Training against our genetics and recovery

Discussion in 'Other' started by Paotle, Nov 14, 2019.

  1. Paotle

    Paotle Second Post

    Hi everyone,
    I have a question about the training modalities according to my own "genetic" heritage. I read a lot about A&A and alactic training. In high school, I was a sprinter and I trained a lot with long rest between sprints. So those protocols are not really new for me.

    Since I was a child, I was always very bad at endurance sport, but good at speed/power sports. My grandfather, my father and my sister have the same abilities (bad endurance/good speed). Even if we train a lot in endurance, we will never be good at it. I can remember that I was the quickest at the 100m at the high school, but was litteraly burned out after one hour of running and finishing after the untrained girls. I am not bad at hiking, but it takes long to recover. It is impossible to do multiple days hiking with lot of climbing.

    Because I wanted to be a complete athlete, during years, I tried to train my endurance (LISS, HIIT), it works a little bit, but the recovery after each workout is very long and taxing for the body and mind (headaches, unmotivated, irritable). For exemple, I have bad sleep only after doing one hour of LSD (below 120 bpm), and if i do HIIT I can have insomnia for all night even if I work out at 6:00 in the morning. For exemple, when I did a maximum heart rate test at 6:00 am, I had bad sleep during 2 nights. I'm not overweight (180cm, 75 kgs), nor do I have diabetes or another metabolic conditions. It really feels my body cannot handle too much effort.

    In my inner self, I really enjoy biking or hiking (being outdoors, sweating, breathing...), but it really kills me and I cannot enjoy it anymore because I know what will happen after it.

    I know that cardio has a lot of health benefits, but the lack of sleep and the burnout feeling following these workouts is worse than the benefits.

    First question is: Do you experience the same recovery problem after mild-moderate LISS?

    Second question: Is it better to train only according to our genetics (so speed/power for me) and removing the problematic protocoles (endurance for me)? Or can training against our genetic have advantages? Is it better to be a complete athlete to the detriment of recovery and sleep?
    Third question: Could A&A protocols without specific endurance training (HIIT or LISS) have sufficient cardio health benefits?

  2. fractal

    fractal More than 500 posts

    I'd be curious about your breathing. Have you ever tried buteyko?
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  3. Anna C

    Anna C More than 5000 posts Elite Certified Instructor

    Hello @Paotle !

    Good point from @fractal about breathing. It can help. I just attended the Second Wind seminar with Pavel, and learned a lot about that. There are lots of ways to improve your physiology with effective breathing techniques.

    No... if it's truly mild-moderate, it should be easy to recover from. A heart rate monitor can tell you where you are, and you can see if your heart rate tends to easily spike with an increase in effort such as when you get to a hill. The Maffetone formula of 180-age (there are also some adjustments you can find on the site) is a good guide for a number to stay under during your LISS sessions.

    I think training your aerobic base has lots of advantages for performance and health. Wherever anyone is with this, they can improve it.

    Cardio health benefits, yes. "Sufficient" depends on your goals.
  4. vegpedlr

    vegpedlr More than 500 posts

    This would be a good question for Phil Maffetone. But first you’d have to try his method carefully and in a disciplined way. Use a HRM, the 180 formula, and start with very low volume, building slowly.

    Generally, humans are endurance oriented, aerobic beasts. Our aerobic metabolism is pretty powerful, and really trainable.

    On the larger question, I can go slow all day, but training with any kind of intensity quickly burns me out. This last spring was the first time I was able to incorporate and benefit from LT intervals. I attribute this to getting stronger in the gym. Greater strength plus my aerobic fitness allowed me to finally go harder.
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  5. ali

    ali Quadruple-Digit Post Count

    @Paotle ...I hear you! You never mentioned your age.
    Like you, as a kid I was a good sprinter and absolutely rubbish at 200 and above.
    That statement reveals, like you, a mindset more than anything.....rubbish, no good at, hopeless at. That you see your endeavours as a comparison to others is not a negative thing at all but by constantly comparing and being competitive has a negative component....rarely is someone a high achieving endurance athlete and a high achieving sprint athlete. You can certainly be good at both, you need a broad base of both for just about any sport but you don't find gold medal specialists in general sport. And I theorise that you see yourself being poor at something because you expect to be good at everything. I bet your idea of a 10k is not to finish it but to win it and win it by smashing the world record. When that is never going to be realised, you shut down. Seeing yourself as a failure, your defence mechanism kicks in and the fear of not being good at something prevents you from doing the thing! You are an athlete, that's all.

    I'm 55 now and returned in recent years to sprinting as my competitive sport outlet.
    Since my 'youth' I've played many sports, martial arts and been active on and off, family, job etc. I stopped playing football (soccer) in my mid 40s and took up running as a main outlet. I couldn't figure out why I couldn't run well for an hour, feel beaten up with poor recovery yet could run around at high intensity for longer!
    A combo of things sorted myself out but ran 10ks, half marathon, marathon and some obstacle stuff but was never, never going to be a good endurance athlete. So I switched back to sprinting.
    Along the way I've realigned. I compete but it's a fun thing, an edge. Being able to compete is the driver, not winning or seeking unachievable goals or pushing myself for some self flaggelation. Just steady betterment.
    I think it all comes down to what you want to do. It's a personal view but there is too much an emphasis of long endurance in general fitness that creates a competitive narrative where for most is unnecessary.
    You can adapt to anything, really. The degree of adaptation possible will vary but is not solely dependent on genetics....we are adaptive, our muscle fibres change according to stimuli.
    So go easy, very easy in aerobic activity and kick any thoughts of a 2 hour marathon, a 3.45 mile, or 25 min 10k or even a 120 mile ultra in the desert goodbye. Well unless you want to do that, of course. And go fast and short from time to time. And keep strong and mobile.
    Maybe you overdo things all the time. Maybe you don't. I theorise again though that if you are a good sprinter with good recovery your aerobic system is fine. You recover.
    It's a myth that short sprint athletes have poor aerobic systems. Compared to a nordic skier perhaps but in general fitness, no. You shut down because you convince yourself that you're rubbish.
    Just go out and run, no clock, no hassle.
    But....this is is not the law. You don't have to.
    If you like sprinting. Your good at it. Do that. It's good for you to, whether you compete or not. Biased here obviously, it's the one thing that runners don't do enough of. you know why?.....endurance athletes think they are rubbish at it.
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  6. Paotle

    Paotle Second Post

    Thanks everyone for your answers.

    Hi @fractal No, I didn't. I will do it. If I undestand it well, it is a CO2 increasing method attained by short inhaling and long exhaling (reduced breathing)? Thanks for the tip.

    Hi @Anna C Thanks for the advice. I already use a heart rate monitor. The Maffetone formula seems to be to high for me. I'm 34, but training constantly at 146 or even as low as 130 will be exhausted and my recovery will take a lot of time. So I will start with very low volume as adviced by @vegpedlr

    My goals are health without any competitive outlook.

    Hi @vegpedlr, even the intensity as low as 130 burns me out. But I only tried it on bike (I cannot run anymore because of chronic Achilles tendinitis). I haven't enough strenght endurance because my legs burn very quickly even if my HR is not high. For this reason, building up my strength as you did will certainly help me.

    Hi @ali. Thanks for your long and interesting answer. You're surely right that mindset is an important factor. But poor recovery and physical burn out symptoms are real. I never tried to become a elite athlete in endurance, but I just want to be able to climb mountain passes on the bike or do some nordic skiing without suffering insomnia because I am to "excited".

    fractal likes this.
  7. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    @Paotle, your post sounds, in many places, like I could have written it. Every time I took a layoff from distance running, I would come back, particularly if it was after an injury, by running sprints and other short distances at a quick pace, doing sometimes twice a day of those kinds of sessions, and gradually stretching it back into long, easy running.

    At StrongFirst, we believe - supported by lots of evidence - that strength, not cardio, is the most important physical quality to develop. That doesn't mean we ignore cardio, but we take a particular approach to it. If you're stronger, everything else, including easy cardio, will become easier because the same effort, which you must repeat many times in that easy cardio, will have become a lower percentage of your maximum capabilities.

    I have spent years doing nothing but relaxed walking as my cardio, and I'm healthy by just about every marker I or my doctors can think of. I recommend you look into two programs we have, each well explained in a book: Kettlebell Simple and Sinister, and The Quick and The Dead. Read both, get stronger, and remember that the overtrained, sleeping badly feelings you've had are 100% avoidable.

    There is absolutely, positively _no_ such thing as being a "complete" athlete - find what improves your life and practice it.

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  8. ClaudeR

    ClaudeR Triple-Digit Post Count

    that should go in bold writing into every single fitness book or article!
    Bauer likes this.
  9. Steve Freides

    Steve Freides Forum Administrator Senior Certified Instructor

    A similar thought, from me, is quoted in Q&D on page ... 45.

  10. Anna C

    Anna C More than 5000 posts Elite Certified Instructor

    I like that quote. If only the general public knew that effective resistance training can consist of only two movements!

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