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RTSAdmin
02-13-2013, 04:47 PM
Mike Tuchscherer wrote:

http://www.t-nation.com/readArticle.do?id=5285625

I posted this up on my Facebook page, but then thought here would be just as good if not better.

Some of my initial thoughts: "I think there's a lot of meat in that article TBH. The fact that they didn't overtrain and die... the fact that they adapted to high workloads... they used, IMO, unconventional methods (breathing ladders, other mental tricks)... the psychological training aspects of the experiment... all that stuff I find very interesting!"

RTSAdmin
02-13-2013, 04:47 PM
Donald Lee wrote:
It's definitely interesting. I wish they had done it longer though-like 6 weeks instead of 10 days.

Regarding overtraining, here's a piece from Lyle:

It became clear early on that true overtraining, whereby it took months to recover to previous performance levels, was fairly rare. When athletes started to perform badly and were given a couple of weeks of rest, they tended to come back quickly and strongly (often exceeding previous fitness levels).

...

In any case, this distinction is an important one. Most people will never experience true overtraining for a variety of reasons. Not the least of which is that, when most people start to perform badly or get tired all the time, they will cut back their training. Basically, they don’t have what it takes to truly become overtrained.

This isn’t meant to be insulting, it’s just a statement of fact. Most people in most gyms aren’t working as hard as they think they are in the first place; if they start to feel run down, workouts are going to get dropped or conveniently ‘missed’ and recovery will take place long before a deep enough hole is created to qualify for even overreaching, much less overtraining.

Another factor is that, as Dan John puts it, “Life gets in the way” and most folks will have something come up that will force a recovery period due to work, family, etc. They won’t be able to maintain the other parts of the definition I’m going to look at to really dig the hole that deep. A holiday will come up, a vacation will come up, something will keep them out of the gym on the weekend. Whatever it is, the kind of chronic heavy overload that generates overreaching in the short-term and overtraining in the long-term simply won’t happen.

Between those two things, overtraining or even overreaching tends to be rare in the general population. Not impossible, mind you, just rare.

But hardcore athletes often show this amusing psychology whereby, when they start to perform badly, they will not only fight through crappy training and competition but train even harder. They see failure as a challenge to be overcome and if they aren’t performing well, assume they need more training (when they usually need much less).

And since they rarely miss training in the first place and go at it week in and week out and month in and month out, they can really do themselves some damage when they start falling into that trap. When you finally do get them to rest, it can take months or longer for them to come back (I’ve seen it argued that some never come back but I’m not sure how much truth there is to this). That’s true overtraining.

Now, there is actually a very silly question in the literature to the effect of “Does overtraining exist?” Effectively, since research has been unable to generate true overtraining (since they can’t destroy people for the 6+ months it takes to generate true overtraining), they aren’t sure it’s real. In the short-term studies where they just beat on people for a couple of weeks, usually it just makes them fitter. But overtraining is real. Again, it’s not common, but it is real as coaches and athletes can readily attest to.

RTSAdmin
02-13-2013, 04:48 PM
vic616283 wrote:
One thing to remember is that Lyle's experience is heavily skewed towards endurance training, and endurance training is, by it's very nature, much more prone to being overdone than strength training.

When you run yourself into the ground really hard with strength training, it's usually only a matter of weeks before you tweak/injure something and have some forced time off. Endurance trainees like swimmers and cyclists can just pound away at training hours for months on end.

RTSAdmin
02-13-2013, 04:48 PM
Mike Tuchscherer wrote:
don't think anyone had any interest in doing it more than 10 days! lol!