Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Progressions and Periodization

The key to effective training is to employ the principles of periodization and progressions to your routine. PERIODIZATION means that your workouts are organized into cycles, with increasing and decreasing focus on different elements of your fitness. One way to periodize your workouts is to switch the emphasis of your sessions between cardio, strength and power. PROGRESSIONS are, simply put, making your exercises incrementally more challenging as you master them.

Using periodization brings a focus to different elements of your fitness and creates a healthy, strong body.

An example of using periodization would be the following routine:

Weeks 1-2
  • jog (for cardio) at a moderate pace (to build a fitness base)
  • light strength training

    Weeks 3-4
  • jog for half the distance, but at a quicker pace
  • introduce lunges, squats, pushups and rows into your routine (to build strength)

    Weeks 5-6
  • sprint for timed or distanced intervals
  • perform plyometrics versions of squats, lunges, pushups and rows (building power)

    Week 7
  • return to easy jogging and light strength training to give your body a rest

    After you complete the first seven weeks, you start the cycle all over again, altering only one variable in each exercise to make it more challenging. This is referred to as using a TRAINING PROGRESSION. For instance, you can add more repetitions or weight to your weight training exercises. If running, increase the distance incrementally through each cycle, or add bigger hills.

    As long as you manipulate only one variable at a time, you'll ensure a steady and sustainable rate of progress and reduce your chance of injury. You should always feel in control of whatever exercise you are doing and be able to perform it with good form. If you find yourself unable to complete an exercise with good form, it's a sign that you're progressing too quickly and you need an easier variation of the exercise.

    Work with your trainer on customizing a periodization routine, and progressions that work for you. Be organized and diligent. You'll be surprised at how much and how quickly you will improve with a consistent effort and a little structure.

    Lark Miller
    Infinite Fitness
    Bently Reserve
    301 Battery St. SF CA 94111

    Phone 415.250.5236
  • No comments:

    Post a Comment