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Other/Mixed Aerobic Deficiency Syndrome

Other strength modalities (e.g., Clubs), mixed strength modalities (e.g., combined kettlebell and barbell), other goals (flexibility)

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
I am not Pavel, but I would argue that deficiencies aren't universal but based on specific needs. I'll give a personal example - I have spent many a month doing nothing but one-armed kettlebell presses, barbell deadlifts, walking, and stretching. Now I regularly do kettlebell swings, primarily because I wanted to increase my work capacity, but I don't feel I had a "deficit," rather just that my wants changed - tough for me to say I needed to add swings to my routine.

If you're looking for a strength-related weakness across all three modalities, consider the requirements of the SFG, SFL, and SFB - work up to being able to meet all of those. I recall Pavel, at the first US-hosted SFL, responding to come attendee complaints about the strength standards being too hard - he said those people who meet those standards can consider themselves only "not weak."

I don't think anyone who can walk comfortably for a few miles can be considered to have an aerobic deficit; I don't think anyone who can meet the SFG, SFL, and SFB standards can be considered to have a strength deficit. If you can do both, you have enough muscular endurance.

JMO, YMMV.

-S-
Well Steve… there is actually a thing called ADS (Aerobic Deficit (deficiency) Syndrome. This is seen in many runners and locomotive endurance folks. Being able to walk comfortably for a few miles would be way below the bar for this.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Well Steve… there is actually a thing called ADS (Aerobic Deficit (deficiency) Syndrome. This is seen in many runners and locomotive endurance folks. Being able to walk comfortably for a few miles would be way below the bar for this.
I just read this:


and I will respectfully disagree with you here. They're talking about aerobic base deficiency for endurance athletes; walking and strength training keeps me in fine shape for both walking and strength training. They're talking about people who spend too much training time in zone 3, and they say, "To avoid or correct ADS, slow down."

-S-
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
I just read this:


and I will respectfully disagree with you here. They're talking about aerobic base deficiency for endurance athletes; walking and strength training keeps me in fine shape for both walking and strength training. They're talking about people who spend too much training time in zone 3, and they say, "To avoid or correct ADS, slow down."

-S-
Exactly my point.

But easy walking whilst a wonderful activity in it’s own right (and one I enjoy) both physically and mentally, will also, unless performed above ZR is not going to develop that aerobic base either. Leaving one with a deficit.

However this maybe should be discussed in another thread as it’s deviated a bit from this threads original intent.
 
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Steve Freides

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But easy walking whilst a wonderful activity in it’s own right (and one I enjoy) both physically and mentally, will also, unless performed above ZR is not going to develop that aerobic base either. Leaving one with a deficit.

However this maybe should be discussed in another thread as it’s deviated a bit from this threads original intent.
One foot out the door but will start a new thread later tonight and move our conversation from here.

[EDIT]
This is now done.
[/EDIT]

If the "R" in "ZR" is resting, my resting heart rate is low 50's and I walk in the 95-105 bpm range. We had a conversation that included @Al Ciampa on this subject a while back, and I recall asking him if we had any science to differentiate a 60 minute walk from a 30 minute run in terms of the health benefits, and my recollection was that his opinion was that there wasn't science to support one being better than the other in terms of health, whatever "health" (and "aerobic system") may mean in this context.

-S-
 
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North Coast Miller

Level 8 Valued Member
This is a very interesting topic to me. In almost every one of these articles as well as Q&D they are never describing actual HIIT as it is done in research or even as used by folks like Clarence Bass.

Yes it triggers a potent glycolytic response but also greatly improves lipid metabolism, capillary density as well as most other markers of aerobic capacity. 45 minutes at high output isn't HIIT even if you are taking breaks, and if you're sore the next day (or even later the same day) you aren't really doing HIIT any more than fooling around with weights is "strength training".

Also, there is a huge difference between competitive pacing and going from A to B. I'd imagine if you took 100 people and trained them for a 4 hr + endurance event at competitive speeds your drop-out rate would be off the hook.

These are just statements, not arguments, although describing an inability to perform race pace aerobics for hours on end as a general "deficiency" is coming at it pretty high.

This is a fitbit screen grab from a hike I did recently with an 80lb pack, I could not have jogged this:
 
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offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
whatever "health" (and "aerobic system") may mean in this context.
Yeah… I think that you are spot on with this statement Steve.
Often times we end up with poor, or perhaps not agreed upon definitions; which in turn leads to differences in opinions and interpretations.
One mans health, or fitness or whatever, might not be another’s.

And the ‘R’ in ZR is Recovery (HR): approximately 20% under ones AeT

And…thanks for making a new thread…
 

bluejeff

Level 6 Valued Member
Wasn't it Phil Maffetone that coined the term "aerobic deficiency syndrome?"


Also, from his book:
Simply put, ADS is usually the result of an imbalance between aerobic and anaerobic function, specifically low aerobic and comparatively high anaerobic function. In addition, adrenal dysfunction is a common associated factor, most often resulting from excessive physical, chemical, or mental stress.

Maffetone, Philip. The Maffetone Method: The Holistic, Low-Stress, No-Pain Way to Exceptional Fitness (p. 83). McGraw-Hill Education. Kindle Edition.

He also lists a number of markers for it. Without copying and pasting the entire chapter from his book, this site explains it well I think.


How does ADS manifest itself? These athletes may feel that they are at peak fitness. During their hardest workouts, they lift more, move faster, and break their own PRs, because of the focused high intensity work that they have been doing. When they make it to the climb however, they are surprised by how quickly their heart rate rises with a relatively slow pace. A few hours into the climb, they are running out of gas, they feel the lactate building up, and they can’t keep the pace. These athletes have a well trained anaerobic system, but their aerobic system is woefully lacking.

This is why I started my thread about aerobic capacity and allegies, etc... I have been getting stronger at strength training, but walking up a flight or three of stairs was leaving me winded. Currently trying to work more aerobic building into my schedule. . .
 

Steve Freides

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I get the ADS idea - when I ran, which I did for 25 years, I always overdid things until towards the end of my time running. The Jack Daniel's book, Running Formula, gave me very specific paces for everything, including recovery runs, and not that long after I started following his book's advice, I set a lifetime 5k PR at age 45. (And then I stopped running. The operation was a success but the patient died - I lost interest in running.)

@offwidth, I judge my fitness, at least in part, by how well I do at some things others have mentioned, e.g., helping someone move. I do - forgive my immodesty - great at those things. I rake the leaves in our yard and some of our neighbor's, and so on. It's all even better with a few swings added to my program, I think, although that's a whole other discussion because of how I program my swings.

-S-
 

Anna C

Level 9 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
Sinister
I'm a great believer in the benefits of aerobic fitness. And I understand the principles as Phil Maffetone describes them. I've done several seasons of aerobic base training with my cycling. It works...

However, I think the term "Aerobic Deficiency Syndrome" should carry about as much weight as "Strength Deficiency Syndrome," if someone coined that term. Lots of people would have that, too. Yes, we should all strive to have both aerobic fitness and strength. But not having them is NOT a disease, and personally I don't particularly like this term that makes it sound like one. It's contextual -- a deficiency relative to the endurance training and performance that one may seek to develop. Not necessarily relevant to every human's condition.

Just my 2 cents...
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
@bluejeff Yes, I believe it was Maffetone that first coined the ADS Term

I was certainly a sufferer, from too much time spent cruising in Z3-Z4. At least I know better now.
What gets me going sometimes is that some folks take the ’going slow’ too far and think that they are getting great cardio benefit and need to do nothing else. And to be fair unless they have endurance athlete aspirations they might not need anything else. It really is contextual.

What Maffetone and others are getting at is doing a majority of locomotive training at or around ones AeT. But… depending upon goals a certain amount of time in higher HR zones, and yes even some training in a sub-AeT environment.

I have stated several times in various threads that what I see a lot of in locomotive endurance folks is that:
Their easy days are too hard, and their hard days are too easy…

No matter how you slice it, it’s a great topic of discussion.
 

bluejeff

Level 6 Valued Member
I have stated several times in various threads that what I see a lot of in locomotive endurance folks is that:
Their easy days are too hard, and their hard days are too easy…
Well put. I'd wager that extends to a lot of strength trainees too.

I'm a great believer in the benefits of aerobic fitness. And I understand the principles as Phil Maffetone describes them. I've done several seasons of aerobic base training with my cycling. It works...

However, I think the term "Aerobic Deficiency Syndrome" should carry about as much weight as "Strength Deficiency Syndrome," if someone coined that term. Lots of people would have that, too. Yes, we should all strive to have both aerobic fitness and strength. But not having them is NOT a disease, and personally I don't particularly like this term that makes it sound like one. It's contextual -- a deficiency relative to the endurance training and performance that one may seek to develop. Not necessarily relevant to every human's condition.

Just my 2 cents...
I agree that perhaps using terminology that makes it sound like a disease might not be . . .helpful. I do think that many many folks are woefully out of shape, overly sedentary, and -I hate to say it but I'll say it like I see it- unwilling to expend effort to make tangible, lasting changes in their lives. That last one applies to mental health as well. I just see a lot of people who seem like they'll try every last pill, supplement, etc before actually making a serious attempt at behavioral or habit changes.

That's not to say that things like diet and nutrient deficiencies play a role in physical health or mental health. I do believe that we need both. The last thing I want to do is make people feel shame about being out of shape. Shame is NOT helpful; I don't care how someone tries to rationalize fat shaming.

That being said, I believe there are plenty of studies showing the correlations between being overweight, having insulin resistance, etc being linked to many diseased states. At the other end, I have also seen studies correlating things like higher VO2 max with lowered overall mortality and much better health outcomes. Similary, studies also have shown reduction in pain and increase in function with basic strength training (recreational strength training, I mean) Unfortunately, I think many parts of society are still trying to mask symptoms instead of correct the causes of the health issues we see everywhere.

I hope that wasn't too much of a derail :)
 

LoneRider

Level 6 Valued Member
I actually have heard of the Uphill Athlete's Heart Rate drift test and that's an interesting way to look at aerobic base. I'm actually testing the use of heart rate zones from Runningversity (calculator linked here) for the next 12-16 weeks to see how that stacks up for aerobic performance as compared to a mostly Maffetone influenced running style.

Just curious what people's experience has been with the heart rate drift and calculating training heart rates.
 

BillSteamshovel

Level 4 Valued Member
Is there a recognised strongfirst set of HR zones that I should read about to better understand terms like ZR AeT etc ? I've always thought about HR Zones as shown in this calculator
I enjoyed using a book by Roy Benson and Declan Connolly called heart rate training a long time ago and keen to learn what current thinking is on this forum regarding HR training. I had the impression that several people here use training programs using Phil Maffetones ideas/books.
 
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LoneRider

Level 6 Valued Member
Is there a recognised strongfirst set of HR zones that I should read about to better understand terms like ZR AeT etc ? I've always thought about HR Zones as shown in this calculator
I enjoyed using a book by Roy Benson and Declan Connolly called heart rate training a long time ago and keen to learn what current thinking is on this forum regarding HR training. I had the impression that several people here use training programs using Phil Maffetones ideas/books.
Thanks for this calculator. It more or less correlates along the same line as the Runningversity one I started using.
 

ali

Level 6 Valued Member
There is a bias towards endurance capability for health....oh, you've done a 5k, how about a 10? You did 80 miles peddling today, how about 120 next time....etc.

And so any problems that arise doing this stuff applies universally....

What about a 5 hour gruelling 5 sets of tennis. Any top level sport with a lot of running....pro athletes who don't do hours of long slow aerobic work?

Does ads only apply to endurance athletes doing long endurance events/activities?

It is an interesting debate/issue.

The difference, if any, between walking and zone 2 running.....and why and how it goes pear shaped doing too much volume at greater intensity, even at zone 3 to why anaerobic athletes are able to perform at high aerobic outputs, recover well and do it again.

I have my bias....as a runner, it's a core base of general athleticism but for health I'm not convinced it's necessary. And so applying endurance training principles to non aspiring endurance trainees is not so relevant. Having said that, we all function the same way and use atp for fuel....so the question is can aerobic improvements be had by not doing aerobic training?

If yes (and it is, in terms of general health markers not for endurance performance) are those improvements somehow different?
And yes, again, muscle fibre, cardiac muscle etc.....but are the gains in anaerobic training offset by pure aerobic improvements?

And you could argue both ways here. Both is the right answer ie time efficiency, insulin sensitivity and lower repetitive strain issues from doing the same thing over and over again.

Again, my bias but ads, fatigue, overtraining could all be a function of under recovery than any specific metabolic issue.
At what point in one's training do you reach a limit?

Slowing down, doing less intensity, less often addresses that.
Could you argue then that doing interval training is an alternative?

Maybe here at this point, bias creeps in to suggest the path to follow. Maffetone and an endurance frame of reference v others.

I sit firmly on the fence. Both are right but both don't provide a precise answer. There isn't one.

A general stress model doesn't provide precision either but it accounts for many variables from all systems rather than isolating one system....the aerobic system.

So doing too much, too often at high output is problematic for some at some time during training....agreed. Guilty.

But is the answer to go slow? Or just have a rest?

Is the answer to get stronger too?

Strength training and walking ticks the box.

But then again....
 

Anna C

Level 9 Valued Member
Elite Certified Instructor
Sinister
Well put. I'd wager that extends to a lot of strength trainees too.


I agree that perhaps using terminology that makes it sound like a disease might not be . . .helpful. I do think that many many folks are woefully out of shape, overly sedentary, and -I hate to say it but I'll say it like I see it- unwilling to expend effort to make tangible, lasting changes in their lives. That last one applies to mental health as well. I just see a lot of people who seem like they'll try every last pill, supplement, etc before actually making a serious attempt at behavioral or habit changes.

That's not to say that things like diet and nutrient deficiencies play a role in physical health or mental health. I do believe that we need both. The last thing I want to do is make people feel shame about being out of shape. Shame is NOT helpful; I don't care how someone tries to rationalize fat shaming.

That being said, I believe there are plenty of studies showing the correlations between being overweight, having insulin resistance, etc being linked to many diseased states. At the other end, I have also seen studies correlating things like higher VO2 max with lowered overall mortality and much better health outcomes. Similary, studies also have shown reduction in pain and increase in function with basic strength training (recreational strength training, I mean) Unfortunately, I think many parts of society are still trying to mask symptoms instead of correct the causes of the health issues we see everywhere.

I hope that wasn't too much of a derail :)

I agree with you; however, the sedentary are not the folks that Maffetone and Uphill Athlete are usually talking about. They're talking about folks who exercise regularly, but do not have a relative aerobic base that supports their training as well as it could. Think of a stereotypical CrossFit enthusiast, for example.

In both cases, I agree that all of these people would benefit greatly from some targeted aerobic training. The first group (the sedentary) because it will get them out of high-risk health categories with a modest amount of effort. The second (the CF enthusiast) because it will help their performance, capabilities, and recovery.

But I would add a third category of people - and @Steve Freides is probably among them, as are many people who do kettlebell or barbell training primarily - who exercise regularly, do enough aerobic activity to keep them out of high-risk health categories (i.e. walking), and have enough of an aerobic base that supports their training. For them, I would suggest, there is no aerobic deficiency. In that way, it's the same as a runner who only half-heartedly does a bit of strength training a couple of times per week. They're not very strong. But they are strong enough to not have a strength deficiency, relative to what they are trying to do. They are fine, and they are healthy. A powerlifter would see their strength as deficient, the same way the runner would see the powerlifter's aerobic capacity as deficient. Both are probably adequately active to be out of high-risk health categories. Beyond that, it's just a matter of what you want to be and what qualities you want to develop.

So to me, the most useful aspect of the term "Aerobic Deficiency Syndrome" is it points clearly to what is missing relative to an aerobic or endurance athlete's physical qualities relative to what they are trying to do. As they race or otherwise tax their undeveloped aerobic system to perform, they are trying to cash checks on the wrong bank account. They might try HIIT or just push themselves to go harder in aerobic events. It may work in the short term, but it backfires in the long term as they become more glycolytic, more stressed, and less fuel-efficient. In this way, I agree the term can be meaningful. Where I think it goes wrong is in implying that it is equally relevant to all, as if we have this disease condition that needs to be fixed if we don't have a huge aerobic engine.
 

offwidth

Level 9 Valued Member
Is there a recognised strongfirst set of HR zones that I should read about to better understand terms like ZR AeT etc ? I've always thought about HR Zones as shown in this calculator
I enjoyed using a book by Roy Benson and Declan Connolly called heart rate training a long time ago and keen to learn what current thinking is on this forum regarding HR training. I had the impression that several people here use training programs using Phil Maffetones ideas/books.
As far as I know there is not a set of SF ’sanctioned’ HR zones. In all candor there probably does not need to be. That being said you are right that there are different zone systems out there, but from what I have seen the differences for the most part are minimal and not likely to be a concern to the vast majority of us.

If you have been following along on this thread and others, you will hear Uphill Athlete referenced a lot. It’s true that these folks are catering to people with ambitions at the higher end of the endurance spectrum… ultra-runners, ski-mo racers, and alpinists… and some would posit beyond the realm of what is applicable to many of us normal trainees. But…

I know those guys and they are the real deal when it comes to locomotive endurance training. If you want some comprehensive reading material on HR zones, and a greater understanding of the terminology (AeT, AnT, LT, etc…), and the science behind all of this, along with ‘practical’ applications, then in my (often voiced) opinion they are one of the current gold standards.

More to follow I’m sure…
I’m going out for a run….
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
What a great thread! My thanks to everyone who has contributed thus far. A few comments and questions from me, in no particular order:

@offwidth, MAF Method for Determining Your Aerobic Threshold — Uphill Athlete and other reading suggests that finding one's heart rate zones, where [Ae]robic [T]hreshold lies, and similar numbers is important for training purposes; the numbers I have for myself confuse me at least as much as they help me. I'm 66 years old, I can get my heart rate up to at least 179 any time I want to, and my pulse sitting here in my chair for the last hour is 55 so I'm assuming a true resting pulse is lower.

@Anna C said:
it's just a matter of what you want to be and what qualities you want to develop.

... which succinctly puts things in perspective. To put things another way, we all bring our own experiences to the table and those experiences can be large part of determining what goals we wish to pursue, at least once we reach a certain age. If you're new to exercise and without a history, well, I can't really relate. :) Mine are 25 years of distance running and 20 years of weight lifting.

I only started exercising when I began practicing music seriously in my mid-20's. I was at the piano 2-3 hours a day, with those wonderful twin goals that music requires: concentration and relaxation. I felt I need to do something physical so, it being the 1970's, I started jogging. 20 years later, I'd completed three half-marathons, I was skinny-fat, I was bored, and then I herniated a lumbar disc.

I now find that aerobic training in my life needs function as a counterbalance to my strength training - I walk with a focus on being relaxed, and specifically without a focus on my walking "performance." I choose to try to perform better in the arena of strength because, as I look at my life, past and present and my best guesstimates of the future, increased strength benefits my quality of life much more than increased endurance ever did, and the combination of powerlifting for strength, kettlebell ballistics for strength-endurance, and walking for easy endurance is the right mixture for me.

For me, it's all about this, "You can be anything you want. A warrior. An athlete. A hard man or woman ready to handle whatever life throws at you. But you must be strong first." from Strength Has a Greater Purpose | StrongFirst We could debate all day long whether the general population has more of a strength deficiency or an aerobic deficiency. As I look at it, anyone who's accepted and acted upon the responsibility to take care of their bodies is already in a small, elite group, and the differences beyond that are relatively minor.

-S-
 

rwleonard

Level 6 Valued Member
NCM wrote - "This is a fitbit screen grab from a hike I did recently with an 80lb pack, I could not have jogged this"

I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of folks who could jog it couldn't hike it with an 80lb ruck.
 
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