Recovery is key

Posted: May 22, 2020 in Uncategorized
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A lot of athletes try to follow the latest and greatest that they see online or on media. Problem is some of these authors are let’s say…. chemically enhanced and can recover with the best of them. Some athletes jump on their routine and make great gains. Others gain for a bit then plateau quickly since they can’t recover. Others get instant tendinitis or other problems because they are doing 5 times as much work as their genetics will tolerate. There really truly is no one right way to train for a specific goal. Some generalities exist with rep ranges and rest periods and such like sets of 15-25 will certainly get you more enduring but nor truly stronger.

Does speed and sprint work factor as one of your “leg days” ? If it doesn’t it should. Watch your gains increase.

The simplest most overlooked way to get stronger for most athletes is simple linear periodization. I know many athletes who spend 8 months in the weight room and then tell me they did not get any stronger. Start keeping records now. Work harder, not longer. Try overtraining every 3rd or 4th week of a 4-5 week strength cycle, then backing off the following week. Keep your total work volume low, intensity of effort high, eat well, sleep much and gain. You need to be concerned with when and how much weight you add to the bar, not how long you are in the weight room.

Most individuals need to be concerned with how and when to add weight and how much effort is to be put forth at each training session. An effective training cycle allows trainees to make continual progress in size and strength cycle after cycle. Sticking points can be avoided by focusing on how the body adapts to training stresses and rolling with your body’s unique recovery ability as opposed to fighting against it with no results forthcoming.
In addition, add small increments of weight for several reasons. First, it is manageable psychologically. The second reason is physiological. We do not want to exceed  ability to adapt to training stress. The first 6 to 8 weeks of a training cycle involves strength gains that are largely neural. The nervous system increases the efficiency of the available muscle fibers that you already have. Additional muscle is not developed until after this period. If weight is added too quickly before exiting the neurological learning period, a premature plateau is reached before experiencing muscle gain.
Another reason for micro loading is to ensure supercompensation. If you are pushing 100 pounds for 8 repetitions with maximum effort, your body rewards you with fiber and neural adaptations to handle maybe 102 pounds. This is a guess. The following week you choose 101 pounds. The reward gets you to 103 pounds. You have a strength cushion of about 2 pounds since you allowed your body time to adapt to the weight.
In contrast, let’s say you added 5 pounds the first week. You would not be able to handle this for 8 reps and the supercompensation effect as well as the mental aspect of training and gaining would be reduced. If this is continued for a long period, a plateau is a sure bet.
In closing, the success of any program is limited to the body’s recovery ability. This notion should be at the core of any strength and conditioning training program.

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