The Puzzle of Performance: How Periodization Can Help You Succeed

The Puzzle of Performance: How Periodization Can Help You Succeed

Planning your Season Ahead: Periodization 🧩

The Puzzle of Performance: How Periodization Can Help You Succeed

Periodization is a systematic approach to organizing training into specific phases. Think of periodization like a big puzzle. Just like a puzzle has different pieces that come together to form the whole picture, periodization is a way of breaking down your training into smaller, manageable pieces. Each piece of the puzzle, or "phase" in periodization terms, has a specific goal and purpose. When you put all the phases together, you get a complete training plan that helps you reach your ultimate goal.

Let's take the example of training for a Gran Fondo or endurance distance cycling event as our goal event.

The puzzle pieces, or phases, could look something like this:

  •  Periodization Phase 1: Get the basics in place (10-12weeks)

    •  Focus on getting your body used to the idea of cycling regularly

    •  Start with short rides and gradually increase distance and time

  •  Periodization Phase 2: Building endurance (8-10 weeks)

    •  Start adding distance to your weekly rides

    •  Include some intervals on climbs or flat roads.

    •  Attempt back to back long rides by nailing nutrition

  •  Periodization Phase 3: Get race-ready (1-2 weeks)

    •  Start doing longer rides that are similar to your target event(s)

    •  Do some 1min, 5min, 20min efforts to get ready for race day

  •  Periodization Phase 4: Taper (1 week)

    •  Gradually decrease your mileage to give your body a rest before the big day

    •  Focus on stretching, foam rolling, and other recovery techniques to stay fresh

This is a simplified illustration of what periodization might involve. Your coach will take a closer look at each day and week of each phase, while taking into account your thoughts and input.

By breaking down your training into smaller pieces, or phases, you're giving your body time to adjust and adapt to the increasing demands of your training. This helps you avoid injury, stay motivated, and reach your goal of finishing and PR'ing your goal event.

Periodization is like a roadmap to reaching your peak performance, and with a well-planned and flexible approach, you'll be on your way to crushing your goals in no time! So, gear up and get ready for a thrilling journey towards the finish line. Happy training!