I play soccer. I was with a pro club in the 2nd half of 2011 and then asked to be released at the end of 2011. I have trials with teams starting this week.
With regards to my training, the club I was with had an inexcusable and surprising lack of focus on the physical preparation side of the game. Because of this I resorted to doing physical training on my own and as a result I was not only the fittest player on my team (by far) but the fastest as well.
Throughout the fall, I structured my training as follows:
Mon, Wed, Sat AM: sprints 4x3x15 meters, 3x2x30 meters all up a mid-level grass incline (I took 1.5 min rest between sprints, 4 mins between sets)
Tues, Fri, Sun: AM: ball work
We had games on sunday (occasionally cup games mid week). I only did the Saturday workouts if I wasn’t playing Sunday. Bear in mind I had practice every weekday and so I felt no need to do extra tempo (I was fit and the practices were not high intensity but they served to keep me fit).
The past few weeks after being released I have done sprints in the MWF am and weight in the MWF pm. Tues/Thurs/Sat have been tempo days and Sundays I rest.
for tempo I do distances up to 200 meters on one day for about 1500 m, up to 400m for 1500 m on day 2 and the third day I do on a bike because I have often suffered shin splints and I find a non-impact day really helps. Additionally I do ball work for a couple hours every day although I have never found this extra stuff to affect my physical training.
Lastly: i haven’t been timed accurately in ages so I don’t really know where I am. I am pretty sure I am sub 4 in the 30m because the fastest person on the team I was with got a 4.03 electronic 30m and I beat him every time we raced. I have a standing vertical of 90cm. My best back squat is 115 kg for 3 (I know i am really weak). My bench is 85 kg for 5.
Im curious if you have ever tried any of the explosive med ball throws? Or hurdle walkovers?
When we did 10 meter runs they were done with a walk back and go.( meaning walk back to the 10 meter line and go with no additional rest)
20 meters I’d touch the wall ( which was a walk back plus an additional 10 to the wall and back to the line = i guess an 20 m as well as the walk back which would be 40 meters total
30 meters would depend on the time of year but as I got faster the rest became more regulated with more time.
4 minutes between sets is pretty good again depending on the time of the season ( closeness to comp/ faster runs so more rest) and speed.
not sure of your volumes but you likely have a back ground with this amount? This is where having some one watch the technical quality to see how or if and when your performance degrades or you are showing too much effort to continue. ( remember quality first or stop)
Shin splints / have you tried active rest with an ems unit? or trouble shooting by frequently replacing your training flats? How tight are your glutes and or calves? Or maybe as a soccer player the straight volume in addition to your ball time is just too much ? If you like the pool you can get so much done volume wise with tempo. Many people hate pool however and it’s more time consuming and hard to find a pool. I am sure you do this already but regulate the time you spend in cleats and make sure you are replacing training flats often to keep the protection at the highest possible. WE used to replace our flats ever 2 months and that was with massage every day and lots of water therapy. ( yes I know that is ideal also I recently learned that a a coach I know well is ice bathing the athletes legs for 10 minutes at a time for each of his sprinters and athletes post speed work… and having excellent results) The thing is shin splints mean lots of residual underlying calf issues so address this asap in all ways.
For my tempo workouts I am trying to work up to the 12000 suggested in the CF for soccer thread. In my case I am shooting for 6000-8000 spread over 2 days and a 3rd day on the bike.
Yes I have extremely tight calves. I have a ton of very sensitive spots on the outsides of my lower leg (both legs) and I find that self massage of these spots with a lacrosse ball following workouts is very helpful.
And yes as an athlete I tend to err on the side of doing too much. I know it is better to do too little than too much but it is often so hard to resist.
Unfortunately, I don’t have an ems unit. In a couple weeks I should have access to a pool so I can do tempo stuff there too.
I have thought about replacing a sprinting day with med ball throws as I understand both are high intensity, it would also serve to reduce the impact stress on my legs.
at my last club I got massage after trainings but unfortunately I don’t have that option any more so it is self massage at least for the immediate future.
I also meant to add the hamstrings… I was always taught that if one place is tight then the other place absorbs more work etc… Charlie always used to say it was a bit of a chain reaction. I see this with my son who has incredible strength and muscle density but I can’t always control what work is getting done in what area of the body. THis is why complete recovery by routine massage and or water therapy / epson salts etc was encouraged. Takes the guessing out of where the work might end up with the individual. Do you ask the athlete? Do you rely on the program? Or do you treat the entire body and let your body re calibrate or reset or balance itself? Shin splints are preventable and an injury that is over use. When the calves are tight the foot stops moving properly. Or the foot is tight and the calves take more work. If the glutes are tight as load might not be progressive enough or maybe there is a growth spurt depending on age etc… then the hams end up over working too and or calves. Tightness grows and spreads. Athletes can not afford to get behind on the recovery but signs like shin splints are rarely good. Trouble shooting is essential and I was taught this by Charlie who had this reinforced by many therapist but primarily Mike Forgraves who specializes on feet issues/ orthodics and has done most every person we have dealt with over the past 20+ years. Mike has been helping me with my feet since I was 13 years old. He was one of Canada’s top hurdlers and so was his wife Sylvia Forgraves. ( I used to run against her as well).
I hope this answers your question.
You can start doing ice baths on those calves after any session if you can afford the time to do this.Even better do the entire legs. Speed days you could do contrast baths as well. I would also look into a travel roller and you can use this everywhere. ( google it)
You need to start getting after that calf issue and I would bet your hams are also tight etc as I was just responding to Pakewi. If you want to keep playing soccer start resisting more work and you will notice the results. Massage is great but you can do a lot of things to work around this for now. I think you might not need to replace an entire day of sprinting with the explosive med ball drils but you could emphasize on alternating days and see what brings the best result. First you do the warm up, not sure if you do power speed, then your explosive med ball stuff and you can end with some sprints to keep the feel. The next speed day straight speed / no explosive med ball/ next speed session after that again repeat what you did speed session before last. Another way to do this might be each speed day you do both but graduate the emphasis of one or the other over time depending how you are doing things. I would not go too far away from the speed at any one time so much. You should be able to feel how the speed is coming as a result of the med ball drills. You must watch the volumes of your speed. Repeat only what feels great. If you have any question likely you needed to stop one or two reps before. Next time you will know how to adjust the volume.
You have an extra month now? If so that’s a good thing I think.
What do you mean " without the extra stressor" ?
Likely you are extremely capable which is an excellent thing but maybe you need to be a bit more progressive with your explosive throws and build into the design of your training a more reasonable progression now that you did this today and had to back off.
I would start with one set of forward explosive throws 4x ( what weight are you using for your med ball?)
followed by 4x backward throws
then I would take a break / shake your legs / stretch
do one more set of each
another break as per above
then I would try single hop throw 3x
This is what I would start with the next time you do this workout
sets of 10 for anyone imo is extremely high
Likely you will feel a bit wanting for more after my suggestion ( if you take the advice which you are not obligated to do) but I have never seen someone do that amount you suggested / not saying it can not be done but if you could feel quality deteriorating I bet it was visible well before that.
If you keep your speed days volumes this low - or even lower,depending of what allows consistently smooth progression for you- and gradually increase your tempo volumes to a total of 12.000m weekly (over time and possibly not yet during this offseason of yours),as Charlie maintained for soccer (and I always found perfectly fits the need of most players when done and managed correctly) you’ll be more than ready for your soccer level.
I don’t think you are likely to be weak. What are your volumes and progressions of your lifts? Do you have a proper lifting routine or do you just go into the gym and do random stuff ?
Btw, those times for your tempo are very good. Mid 15s and anything under 40 is excellent for 200’s and this is usually always how we did 200’s ( turn around I mean) Rarely did them anywhere continious except on a very rare occassion on a track to see how fast we were going. So important to do tempo on grass and when do most have a 200 meter grass track at their fingertips. ( unless we are from the great land of OZ. yes I mean Australia. What an amazing place that is to train! OMG.)
yeah I’m jealous of Kitkat1 and those lucky guys (except when they’re doing those 300s up the hill )
Thanks, I was really happy with the tempo. It felt really easy and I felt like i could have kept going for ages.
with lifting I try to do the following template
Monday and Friday: I do squats and bench up to a tough 5 reps (about 5 sets of each total including warm-ups)
Wednesday: do squats and bench at 60% of max for sets of 3 trying to be explosive (I do about 6 sets of these 3 reps)
I do cleans every day and RDLs if I want to add in more volume. My volume of lifting however is not that high and I’m usually only lifting for about 30-45 min. For lifting I don’t do any sort of periodisation. I always do it in the afternoon after my speed/explosive stuff in the morning and if I am feeling particularly run down I cut things short.
by weak I mean that of my friends with similar speed and explosive characteristics, I am by far the weakest in terms of squatting strength.
To summerize you are trying to keeping a higher intensity lifting session for squats and bench on M and F = 5 sets of 5?
Wednesday you routinely do 60 percent of max? 6 sets of 3 ( with explosive power?)
You do cleans every day you train? 7 days a week? 5? how many days would you be doing cleans exactly?
Pakewi will likely have some imput to this area as he has extensively worked with several very high level soccer teams in Europe.
I might like to see you put your speed ( 2 or 3x a week) and explosive med ball and weights on the same days
And tempo based work on the other days ( 2 or 3x a week).