Deload weeks

I have a couple of basic questions about deload weeks. I have already done a search and was able to find some good info on deload weeks for weights, but could not find any specific guidelines for speed work.

When doing a deload week do you typically reduce both the volume and intensity of speed work, or just the volume?

Or does it vary depending on the situation?

Could someone please give an example of what a deload week would generally look like (ie week 1 = x number of meters, week 2 =, week 3 =, week 4 = deload week = …)


if you look at cf spp graphs theres really no real deload weeks.

That’s what had me confused.

So during SPP you only deload your strength training but not your speed work?

Depends what coach you speak to i think cf keep vol similar throughout the phase and drop during the finial weeks. I tend to regulate my intensity by dropping or increasing the int limit.

Here are a couple of quotes from Charlie in another thread:

“How about a discussion about the relative values of two conflicting approaches.
My approach is to use 2 speed and 1 speed end session per week for three high int weeks with 1 reduced int week.
The other popular approach is to use 2 speed and 2 speed end sessions per week as follows - speed, speed end, tempo, speed, speed end, tempo, off, with 2 high intensity weeks followed by a reduced int week.
What are the relative merits of each approach, and which will yield the most progress in the long run for the highest level athletes?”

“Let’s do some math
Given the 2 speed + 1 speed end with a 3 week high 1 wk reduced approach, a 16 week training cycle will include 24 high int speed sessions and 12 high int speed end sessions.
The 2 speed plus 2 speed end on a 2 week high int and 1 week reduced int will yield 20 speed and 20 speed end sessions.
The implications are that system one yields more speed sessions- and at a higher quality per individual session due to longer recovery between sessions, while system two yields more speed end at the cost of lowering the quality and quantity of pure speed work.”

This post made me think that Charlie deloads the speed work every fourth week. This doesn’t seem to be reflected in the Vancouver graphs though.

So how do you decide when to have a week where you reduce the int limit. Do you decide this in advance, or just go by feel?

i usually have it plan but you always have to be flexable.

So when you plan it out do you normally have a deload scheduled every fourth week.

Could you please give an example?

eg Week 1 = 40m int limit, Week 2 = 40m, Week 3 = 50m, Week 4 (deload) = 30m int limit


strength training:

wk 1: 3x4x75%
wk 2: 3x4x80
wk 3: 3x4x85
wk 4: 2x4x75

Thanks for that.

I would rep you but it says I need to spread some reputation around first.

where are you with ur training, i remember u were suppose to do the 8-12wk gpp ls program?

I’m just starting week 3 of GPP. My volume was pretty low for the first couple of weeks, but it’s been going quite well so far.

I will probably start a journal here once I start SPP.

u should start one now and update us on the past 2 weeks.

Ok cool.

I will start one when I get home from work tonight.

In terms of the weights I know Dave Lease removed all the supplementary lifts from the second session in his week. I also believe it was the volume of the speed work that got reduced. He was very big into grouping things in 4s. 4 day and 4 week cycles. So the 4th day would be rest (how much of that was implemented in practice I’m not sure, due to the week being seven days). But he used an unload week every fourth week, and with good success in 1998 at least!

I’m not quite sure I understand what you mean about the 4th day. So you would train 3 days in a row and then a complete rest day on the 4th day?

Does Lease use a High/Low setup, or something different?

That’s correct, he would rest on the 4th day, or he at least stated that as an ideal scenario, but like I say, the practical issues meant it didn’t really materialise I think. Dave tended to use a high, high, low, off set up, or that’s how the four days were planned. It would follow the rough format of speed, strength (lifting), endurance (intensive tempo/special endurance), rest.

Thanks for clarifying

That’s high, high, high, off.

Anything that allows the body to recover and supercompensate will do. I personally reduce intensity by 5% and then drop volume by about 1/5. Works well. You could also reduce density or increase recovery measures or really any combination of the above. The one important thing is not to stop training or you will be in trouble when you restart.