Current Training Phase (May 2024)

Current Training Phase

Summer Series & Recap of Summer Series Prep

Summer is (kind of) here! Our programming and training goals are to have a positive impact on your summer activities, avoid plateaus, and mitigate injuries as much as possible.

Programming takeaways:

  • Why have we switched from back squat to front squat? This change helps re-develop core strength needed for many summer activities, improves body posture, and helps individuals increase their squat depth. This increase in depth elicits flexibility and mobility. Additionally, front squats are more anterior dominant which helps develop your quads, VMO (vastus medialis oblique), and patella tendon. The goal is to develop these muscles and ligaments earlier in the season, so they can endure higher levels of stress later in the season. This should also help decrease pain and injuries to your knees and hips. It’s important to note, we can’t stop all injuries, but we can decrease the likelihood and severity. Later in the summer, we will adjust the programming to create less pressure on these muscle groups. 
  • We will also be consistently working the posterior chain (i.e. the glutes, hamstrings, upper and lower back) to ensure high levels of power output which will increase speed when running, cycling, and hiking. 
  • Lastly, you will see more unilateral movements or single leg and single arm work to ensure bodily balance.  With some sports, like skiing, people instinctively favor their stronger side and that carries into other athletic movements. If we do this for an extended period, we can create heavy imbalances that decrease performance and increase injuries. To combat this early on, you will see sgl leg squats, Bulgarian split squats, 45-degree lunges, sgl arm rows, sgl leg RDLs, and sgl leg glute bridges. 

Summer Goals:

  • Increase strength and power output! 
  • Balance the body for increased performance & decreased injuries.
  • Muscle Hypertrophy-Building of Muscle 
  • Increase speed and change of direction. 
  • Develop a high level of work capacity so we can repeat bouts of activity at     high levels of force over longer periods. Example: Sprint longer and faster without getting as tired, this goes for cycling, swimming, and hiking.
  • Joint Stability-Ankle/Knees/Hips 

In our last write-up, we included two studies on how excessive running volume can decrease your performance when training for a running event. This also applies to cycling, swimming, and hiking. We love our activities but, remember, too much activity can also be a bad thing. Running, hiking, and mountain biking are considered high impact on our joints and doing a sport 2-3 times per week has been shown to be enough volume for higher performance levels.  

Articles Recap: 

Within the last 20 years, research has shown that by increasing strength and endurance training while decreasing the volume of endurance activities you’re going to increase performance, especially for endurance athletes. This means running more or cycling more will not always prepare you for your race. For example, recent research shows that decreasing running volume and increasing strength training can increase performance in a 10K by 3-5%. (3,2,1,4) 

It is a common misconception that clocking more miles means the more prepared you are for your marathon or triathlon. Building muscle strength, power output, and muscle hypertrophy is what will increase strength, speed, and endurance for your sports. Beyond 8-12 weeks, solely running, cycling, or swimming will not continue to increase strength. Many of you have been doing these for years so you will not get strength or power properties from your activities. This is why we continue to stress the importance of training year round, 2-3 times per week. 

 Do not forget to build your body up at the gym, make sure you rest, and fuel your body for your summer activities. 

Direct quotes from research: 

  • In summary, 8 weeks of combined strength and speed endurance training along with a 58% reduction in training volume improved short-term exercise capacity and induced muscular adaptations related to anaerobic capacity in endurance-trained runners, Vorup, J., Tybirk, J., Gunnarsson, T. P, Ravnholt, T. Dalsgaard, S, & Bangsbo, J. (2016). 
  • Adding strength training to an endurance training program has been shown to improve long-term performance (>3 %) and running economy (~5 %) in trained individuals ( Paavolainen et al. 1999). 
  • Recently, Skovgaard et al. (2014) showed that SE and strength training performed in succession, along with a reduction in training volume, did lead to improved 10-K performance in moderately trained endurance runners. Like in the study by Bangsbo et al. (2009) 


1-Rønnestad, B. R., & Mujika, I. (2014). Optimizing strength training for running and cycling endurance performance: A review. Scandinavian journal of medicine & science in sports, 24(4), 603-612.

2-Barnes KR, Hopkins WG, McGuigan MR, Northuis ME, Kilding AE. Effects of resistance training on running economy and cross-country performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc 2013: 45: 2322–2331.

3- Vorup, J., Tybirk, J., Gunnarsson, T. P., Ravnholt, T., Dalsgaard, S., & Bangsbo, J. (2016). Effect of speed endurance and strength training on performance, running economy and muscular adaptations in endurance-trained runners. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 116, 1331-1341.

4- Trowell, D., Vicenzino, B., Saunders, N., Fox, A., & Bonacci, J. (2020). Effect of strength training on biomechanical and neuromuscular variables in distance runners: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Sports Medicine, 50, 133-150.

5-Stöggl, T., & Holmberg, H. C. (2022). A systematic review of the effects of strength and power training on performance in cross-country skiers. Journal of Sports Science & Medicine, 21(4), 555.

6- McGuigan, M. R., Wright, G. A., & Fleck, S. J. (2012). Strength training for athletes: does it really help sports performance?. International journal of sports physiology and performance, 7(1), 2-5.

7- Carbone, S., Kirkman, D. L., Garten, R. S., Rodriguez-Miguelez, P., Artero, E. G., Lee, D. C., & Lavie, C. J. (2020). Muscular strength and cardiovascular disease: an updated state-of-the-art narrative review. Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention, 40(5), 302-309.

8- Rebelo, A., Pereira, J. R., & Valente-dos-Santos, J. (2023). Effects of a preseason triphasic resistance training program on athletic performance in elite volleyball players—an observational study. German Journal of Exercise and Sport Research, 53(2), 163-170.