Training Volume

One of the more common bits of training advice you’ll read on the internet is to reduce your volume training. Philosophies like CrossFit Endurance and HIT (training to failure in the weight room) are largely based on the concept that volume can be replaced by intensity if intensity is sufficiently high. While this works for a short while, the benefits are rarely long lasting and often detrimental. In many cases, coaches and athletes that move to very low volume training plans mistakenly assume that their freshness and acutely improved results in training (the weight room, sprint times, etc) are proof of the effectiveness of low volume training plans. Inevitably though, those benefits wear off and the athlete begins to lose fitness. You see, when moderate to high volume training is followed by low volume training, you’re effectively creating a tapering scenario where fatigue is reduced and performance improves. But as fitness-fatigue models show us, if such training continues for too long, fitness will begin to drop and you performance will follow. Even the best tapers can’t be sustained forever. Don’t be fooled by quick fixes. Training is a long term process that involves intelligent manipulation of multiple training variables (volume, intensity, frequency, mode, density, exercise selection, etc) to maximize the effectiveness.