Monday, January 1, 2024

DN Interval training overview and comments


DN training for advanced skiers (and those intermediate skiers preparing for an event or adventure!) over the next few months – we will have interval sessions each Tuesday night

General goal: build efficient & relaxed speed on skis in a long-term healthy way

For some, the goal might be a big ski trip to the mountains in March, for others it might be a specific event like the Finlandia or the Birkie.   A few principles to keep in mind throughout all your training:

1)     Maintain injury-prevention strength work year-round. We tend to assume that we DESERVE to be able to do all the physical things we want to do, but that’s not the case!   Our bodies were not built to be skiers, cyclists, rowers, etc., so a small amount of injury-prevention strength work once or twice a week needs to be maintained year-round – see our videos on the things that have helped members build injury prevention strength for skiing and other sports.

2)     Regular easy aerobic activity.   Hard endurance training day-after-day leads to a lot of negative stress that can turn into really unhealthy chronic stress.    To help build your body’s ability to handle a bit of harder training on other days, you should be aiming for 2 to 3 sessions every week of only light aerobic intensity – e.g. brisk walking or light skiing for an hour+.

3)     Enjoy the outdoors.  We are lucky to be able to be outside in the winter and enjoying the beauty of beautiful winter days!

Plan – this plan can be modified for specific goals and each person’s strengths and weaknesses – feel free to reach out to discuss in more detail.

Interval sessions should not be overly hard.    Goal is to maintain relaxed & efficient speed to the very last interval effort.   We want to ingrain good technique, rather than push too hard!!

Week 1 – interval session – 4 to 5 x 30 seconds pick-ups with 1 to 2 minutes easy skiing in between – good technique but at a faster speed; can add in a bit of terrain

Week 2 – 4 x 1 minute pick-ups with 2 minutes easy skiing in between; should not be breathing too hard at the end of each interval

Start adding in a longer and hillier ski each week – these skis can get longer or a bit more intense as you progress over the next several weeks.  E.g. 1 hour hilly ski … then 1 hour 30 minutes hillier ski … building to 2 hours plus of hillier faster skis on terrain closer to your goal

Week 3 – 4 x 2 minutes with 2 minutes easy skiing in between; should have great relaxed technique throughout; should be a bit faster than goal pace, but not too fast!

Week 4 – 4 x 3 minutes with 2 minutes easy skiing in between; if goal is to race really fast, then you can be breathing fairly hard at the end of these, but otherwise keeping technique relaxed and efficient

Week 5 – 4 x 5 minutes with 2 minutes easy skiing in between

Week 6 – 3 x 8 minutes with 3 minutes easy skiing in between

Week 7 – 3 x 8 minutes with 2 minutes easy skiing in between

Week 8 – 2 longer hillier skis

Week 9 – easier week of skiing before bigger goal skis / event

See below for one injury-prevention exercise Jessie Diggins does year-round - go to 5:50 into the video for the exercise