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Power dip during training cycle. (Read 1158 times)

Fultonius

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Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 09:59:16 am
I've just come back from 2 months of low volume climbing, typically 2 outdoors sessions a week, with a couple of fingerboard session dotted through the period.

I'm now back in Glasgow, back on the plastic. Had a great start, feeling fresh, light and climbing well.

Since then I seem to have gone backwards...

I've had some low grade fatigue which hasn't helped.

But is this common? It's been a while since I did higher volume training (3/4 times a week). For example, had a circuits session on Sunday followed by a short weights session. Had bad doms in the lats from shoulder presses the next day. Still felt them on Tuesday morning's limit boulder session.

Today I'm back on the circuits and just feeling drained and struggling on moves that I know shouldn't feel that hard.

I'm currently trying to have a mini build up to a trip December 2nd, so focusing on working what I know my weaknesses usually are on a trip like this (fighting through punchy cruxes).

Should I:

Drop the intensity/grade a bit?

Drop the distance and keep the intensity? (I.e. Reduce moves from 30-40 to 18-25?)

Do fewer sessions per week?

Have a few days off to recover and get back to it?

It's just been so long since I've done higher volumes I don't want to dig myself into a hole, get injured etc.

Trying to focus hard on recovery, diet etc.

Dingdong

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#1 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 10:13:40 am
That’s pretty normal when going back to higher volume and intensity from a long period of lower volume/no training.

Personally if you weren’t going on a trip I would break this training cycle into 12 weeks, the first 3-4 weeks being a slow build up of volume to get back to your previous level - this can be done by adding more and more sessions into your week and feeling it out as you go along, listen to your body most of all and if it feels like too much just back off a bit. Because you’re off next month though I would just ease those sessions back in over the next few weeks, just don’t steamroll too quick or you could get injured.

You could definitely reintroduce your volume sessions by doing less moves to start with but at the same intensity. starting at 50% of the volume you want to achieve say 70 moves, start at 35 then slowly across those 3-4 weeks you add 10 more moves and then another 10 until you hit your goal.

I’d say 1-2 volume sessions a week and 1 focus on power/max efforts and then sprinkle some conditioning for legs and upper body on the days you’re doing volume and one hangboard sesh a week should be enough - could do hangboard lifts which are less taxing on the shoulders than hanging

Liamhutch89

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#2 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 10:22:05 am
You have a trip coming up in just over 2 weeks. Now is the time to start tapering and it sounds like you've timed your training perfectly if you're just now starting to feel the effects of accumulated fatigue. 70% volume two weeks out, 40% volume the week before, keep intensity high and then feel good and climb hard on your trip! Enjoy. 

Fultonius

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#3 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 10:24:00 am
Forgot to say, it's a bolt clipping / leisure / vit d health trip!

Not sure if you're referring to total number of moves in a boulder session? I was talking endurance circuits.

I'm away on a work trip the week before the climbing trip, so I suspect that will be a total rest week (might buy/make a mini travel edge actually).

So, realistically I have 2 weekends and one week left....which kind of answers my question a bit doesn't it  :lol:

Taper and maintain explosive power, drop all volume.  :slap:

Aye... What Liam said...

teestub

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#4 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 10:26:20 am
Had bad doms in the lats from shoulder presses the next day. Still felt them on Tuesday morning's limit boulder session.


Don’t think you use your lats doing shoulder press? I get DOMs pretty regularly doing new exercises (or stuff I haven’t done for a while) and getting a bit carried away

Like Dingdong says sounds like you jumped on a bit quick. I think a general rule is along the lines of not increasing training volume by more than 10% in a week. This is obviously hard to work out in climbing terms, but gives a general idea of what to think about in terms of ramping up.

Dingdong

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#5 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 10:54:48 am
Not sure if you're referring to total number of moves in a boulder session? I was talking endurance circuits.

Nah i meant circuit moves, you could either do it by number of moves or time on wall, always keeping RPE the same, since it's a few weeks out i would definitely just do a few easier volume sessions to keep the body moving.

Get a travel edge with a number of different strength bands and take those with you on your work trip and just keep your fingers healthy and recruited by doing some long (30 sec) pulls 3/4 days that week and maybe some real chill bodyweight conidioning like pushups etc and then lots of stretching/mobility.

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#6 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 11:08:28 am
Had bad doms in the lats from shoulder presses the next day. Still felt them on Tuesday morning's limit boulder session.


Like Dingdong says sounds like you jumped on a bit quick. I think a general rule is along the lines of not increasing training volume by more than 10% in a week.
Week 1 load
Week 2 load = 110% of week 1 load
Week 3 load = 110x110% = 121%
Week 4 load = 110x121% = 133.1%
Week 5 load = 110x133.1 = 146.4%

10% weekly increase adds nearly 50% of load in a little over a month. That’s a working maximum rate of increase for the body to adapt to.

Tim Gabett did a lot of research into this. He called it Chronic-Acute Training Load. He compared ‘acute load’ (current weekly effort) with ‘chronic load’ (the average effort over the preceding 4 weeks). It’s interesting. ‘The Training-Injury Prevention Paradox’.
https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/50/5/273

TL;DR keep your rate of change of workload (ie including reductions as well as increases) in the sub 10% range.  My run of chronic injuries stopped once I got my head round this.


Edit - abstract title added
« Last Edit: November 16, 2023, 11:18:04 am by mrjonathanr »

Fultonius

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#7 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 01:40:19 pm
Not sure if you're referring to total number of moves in a boulder session? I was talking endurance circuits.

Nah i meant circuit moves, you could either do it by number of moves or time on wall, always keeping RPE the same, since it's a few weeks out i would definitely just do a few easier volume sessions to keep the body moving.

Get a travel edge with a number of different strength bands and take those with you on your work trip and just keep your fingers healthy and recruited by doing some long (30 sec) pulls 3/4 days that week and maybe some real chill bodyweight conidioning like pushups etc and then lots of stretching/mobility.

Cool, thanks. Will need to get my head around RPE and total load/volume, not something I've ever considered really (always been too time limited to worry about overtraining!)

t’s interesting. ‘The Training-Injury Prevention Paradox’.
https://bjsm.bmj.com/content/50/5/273

TL;DR keep your rate of change of workload (ie including reductions as well as increases) in the sub 10% range.  My run of chronic injuries stopped once I got my head round this.


Thanks, interesting read. I feel like in the last 3-4 years I've got a better understanding of my limits and how to avoid injury (barely had one other than some wrist issues, and a pulled knee muscle/ligament earlier in the year that was just bad luck/silliness, since around 2017). But the whole time I'd say my climbing and training volume has been on the lower end of the spectrum. Definitely not climbed/trained regularly more than 3 sessions a week that whole time....and it's a long plateau really.

Last year was the first winter I'd actively trained base endurance and, on the whole, I feel it's been beneficial. But my upper limit is still constrained by steeper, bouldery moves, hence looking to balance endurance and strength this winter.

So, if using RPE as a gauge of session load:

For circuits moves per circuit x no of circuits x "feeling of effort (1-10)"?

Bouldering, number of boulders x "feeling of effort (1-10)"?

mrjonathanr

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#8 Re: Power dip during training cycle.
November 16, 2023, 07:37:15 pm
Hi Fultonius, I think Gabett’s idea is along those lines, he calls the RPE x minutes of exertion ‘arbitrary units’ and uses that to measure load.

The beauty of that is that to establish likelihood of injury, the subjective strain on you is what counts, not some objective work rate. The strain of a moderate session for someone exhausted from work could be higher than someone fresh and healthy cranking the same number of minutes full on.

So (unless you’re a professional coach?) a rough sense of not upping the ante too fast or, equally, slacking off suddenly, is probably enough. Steady progression is his recommendation.

It’s meant I’ve done easy sessions just to tick over to stay healthy and calibrated them accordingly, when I wouldn’t have bothered in the past, or would have pushed hard whatever.

N= 1 etc

Sounds like you need to cut down and keep a bit of intensity, like Liam said.. But what do I know?! :shrug:

 

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