Build a Strong Mind and a Strong Body in 2021!

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” - Buddha

Optimizing the Offseason - Part 6:
Adapting in the Present to Perform in the Future

For many of us, this is the time when we look at when our endurance training in the pool, on the bike, and in our running shoes will start to build in volume and intensity as we strategically look to peak for our “A” races. Those of us that have implemented a focused offseason strength plan for endurance athletes may start to wonder how this will work as our traditional endurance training starts to take its place once again in our routines. How we handle this transition has a lot to do with our early season race schedule and the goals that we have set for ourselves in the offseason. Goal Setting is a continuous process and goes well beyond the activity of identifying and choosing goals, and we will continue to unpack the performance psychology aspects of Goal Setting in the weeks ahead.


Incorporating Offseason Strength with Endurance Training

Strength training is not added to our training plan, it is an integrated part of an effective training program. All aspects of the program are aligned to control the training stress and increases in volume and intensity to maximize outcomes. If you are doing this yourself, here are a few key items to maximize your results as your endurance training starts to pick up.


Axes Performance Tip #6


  1. Continue strength training – Gaines can be realized with just 2 strength sessions a week, so continue to integrate it while reducing the number of strength sessions as overall workout volume increases.
  2. Prioritize the primary workout – Is your current focus to continue to increase foundation strength? If so, make your strength workout the more important workout for that day and do it first. If your primary focus is shifting to endurance training then your strength workout comes second to (after) your endurance training.
    Place your strength workouts strategically in your weekly plan – Complete your strength workouts well in advance of, or after, your long workouts and/or speed workouts. Even if strength is still your focus, do not increase the training stress of your key swim, bike, or run workouts and potentially limit your overall training potential.
  3. Remember to adjust your nutrition – An increase in training volume comes with an increase in demand for proper fueling in and around your workouts. Don’t undermine your training with poor or inadequate fueling!
  4. Know that it has value – Studies have shown that one focused strength workout a week can maintain strength gains for up to 31 weeks! Unless it is recommended otherwise by your coach or medical professional, consider keeping at least one strength workout per week as you move through the season.

- Coach Brad


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