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11/09/2013

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Craig David Uffman

Thought I'd ask you something that may reflect a gross conceptual error on my part. I've been thinking about the build and peak periods and your specific prescriptions based on calendar weeks before the A race. Why is the number of calendar weeks the same even after one switches to the 9-day microcycle? For example, if, when I did a 7-day cycle, I did a 12-week build, why would I not now do a 12-microcycle build (108 days now rather than 84)? It seems in once case the focus is microcycles, and in other cases it is calendar weeks. But it occurs to me that perhaps if it took my 18 weeks before to train for a race, it should now take me 18 microcycles. Seems like it should take me longer to train for the same race. Can you explain?

Joe Friel

Craig David Uffman--Actually, the conventional Build period (as in my books) is 2 x 4 weeks (build 1 and build 2). 2, 28-day cycles. That's 56 days. What I'm proposing for senior athletes is 3, 23-day cycles. 69 days total. Once you subtract out the R&R micro cycles at the end of each build period, there is a difference of 8 days between them with seniors taking that many more days to prepare in this period. That is beneficial, I think, because it allows for a slower ramp rate and less density of training. That's beneficial in that it helps to prevent injuries while still arriving at a high level of fitness.

Craig David Uffman

Just to confirm: so you are saying that my interpretation is correct - that the entire buildup for us - from prep to race - will be longer. As in my example, if it once took me 18 7-day microcycles, I will now prepare over a longer duration for the same event (such as 18 9-day microcycles or more).

My question was triggered by wondering whether you felt that the build periods or particular workouts needed to be at least (or no more than) X weeks or X days before the race, regardless of the duration of my buildup. For example, many folks suggest that the last long run should be a specified number of days before the race, and Jack Daniels used to raise concern about the length of time one could sustain the high quality (race-specific) training.

Hence my question about your specifying 12-weeks. Is that a judgment about the maximum duration you feel a senior should spend in that phase?

Joe Friel

Craig David Uffman--Yes, I extended it not to fit in more hard workouts, but rather to fit in more recovery.

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