17 May Keeping Stats and Crunching the Numbers
by Dr. Matt Fontaine What should you track and why? Triathletes love to track stats, like WATTS to measure power output on the bike, Heart Rate (HR), what HR zone you are training at ( zone 1- zone 5), LT, VO2Max. These stats could rival those kept in a high level collegiate human physiology and sports medicine rehabilitation research project funded by the NIH. We will discuss what is important and why. Tracking sleep I think is by far the most important. You can’t measure what you don’t track. By tracking sleep, you can stay on top of overtraining. Inadequate sleep predisposes overtraining, and injury. The downfall to tracking sleep is that after a poor night sleep, knowing you didn’t get enough sleep and still having to go through the anguish of tracking that number down on an excel sheet. I attached a snapshot of a monthly log for training and regeneration the month prior to race month, July 2012. You can see I track nightly sleep, including naps. Nas are a great way to get in much needed extra sleep for recovery. You can also see yellow highlights nights where I got less than a full 8 hrs. Not a good thing when you are training at high volume. Green bar highlights days I got treated with ART and manipulation. I recommend weekly during peak training months. You will also note that mobility is noted almost every day. MOBILITY NEEDS TO BE A DAILY THING. PERIOD! You will also note that a few days on the sheet say “OFF” even though there is a workout posted. Those are days I chose to rest because my body was beat down. I still track the workout so that I can keep track of what I missed. More importantly it allowed me to track if I was overtraining or not. The idea here is to track some stuff. You can’t measure what you don’t track. But again, keep it basic. Tracking too many metrics is daunting and takes the fun out of training.