Is too much cross-training a bad thing? | 80/20 Endurance

Is too much cross-training a bad thing?

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  • #9611
    benito1x
    Participant

    Is too much cross-training a bad thing?

    Running a 10k in January and have stuck to a plan that embraces the philosophy of 80/20. FTR, I’ve purchased the 80/20 plan and book and plan on using it for my next 10k attempt sometime in March — i discovered it after the fact.

    On the current 12 week program, the speed work per week will make up 17% of weekly mileage ~ i’m avg’ing 45 miles per week with 2 speed workouts.

    Enter cross-training…

    I run in the mornings but then ride the Peloton at night (Power Zone 2-3) ~ somewhere between 50-60 miles per week. These are all easy rides w/ the heart rate in Zone 2, mirroring that of my runs ~ 8:40-8:45 pace. And I haven’t been factoring my cross-training into my 10k training plan.

    Should I? Do you think I’m doing too much or does this have any adverse affect in relation to my upcoming 10k or future 10ks with the 80/20 plan? I try not to ride the day before a speed workout to avoid any fatigue in my legs.

    FWIW, i don’t feel like i’m stressing the body w/ zone 2-3 rides and i can comfortably fit them into my schedule.

    Any advice would be much appreciated.

    #9613
    David Warden
    Keymaster

    Benito,

    You should feel totally confident that your cross-training is only going to help your 10K: provided that your cycling is also following the 80/20 intensity ratios.

    More hours of training is always better for endurance athletes (at least until about 25 hours a week). Any cross-training is going to improve your aerobic fitness. Of course, running will always improve running best, but there are diminishing returns and cross-training is a great way to avoid injury and not get burned out.

    Just watch that 80/20 ratio in your cycling and you’ll be in a great position.

    David

    #9617
    benito1x
    Participant

    David i’m so impressed with your commitment and dedication to this forum. It really seems like you respond to everyone and the turnaround time is quick. Makes me feel so much better about the $ spent on the program and getting back on TP. Thank you!

    To clarify something you said above re “just watch the 80/20 ratio in your cycling” does this only apply to when/if i’m doing any intense riding?

    In other words, if all my rides are between HR Z1 and Z2 (easy), would there still be a need to recalibrate my 10k Running Plan for 80/20 — the plan is exclusively running with zero cross-training so the extra riding that i’m doing is just additional easy mileage.

    Hate to be neurotic here but just trying to understand it. Indulge me for just a sec, on a 40 mile week of total running, 8 miles would then be speed (20%). I read somewhere that 1 mile running equates to 3 miles of cycling. So if i’m doing 60 miles on the Pton per week, that’s equivalent to 20 miles of running. Would I then need to add those 20 miles to the 40 miles? If so then I would need to do more high-intensity to bring it back to 20%. At this point, I feel like i would be over-training.

    #9620
    David Warden
    Keymaster

    Benito,

    Thanks for the kind words!

    First, we only use duration when calculating 80/20 ratios, not distance. It’s less prone to error and much easier. So, let’s switch your example from 40 miles to 5 hours of which 1 hour would be high intensity (20%). Your 60 miles of cycling now becomes 3 hours of cycling, of which 36 minutes (20%) is high intensity.

    So, if you add 3 hours of cycling on top of the 80/20 plan, and you can also safely assume that the 80/20 plan is already at the appropriate 80/20 ratios (because I wrote it), then all you need to do is make sure anything you add on top of the 80/20 plan continues to follow the 80/20 ratios (by time!)

    David

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