Sunday, September 21, 2014

9/22/14: 1802.9 miles to 1807.6 miles: Lunar Training Plan - Pigeon head

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This leg ends in Walla Walla, Washington.

Leaves and crab apples are starting to fall on the sidewalks. There were blossoms in the spring. The cycle of the year continues.

"I see you joined a fraternity."
"Birds of a feather flock together."
"You may need a wet wipe."

Each day I try to find a memorable picture. Some days are better than others. The statues are at the local University, and yes, that is a real pigeon on his head.

This picture is begging for a caption contest. Put your entries in the comments. Feel free to include the URL for your blog.

Lunar Training Plan

Circadian Rhythm
Our body has many rhythms. There is the daily rhythm of sleep and waking which people are familiar with. There is the weekly rhythm of work days and days off. 

Many people do not consider there are monthly and yearly rhythms that affect our training.

This post will address the 28 day rhythm of the body. If we tune ourselves to this rhythm we can maximize the training effect. 

The "New Moon" day is our day of minimum training. The "Full Moon" day is our day of maximum training.

One day out of seven is a rest day.

This cycle does not have to be aligned with the actual phases of the moon. We can tune our body to any 28 day cycle we like.

Plan Overview
The Lunar Training Cycle starts on day one with the minimum miles, peaks at the maximum miles on day 14 and returns to the minimum on day 28. Every seventh day is a day off.

Why it works
This plan takes advantage of the training effect of stress and recovery. 

The period above the average miles causes minor stress. 

The period below the average miles allows recovery.

How to get started
Buy a pedometer that automatically records distances on the computer. You can use a cheap pedometer and log the distance manually, but that's tiresome. I prefer a Fitbit Zip pedometer. You can by them in many sporting good stores.

All distances count whether on a planned walk or short steps during the day.

Training effect is based on steps, so don't worry about inaccuracies because of short steps.

If starting from scratch, gradually increase steps until getting 31.1 miles in a week. (This is where the training table in the next section begins.)

Training Table

I created a spreadsheet with a complete training plan for all people. You can access it here.

After you access the table, print the spreadsheet which is four pages long.

The highlighted row is the miles on the maximum effort training day.

If you prefer a chart, you can print the image at the end of this post. 

Look on the bottom of the spreadsheet for your seven day average miles. That column is the first cycle of your training plan.

Plan is initially a step backwards!
That's right. Initially the number of miles is reduced because every seventh day is a day off. 
The training table doesn't show this. 

On the rest day, do not take any walks. Try to minimize other steps.

These rest days help the cycle work, so do not skip them. 

Not an exact science
You may go slightly or over the recommended mileage on some days as you are calculating the distance with a pedometer. Try to get close. Exactness is not part of the program. Avoid taking extra walks when it is clear you will go over. Take an extra walk if it is clear you will be under.

The plan is too easy!
That's right. It is easy in order to prevent chronic injuries. Accelerate the plan at your own risk. If you do find a cycle too hard, repeat it or go back a cycle

When is the marathon?
Marathons are for runners. I have bigger plans. See you next post!

Does this work for runners?
The plan is slightly different for runners. I'll make a post for runners in a few days.

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