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Old 10-20-2006, 11:50 AM   #1
Steve Shafley
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Default "Intervals within Intervals"

Could you elaborate on this a bit, Robb? Maybe a bit of the reasoning behind it and then an example or two?

I'll re-read "Power Bias 2" while I'm at it to see if I missed it the first time.
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Old 10-22-2006, 01:34 PM   #2
Robb Wolf
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I guess the way I am looking at this is...take Helen: 400m run, 21KB Swings, 12 Pull ups-3 rounds. Now the fact one is breaking up the runs, swings and PU is a form of mixed-mode interval training, however this is performed as quickly as possible, which necessitates a SUSTAINABLE pace.

By contrast this "intervals within intervals" idea is to break the sub-sets of something like Helen into discrete pieces:
400m run-2min rest (max speed)
21 KB swings-2min rest (max speed)
12 pull-ups-2min rest (max speed).

So we have the interval aspect of the mixed-mode approach AND the emphasis of max power production during those sub-elements because we have some built in rest periods, which are necessary to maintain that PEAK power output.

Like I mentioned in the second PB piece the original Helen is a serious fanny kicker (high AKP) but the emphasis on max power output in this alternative format is even nastier...and it offers some adaptations that are simply impossible to achieve when the objective is a "good" average time.

Let me know if the helped or muddied things!
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Old 10-22-2006, 09:40 PM   #3
Steve Shafley
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It's interesting to play around with that stuff:

If you assign numbers to the movements in the Helen workout, where:

1 = 400m run
2 = 21KB Swings
3 = 12 Pull ups

Regular Helen is (1+2+3)*3, where success is measured by total time for completion

Power Bias Helen is (1+1+1+2+2+2+3+3+3) where success is measured by minimizing the time for each individual exercise's set.

Or is the power bias Helen (1+2+3) with full rest in between, and then with a repeat? [(1+2+3)+2 min rest]*3

Two very different things, for sure. Or even three.
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Old 10-22-2006, 09:55 PM   #4
Yael Grauer
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I thought it was (1+rest+2+rest+3+rest)*3, but math has never been my strong suit.
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Old 10-22-2006, 09:55 PM   #5
Eva Twardokens
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Default I will try it this week

Robb,
It was great to see you this weekend and I will give this a whirl...it seems right down my alley for training right now. Will report back at the end of the week.
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Old 10-23-2006, 05:05 AM   #6
Steve Shafley
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Actually, Yaul, that's what I meant in the first string of +s and #s. I didn't clarify it. Sorry.
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Old 10-23-2006, 10:17 AM   #7
Yael Grauer
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I tried a variation of this out on some kids I was volunteering with, and the way I did it without having to give everyone a stopwatch was by putting them in small groups. In this case, it was two teams of two and they were racing each other, but I could see it working with four-person teams (still in groups of two.) The way I worked in intervals without having to use a stopwatch is by having them take turns. They did two rounds of 25 situps (they held each other's feet), a shuttle run and 15 rolls (their choice) but had to wait for their partner to finish before they could go. I think it was ~ 2 minutes for the situps and rolls, the run was a bit quicker. If I was really good, I could have divided them by ability level, had everyone go at the same time and described the second exercise to each group in exactly two minutes after they finished the first one.

Anyway, my goal was to come up with a cooperative group learning activity that was appropriate for the age group, was okay for different skill levels and incorporated intervals within intervals as well as all seven aspects of cooperative learning, according to this really awful educational psychology textbook I'm reading. (Group heterogeneity, group goals/positive interdependence, promotive interaction, individual accountability, interpersonal skills, equal opportunities for success, team competition.) It worked pretty well and got them working together instead of hitting each other, but I think they like it when we kick the soccer ball around better. Also it was too short and I should've added rounds.

Just thought I'd share this because it seemed like a good way around the "reasons this isn't used more" part of the article...for kids, anyway.
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Old 10-23-2006, 12:42 PM   #8
Ryan Atkins
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Another option for getting this to work for a group of kids may be to assign a number of reps for the group as a whole to accomplish. For example, you could use 200 squats for 4 kids (or 400 for 8 kids). Once the total of the group reaches that level they all get to rest for 2 minutes before doing the next round or exercise. Hopefully this would promote some in group competition (somebody gets to brag about contributing the most to their team), some competition between groups, promote some team cohesion and might even refine adding skills among the participants. Assuming they're motivated, all the participants would be working at or close to peak power capacity during the work timeframe, regardless of their varying athletic capability. It also has the potential for cutting down on the number of stopwatches required.

Just a thought,

Ryan
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Old 10-23-2006, 05:54 PM   #9
Robb Wolf
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Hey Eva!
We were stoked you could stop by. Keep us posted on the OL's and minimalist met-con!
Ryan!!!
Good to see you amigo!
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Old 07-13-2007, 12:59 PM   #10
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So I gave Robb's interval with in an interval a try. Let me just say it was interesting. I used Helen, because she is my fav, with 2:00 rest between exercises. I liked it quite a bit. I certainly looked forward to each event. 2:00 seemed lilke a long time. I had to make myself wait. Strangely my 400m was faster in each round than the first 400m of the previous Helen bout. It was like blasted off and crashed on the way back. I would get about 50m from the finish line and crash. The KB swings were all unbroken, where in the last bouts it was 21, 14/7, 7/7/7. Pullups are not my strong suit, they went quick for a non-kipper (more like a carp on a stringer).

All in all I liked it. Now I have to figure out how to do the other girls that way.
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