Andrea Dupont

Archive for July, 2009

Ode to Plyometrics

This week our team had our first plyos workout of the summer and let me tell you, there is nothing like the feeling of doing your first plyo workout of the training season. The feeling stays with you all week as you walk, descend stairs, or even try and sit on the toilet. It is the self content and mildly sadistic feeling knowing that this pain is reassuring you that you are building power in your legs.

Now having stated the sadistic nature of plyos, I have to admit that plyo workouts are among my favourite.  Plyos are all about maxing everything; max height, max reps and max power in a short amount of time. So they are also a great workout that can be squeezed into a busy schedule.  My only word of warning is that the max nature of plyos require a good warm up and cool down, or you may be in a max amount of pain for a long while afterwards.

So what exactly is a plyometric? Plyometrics can be any exercise that is designed to produce fast powerful movements. Plyo exercises are designed to mimic sport specific movements with increased speed and force of muscular contraction. Plyometrics are not limited to leg exercises, in fact since cross country skiing is a full body sport, our strength routine involves both upper and lower body plyos.

The key to a good plyo workout is for each rep to be as explosive and as fast as possible and that you fully recover between sets and that you stop as soon as you are losing power.

With any good training program each session will build on the last session but here is a good starting point for a full body plyos workout.

15 seconds max Clap pushups

15 seconds max side jumps

15 seconds max dips

15 seconds max single legged bounds

Start each exercise every minute and take a 45 second break before beginning next exercies. Repeat in order 3 times. When looking to increase difficulty ensure proper posture is maintained throughout exercise and ensure motion is as fast and powerful as possible. In order to maintain the max effort do not increase length of sets, instead perform multiple sets of one exercise before moving on to the next exercise. You should always do a minimum of 3 sets, if needed give yourself more rest between reps or set.

Until next time, enjoy the wonderful feeling of knowing you are building muscular power.

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End of Spring!

I am so happy for spring to be over, this year spring has brought nothing but injury after injury for me. The injury spree started at the end of March when I broke my scaphoid  in the first race of nationals, then continued with wrecking my ankle the day before I got my cast off of my wrist, and finished with a road bike crash where I mostly lost skin and pride. Today I was able to go for my first pain free run, ending an injury filled spring and beginning a summer full of happy training!


Now although I have been injured I have still been keeping up with training, my broken wrist forced me to work on my legs for a while, then the ankle expedited the wrist rehab and forced me to do some epic double pole workouts and to get cozy with my road bike, and well the bike crash just made me tougher :p


Our team just ended the first training cycle of the summer and amazingly I am not behind in my hours at all. Most of these hours have been spent on a road bike, which is good for a base but I have been anxious to start into some real ski specific training for a while now.


I did get a taste of some super sweet glacier skiing last week when our team headed up to the Haig Glacier in the Kananaskis area. This glacier is only an hour drive and a 3-4 hour hike away from where I live. This camp was a short camp for me because of my ankle but it is so refreshing as a skier to get to ski on snow in the summer and remember how great skiing feels, even at 2700m!



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