Before I get started, I should mention that I'm fairly uninformed when it comes to conditioning. I grew up a performance athlete and had my training methods laid out for me without having to think twice about them. That was all over ten years ago; since then I've focussed more and more on strength. At the moment I'm training for powerlifting and hope to compete for the first time within the next year.
However, I notice that at my age my recovery is beginning to go downhill. I train four times per week and tend to keep my workouts fairly intense and brief with short rest intervals. Apart from that, I have a fairly active daily lifestyle (i.e., walk everywhere, live in 5th story without an elevator). Still, I don't recover as fast as I'd like following/during intense workouts.
I'd therefore like to begin throwing in some dedicated conditioning/GPP/work capacity/whatever workouts during my off days. Despite browsing through countless articles here, however, I have no idea where to start considering my goals. The issue of timing is especially puzzling. I'd like to do some stair sprints (sadly no hills in my region!) once or twice a week, gradually upping the volume. When should I perform these? After my deadlift/squat training and before my press days?
Also, what do you make of GPP "finishers"? I love farmer's walks and other loaded carries, but worry that this would be detrimental to my general recovery if I were to throw them in at a higher volume at the tail end of a regular workout.
There also seems to be conflicting opinions as to the timing of such sessions. Some seem to want to restrict conditioning for strength athletes to speed intervals at no more than 15" on/30"-1' off for no more than 20-30 minutes in total. Others see circuits and complexes with much longer intervals as appropriate. Seeing as I'm training for strength, what would be the better course of action?
Thanks in advance for your help!