Friday, January 16, 2009

Friday Q&A::

YETI snowshoe race tomorrow ...and Team ELM is planning to kick some snow! Wanna come watch the action? 10am Raven Lodge up at Mt. Washington! It is 10 degrees and super sunny up there...come on up and cheer us on!

OK Here is Fridays Question and Answer session: (PS: is anyone reading this?? Buler? Buler?)

Question: When my bootcamp session is on Friday and the next one is on Monday there is not enough days to fit in an extra strength session and have a recovery day in between. So far I have opted to only do cardio in betweenbut is there a safe way to fit in an extra strength session to completethree for the week? Thanks, Penny.

Thank you for your question Penny! I am sure many of you struggle with scheduling in your workouts for a variety of reasons from busy lives to class schedules and the long, dark days of winter. The best schedule is the one that meets your needs and personal preferences.

When it comes to your specific question re: fitting in an extra strength day, here is my advice:

The best schedule would be a Wednesday full body strength training workout. Our muscles require 48 hours recovery time between intense exercise to exaustion or muscle failure. So, if you are doing 2 challenging full body workouts on Mon/Friday then the logical day for a 3rd session would be Wednesday. If time is a limiting factor during the week, I suggest picking 3-5 exercises and completing a mini-full-body workout that won't take more than 15-20 minutes. Warm up and then pick your favorite (or least favorite for more of a challenge!) exercises including 1 for upper body, lower body and core. A great combination would be a Lunge, Push Ups or Pull Ups and Crunches or a front Plank. Complete 2 sets of 10-15 repetitions and you will continue to see strength gains by adding your 3rd weekly (mini) training session!

Another option would be completing a high repetition - low resistance session on Saturday or Sunday. By completing a higher amount of repetitions (20) at a lower intensity you will be focusing your workout on endurance rather than strength. You will find that your body recovers much faster after this type of workout as you are not breaking down your muscles and exhausting the system like you do with your more intense workouts. You can complete low-moderate intensity exercise on a daily basis and you will continue to improve your overall strength and endurance as well.

The moral of the story is, the higher the intensity of your workouts, the longer recovery time you will need before your body is ready for another bout. So, you can complete endurance exercise on a daily basis whereas you need 48 hours of recovery time between high intensity workouts.

Finally, don't overlook the importance of rest in your program. I am a firm believer in scheduling in a minimum of 1-2 rest days from training each week. This downtime allows your body to rebuild tissues, restore your energy systems and replenish your muscle cells so that you become stronger. It is during your rest periods and deep sleeps that you reap the benefits of your hard efforts. Without adequate rest your body will not be able to reach new levels of strength and your hard work will never actually pay off. Worse, you risk injury and illness if your body never has a chance to catch up. Too much rest on the other hand...

I hope this answers your question!

Have a great weekend!



Lolo said...

I am reading these and like it! I am a blog lurker but will send in a question soon!

Maureen said...

Hi Sarah!

I am reading and enjoy the extra info.
Thanks for taking the time!