January 12, 2010 posted by


I’ve been asked to log more actual workouts. I don’t often do this because I find it boring when I read it on other sites. I guess, however, this would depend on the person. I’d love to hear about Patxi Usobiaga or Alberto Contador’s training. But that’s always a secret. As a middling weekend warrior I certainly don’t have any training secrets, so if it can help anyone out to hear what I do I’ll record it.

Here in my first cycle of training enthusiasm has been low due to “the worst” inversion anyone around here has seen. Each day is an evaluation over whether training in this air has actual benefits. I can always drive 15 minutes up the hill to get out of it, which I usually for my runs. Gym training has sucked but I’m sticking to the schedule regardless.

Climbing days consist of a lengthy warm-up, usually 30-45 minutes of bouldering, followed by the hangboard workout outlined in this post. I then do a series of lock-off and reaches on the systems wall. I do 4 sets of 8 reps for each arm for jugs, pockets, and undercuts. I also do an aerobic workout on this day of about an hour of hiking, running, or sitting on my trainer in the time trial position.

The next day I ARC train, which is low level climbing without getting pumped to increase capillarity. I’ve been doing one set of 30 minutes in the garage. This days also includes something aerobic, as well as my foundation or stabilizer exercises. I do this for both upper and lower body. I will actually post video of these movements at some point in the future because everyone should be doing them.

My lower body day is a series of one leg movements. Most of these can be found in various Beachbody workouts, and perhaps all of them in Tony Horton’s upcoming One on One for one leg workout, which he made for me (but it’ll be great for everyone, I promise). I also do some core work on this day. Since I’ve had a break from both I’m starting slow on both fronts. I set of 30 for each leg on ten different exercises, followed by one of Beachbody’s short ab or core routines. I build on each workout as I progress, trying to keep from getting sore. I finish this day with a harder run or ride or brick (ride/run). One day a week I’ve been building mileage. Last week I did a three hour run. This week is was 4:15. I’ll keep increasing this to get ready for Mexico in March.

Oh, yeah. I also start almost every day with 20-30 minutes of yoga.

Even though the focus is hypertrophy, the bulk of my hours training are doing low-level aerobic work. This is the burden of the endurance athlete. Still, my main focus in this cycle are my resistance workouts. And given that I was coming off a break these are almost foundation work as much as pure hypertrophy. This is cool because I don’t want to gain much muscle mass and my goal is to prepare my muscles for the upcoming strength training phase.

pics: even in the most challenging circumstances, the members of Team Zissou keep moral high.


  • I wont leave for school until I read this haha…..

  • Quite interesting, so the high amount of low level aerobics enables your body to not get sore or aim for hypertrophy?Wouldn't High intensity intervals for a shorter period of time with resistance do the same?

  • The extra long aerobic work (3-4 hours) is sports specific and not necessary for most people. But aerobic training 30+ minute sessions does increase your number of capillaries. This increases your oxygen carrying capacity and efficiency across the board. High intensity intervals destroy capillaries but are good for fitness, obviously. So you want a balance but this is why you should periodizize your training. You can train capillarity in its own cycle, recovery, or along with gauged hypertrophy and power. The key factor is pumped-ness. Gettting pumped is what does the damage, which is why you want power-endurance phases to be very intense but short.

  • As someone that loves endurance sports, but recognizes the importance of strength training and yoga (did Yoga X last night), you are not boring us with this stuff. I train with a lot of triathletes that refuse to do anything but swim/bike/run. Inevitably, they suffer injuries. I'm not as fast, but I don't have those issues. Love the info. Keep it coming. Thanks,Dave

  • Triathletes are insane. Manic, mostly. I mean, I guess I am one, too so that includes me. I was at a big tri function and a cycling coach was speaking to us and said, "You're all triathletes. That means 99% of you are overtrained." Most tri clubs are merely social avenues for like types so they can hangout and all overtrain together. Performance doesn't come into play. And that's cool. But, yeah, they get injured way too much.

  • overtrained? isnt that a bad thing?I sometimes overtrain….Would the low intensity aerobics for longer period of time have the same affect as high intensity short intervals?

  • oh right you explained it sorry :).Why dont marathon runner and endurance athlete use this method?They can train consistently while not getting overtrained.

  • That is EXACTLY what they do. Hang out and overtrain. Oh, and compete for who has the most grueling injuries/treatments. If you aren't getting your IT band "scraped", you just aren't training hard enough. Um…how about just doing some yoga guys? None of us are going to be challenging Craig Alexander this year in Kona. Take it easy. Anyway, interesting stuff. Keep it up.

  • I'll admit to some foam roller torture on my IT band, but scraping?! No, thank you. Like you said, if they were competing for Kona it would be different, but then they'd have to train properly in the first place.Hassan, endurance athletes do use that method. Well, maybe not triathletes… And if you're never overtrained then you'll never know where your limits are. You've got to push your boundaries sometimes. The trick is not to do it chronically.

  • Doesnt the overtrainig increase their heart rate enabling them to make lesser gains when endurance training? my heart rate was elevated around 3 weeks ago (84 average) but right now after the recovery weeks its lowered to (77 average).

  • Is that your garage? Wow sweet place to climb. Did you build the climbing wall? I remember a few posts back you were talking about home renovation.

  • That's the garage. There will be more pics soon.

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