T Nation

College Football Training


#1

I am a college track athelete, most of my friends are college football players(it just wasn't for me), anyway every year at around this time they go through a "metabolic lifting phase". They do 8 weightroom workouts over a 12 day period. (Mon-Lift, Tues-Lift, wed-off, Thurs-Lift, Fri-Lift). On monday and thursday of the two weeks, the guys lift BEYOND FAILURE ON EVERY SET OF THE WORKOUT. Once they hit failure their spotter will essentially move the weight for them. The result is guys puking all over the place (they actually set up buckets in the weightroom) and then continuing to lift after throwing up.
as far as I have read puking is one of the worst things that an athelete can do during a training session

-Puking is one of the most catabolic things you can do to your body. If your goals are increased muscular strength and/or muscular hypertrophy, you should do everything possible not to puke during your training!- (Joe Defranco)

So what exactly is the purpose of this "Metabolic Phase" that the coaches at my school swear by. Does it serve some purpose in increasing endurance or something or is it just one of those old school football training ideas i.e. "water during practice makes you weak", etc. that really has no place in a modern training program?

I'd love to hear your opinions on this as well as any articles you guys might have that could further explain what these guys are up to. Thanks.


#2

Well, there's nothing wrong with some hard-ass lifting, especially if these guys only do that once a year. Maybe it's not the best idea, but the season's been over for awhile, spring ball's probably ending. Maybe they use this as a (somewhat extreme) way to overreach for the next phase of their training. After the 12 days do they do something else or do they repeat this? I imagine that you've got a strength coach there, right? Ask him (or the football coach) why they do this. Don't start attacking his method to his face if you want a straight answer though, just ask why he asks these guys to push themselves so hard at this time.
Also, about puking. I think that there are plenty of elite athletes who've puked numerous times because tehy push themselves hard. I'd say that it's alright every once in awhile, but you shouldn't be puking too often either.


#3

I could only imagine this being effective in the very beginning of the off-season and then with a proper recovery period afterwards.

I know Jay Schroeder deliberately holds some of his most advanced athletes in an over-trained state for as long as a couple of months in order to reap a massive supercompensation effect. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and say that maybe it's something like that?

I don't really know what "metabolic" has to do with anything though.


#4

both interesting responses.

spring practice for these guys actually starts about a week after this period ends.

also once the "metabolic" period ends the guys resume their regular four day a week lifting schedule.

any idea how these two factors fit in to the equation?

I probably will ask the strength coach/O. Coordinator about this method but I'd also love to hear more from T-Nation members


#5

Looks like a form of toughness training. Mainly intended to see what everyone is made out of. I'm sure there is very little scientific rationale