Training Cycles For Masters Athletes

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masters athletes training cycle

The Importance of Training in Cycles for Masters Athletes

Training in cycles, also known as periodization, is crucial for athletes, especially masters athletes, for several reasons:

  • Optimized Performance: Cyclical training allows for systematic planning of different phases, such as building strength, improving endurance, or refining technique. This structured approach helps avoid plateaus and continuously push the performance envelope.

  • Injury Prevention: By alternating between high-intensity and recovery phases, cyclical training helps prevent overuse injuries, which are more common in older athletes. It ensures that your body gets the necessary time to recover and adapt, thereby reducing the risk of injury.

  • Sustainable Progress: For masters athletes, the goal is often longevity in the sport and maintaining a high level of fitness over time. Training cycles facilitate sustainable progress by incorporating varied training stimuli and sufficient rest, which is crucial for long-term success and health.

  • Mental Refreshment: Cycling through different training focuses can keep workouts fresh and mentally stimulating. This variety helps in maintaining motivation and preventing burnout, which is particularly important for athletes who have been training for many years.

Training in cycles ensures a balanced approach, targeting all aspects of fitness while respecting the unique needs of masters athletes. This method not only enhances physical performance but also contributes to overall well-being and longevity in the sport.

Example Cycle from Bolder Athlete (starts July 1st)


Bolder Athlete is excited to launch their next four-week training cycle, specifically designed for masters athletes. This cycle is all about taking your fitness to the next level with a well-rounded approach. Let's dive into the focus areas and a sample day to give you a taste of what’s in store.

The next cycle emphasizes several critical areas:

  • Gymnastics Under Fatigue: Mastering gymnastics movements even when fatigued, improving both technique and efficiency.

  • Olympic Lifting Technique and Strength: Sharpening your snatch and clean movements to boost overall lifting performance.

  • High-Intensity Cyclical Endurance Workouts: Enhancing stamina and power output for sustained high-intensity efforts.

  • Strength Sessions: Building balanced strength through dedicated sessions, including reinforcement exercises to support muscle groups crucial for injury prevention.

Sample Day from the “Compete” Track


A. 🟧 Gymnastics Under Fatigue

3:00 of Work:

  • 35/28 Cal Bike Erg (60+ 25/20)

  • Max Ring Muscle Ups in Remaining Time Rest: 1:00 3:00 of Work:

  • 400m Run Assault Runner (60+ 300m)

  • Max Bar Muscle Ups in Remaining Time Rest: 1:00 Repeat the above sequence two more times.

  • Purpose: Enhance your ability to maintain high-level gymnastics skills while fatigued.

  • Tips: Focus on pacing during the bike and run to leave enough energy for quality muscle-up attempts.

B. 🟩 Snatch Work


  • 3 Sets of the Complex @50%, 55%, 60%

    • 3 Muscle Snatch

    • 2 Snatch Balance

    • 1 Overhead Squat

Power Snatch:

  • 4 sets of 3 reps at 80% of 1RM

  • Rest: 90 seconds between sets

Squat Snatch:

  • 3 sets of 2 reps at 75% of 1RM

  • Rest: 90 seconds between sets

Snatch Pull:

  • 3 sets of 3 reps at 90% of 1RM

  • Rest: 90 seconds between sets

  • Purpose: Develop snatch technique and strength through varied snatch movements.

  • Tips: Prioritize technique over weight; focus on smooth, controlled lifts.

C. 🟧 Snatch (Battery)

EMOM 15:

  • Minute 1: 5 Power Snatches at 70% of 1RM

  • Minute 2: 10 Box Jumps at 24/20

  • Minute 3: 12 Chest To Bar Pull Ups

  • Purpose: Improve explosive power and metabolic conditioning.

  • Tips: Maintain consistent pace; focus on explosive power in the snatches and box jumps.

D. 🟨 Tempo Front Squats

  • 4 sets of 5 reps at 75% of 1RM

    • Rest: 2-3 minutes between sets

  • Purpose: Build leg strength and control through tempo work.

  • Tips: Focus on maintaining proper form and tempo; control the descent and explode upwards.

E. 🟧 Abyss

  • For Time:

    • 5 Rounds of 500/400m Row

    • Rest: 2:00

  • Purpose: Enhance aerobic capacity and rowing efficiency.

  • Tips: Maintain a steady pace on the rower; use the rest periods to recover and prepare for the next round.

Bolder Athlete Color Coding System


At Bolder Athlete, there is a color-coded system to indicate the intensity and effort level recommended for each workout (hint - not all workouts are meant to be orange or red):

  • 🟦 (Blue) - Light HR / Easy Pace: Easy, low-intensity.

  • 🟩 (Green) - Zone 2 HR / Light Pace: Light, aerobic base.

  • 🟨 (Yellow) - Zone 3 HR / Moderate Pace: Moderate, sustainable.

  • 🟧 (Orange) - Zone 3-4 HR / 80-90% Effort: Hard, high-intensity.

  • 🟥 (Red) - Zone 4-5 HR / Max Effort: Max, all-out.

Stay tuned for more updates, tips, and inspiration in our next EverBold newsletter.

Stay strong and train smart!

Jason Grubb

P.S. Ready to take your training to the next level? Jump in for a free week of the next Bolder Athlete Cycle starting Monday, July 1st! Don’t miss this opportunity to elevate your performance and join our community of dedicated masters athletes.