Training Programme and Technique Changes

Training Programme and Technique Changes

Running is most likely going to be the most damaging to you from the point of view of joint wear and tear. So simply decreasing the volume of running might be all that is required. Increasing the volume in another discipline like cycling or swimming for aerobic development will suffice. Perhaps if you have come from a running background you used a larger proportion of your running programme in developing an aerobic base. Since the aerobic benefits from one discipline are known to carry over from one to another you can do more of this aerobic development in the other 2 disciplines. Personally, I prefer to do it cycling, and because it is more specific to the legs, it may be of more benefit.

For specific strength and speed work, you will still need to run. The bones and joints still need to bear weight so they will thicken and adapt to the load, however, some of the more vigorous and challenging speed and interval work can be done in the pool. Pool running provide a great resistance workout without pounding the joints. You can even use pool running to develop your aerobic base running too if you can stand the monotony. However, monotony should not be any problem at all if you are sufficiently motivated and committed to achieving a particular goal. I have heard of a number of stories (sorry no hard facts) of people doing PBs for marathons and half marathons with little or nothing else but pool running.

Pool running, in case you are not quite familiar, is where there is no weight bearing at all, is performed in deep water with a buoyancy belt with running type motions. Some of the other benefits are that it also aids in developing “core stability”. Core stability is a subject that is become very popular in sporting circles. The idea is that by developing, or correcting problems with, strength in the stable muscles, the muscles that are actually for movement can do their job better, that is, they can devote all of their work towards their particular movement and don’t have to compensate for poor stability strength. For example, stand on each leg separately, you may find on one leg you wobble a little and have some trouble maintaining balance as easily as the other leg. This is evidence that some of these stability muscles may not be doing their job properly. These muscles are responsible for keeping our hips stable when we run. If the hip is moving then 2 things happen, the movement muscles try to compensate for this, and this movement is going to take strength out of the contraction (try closing an over packed suit case on a spongy bed as opposed to closing it on a solid table). Often after surgery these stability muscles may be weak. Pool running exercise can help correct this. The is also a type of therapy called Pilates and I have just read in the latest triathlon magazine (Australian Triathlete issue 8.1 What is the Big Deal About Swiss Balls? pp.62-4) and cycling magazine (Bicycling Australia Jan/Feb 2001 Hardcore Stability pp. 72-7) how the Swiss Ball is the new fad for improving core strength.

Of course all of this assumes you have a training programme already worked out. If you have not then you need to do this first. I don’t intend to go into that kind of detail here, but I will give you a link to another site to do this. Perhaps as a first cut write down what you already do, then write down what it is that you want to achieve and then review what you currently do against a programme that you’d derive using principles found at Online Triathlon

Medical and Nutritional Supplements

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