Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Training: The Year in Review

My training period actually ends on December 1, but as I take the month of November off, it is a good time to review the prior year and evaluate how it went.

First, the metrics for 12/1/04-12/1/05:

This year, I added in Ultimate games and practices. This was probably a sorry attempt to bump my numbers up, but I thought it might be interesting.

Total Year Hours: 334
Total Calories: 149,763

Total Weight Training Hours: 47 (roughly 20%)
Total Aerobic/Anaerobic training hours: 142(roughly 40%)
Total Ultimate Hours: 145(roughly 40%)

My total non-Ultimate hours: 189
This is down from a high of about 250 hours several years ago, but only 16 hours off of my goal for the year. I think the major loss came from weight training as my focus and commitment were not there this year.

So the numbers are interesting, but do not tell the whole story. In general, I felt this was an off year, and I did not have the confidence in my conditioning that I have had in prior years. I think was due to several factors:

1) Lack of defined and focused personal goals:

I felt very comfortable in the 03-04 year as my conditioning resulted in an appropriate role on 6TM, and we had a great year on and off the field. Entering this year, I had very little resolve to improve on that model. However, as we added more depth on the team, specifically in the areas in which I contribute, and, my overall focus was off, my role and contribution diminished this year. I need to evaluate how to proceed, but I think a possible set of goals for 04-05 could be higher volume and more focused work in an effort to try to bump myself up on the depth chart. Or retire....but more on that later.

I rely heavily on my foundation work in Dec-March to get me to the place where I can benefit from quick twitch work in the late spring/summer. I think if I proceed with the above goals, then I am going to have to train "for real" this December.

2) Injuries:

Chronic Achilles tendinitis, small hamstring tweaks, and chronic tight hip flexors were omnipresent. I think I need to make a commitment to stretching as I have no interest in it at all.

3) Nutrition/Weight:

I love to eat and cook. When I started training seriously, I weighed 164 pounds. With real weight training and conditioning, I was able to get up to about 180 pounds at about 11% body fat. Some folks have questioned whether this extra weight was beneficial, but I felt that I had more power and spring at that time. In the past few years, my weight has been getting close to 185 and I am higher in my body fat count. I think that 05-06 will require greater attention to nutrition if I am going to train seriously.


mark said...

Re: achilles tendinitis

Have you come up with any ways to deal with this? I've started stretching my calves and ankles a lot more, but that hasn't seen much improvement. There was a swedish study done with a technique to increase calf strength focusing only on eccentric contractions, and I've found those exercises help some. Regardless, I still find that a weekend of ultimate ruins my achilles for the next 2 days. Even pickup/practice usually leaves me pretty sore the next day.

The bigger problem I've found is that it limits the quantity and intensity of running I can do, so I can't achieve the same "running fitness" I'm used to. Thoughts?

Josh Mullen said...

I had terrible achilles tendonitis i think my fifth year of playing in college. the worst i had it was during a tourney tempe, az, and a person i was playing with, weasel, told me about eccentric loading excercises.

essentially, you stand on a step with both feet (on the balls of your feet i.e. heels hanging off the edge), do a slow toe-raise using mostly your good leg, and once at your peak, you take the good leg away, and slowly lift yourself in a controlled manner down until your heel is below the level of the step.

you can do this 10-20 reps a couple times a day, and it definitely fixed it for me.

i do have plantar fascitis now (after a year of being almost healthy). if anyone knows how to cure this, that would be awesome.


RHL said...

What training regimen (detailed if possible) do you do in the off-season? I keep seeing people talk about training, but no one really sits down and writes out what they do, for others to learn from.. For example.. what do you do and how often through which months, at which point you transition to doing how much of what for how many months going into the season.....

gcooke said...

The basis for my training plan is "Serious Training for Endurance Athletes" by Rob Sleamaker. Here is a somewhat detailed account of my plan:

Dec 1-Jan 31:
Weight training-3x/week. My weight training is from a plan dveloped by Brian Doo. The plan focuses on core ab strength, balance exercises (using a disc), and fundamental exercises like squats, pull ups, rows, etc.

Overdistance runs-2x/week. My heartrate range for OD is 132-142 bpm. I run in this range for 60-90 minutes per session. It is pretty much impossible to run this slow without a heartrate monitor.

Endurance run-1x/week. Heartrate range is 143-148 bpm. 45-60 minutes per session.

Feb 1-March 31:

Weight training-3x/week. Shifts to strip sets (bech, squats, rows), big and heavy, pyramids. Continued balance work and core abs.

I start to add in Interval work (152-168 bpm). 1 seesion/week to begin...2/week by March. My INT work is either hill repeats (90 sec) or long interval runs (4-6 minutes) at a low bpm (162bpm)

April 1-May 31- First week of June is a peak, so there is lots of work here.

Weights-shifts to cables, bands, and plyos.

add agility work (ladders, etc)

add speed work

June, July August--Tournaments and recovery.

Phase out OD and EN runs. Weight training is down to 2x/week. Lots of INT and agility work. Stadiums are added.

Sept, Oct, Nov--Season. Weights might be down to 1x/week. Satdiums, agility, and speed. Phase out INT work.

RHL said...

Thanks for the answers!
What balance work do you do with a disc?
stuff on a wobble board, or on a stability ball of some sort? Or just trying to do things on one leg etc?

gcooke said...

One leg balance- Stand on one foot...hold for 60 seconds. add a disc if this gets easy.

Squats on a disc-

5-point drill- using small weights, make an arc of 5 weights in front of you. Stand on one foot. With the same side hand (right hand if right foot), bend your leg and touch the weights with your hand 1-5...left to right. Then back...5 to 1. Try to not bend at the waist too much.

Cruches on the disc-

Ab balance- sit on the edge of the disc. raise both legs so that your body looks like a V. Hold for 45-60 sec.

Flys and presses using the swiss ball

pushups using the swiss ball