Mid Season Training modifications

I’d like to get opinions from people with regards to GPP and SPP style sprint training during the competitive season of another sport, in this case Soccer specifically.

With 1 game per week alongside 2 practices, I’m wondering if there would be benefit in trying to incorporate a GPP style general fitness program to help round out the fitness gained from the existing soccer work?

I’m asking because for the first time since I stopped sprint training and switched to soccer after University, I’m feeling a dstinct loss in my ability to recover from short bursts of running. I used to be able to glide over the field and easily play a full game, but this year I’m having trouble making it to 90 minutes and literally for the first time in my life, running feels laboured, regardless of the speed.

It may have something to do with the ankle injury I picked up in March, that’s definitely still bugging me and hindering my ability to apply force, but everything just feels tight and “wrong” somehow. Much moreso than I’m used to.

Anyway, to make an already long story a little shorter, I’m 33, visibly fit but maybe not necessarily “track” fit and in the middle of a highly competitive soccer season.

My options are to see out the season as best I can, and then take up a more regimented training from base GPP to SPP over the winter in preparation for next outdoor, or, try and put together a program that could be done on some of the off days during the week so that I could see some immediate improvement. Magic bullets exist right? :stuck_out_tongue:

Anyway, I look forward to hearing from anyone interested in discussing this.

[QUOTE=Janic;247460]I’d like to get opinions from people with regards to GPP and SPP style sprint training during the competitive season of another sport, in this case Soccer specifically.

[b]Let’s look at what we know for sure first.

You have lost some base work it sounds like to me. You need to think about why but you have hinted to the solution which is good. ( A fall and winter rebuilding of GPP and SPP)

So what . Who cares. It happens. What matters is you recognize a need to deal with this and you are looking for a solution now and later as well. [/b]

With 1 game per week alongside 2 practices, I’m wondering if there would be benefit in trying to incorporate a GPP style general fitness program to help round out the fitness gained from the existing soccer work?

[b]Are you doing everything in your power to control the training variables that are at play? What are the training variables at play? Sounds to me like one game and two practices right? Anything else we need to know?

Another important question we often don’t get much information about on this site. What is going on outside of training? Eating, sleeping, going out , other work you are doing to finance the training ? Specifically, what are the life style habits diminishing what could be gained from the training?

How much are you playing each game? Is your play time consistent ? What position are you playing?

About your ankle injury. Four months ago you sprained your ankle and if you are still feeling it you must have had a serious sprain. Would you say you have aggressively attended to this injury? Or have you waited for time to pass and hoped for the best?[/b]

[b]Right now you can do something to make more of what situation you are in.

In order of importance and priority.

Sleep = Are you sleeping well and maxing out on your sleep? ( make sure you are hydrated, well fed with proper calories , institute shakes if need be and think about a supplement like ZMA).

Nutrition = how is yours? You need the major building blocks for recovery when physical demand is consistently tapping you out. You don’t need to be ultra scientific now but protein high, complex carbs , lots of veggies ,beans and greens work well. [u]

Water = lots of athletes think they drink enough water but juice, pop , coffee and tea do not count for water intake. If you are not trying to drink tons of water I bet you are not drinking enough and your system needs a ton of water to clean out your system of toxins.[u]

Actively regenerating =[/u] I was taught by a master in this area and what I know for sure is it gets overlooked constantly. This key aspect of training has NOTHING to do what work you are doing. It has everything to do with prepping the body to be “ ready” to get what ever there might be available from the training that is done. Please refer to the chart Boldwarrior spoke about showing the Supercompensation curve . Regenerating alters that curve.[/b]

I do not have any experience with heart rate monitors. Using them and experimenting with them makes perfect sense as it gives the athlete a visual piece of information to support things we already know for sure. T –Slow and Estee and a few others here have been doing interesting work and can expand on this section. T slow shared a great deal of data with me showing his research supports many ideas of working high one day and low the other and waiting for the body to be ready for more high intensity work.

Training =

[b]The trick is to add the right qualities of work without over doing it. You need to assess what exactly you are getting done in training?

Are you doing enough high quality speed work in the game and or in practice? My guess is that you are not. What do you think? [/b]

[b]Let’s go back to what we know for sure.

You will not be able to training after a soccer game right? It’s likely way too late.

But we could do somethings first thing the day of the soccer game. Again, not much and you have to experiment a bit but the idea is to get your metabolic rate up , do a few small explosive things and maybe a few short , fast runs. Is this possible? Have you ever tried this before? Done correctly you are preparing yourself to get more of what is going on in the game at a higher level of intensity.

Initially, because you are already fading ( by your own description) my suggestion for the next few weeks is a very slow and careful warm up that is not rushed what so ever. I would not spend more than 20 minutes. First I would jog or bike mundanely with no power and very low speed for about 10 minutes. Then I might do easy mobility arm swings and side skips mixed with a few small sets of push-ups and sit ups. If you can’t be outside than do your best to move your body to fully get a bit of sweat going but not tire yourself out. [/b]

[b]After trying this for a few weeks you might need to adjust a bit. You will know if you feel better or an improvement. There will likely be a bit of a fitness improvement .

The next adjustment in the morning you could make once you do a bit of a warm up could be easy power speed drills ( 3 to 4 sets of 10 meters bum kicks, A skip and running A’s)

see this link. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UuCMxAEjlmQa

After that I might do a few explosive medicane ball drills 4 to 6 forward squat throws with less than 10 meter run off / take 4 minutes and do 4 to 6 x backward throws / properly stretch after.

Make sure you do this kind of work first thing with enough of a gap before your game. I am assuming the game is later such as 7 pm or later.[/b]

Now we have a few solutions on how to address adding something to your soccer game day as well as doing something small at the furthest time period away before the game to “ get “ a higher intensity stimulus from what training might be had within the game itself.

If you are not training the next day, I would try to work towards doing tempo. The session would best be done 24 hours later but we know that will interfere with more soccer and prevent more chances you have to get another training session in of your own making. Therefore , you need to get up and do it first thing after breakfast and or a few hours upon waking.

Volume wise I would work towards 1 x big circuit but you will need to progress towards big circuit carefully. This is where the pool workout becomes invaluable as does the bike tempo.

How I would build in tempo might be to do some running mixed with bike and or pool as you need to allow your body to adapt over the next few months of “ more “ in general but running volume takes time specifically to prevent shin splints , calf tightness and all lower limb injuries . [/b]


The single biggest factor you need to understand is how you implement these ideas. As I draft this response I realize ( it’s friday night and I am going out and I need to go and get ready… just kidding… no I am not… I am actually going out plus I need to go and check on my teenager who pretends I don’t exist ) I am throwing a great deal of information at you.

Judgement call is everything and I find this variability of training is difficult to teach quickly.

Of all the things I have mentioned trouble shoot the life style patterns first , address this ankle issue more with icing or contrast baths and heat wrapping at night and then give us some feed back so others might advise and we can go from there.[/b]

Wow, that’s quite a bit of info Angela, thanks. I’ll read through it more completely and probably have some questions and comments, but thanks for taking the time to reply so quickly.

I was away all weekend and not able to post.
More than anything the idea I wanted to summarize was this.
There are many solutions for you to move ahead.
I have started a discussion and I am sure there will be more comments once you have a chance to think about these ideas.