T Nation

What Energy System to Work On


#1

Hi Guys, got a minor injury that is keeping me from training for the coming days/weeks.

So i decided to do some cardio, now i read about the 3 energy systems and i guess i want to work on my weakest point/one.

But i have no clue which one that would be, does anyone know of like a test to check this out and decide which energy system needs the most improving?


#2

It comes down to what you’re training for. A marathoner doesn’t need what a sprinter needs. Chances are your weak system will change as you work on one energy system more than another.

If your goals are general cardio fitness, mix it up. Sprint some days, run 300m-500m repetitions another day, then crank out some miles other days.


#3

As for tests, there are formulas and calculators you can use that allow you to plug in times from various distances and determine your relative weakness. But it is like telling a soccer player he isn’t that good at basketball.


#4

Do you have a link to those formulas and calculators and i dont really get your comparison of the soccer player, could you explain?


#5

Yeah, my comparison sucked. I’ll try again.

Anthony Ervin is a super fast sprinter. While I’m sure his swimming ability in the 1500 far surpasses 99% of the population, it is a relative weakness for him. If he focused on lowering his mile time, over time he would add seconds to his 50m and 100m times and might not win a gold medal in Rio.

The same thing applies to anyone. What do you hope to accomplish through your cardio training? Train around that.

If you are motivated by improving something you suck at, go run a 100m, a 400m, and a mile. Look at your splits to see how well you hold speed. If you fall apart at longer distances, you need more aerobic work. If you can hold the same pace for 100m that you can for 400m, or for 400m compared to 1600, you need more speed work.

Caveat: You have to factor in your power and technique, especially for the sprints.


#6

Ok makes sense thanks.