My favorite part of playing pro soccer was pre-season. Every year we took two weeks at the beginning of pre-season and boarded an airplane to go somewhere remote. When I say remote, I don’t mean an island somewhere that had beautiful hotels and peaceful sunsets. It was usually someplace in Arizona, Florida, or Mexico that was simple, warm, had a soccer field, a dorm or hotel, and food. We spent two weeks focusing only on training and recovery with no distractions. The days were filled with hard training sessions and deep recovery - hot and cold contrast therapy, sleep, and precision nutrition, and soft tissue and mobility work. When it was over, we came out feeling refreshed, fit, accomplished, and confident.
The programming we followed was specific. It was part of what is called periodization, which is a long-term schematic that helps us manage stress and intensity with recovery and regeneration. During these two weeks, we did something called overreaching. We would push to the limit for a short time, 2-4 days, and let the body recover. Then push higher for 2-4 days, and recover again. Slowly building to a peak of intensity by the end of the 2 weeks.
I am a firm believer that everyone should have a period of the year in which we overreach for a short amount of time. It resets the body, builds a strong sense of team and community when we are going through this together, and provides a specific time in which the expectations are set for us to succeed in pushing to the limits of what we thought was capable.
Typically this overreaching period is done for no more than 2 weeks and only happens a few times during the yearlong training cycle. The demand is specific to what the body can handle and a careful emphasis on how often and how hard we train along with specific times that are spent on recovery. Without these key changes in high intensity and recovery we enter what is called over training. Over training is the place that is often known as a plateau. It’s the place that doesn’t allow us to see improvements in performance or body composition because the body is taxed too much too often.
During my years playing soccer, I remember the distinct difference between how we ran training sessions on a weekly basis during our normal training season compared to our pre-season. There was room for growth and improvement in both, but a strong difference in how much intensity and how close that intensity was day after day in pre-season.
Your Fly Feet team is super excited to do our own version of Spring Training. Just like my soccer years, we’ve created a 14 day schematic that we’ll follow together. Don’t think about this like it’s going to be so much harder than a typically Fly Feet workout. Rather, think about it like it’s more structure, more specific and will push you in a different way to improve your performance and a strategy to accelerate your gains. If you want to do this with us, commit to 14 consecutive days at Fly Feet. We’ll over reach and recover together. The workouts will be specific. Train like the pros. Learn more at our kickoff on Saturday, March 11th at 10:00 a.m.