By Leandro Lutz
Visma Ski Classics Season X has been launched and now we know all the 12 events for the 2019/2020 winter. In all, athletes will race 604 km during the season and need to prepare for this great challenge!
Knowing this, what is the best approach for athletes during the training period to face the mythical Season X? More hours and longer distances or better quality in training?
Professional or amateur skiers already know before facing long-distance events that it is common to feel anxiety and hesitation. To overcome that feeling, everyone wants to give his or her best in each training session and build confidence for the challenges that lie ahead. However, in Nordic skiing, the good results depend on proper preparation, determination and discipline to follow a preordained training program.
When you train for long-distance races, you have to balance the quality and quantity of the exercises, with each person having a suitable volume and intensity. There are athletes who think that doing lots of hours will create a good result. Big mistake. Quantity is not linked to quality.
For those who are reflecting on possible changes in training, this time of the year is the opportunity to rethink the subject to avoid putting health at risk and optimizing their results next winter. The increase in the distance and weekly hours as well as the sudden shift in training habits are the main risk factors for injuries due to the difficulty of adapting to these fast changes.
The application of drill exercises, with emphasis on technique workouts, added to specific strength training are important tools for the performance optimization and makes the movement more efficient, through physiological and biomechanical changes.
A training program elaborated with these tools, with a good distribution of the distances and speeds during the week (quality), aims to replace training based on long distances (quantity) and, consequently, increase the race performance and reduce the risk of injuries.
Think about it and train smart!