Sharing this email, as sent to a recent client. Please use it to think about your goals and where you derive your motivation!
Writing today… to dive more into the concept of “super-compensation.” You are getting to the point in your training where you are understanding quite a bit about the body, and how it operates.
“Coaching” and/or Personal Training has so many different opportunities. Certainly anyone with an interest in fitness can obtain a certificate from ‘someone’ on the internet. What separates an NSCA (National Strength and Conditioning Association) Certified or Professional Coach from a typical $10/hr-YMCA trainer is that we understand the theory of super-compensation. Researcher Dr. Leonid Matveyev in 1965 proved that animals, when given a stimulus, have the ability to “change” or compensate.
With organizations like the NSCA and USA Weightlifting, we are able to understand models of: Loading, Crushing, de-Loading, and Testing. By varying levels of intensity like with “interval training” we are able to scientifically elicit a response in the body. This is something that the typical “CF” or YMCA trainer isn’t trained or tested on. It’s ok… many just don’t want to. It is difficult information and it takes a certain type of person to motivate an athlete and have the knowledge to do so.
Consider the 4 factors that have to exist in each workout to gain a neural, physical, emotional, and cardiovascular response. This is known at the F.I.T.T. principle:
- Frequency: how often is your program set up for you to exercise?
- Ex: Some weeks should only be 3 days… others could be 6
- Intensity: each week or each workout should be radically different
- Ex: within each workout, some may be 100 rep workouts at 50% Max HR others may be 2 RM Snatch at 98% Intensity
- Time: Varying amounts of time should occur within each workout or week
- Ex: Some workouts like 30 Clean/Jerks may be 5 minutes, others may be loaded for 1 hr
- Type: Mode of exercise should change between loading, offloading, rotation, and could radically change within movement standards
- These principles are the basis for the development of the “Fittest person on Earth”
- Ex: One WOD may have a person cycling 50 miles, another may be swimming 1/2 mile, yet another may be a tower building stair climb for 50 flights; Lifting vs. Canoeing
Regarding the daily monitoring of your body: you are becoming a very good resource for your coaches. You, more than any doctor are going to know when and how you are able to work. That said, the next point is critical for you to take in and evaluate.
- Knowing when to take rest days is totally up to you. We (your coaches) have to rely on your instinct. We need to train hard and rest even harder. As a Masters (45+) athlete, your body must be fresh each time you train. If it isn’t, we are digging a deep hole that we can’t get out of. Here is the concept:
- Intensity and duration have a love/hate relationship
- If intensity is high (like with sprinting), duration (time) has to be low—like sprinting a 50m dash
- Inversely, if duration is high (like a marathon), intensity has to be low
- Here is the point: if you are training 2x/day and potentially 5-6 days/ week, you are lowering your intensity.
- As such, we are giving you the right to “call a rest day.” However, if you train on a day that is scheduled for rest, we reserve the right to cancel training on any workout day. It just doesn’t make any sense to continue to train yourself into the ground. You have too much invested in this. Your Coaches have time, energy, and pride invested in you. We know how broken you are right now… and we are already fighting an uphill battle.
- One shoulder is at 50% and recovering.
- Other shoulder my be at 75%—but both are limited in movement, strength, and ROM.
- Hamstrings are being watched, with a potential strain last week. One has received treatment 2x.
- Low back and hips are at 75%. Therapy continues, but WODs including static stress are problematic. Ex: KB Swing, Run, Row or Deadlift. This will put you in the dirt.
- Knees are 90%—but take time to warm up, lest they ache.
I believe that all your coaches would agree. Your cardiovascular system is responding to all the training. Your heart and lungs are becoming very conditioned and will only get better as we get closer to your event date. The area where we can make the most improvement is within the power lifts. Weightlifting. Specifically the snatch and the clean and jerk.
This area of training specifically utilizes the nervous system. Strength is developed by the muscular system. Weightlifting uses the nervous system… but this is a another world we can chat about tomorrow…