EPC Run

EPC Tips – Race Pace Run

As you near your final races of the season you want to be sure to train the energy systems and efforts you expect to put out on race day. The following run session is a great one with just this purpose. It is best to perform this session on terrain similar to your upcoming race (hills, trails, pavement, concrete, sand, etc.).

Also attempt this session “off the bike” following a moderately long bike ride that has left you with some fatigue in the legs as you begin the run, further mimicking the race day experience.

Begin with some one minute fast paced efforts to find your rhythm and get your cadence up to speed. These are best done on flat terrain to assist in the high turnover. Then after a short recovery break, jump into the extended race pace tempo repeats with short recoveries. These should be done on hills if your race has hills (both uphill and downhill). Finish the workout with some easy jogging and a walk to jump start the recovery process.  Off the bike…

WARM UP: 6x[1:00 fast, 1:00 easy]
3:00 walk

MAIN SET: 3-4x[8:00 race pace, 2:00 easy jog]

WARM-DOWN: 5-10:00 easy run
5:00 walk

Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching

EPC Tips Threshold

EPC Tips: Vo2 Max Bike Workout

Vo2 Max intervals are short to moderate length intervals performed at a high level of power; power you could sustain for maybe a 8-16 minutes max effort (read: pain cave). We’ll break this effort up into much smaller chunks of 2-4 minutes, with relatively short rests of equal duration, to make the effort more manageable and allow you to get between 15-30 minutes worth on work at your Vo2 Max power. HR will lag behind on these efforts since they are short, but will likely climb to a very high level, a little short of max HR, by the end of the last few intervals. RPE on these intervals is a 9 on the 1-10 scale. I like to do these on the trainer (controlled environment) or outside as hill repeats (6-8% grade) to allow for steady power output.

Vo2 Max intervals allow you to train above your race day steady state effort and get you more comfortable with digging deep to drop a competitor, bridge a gap, or get over a steep climb with power and then recover without blowing yourself up.

WARM-UP:

  • 10:00-20:00 easy
  • 5:00 build to threshold/race pace
  • 5:00 easy

MAIN SET:

  • 10x[2:00 hard (110-120% of threshold power/2:00 easy (50-60% of threshold power]
  • 5:00+ easy

AEROBIC SET:

  • optional additional aerobic riding to meet volume goals

(60-90+ minutes total time)

Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching. XTERRA Athletes, if you’re going to XTERRA USA and/or XTERRA Worlds this year join our XTERRA Championship Training Program that contains all the key training sessions that will have you in peak condition leading up to these two great events.  
Don’t forget to ‘LIKE’ the EPC Facebook Page and follow Cody on Instagram
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EPC Tips – Speed Swim Session

Crank up the pace in the pool by training your 100, 200, and 400 speed with this swim session.

Begin the session with some strength & technique work, by pulling and focusing on your catch. Then the main set targets your speed with short intervals at some of your faster paces. By breaking the goal pace/effort into 4 smaller segments (intervals) you can successfully hit your target paces without working at max effort. This session works best if you already know your max speed for 100, 200 and 400 yards/meters. If you don’t your max speed for these distances, you can choose to do a test set (or session) prior to this workout, or simply estimate your target paces. This is a great set to repeat once a week, or every other week, as you build up for next goal race to monitor improvements in your speed (and/or decreased effort to hit target paces). Finish the session with a nice easy pull to stretch out and warm-down.

WARM-UP:

Snorkel (optional), pull buoy, ankle band…

  • 2×200 @ 60%, 0:20 rests
  • 2×150 @ 70%, 0:15 rests
  • 2×100 @ 80%, 0:10 rests
  • 2×50 @ 90%, 0:05 rests

MAIN SET:

2 Rounds of…

  • 4×25 @ 100 pace, 0:10 rests
  • 100 easy
  • 4×50 @ 200 pace, 0:15 rests
  • 100 easy
  • 4×100 @ 400 pace, 0:20 rests
  • 100 easy

WARM-DOWN:

  • 500 easy pull, choice of gear

Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching. XTERRA Athletes, if you’re going to XTERRA USA and/or XTERRA Worlds this year join our XTERRA Championship Training Program that contains all the key training sessions that will have you in peak condition leading up to these two great events.

Don’t forget to ‘LIKE’ the EPC Facebook Page and follow Cody on Instagram
Cody Run

EPC Tips – Hill Repeat Run

HILL REPEATS: Following your aerobic base re-build block, begin to re-introduce some intensity into your midseason training program by running short hill repeats. This session allows you to do some higher intensity training without spending too much time running “fast” and allowing your body to gradually adapt to the faster running without being too stressful.

Hill repeats are a classic endurance training protocol. Whether on the bike or run, going up hill brings many benefits to the endurance athlete, regardless if your race is hilly or flat. Hill repeats can be long and sustained or short and fast depending on your training objectives. Use this RUNNING hill repeat session to build strength in the first half of the set (the 1:00 repeats) and to build power in the second half of the set (the 0:30 repeats).

The FLAT intervals are intended to help you dial in the effort prior to the HILL repeats, as well as to feel the strength & power benefits after performing the hill repeats. Run out and back on the FLAT intervals at same effort (but greater speed) as on HILL intervals. Run at a fast pace that you can sustain throughout the longer intervals. Run the shorter intervals as fast as you can.

WARM-UP: 
5:00 Dynamic Warm-Up
5-15:00 easy run
4x[0:15 strides, 0:45 walk]
1:00 walk

MAIN SET
1x[1:00 FLAT fast run]
4-6x[1:00 UPHILL fast run, jog down recovery]
1x[1:00 FLAT fast run]
3:00 walk
1x[0:30 FLAT fast run]
4-6x[0:30 UPHILL fast run, walk down recovery]
1x[0:30 FLAT fast run]

WARM-DOWN
2:00 walk
5-10 easy run
3:00 walk

Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching who is offering training programs for both XTERRA Nationals & Worlds.

Learn more here: XTERRA Championship Training Program

Cody Waite Bike

EPC Tips – Aerobic Strength Bike

After your first peak of the season and your subsequent transition or rest period, you’re ready to get back into training mode with your sights set squarely on your second peak of the year in September or October. The second half of the season’s training is often built much like the first, only maybe over a little shorter period of time (which works because you’re starting from higher level of fitness than when coming off your off-season). You will first want to re-build some aerobic fitness and aerobic strength, which were likely neglected a bit in your final push towards your first peak a few weeks ago.

The following bike session is one that is a staple, not only in my own training and coaching, but most cycling and triathlon training programs. 

It’s a crucial session to build strength on the bike and improve your ability to produce force on the pedals and resist muscular fatigue when putting out more power in the coming weeks of training and racing. This session can be performed outside on hills (in larger gears up moderate grades, 5-7% ideal) on the road or even on your mountain bike for you off-road types. Cadences should hover around 50-60 rpm varying with the terrain. You can also make it a very effective trainer session if you are short on time or do not have long hills in your area. Done on the trainer you will want to elevate your front wheel on a block of wood to simulate an uphill position on the bike, shift into one of your largest gears (high resistance level) and pedal the “climbs” at around 50rpm to simulate grinding up a a long hill. Effort level on these strength intervals is moderate. HR and power output should be kept just under your threshold level.

Perform this session once or twice a week for a few weeks. Start with shorter climbs (3-5:00) and and gradually extend the length of the climbs every few sessions as you find yourself gaining strength (up to 20:00 climbs). 

After a few weeks of re-building your aerobic strength you’ll be ready to add some turnover to the equation and ramping up the power output!

WARM-UP:

  • 10:00 easy spin
  • 20+ min additional aerobic riding as desired
  • 5:00 progressive build to threshold power
  • 3:00 easy

MAIN SET:

  • 4x[5:00 big gear, low cadence climbing, 1-2 min recovery (alternate seated & standing)]
  • 10:00-20:00 easy gear spin (or downhill)
  • 4x[5:00 big gear, low cadence climbing, 1-2 min recovery (alternate seated & standing)]

WARM-DOWN:

  • 10:00 easy gear spin (or downhill)
  • extra aerobic riding as desired
EPC Tips - Swim Set

EPC Tips – 3-Stage Swim Set

The following 3-stage swim set is a great addition to your sport-specific strength building phase.

There are three parts to this set: the long extended reach for strength with all the gear (100s), the increased turnover & core ‘taughtness’ pull with legs tied and no buoy to translate the strength from previous set to power (50s), and the regular swim (sans gear) with emphasis on high turnover rate to translate the power from previous set to speed.

The 100s are long, balanced, and strong focusing on a big reach, solid catch and strong pull. With the 50s the buoy is removed which forces you to keep your core tight to resist your hips dropping with feet still tied together. Your cadence must increase to prevent you from sinking and all the propulsion comes from your upper body. Then when you remove the band for the 25s, you regain the balance and propulsion from your lower body and with the increased tension of your core and and strong pull you move seemingly effortlessly through the water at a high turnover rate.

Be sure to warm-up well with a 800-1500 yards of swimming and finish the session off with a warm-down of choice. Good luck and have fun!

MAIN SET:

  • 6×100 buoy & band at 70% @ 0:20 rests  (paddles and/or snorkle optional)
  • 12×50 band-only at 80% @ 0:15 rests (snorkel optional)
  • 24×25 swim  at 90% high stroke rate @ 0:10 rests (no gear)
Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching. XTERRA Athletes, if you’re going to XTERRA USA and/or XTERRA Worlds this year join our XTERRA Championship Training Program that contains all the key training sessions that will have you in peak condition leading up to these two great events.  
Don’t forget to ‘LIKE’ the EPC Facebook Page and follow Cody on Instagram
EPC Tips - Pacing

EPC Tips – Running Off the Bike

Triathlon requires an athlete to be proficient at three sports: swimming, cycling and running. Training the three sports individually is a starting point for most triathletes, but eventually you realize that the sport of triathlon is not simply swimming, biking and running; but rather it is its own sport of swim-bike-run. What’s the difference you ask?

Cycling after swimming hard is far more challenging than simply cycling hard in a bike race. Likewise, running fast after cycling hard for an extended period is whole different experience than simply running a run race. By the time you reach the run in a triathlon you are already fatigued and you must be able to keep it together to finish your race strong on foot!

For this reason you must train the bike-to-run effort before race day.

For the bike to run transition you must go from a seated, quad-dominant, flexed spinal position on the bike to a standing, full spine extension running position that requires heavy hamstring and glute activation. Anyone who’s done a triathlon knows exactly what this feeling is like going from hard cycling to fast running: the stiff back, heavy legs, and lack of bounce as they head out onto the run. Not only is this an unpleasant feeling to work through, but the longer it takes you to find your running stride, the more time you are losing to you competitors on the course!

Training the bike to run transition is critical for triathlon success. Often referred to as “bricks,” these training sessions involve a period of cycling followed by a period of running, and are far more triathlon specific than simply a stand-alone bike or stand-alone run session. Most triathletes include bike-to-run training in their programs, but many miss the key element of getting up to speed off the bike by instead simply heading out for an easy run after their bike rides. There are endless ways of constructing a “brick” session, but the key element of nearly all bike-to-run training sessions should be to quickly go from your bike to the run and get up to run speed immediately. Finding your rhythm and a fast run cadence as quick as possible is what helps you on race day to work through that uncomfortable feeling and find your form and rhythm as fast as possible.

The following “run off the bike” session is a good example of specific triathlon training that will train your neuromuscular system to get your run cadence up immediately off the bike, allowing you to be more successful on race day:

  • Immediately following your bike ride (works best after a tough interval session, see last week’s bike workout for example), transition to your the following 45:00 run…
  • 4x[1:00 fast, 1:00 easy], build the effort with each interval
  • 4x[5:00 race pace, 1:00 walk]
  • 8:00 easy
  • 5:00 walk
Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching. XTERRA Athletes, if you’re going to XTERRA USA and/or XTERRA Worlds this year join our XTERRA Championship Training Program that contains all the key training sessions that will have you in peak condition leading up to these two great events.  
Don’t forget to ‘LIKE’ the EPC Facebook Page and follow Cody on Instagram
Cody-Waite

EPC Tips – Criss-Cross Bike Intervals

Leading into your goal race you want to replicate your race day efforts in your training to best prepare you for success.

Regardless of the race format or distance, you need to have the ability (and confidence) to go hard, often beyond that of your goal race pace, in order to get into the lead group at the start of the race. After this hard effort you need to be able to settle into your sustainable race pace while still being able to respond to attacks by your competitors, surges up a hill, and surges to pass competitors. The ability to surge, settle in, surge, settle in, throughout a race is crucial to being able to finish strong and make or break your race day performance.

The following bike session is a classic example of race specific training that will help you learn to become more “comfortable” and be able to make these harder efforts within in a race without blowing up. These types of intervals are often referred to as “criss-cross intervals” as they go back and forth between two training zones. The exact zones you’re training in these sessions depends on the distance of the race you are training for. For races of duration under 5 hours you’ll want to do this session with “race pace” being at or near your lactate threshold (zone 4) and the “super-race pace” at or near your vo2 max (zone 5). For races extending beyond the 5 hour mark you can lower the intensity just a bit by have race pace be more in line with your aerobic threshold (zone 3) and the “super-race pace” being at your lactate threshold (zone 4).

The goal within these intervals is to start above your race pace, holding it there for a short bit before backing off slightly and bringing the intensity down to your race pace for an extended period of time. Then near the end of the interval you kick it back up a notch and finish strong, above your race pace for a short period. Then you take a recovery interval before repeating the complete  interval again.

Performed correctly this session will improve your threshold power on the bike and leave you better prepared to respond to the dynamic efforts required on race day.

WARM-UP:

30+ minutes easy/moderate paced riding

MAIN SET:

2-4x[12:00 (as 2:00 super-race pace, 8:00 race pace, 2:00 super-race pace), 5:00-10:00 easy]

Perform the intervals on terrain similar to that of your goal race (long hills, rollers, flats, etc.) finish with additional aerobic riding to meet volume goals.

Written by Cody Waite, professional endurance athlete, endurance sport coach and founder of Endurance Performance Coaching. XTERRA Athletes, if you’re going to XTERRA USA and/or XTERRA Worlds this year join our XTERRA Championship Training Program that contains all the key training sessions that will have you in peak condition leading up to these two great events.  

EPC Tips - Power Run

XTERRA Training Programs for National and World Championships

Here we are just about midway through the XTERRA World Tour racing season and hundreds of athletes have qualified themselves for the USA and World Championship races. For those looking to do their very best, and race as fast as they possibly can at one or both of the marquee events; a personally tailored training program is a valuable tool.

“It’s time to get serious with your training and make the most out of your preparation for the big end-of-season championship events,” says professional XTERRA racer and Endurance Performance Coaching head coach Cody Waite, who has once again put together a proven program of key training sessions to get you ready to rip on the XTERRA courses come fall.

“With this program you join our already successful XTERRA Group Coaching programs that have gotten many athletes qualified for these races,” he says. “This program consists of four 4-week training blocks building up to XTERRA USA and the XTERRA World Championships plus a two week travel/taper schedule for Worlds. Along the way athletes receive their specific training plan delivered via Training Peaks along with a downloadable audio recording to explain the key training sessions and goals of each training block. On top of that, email support is included to answer any specific questions athletes have as they follow the program.”

The program officially begins June 29th, allowing for a 12-week build to XTERRA USA Champs, followed by a 6-week build to XTERRA World Champs.  Late registrants are also welcome to jump in at any point along the way.

For more info visit epcmultisport.com.