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David Wood 06-02-2005 08:54 AM

I've had a very miserable last month or so, fitness-wise (well, on other fronts, too).

The net result of being sick and having *way* too much work and too little sleep is that I didn't train for pretty much the whole month of May . . . got about 2 workouts in 30 days, and neither of those were WODs (although they did involve repeat 400s at the track, so they weren't totally useless . . . but 2 workouts don't go very far).

I've started back this week, doing WOD's at about half-speed (i.e., 90% effort is producing significantly reduced performance). I presume it'll come back in time.

What I'm finding interesting is seeing that my "losses" are *not* uniform across the spectrum of fitness. I seem to have lost the most in two "categories" of fitness:

- "anaerobic capacity" . . . the ability to go hard in that 60 seconds - 120 seconds range. My row times for 500 meters are way off. My "Tabata Something Else" score was about 70% of a previous best. (I didn't even attempt Diane this week; putting thrusters overhead had Pukie on me on the first round.)

-- localized muscular endurance (not sure if I have the right concept here). My pullups and pushups are WAY off. I've never been "good" at pullups (all-time best: 16; just before the layoff: 14), but now I'm at about 6. Pushups similar (proportional falloff).

Other categories are not terribly degraded:

-- aerobic endurance: my 5K time (which was lousy to begin with) isn't any more lousy

-- very short term / glycotic pathway: on the WOD with 1-1-1-1 etc. of power cleans this week, I pulled a PR. Go figure.

Does any of this match other people's experience, and/or should have been expected based on known patterns of detraining?

Thanks in advance,

Eugene R. Allen 06-02-2005 11:40 AM

I hate 800 repeats. At that distance you really have to go hard the entire time and there isn't much pacing involved. with a 400 you can be done in a bit over a minute and it takes about 15 or 20 seconds for the pain to really begin setting in. With an 800 the pain starts in that same 15 or 20 seconds but it stays with you for soooo much longer.

Your fitness loss is, not surprisingly, in the 800 meter zone where your blood is loading up with lactate and the gorilla with the piano is on your back. The good news is that I'll bet it comes back pretty quickly and that when it does, you will go past your previous bests. Some of my very best performances were after forced layoffs from sickness or injury.

In exactly the same way that you will develop certain of the 10 fitness attributes more quickly than others, you will also lose them at differing rates. You are not a freak and not deserving of a some goverment program. Now as soon as you can get over the bedwetting a fear of dust bunnies you can get back to training and tear up the girls.

Aushion Chatman 06-02-2005 08:46 PM


I'm in the middle of what you must have experienced...I'm at sea right now and finding time or the right seas to workout is difficult. I just did a workout yesterday 21-15-9 SDLHP, 2 sets ea arm of 1 arm DL's and 21-15-9 standing roman.

I wasn't as exhausted as I thought I'd be, I've done pull-ups here and there when I can, I've probably only done 4-5 sets of 10 the last 20 days. But i have been able to crank out 10 each time, though it is much more difficult than it used to be.

I'm not sure when I'll get back to a good routine, I'm expecting it to be in months when I return home.

I can't relate to your glycotic p-way...we have no equip/space for that type of training right now. I also don't use the treadmill while we're at sea...I'm interested to see just how far I slip when I get home and can start a good routine again.

We used to talk about muscle memory when I was lifting the traditional way (MWF seperating arms/shoulders, legs, back) Is there truth to that, or is it that I'm mentally adapted to pushing myself so the scaled back workouts I'm doing aren't as bad as even I think they'll be?


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