General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Explosive, technical squats and deadlifts vs USB Rss Feed  
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2020-03-20 11:02 PM

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Subject: Explosive, technical squats and deadlifts vs USB
I am a 63 year-old male who likes to do rec sprint triathlons. Fairly serious, competitive at local races but could never (will never) win a big race.  I am considering an Ultimate Sand Bag program as my strength training to minimize injuries (I've had plenty, mostly over-training related) and to improve performance.
My only hesitation to jumping head-long into the USB program is caused by an excellent podcast w Alex Harrison I recently heard.  Dr. Harrison stressed the importance of explosiveness in strength training for endurance athletes and the importance of emphasizing intensity over volume (just 3 to 5 reps, only 2 or 3 sets) and focusing on basic lifts done with classic technique like squats (w weights equal to body weight) and deadlifts.
I can't imagine doing a bear hug squat with a sandbag that weighs 155 pounds!  Are these just 2 opposing philosophies or can USB be adapted to meet the principles of using power training to improve my performance and avoid injuries?  TIA, Allan

2020-03-23 10:24 AM
in reply to: lombardi3g

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McAlester, Oklahoma
Subject: RE: Explosive, technical squats and deadlifts vs USB

My weeks get busy and I live a long way from the gym.  The only time that I have been able to be consistent on weight is when I can swim three days and do weights two days a week over my lunch break (when I am already in town and don't have to make a 15-minute drive to town to get to the gym).  My two days a week in the gym focused on using my own weight for squats, step-up, push-ups, etc.  Yes, they tended to be more explosive, but they were higher reps focused more on speed than on power.  I have gone away from the weights in the past two seasons though.  My reading came across two ways to build explosive speed. One is through weights and the other is through running hills.  Since the neighborhood where I live has a lot of elevation change I got tons of hill work every time I run. So I have fallen back on that to give me the kick at the end of my run rather than weights.  It works for me.  I can kick at the end of a 5K race, I can kick at the end of a Marathons, and I can kick at the end of triathlons from the sprint-70.3 distance.   The purpose of the explosive weights to give you the power that you need to pass people, to climb hills, and to have a kick at the end of the race.  I would think that the USB plan would accomplish that.  I personally would go the USB route but that is mostly because I don't have a lot of time for the weight room (30 mins top 2x a week).  If you are dying on hills and can pass people as needed and can finish strong at the end of the race then you will know that what you are doing is working.   

Below is the typical neighborhood run that I do 3 times a week.   This works. I don't need to do any powerlifting at the gym to supplement my training.  The 10 stores of elevation that I climb every mile I run is doing the trick.

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