Progressing stimulus with limited time

  • Creator
  • #4599

    I’m probably getting a reputation for asking dumb questions here eventually but I have to ask to learn I think.

    Anyway, a lot of us have limited time, especially during the weekdays. I try to fit in about 10 hours of stair climbing and hill hiking a week.

    But doing a lot of 2 hour and 3 hour sessions is tricky to fit in to my schedule.

    I was wondering what the thinking is regarding progressing via doing a few shorter sessions during the week, and then 1 big session on the weekend, progressing it to be longer and longer up to maybe 10 hours.

  • Keymaster
    Steve House on #4606

    Don’t worry, there are no stupid questions here, and enabling this sort of back and forth is exactly the reason Uphill Athlete exists.

    This is a very common concern/question. For people with a 5-day-a-week job, which is most people, it can be impossible to do longer duration workouts mid-week.
    Let’s look at a simple, yet typical, weekly training schedule during the beginning phase of the base period (no intensity work yet):

    Monday: Rest
    Tues: Aerobic Capacity #1 (20% of weekly volume)
    Wed: Strength #1
    Thursday: Aerobic Capacity #2 (15% of weekly volume)
    Friday: Aerobic Capacity #3 (15% of weekly volume)
    Saturday: Long Aerobic Capacity: (50% of weekly volume)
    Sunday: Strength #2 and/or skill day (such as climbing)

    So when you get to 10 hours per week, if we take out 2 hours for strength that leaves 8 hours for aerobic capacity. That translates to the following times for aerobic capacity workouts:
    Tues:48 min
    Thurs: 36 min
    Friday: 36 min
    Sat: 4 hours

    So that keeps the schedule less lime-intensive mid-week and puts the long run on a weekend day when it’s easier to get out and get the long workout in. Hope that helps.

    Anonymous on #4672

    Another factor is what types of training density and modulation that you can adapt to. Your response to a given training regime will be very individual. Not only may you have to reshuffle workout prescriptions because of life constraints, you may also have to shuffle because of physiological constraints.

    Our physiology is as unique to us as our fingerprints and needs to be taken into account. Through trial and error (and illness), I’ve found that I don’t respond well to dense programming (a high consistent level of training volume). I respond better to big variations like Steve has described. For example, rather than the 30% one day, 20% another that is prescribed in TftNA, I respond better to one day comprising 50% of weekly volume with other days being much less.

    Here’s a video by Steve Magness where he discusses “what wave are you creating?” at about the 13:30 mark:

    In the video, he describes three athletes that he trains where one does only one key workout per week, another has a lot of variety, and the third needs a lot of density:

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