Can you complete/compete at the 140.6 distance w/ only 10 hrs of training per week?

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Baseline Testing - "Action Step" Two

The first "Action Step" for 2011 was to make sure you took corrective strength seriously. For more on that topic please visit my January 19 post.

In order to ensure your training is producing the physiological and psychological benefits you are seeking one must have baseline numbers. This is made possible by putting the body through a series of tests that quite frankly hurt, but are a necessary evil. One must put on the big boy/girl pants and execute this non-exhaustive list of tests below. It is important to note that there are many variations to the tests I mention here, but these are the ones I have taken a liking to:

CSS (Critical Swim Speed)

1000 yd time trial

CP20 (Critical Power)

Lactate Balance Point (LBP)

3 mile VDOT

1 hr TT

For the 2011 season I will be hitting these tests on a frequency range of every 4 to 6 weeks.

As mentioned above, there are plenty of testing options out there. The key is to own the ones you select and commit to them. This will allow you to adjust training zones and validate your progress (regression is not the goal) from month to month.

I look forward to sharing additional data as the season progresses to IML.

Think big,
Coach L

Friday, February 25, 2011

Case for Vibrams

This week I re-entered the training world (sick for two days) with a workout that mixed a taste of FTP and neuro work on the run. With only an hour to work with I opted to hit the following:

7 x 3 min @ 300 watts w/ 800 meter neuro focus efforts per

With the help of the CS 1.6 I created the work intervals noted above with a 2 min recovery at 100 watts. Each time I completed the 3 min efforts noted above I would press pause on the CT, dismount my battle wagon, and then throw on the Vibram KSO.

The fun twist to this transition to the run was trying to get those 'shoes' on fast AND place the Garmin Foot Pod on the dorsal side of the KSO. The fastest I was able to do was 27 seconds. I have seriously considered using the Vibram for a sprint like Cool Breeze, but still waivering.

Some key points here:

(1) I continue to see significant improvements in leg turnover when using he Vibram vs. my Nike Lunar Fly (or any other running shoe for that matter). As noted above, I did 7 x 800 and the first 7 were with the Vibram. Coincidentally, my average stride rate was 93 with them on and 90 for the last interval per the Lunar Fly being on board. I plan on doing additional sessions where I alternate KSO/Lunar to see if I can see similar trending.

Fatigue could have certainly played a role here, but take a look at the difference between the "V"s and the Nikes:

w/ Vs = 5:32/mile average pacing and 93.7 stride rate

w/ Nikes = 5:44/mile pacing and 90 stride rate

(2) Last point for the Vs. I was not attempting to go 'fast' at any point during these neuro focused 800 meter efforts (which were ITU style - see 2/16/11 post). The goal was to hone in solely on leg turnover. Speed comes with an optimal leg turnover. In other words, if I tried to throw down a 100 vs. a 94 I would have likely seen a slower overall pace and the energy cost would have been excessive. Moreover, if I pulled back the 'Fred Flinstone' legs (picture big Fred in his car using his legs to propel his stone age car) to 80 I know I would have been spending too much time on the ground per footstrike. Challenge yourself to spend less time on the ground per footstrike coupled with a slight forward lean and be prepared to go faster.

There is my brief case for Vibrams. Not exhaustive, but something to chew on.

WORD OF CAUTION: Please do not buy Vs and then go run 6 miles with them. Allow your feet and the skeleteal/muscular systems to adapt to them first. Walk around the house for a week or so and then go out for a 5 to 10 min run first. Please use common sense when using these.

Enjoy the training process friends,
Coach L

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Swim Workout #8

For the 2011 season I have hit 8 swim workouts. To promote recovery and to enhance the feel of the water I plan on increasing the swim frequency to about three per week. From a duration perspective these workouts will last from 10 min to 40 minutes max. Front end mechanics (heaviest emphasis), recovery, and some intensity will dictate the design and execution of these workouts.

Below is a quick summary of what Workout #8 consisted of:

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

400 meters ITU style

Yesterday I mixed things up a bit and executed my 400 m 'track workout' on Pit Stop Court. This stretch of road is a hop, skip, and a jump from my office and is approximately .125 miles in length.

The goal of this session, which followed 40 min on the CompuTrainer (3 x 10 min @ 90% of FTP or 294 watts w/ 5 min of recovery at 100 watts) was to work short intervals w/ adequate recovery (2:30 min rest). 5 x 400 meters was consumed off the bike at slightly faster then threshold pace.

I also wanted to reinforce the neuro end of things by dialing in on leg turnover or stride rate. Enter the Vibram Five Fingers with a Garmin Foot Pod placed on the dorsal side of the 'shoe'. I have found that the foot pod settles perfectly just south of the velcro strap of my KSOs. No friction issues at all and great neuro data gathered.

Switching gears to the title of this post. Per the length of Pit Stop Court I was forced to 'round a cone' or make a complete 'about-face' before regaining top end speed. This break in momentum can really take the air out of your sails if you have not been exposed to this 'changing of gears'. You will notice that many ITU run courses are designed in this manner. For those who have raced Latta you also know that such turns exist. The one most noteable is experienced on the downhill towards the boat ramp.

If you have not dialed in on and watched some ITU racing please do so today. To see Gomez, Frodeno, Brownlee, etc go at it is simply inspiring. Incredible talent and mind boggling speed.

Tomorrow I will post my swim workout I executed today that focused on 'front end traction' and no 'back end traction'.

Train smart, think big!
Coach L

Friday, February 11, 2011

Food Demo at the Leo Campus

Last Saturday (February 5) we had the privilege and honor to have the ladies of Team Triumph over. Anne demonstrated (third year we have done this) how to prepare some incredible dishes that contained 'super foods'. It was fun seeing my wife in her element sharing the how and why behind what we consume.

Below is a quick video of this demo:

If you would like Anne and I to do this for you please let us know. We are eager to serve and to share.

I am truly blessed to have a wife that cooks from scratch! Truly blessed.

Stay tuned for the next "Action Step" for 2011!
Coach L