Friday, January 22, 2010

Intervals, intervals, intervals

I pull a lot of my rowing workouts from the CrossFit Endurance site.  As an endurance athlete, I have always struggled with balancing the need to log lots and lots of time in running, biking, etc. in order to get in condition for races.   Let's face it, not a lot of people have the time to put in 8+ hours a week training, and have a full time job, and be a parent, and have friends, and watch "24" each week.  The CrossFit Endurance folks don't believe you need to put in all those hours in order to do an endurance event.   As long as you follow a metabolic training program like CrossFit, you can add an endurance program that is based largely on interval training, and be well prepared for longer distance races.   The thought process is that by logging lots and lots of long-distance training run/bike/swims, you are really just training your body to go slowly for long periods of time.   Wouldn't it be better to train your body to go fast, and build the aerobic capacity at the same time?

Almost a year ago I attended a CrossFit Endurance certification, which focused on running, and I have been a big fan of the CrossFit Endurance program ever since.   In addition to fixing my running technique (I'll post something about POSE running and barefoot running another day), it really got me to concentrate on training with intervals rather than lots of long distance run/bike/swims.  For me, the results have been significant in the triathlons I do.  With just a bit of interval training last year, and no long distance training, I improved my times by about 10%.  This year I am hoping to improve on that by increasing the number of interval training sessions (while keeping up with CrossFit 4-5 days a week).   This summer we'll see how it pans out.

Today's rowing was a CrossFit Endurance WOD that was posted yesterday.   5-4-3-2-1:  5 minutes of work followed by a 5 minute rest, 4 minutes of work followed by a 4 minute rest, and so on down to 1 minute.   Man, those 5 minute intervals are killers....  Tried rowing against a pace boat on the PM3 monitor for the first time.  Seemed to help having the visual queue.  Plus, I really hate to lose, even to an imaginary pace boat! :-)   Results below.


Description
Total Meters
Time
Pace/500m
Warm up
1,019
4:08.4
2:01.8
5:00/5:00r
1,333
5:00.0
1:52.5
4:00/4:00r
1,067
4:00.0
1:52.4
3:00/3:00r
824
3:00.0
1:49.2
2:00/2:00r
548
2:00.0
1:49.4
1:00
301
1:00.0
1:39.6
Cool down
1,000
7:58.0
2:26.1
Total for Day
6,092

Meters to go
979,831

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