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Planning your training schedule: vindication!

Tue, Jul  24, 2007 - By Mike Muha

Smart call! After rollerski intervals on Saturday, I drove to the gym to lift weights. I had both a quality rollerski session (except when the glue to my pole grip decided to fail during intervals and I had to roll back to pick up my pole shaft off the pavement...) and a quality weight session.

Sunday was a different matter. I went road bike riding with Ryan Robinson. I felt pretty good and pushed fairly hard up the first real hill. But that was it: my legs had nothing left for any remaining hill. I struggled the rest of the ride unless I kept an easy pace.

So what happened? My quality weight session included two season highs for squats and seated leg press. I do heavy squats using a Smith machine - the bar follows a track so you don't need to worry about balance. (I also do free squats, but at a lighter weight). After a warm-up set, I pushed two sets of 315 lbs - more than twice my body weight. Seated leg press machine? Three sets using every weight on the machine.

So my legs were tired for Sunday's ride - even though initially they felt fine. Clearly, if I had chosen to do intervals the day after weights, the session would have been of low quality.

This reinforces the lesson from my last post: Plan your training schedule around your most important sessions. Make sure you have energy and strength for the sessions that really count. Don't overdo it the day before a hard session.