I’ve added some serious free-weights to my training this winter, and I have a question about how best to track my overall progress.
Obviously being able to lift more weight is a data point, and the overall volume of weight lifted per session is another, but I’m wondering if there’s a way to quantify the positive fitness benefits since aerobic fitness only measures Power/HR data.
In weight training, I’ve always considered recovery time as a metric. When I’ve been on a particular schedule for a certain amount of time - all else being equal - how quickly am I recovering, how much muscle fatigue/pain (lactic acid buildup) am I accumulating compared to previously?
Subjective, but I’ve found recovery an informative data point.
That makes sense–it’s sort of an RPE metric. I use a Garmin watch with rest time built into the sets, so I can sort of monitor how my body is reacting (i.e. am I ready to go after 2 min instead of 3 min).
I meant day-to-day, but that’s an interesting twist as well!
Very RPE, but I can also quantify daily recovery by monitoring resting HR and HR variability over time.
HI @Michael_Robertson ! As an endurance athlete it seems that there are many more metrics to evaluate your performance… for weight training, what was your goal when you started? Strength, strength-endurance, power on the bike…?
I’ve gotten into gravel racing and found that I’m struggling with cramps towards the end of events. I have a solid hydration regimen, so my theory is that I don’t have enough muscle fibers developed to tolerate the load over longer distances (>50 miles).
Overall strength upper and lower body
Increased power @ ftp
I’m following a plan from Ed Burke’s book “Off Season Training for Cyclists” which is somewhat dated but the periodized weight training program fits with my goals.
@Michael_Robertson Awesome! Since your goals are focused on strength- then a simple metric would simply be the amount of weight you are able to life for a specified amount of reps.
As for cramps… do you follow a stretching program for your low back, hamstring, and calf muscles?
Thanks Jinger–Yes, I’m a consistent Abi Carver yoga devotee, and I follow almost 100% of my workouts with her “Hips & Hamstrings” routine which has helped quite a bit. At 52 yo I’m not as limber as I used to be, but I recognize how important stretching is for injury prevention and better performance. I’m trying to also increase core strength/stability both through her yoga workouts and through more traditional ab routines (my lower back does get sore on long, hard efforts).
Appreciate your feedback!
Interestingly, the cramps are often in my quads, which is in part what leads me to believe is a muscle mass/muscular endurance issue and not hydration/stretching.
Interesting! Where specifically in the quad? Or is it more global?
Typically the outer quad, and almost always on hills, but it’s been more generalized in certain events. Sometimes I can focus on using my glutes and hamstrings to prevent locking up completely…
OK- makes send that it is on hills… vastus lateralis is the primary knee extensor for everything up… hills and stairs.