for?
[quote=jnrice] Until then, you're looking for "11"... just turn the intensity knob to 11. [/quote]
Is this a Spinal Tap reference?
To the OP, most of the training plans I have looked at, incl the one I am using, include details for length of each training session and intensity*, carefully structured to increase strength and endurance, avoid injury and burnout and includes a few low impact weeks and a good taper period at the end. If your plan does not include these kinds of details, get another plan! There's plenty out there. I have Joe's bible, and I am sure it's great, but I just didn't love it. I ended up looking at other plans until I found one that I felt good about.
* like 6 mile run with 1 mile warm-up, 4 miles of 800 repeats at RPE(rate of perceived exertion) 7, with 800 recovery intervals, and 1 mile cool down.
jnrice, yes this is what I was looking for. I also appreciate TryScott's information.
I certainly didn't think you folks would say "you need to do x amount of distance in this amount of time 3 times a week, etc..." :-)
I understand the taper part - makes perfect sense. I guess everything that leads up to that point - my workload and how I manage that workload between volume and intensity is truly unique and it's up to how my body responds. I guess that's why I should write things down so I know what is working and not working.
Volume decreases but "intensity" can increase more speed work. heres a workout format that has worked well for me break the race down, say your doing an olympic on sun. the monday prior to your race do 100mswm immediatley followed by 2ml bike followed by 1ml run all out, do this as if it was a mini tri rest 10min and repeat this process 5times then on wed repeat this workout and do low volume the rest of the week maybe sat before the race get complete rest. good luck.
[quote=TonisTri][quote=jnrice] Until then, you're looking for "11"... just turn the intensity knob to 11. [/quote]
Is this a Spinal Tap reference?
yes it is. :) That little reference is applicable to just about every day of everyones life. Watch, you'll use it at least once this week.
[quote=jnrice][quote=TonisTri][quote=jnrice] Until then, you're looking for "11"... just turn the intensity knob to 11. [/quote]
yes it is. :) That little reference is applicable to just about every day of everyones life. Watch, you'll use it at least once this week. [/quote]
"We've got armadillos in our trousers. It's really quite frightening."
"You can;t really dust for vomit."
Bizarre gardening accident.
Anything by Artie Fufkin.
The movie is a quote machine.
Love me some Spinal Tap.
"None. None more black."
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