T Nation

Endurance Training - Minimizing Strength Loss & Injuries


Hi CT and All,

My regiment's current training program consists mostly of strength training & crossfit-style xtraining. Members of our group are training for the military ironman coming up in a few months (consisting of 32 km ruck sack march w/ 40 lbs in combat gear, 4km portage, 8km canoe, and a 6 km ruck sack run). The ironman is elective but is extremely competitive within the Canadian Forces and most train extremely hard for it despite it being prone to causing injuries.

My concern is the detrimental effect it may have on our group's usual training (namely on strength, power, speed etc. that make us operational-ready). There are also a great deal of overuse injuries associated with this training.

Would eccentric-less training (using sleds, treadmill pushing etc) be an effective means of maintaining strength while not significantly adding to the overtraining associated with endurance training of this kind?

Would circuit training focusing on strength rather than strength-endurance (as with xfit stuff) be a good idea between endurance training sessions?

Thanks all,



I think you are on the right track. I like the complexes he has put in the livespill. I would just keep everything well short of failure, and be real careful with the heavy pulls (deadlifts and cleans, etc.) because those always seem to be at the most risk with me when I am rucking a lot. How much of your endurance training is mandated? I ask because I definitely think you would get a work capacity boost out of the complexes, so you could kill a little of two birds with one stone.


Thanks, nothing is mandated per se. Everyone does there own thing (usually crossfit once or twice daily) and will do a long ruck on fridays. Just looking for a way to keep strength training in (considering everyone is just doing crossfit) but without adding too much training volume as most will be getting alot from workouts and training.




I got you. Dan John had an article on here about mass where he basically had two days of strength training per week based on Wendler's 5/3/1. You don't necessarily have to follow that, but I would think just picking a strength lift or two from the major planes and ramping up before your capacity session would work. That way you keep the volume low, you are getting the volume with your other training anyway, and you have a gauge for where you are hurting (i.e. if there is a trend with your max weights going up or down). Just me, but I would probably worry less about my lower body lifts suffering than upper body with the other things you are doing - to me lower body going down indicates localized fatigue, but upper body may indicate a real systemic lack of recovery. I'm not a trainer like a lot of the folks on here, so I'm just talking from my experience with myself and the guys around me. Good luck with your competition.