Two of the most challenging elements for elite level athletes within their non sport-specific training are maintaining direct focus to improve production in the field of competition as well as staying challenged with basic exercise regimes. While on the surface both concerns would seem “simple” to solve, the training of elite level athletes is complicated by their level of athleticism and an industry that rarely, if ever, caters to their pedigree.
This is extremely peculiar area as elite level athletes routinely make “the difficult look easy” and whilst most will take weeks to adapt to an exercise, for them it might be intra-training session. Equally, while trends in exercise come and go, it is easy for an athlete who is not sufficiently motivated in their exercise regime to venture into endless “cross-training” approaches and effectively “de-train” for their sport. Given this fact, it is important for the performance coach to monitor the training regime of an elite level athlete such that has an immediate carryover to improving sports production, sufficiently motivates and adjusts constantly to avoid adaptation, whilst naturally understanding the sport at a highly detailed level. This is not an easy hurdle to navigate and many athletes find their sports production plummet given their training is not planned with these aspects in consideration.
The latter issue, of being motivated for training outside the athletes sporting discipline, is not reserved for merely the elite level as others suffer the same situation. This is very true within the great sport cycling, as the rider who is use to traversing the countryside in long rides is then forced on rollers due to winter conditions and even more problematic within a gymnasium setting where the connection to sport is difficult to envision.
Specifically dealing with cycling, a sport that regardless of level of ability requires an inordinate amount of time in the saddle, intense concentration and discipline as it relates to pace and management of terrain it is important to remember:
- all training must be have a carryover to sports production
- training will further reduce the risk of injury and enhance recovery for the often problematic concern of repetitive stress within sporting skills.
The latter is extremely important given the amount of time needed in the saddle to excel in cycling as non sport-specific training must “re-set muscular” to compensate for the repetitive action of the sport as well as satisfying energy cycle and strength development needs but always keeping in mind the importance of managing strength to bodyweight. Of extreme importance and some of the most neglected concerns within cycling regardless of your level of performance is range of motion work, both static and dynamic (Hurdle mobility drills, RED2) ensuring optimal health of the shoulder capsule and core stability.
Prepared by John Davies
Photo: Renegade Cycling
John’s present supplement stack starts daily with the “athlete’s advantage”, Modern, Super Cissus, PowerFull and Prime, along with additional use of Recreate, Yok3d, Anabolic Pump and Pink Magic depending upon his training cycle (workout log 1, 2, 3, 4).
The information provided in “Instant Training Improvement Tips”, as well as this web-site blog is intended for informational and educational purposes only and should not be interpreted as medical advice for any condition. Always consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. By reading this disclaimer, you hereby agree and understand that the information provided in this column is not medical advice and relying upon it shall be done at your sole risk.