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Diary of a Spartan Warrior: Week 7

Harnessing the Power

In their seventh week of training, our team of Spartan warriors are getting ready to dive into a whole new workout. More specifically, one that is going to require a lot of power.

“The next phase of our training is going to be the most difficult,” says Sean Wells, a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist through the NSCA, and the fitness expert at BistroMD. “This phase is going to require high intensity, with a combination of strength and power training activities. Our team will also be incorporating a workout that promotes agility and endurance.”

To find out how you can power train the right way, here are some tips from our fitness expert about how to progress in your workout, while avoiding injury.

Jumping RopeHigh Weight, Lower Reps, Moderate Sets

If you are at the point of being able to progress to power training in your workout, there are a few key things to keep in mind.

“In order to promote strength, without straining your muscles, it’s important that you use higher weights, but do them in lower repetitions with more moderate sets,” says Sean. “This prevents injury, but also keeps your workout dynamic, which is essential for progression.”

In their seventh week, our Spartan warriors will do several power-training activities, including: squats, hang downs, jump rope, forward jumps, and high knees.

“Power training and strength training have actually been shown to prevent certain health conditions, and can make certain conditions more manageable,” says Sean. “This includes heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and osteoporosis.”

Performing a power training or strength training workout doesn’t mean you need bulging biceps. Whether you are 20 or 45, small or large build, there is always a plan that is suitable for you.

“Because of the intensity of power training and strength training, it’s always best to get an expert’s opinion first,” says Sean. “Once you have passed the health requirements, seek the help of a personal trainer or a fitness expert who can put the right routine together for you.”

Trail RunningCombine the Right Kind of Cardio

Cardio isn’t always just about running on a treadmill. There are actually different ways to do cardio in combination with power and strength-training activities.

“For our Spartan warriors, I have developed the second half of this plan to include interval cardio, trail run cardio, and pace cardio,” says Sean. “Not only will this help team members develop better endurance, but it is similar to the type of cardio they will be doing at the actual Spartan Race.”

Here is a breakdown of three types of cardio routines our Spartans will be doing:

Interval Cardio: Interval cardio involves alternating the same period of low intensity, with the same level of higher intensity. This is a standard level of interval cardio training. There is also sports conditioning cardio and pyramid cardio which simulate unpredictability and combine short and long bursts of speed.

Trail Running: This type of cardio often involves running on inclines. It usually begins with a brief warm-up period, then progresses into more intense running. Trail running is a great workout and increases endurance, as well as agility.

Pace Cardio: Pace cardio involves running moderate distances, at a moderate speed. This is usually combined effectively with strength-training activities, simply because it creates a balanced workout.

For more tips from our experts, please visit our healthy facts section for more information.

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