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Saturday, December 30, 2017

My Off-Season Part 4 - Full Pre Xmas Block

I've touched on my off-season training a couple of months back here, here and here but I'll lay everything out in this 1 post right now so I'll be doubling up a little bit.

My number 1 goal is speed development.

Speed is driven by plenty of different mechanisms, of which I trained directly during this block, that I categorized as:

1 - Running Function/Form

2 - Max Strength

3 - Fast Twitch Muscle Fibre Repeated Speed Ability

4 - Isometric Exercises Specific to Sprinting

5 - Sprint Training

RUNNING FORM/FUNCTION

For this I focused on 4 aspects of speed:

  • Big Toe Mobility
  • Perfecting the Hip Lock Position
  • Optimising Ankle Rocker
  • Pure Stiffness of the Ankle/Foot Complex

After my activation drills, my warm up consisted of 1 exercise for each of the 4 sections and did 2, 3, then 4 circuits of this before swapping the exercises out and starting again.


MAX STRENGTH

The off-season is the best time to put on your gym work because you have more time and energy resources to put into training, with little competition from anywhere else, compared to footy season where games and training take priority.

As usual at this time of the year I follow the TriphasIc method from Cal Dietz where I did 5 sessions of each of these mini-blocks:

  • Eccentric focus @ 70 - 775
  • Isometric focus @ 77 - 85%
After those 10 sessions I moved to a power phase with accommodating resistance in the form of elastic bands for another 5 sessions @ 70 - 50% (a decrease in load each session).

After that my final phase was a peaking-velocity phase with timed sets @ 40 - 25% for another 5 sessions that took me to Xmas.

I did 1 exercise for lower body (Weck Deadlift) x 2/week and 4 for upper body(Seated Military Press, Weighted Chin Up, Bench Press, Chest Supported Row) exercises, again 2/week, on separate days.


FAST TWITCH MUSCLE FIBRE REPEATED SPEED ABILITY

99% of the time when someone trains repeated speed, they are actually training repeated sub-maximal speed but this method actually trains fast twitch muscle fibres specifically, another doozie from Cal Dietz.

It has 2 blocks:
  • Capacity
  • Hypertrophy
Capacity is your base/foundational work to prepare the fibres for more the hypertrophy block which is the more intensive/explosive work, to come.

Within the hypertrophy block, the lower body max strength exercise was performed within a circuit for the hypertrophy block.

I did 4 capacity sessions followed by 10 hypertrophy followed by another 4 capacity sessions taking me right up to Xmas again, doing them 2/week.



Isometric Exercises Specific to Sprinting

Alex Natera is the now brand new strength coach for the GWS Giants and these isometric exercises came from his work with track athletes.

There are 4 mini blocks for this part of the program:

  • Iso Hold
  • Iso Push
  • Iso Switch
  • Iso Catch
I did 5 sessions for each section as my assistance work for the lower body 2/week after the strength and fast fibre repeat speed work.





SPRINT TRAINING

I matched my sprint training up with the strength phase I was in:
  • High Force/Low Velocity (Max Strength)
  • Moderate Force/Moderate Velocity (Power) 
  • Low Force/High Velocity (Speed)
So for sprinting I did this:
  • Sled Sprints @ 48 - 52% of Bodyweight 20m Speed Time
  • Sled Sprints@ 72 - 77% of Bodyweight 20m Speed Time
  • Bodyweight Sprints Introducing Velocity Specific Distances and Speeds
This week being the in between Xmas and new years week I'll retest my force-velocity profile and compare to my pre-Xmas training results and next week starts my post-Xmas phase where I'll b starting my endurance based training.


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