Overreaching in Power Training

Hey CT,

I have a short question out of pure interest.

For many years I had problems developing explosivness (26inch standing vert at a long limbed 2,3xBW squat) even when I stopped strength training and only did sprints & plyos.

In the last weeks I steadily improved like never before by simply doing shorter workouts (4x45-60min) instead of 3-4x90-120min) so it looks like I was overreaching for years without going into real overtraining, but also without adapting.
How can that happen with pure sprint & plyo phases? Even if the stress is high, shouldnt the body get used to it after a few months and start do adapt?

I wouldn’t say that it was overreaching. Probably more central nervous system under-recovery or a downregulation of the beta-adrenergic receptors.

Sprints and plyos are, with true effort work, the most neurologically demanding method. You might not feel fatigued from them, but it doesn’t take much to cause central fatigue.

I’ve trained with sprinters and worked with elite sprint coaches. You would not believe how low volume the workouts are. I’m taking like 4-6 sprints in a workout with only 2-3 being above 90% effort. Not only that, rest intervals were amazingly long… I’m talking sometimes up to 10 minutes!!!

True plyo is the same way. A volume of around 20-25 ground contacts per session is normally recommended.


Yes their rest time are crazy! Michel Pradet here with the French athletics team uses the 1 min rest per 10 meters sprint…

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Me: Looks at 4-6 sprints and 20-25 ground contacts
Also me: Did around 30-40x 20-40 yard sprints at each sprint session and around 50-150 dunk attempts per jump session lol. Each one all-out with heavy music and face slapping of course hahaha. Crazy to think I still felt pretty awesome afterwards.

By now Im at around 6-8 sprints and like 50 plyo contacts. Seems like I can reduce that even more. Never thought that it exhausted the CNS that much. That explains why I didnt adapted to that shit. If I always performed at 90% because I was under-recovered or my output was downregulated, I gave my body no chance to get better.

@aldebaran I also used 1min for 10yard and 2min for 20-30 yard, but 5min for 50meter or 10min for 100 meter? I would be cold like ice after 7mins…

Are you Neurotype 1B? I think only 1B can do sprinters and plyo at such high volume

Apparently they can use up to 20 mins rest. Sprinting is a dichotomy where you need to have your CNS recovered but at the same time amped up. Usually, before a sprint, the athletes are excited almost to a frenzy, hence why the time between the order of setting up and the start is required to be short.

Long rest periods are not uncommon for things very neurally taxing. Like heavy deads, I’ve already waited 8 minutes or something

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Im a type 1b, but still couldnt adapt to it. I was able to sustain it yeah, but I wasnt adapting to it. I had times where I had a much higher workload per week and I felt fine, because my immune and neurological systems are very good, but my hormonal system wasnt feeling that great al all hahaha

@aldebaran That explains why they’re always jumping in front of their blocks before the start. Thanks for your explanation!

pretty much nobody could progress on that regimen