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Rest weeks in training program


Squier
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I,ve been reading up a bit on rest weeks as we now have to start employing a more structured training program for sani2c next year.

 

It seems as if there are a number of different views out there. Some recommend staying of the bike for 3 - 4 days (some say as much as 7 days) and others recommend only reducing your volume whilst maintaining your intensity.

 

In the past I've only really made use of tapering weeks before big races by cutting training to almost nothing the week of the race, but as I say, I need to employ a more structured approach to resting and recovery.

 

So, I'd like to know how you go about it, i.e. How often do you make use of rest weeks and how much do you train during these weeks?

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Search for Maryks, get her to do you a training plan. Then all of this mystery is dealt with...

 

That's my plan for next yr Sani2C. I'm already on it.

Edited by davetapson
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I take a week off when I am feeling really tired and leave it at that. They say it helps. I am sure everyone will have their own formula.

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Maryks has had great press here - I'd try her program but I also think it helps to understand how periodised training works? That way you get to train to the way you respond to training. Maybe she uses that kind of feedback but if you just try to stick to a generic program it doesn't always work so well...

Here's my 2c worth, from reading and experience. First, rest weeks shouldn't mean too much time off the bike. Then, using the principles of periodisation, you can adapt your schedule to how strong you feel.

This is what I understand about how periodised programs work, and where rest and recovery fits in:

Periodisation works in macro cycles of four weeks so that you build a base (4 to 12 weeks - aerobic) then strength and speed (4 to 8 weeks - tempo, sprints, hills and leg speed drills) and then taper (1 to 2 weeks - cutting volume not intensity)and race. You pick one or two races a season to hit with your best and plan these cycles around that. For the micro cycles within each macro phase, you follow an increase of volume mainly but also intensity over 3 weeks and then drop down to the second week's volume in the fourth week. For the next 4-week cycle you pick up where you were in the third week aiming to build a 10% increase between weeks. I focus my increase mainly on my long rides, going from 50km one week to 55 to 60 then drop to 50/55 depending on how strong I'm feeling. Then start the next 4 weeks at 55 say.

Within each week you can do anything from 3 to 6 rides, of 1 to 2hrs, with 4 to 5 being most realistic unless you're unemployed! After your base phase (I build progressively from 60% to 75-80% HR using the max HR minus resting HR [called HR reserve] x % plus resting HR formula) you need to do one hills (tempo 10 min building to 30mins intervals, +-80% HR) one sprints (4 to 8 varying from 30s to 2min as close to max HR and cadence as you can) and one long ride. Best is two longish rides back to back if you're training for multiple-stage races. Even if not, to have a long ride at 80% followed by another at much lower intensity the next day has a huge impact on your fitness. The other thing is to make sure you recover properly between micro and macro cycles. If you're tired or can't get you HR up then you need to rest. As they say, it's when you rest that you're building fitness, which is why periodisation works. And why you need to have more weeks aerobic base training than you do for the power and speed phase...

I'm sure you're doing a lot of this already, but it's getting the proportions right in each phase and then using the 3 weeks up, one week down, cycle that really lets you make the most of limited time.

Hope I haven't gone on too much. And hope this helps.

Now, can anyone tell me what to do about age and weight??

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Generally speaking your body "develops capacity to strengthen/improve" when it is stressed, but only uses this capacity to strengthen/improve when it rests. So a training program will generally be a string of stress and rest phases. From base to peak it is about stressing the body and then strengthening it through rest.

 

One great method of improving by increasing the stress your body sees over a series of 3 weeks (easy, medium, hard) and then having a rest week as you call it. Generally rest should be active rest and not passive rest, i.e. you still exercise but at a level that is low enought o actual still recover. None of the coaches I have ever had have had me rest totally for a week. It is normally a matter of easy rides with no high intensity.

 

Were it gets interesting is how you progress from 4 week block to 4 week block. If you look over say a 12 or 16 week period you should continually be increasing the stress on your body. Slowly raising it and then resting to improve.

 

As for tappering, a week is sufficient, but be carewful not to rest totally. Generally easy riding the week prior to an event with short sprint sessions just to keep the muscles activated is fine.

 

There are many different methods one can employ, but the basics remain the same you need to stress the body to make it want to strengthen, but need to rest it so that it can strengthen.

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I,ve been reading up a bit on rest weeks as we now have to start employing a more structured training program for sani2c next year.

 

It seems as if there are a number of different views out there. Some recommend staying of the bike for 3 - 4 days (some say as much as 7 days) and others recommend only reducing your volume whilst maintaining your intensity.

 

In the past I've only really made use of tapering weeks before big races by cutting training to almost nothing the week of the race, but as I say, I need to employ a more structured approach to resting and recovery.

 

 

So, I'd like to know how you go about it, i.e. How often do you make use of rest weeks and how much do you train during these weeks?

 

 

 

Well I am starting with my 22 week program tomorrow is going to get me a podium @ SA champs next year, it's a +- 12 000km program, peaking @ a high of 30hours a week later on in the program and my recovery weeks are 15 to 16.5 hours just on a LA Endurance ride (60% effort).

 

SO I'd say NEVER take a week off, try reducing hours and intensity and just keep your legs going :)

 

OH... I take off every monday, so that's 6 days of cycling a week.

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Well I am starting with my 22 week program tomorrow is going to get me a podium @ SA champs next year, it's a +- 12 000km program, peaking @ a high of 30hours a week later on in the program and my recovery weeks are 15 to 16.5 hours just on a LA Endurance ride (60% effort).

 

SO I'd say NEVER take a week off, try reducing hours and intensity and just keep your legs going :)

 

OH... I take off every monday, so that's 6 days of cycling a week.

 

Podium at SA Champs next year hey? Where is the race and what type of course is it?

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Well I am starting with my 22 week program tomorrow is going to get me a podium @ SA champs next year, it's a +- 12 000km program, peaking @ a high of 30hours a week later on in the program and my recovery weeks are 15 to 16.5 hours just on a LA Endurance ride (60% effort).

 

SO I'd say NEVER take a week off, try reducing hours and intensity and just keep your legs going :)

 

OH... I take off every monday, so that's 6 days of cycling a week.

 

You seriously cannot work.

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Podium at SA Champs next year hey? Where is the race and what type of course is it?

 

 

No idea... Flat or hilly I'm going to have top form! It's from the 1st to the 4th March if I remember correctly...

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Every 3rd week is not a 'rest week', but an 'easy week' for me.

Lower intensity. Lower distance.

 

Also, in my 'two hard weeks', I mix a really hard session with an easier session, as well as rest days in between.

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Thanks for all the advice! Seems like it's all about getting that proportion between rest and stress right... Will give Maryks a shout. Thanks again!!

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No idea... Flat or hilly I'm going to have top form! It's from the 1st to the 4th March if I remember correctly...

 

Putting your balls on the line there then hey if you don't even know what course you are riding. Are you a sprinter, a climber a breakaway specialist? Could have a big outcome on your race if you claim to be on the podium and you don't even know what kind of a race it is.

 

No offense, man, but true champions don't make claims like that and not know all the facts. Unless of course I am truly ignorant and you have had podium finishes the past few years.

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No offense, man, but true champions don't make claims like that and not know all the facts. Unless of course I am truly ignorant and you have had podium finishes the past few years.

 

Someone named Arnold was that determined and actually did it.

In his first film, they changed his name to Arnold Strong in the credits.

That irritated him to the point that he apparently said, one day the world will know me as Arnold and know exactly who I am.

 

I'm sure he wasn't / isn't the only arrogant / determined champion out there.

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