T Nation

How to Position Cardio and Leg Workouts


#1

Hello
For about a month now I have been gradually getting back into doing cardio after a layoff of about 2 years.
The weekly schedule consists of 2 times a week running 10 km (~6 miles) which takes me about 50 minutes (still in decent running shape for some reason, used to be much better before the layoff). Additionally to this I try to squeeze in a session of biking once a week (usually in the morning of one of the running sessions) of about 25 km (~15.5 miles) for an hour or so.

Besides the cardio training, I have my weight training (currently training using the "Badass" program of Defranco).
So my training week looks like this:

Sun - Upper Max Effort
Mon - Morning Biking/Evening Running
Tue - Lower
Wed - Off
Thu - Evening running/Upper Dyn/Rep Training (Usually get too exhausted after running and skip weight training here in favor of Friday)
Fri - Additional Weight training day or if too tired on Thu will train Upper Dyn/Rep
Sat - Off

The problem with the current schedule is that my legs get pretty sore after the biking and/or running which makes it extremely hard to train legs. Sometimes I will train legs and then I will be too sore to run on Thursday.

How can I improve it, how to position leg training correctly in relation to cardio? I assume that the DOMs from running will go away in a month or two once I get more accustomed to it, also the legs are pretty exhausted the next day after running anyway.

What do you guys suggest, how should I arrange it better?
Thanks in advance.


#2

Um... move it to Wednesday?

EDIT: My advice sounded dickish.

This is really all about priorities. If your main goal is to get stronger, you are going to have to separate your leg training a little more from running, ie. move it to Wednesday, to allow for proper recovery.

Your going to have accept that your legs will be "tired" for your run on Thursday but you should be able to flush that out within the first mile or so methinks.


#3

What's your goal?

The advice would be different depending on whether you want to gain muscle, strength, or endurance.

For example, if your goal was gaining muscle mass, then I'd say your spacing isn't problematic but the 50 minutes of cardio is excessive.

Determine what your goal is, then better understanding of your dilemma can occur...


#4

I want to burn fat and improve indurance


#5

That's not a goal, its a goal idea.

"I want to be able to run a 10k in 42 minutes by October 1st" is a goal

Or "I want to get my bodyfat down to 10% over the next three months" is a goal.


#6

that first one is a pretty good goal lol. That would not be too easy

.greg.


#7

prolly more info than you want, but PHA training is a method to use strength training as a base for your "cardio" (by definition what isn't cardio?)

this is an overview of the PHA method we use with general clients through advanced athletes

PHA (Peripheral Heart Action) Training Concept

Peripheral Heart Action, better known as PHA is a â??systemâ?? that we use to construct training templates for the majority of our clientele, it was developed by Dr. Arthur Steinhaus and brought to the forefront of the fitness world by 1960â??s legendary body builder and Mr. America/Mr. Universe title holder, Bob Gajda. The PHA method was specifically designed to keep the blood circulating throughout the body during an entire workout. PHA sounds curiously similar to circuit training or even GPP (General Physical Preparedness) but differs in that PHAâ??s emphasis is not in bringing a localized pump to single muscle group. The basic approach requires choosing exercises that will demand blood to pump to extreme ends of the body. This is specifically so blood doesnâ??t localize and develop a lactic acid build up. This is where PHA differs in comparison to most traditional training methods.

The typical DIVISION ONE PHA workout requires an individual to use a handful of exercises that stress the lower, upper, then centralized musculature - with the intention of moving seamlessly between exercises.

â??Waveâ?? â?? A PHA Wave is the term used to describe the three exercise combination types that conform to the following format

1 -A â??Pushâ?? effort from the lower body, ex. Leg Press
2 â?? A â??Pullâ?? from the upper body, ex. Up-right Row
3 â?? A â??Centralizingâ?? movement, ex. Reverse Crunch

â??Cycleâ?? â?? A PHA Cycle is the continuum of exercises used prior to a rest period. It is important to note that one complete wave may or may not be a complete cycle. To put this in different terms, â??A PHA Cycle must be comprised of at least one complete Waveâ??

A PHA Cycle may contain more than one complete Wave and may end at any point a Wave. Example below of 1 PHA Cycle with an â??Incompleteâ?? Wave

1 â?? Box Jumps (Push)
2 â?? Pull-ups (Pull)
3 â?? Incline sit-ups (Centralize)
4 â?? Squats (Push)
5 â?? Dumbell Rows (Pull)

A â??typicalâ?? DIVISION ONE PHA workout would use three to six Cycles of â??Wave Continuumsâ?? with an appropriate change in demand used for each completed Cycle.

The applications of PHA are endless. Variations with jumping, medicine balls, kettlebells, sprinting (running, biking, climbing) and body weight applications are a fun mixture that can facilitate great workouts that also enables one to train the entire body in a single workout while achieving cardiovascular and strength benefits in a relatively short period of time.
More on PHA training

Keep in mind the importance of developing both a general and specific energy system base is the aim of PHA training. PHA makes it possible for clients to train general, general-specific, and specific movements within an environment that is reflective of current energy system needs.

With appropriate PHA one can learn 1) multiple movements while 2) developing a general conditioning base.

The fatigue induced from PHA workouts, in this respect is systematic, or cumulative rather than localized.

Athletes and PHAâ?¦

Athletes can reap the benefits of PHA in a twofold manner. Firstly, movements of both a general and specific means may be used concurrently to create an atmosphere that is geared toward specific strengths and motor abilities as it relates to higher intensity (CNS stimulation) or general purposes (for recovery and/ or general strength development). Secondly, the merging of general and specific movements within a PHA workout of specified time, load, and speed parameters can mimic the energy system/ movement demands of a contest. I.E. A football athlete may engage in a series that will tax his explosive ability, strength-speed, and postural strength for a given amount of work/ time (in this case maximum exertion in the afore mentioned abilities could last about 4-8 seconds with a 25-45 sec. rest interval). In both cases a properly trained DIVISION ONE Specialist should have the ability to manipulate one or several variables in order to elicit the desired result.

In either case strict adherence to the safe movement principles of executing with proper technique will dictate: the degree of movement difficulty, external load, speed, range, and the termination of a cycle if the capability of optimal mechanics (and efficiency of above criteria) ceases. Essentially, it is the goal of both the trainer and athlete to push beyond current bounds and limitations during advanced PHA sessions. Many variables can be manipulated here to measure â??gainsâ?? depending on what ability needs to improve. I.E.-If work capacity improvements are a priority then amount of work in a given/ fixed amount of time should be tracked (training density). If strength development is lacking then the manipulation of intensity of load and volume is in order.