12 January 2011

Genetics Influence

January 13
Here's an article that discusses a topic a lot of us don't want to know about -
The influence of genetics on training response.

The harsh reality of individual response to training is that we all respond differently.
The upside of that is that we can rely on most of the population (the competition) to stick to standard training protocols whether they are optimal for their own personal profile or not. Most people are too conventional or too stubborn to think outside the square and apply non-conventional training techniques.

Though the study sited here uses strength training to test the hypothesis we know from the experience with our own peer group that some people seem to improve dis-proportionate to their workload.
I'd like to take this a step further and suggest that even an individual's response to swim, bike or run training will vary quite a bit - they may improve in one area fairly easily and not in another.
I've worked with plenty of athletes who've had that experience and they've tested me as a coach! For example some people respond best in their swim training when given quite a bit of anaerobic work and high-powered efforts yet respond best to run training that is over 95% easy.

If you've been at this sport for a few years and have been on a plateau for more than 2 seasons in one area or another then it pays to consider trying something different. I'm certainly not an advocate of jumping from one of the latest fads in training to another, but a long-term plateau can kill the spirit of any athlete so necessitates a change of approach.

This sport presents a million challenges in every direction. That's what makes it worth doing. Keep at it.
Cheers, Scott