You may have seen my recent blog about the Overcompensation Model, if not it’s worth a read before starting this.
The Super Compensation Model above shows a little more detail and what happens if you don’t get it right. Although named slightly different they are essentially the same model, just this one showing more detail. The biological state before stimulus is your baseline fitness before you stress it, or fatigue it through training.
Now the tricky part, as described in my overcompensation blog, is getting the right amount of training stimulus before starting your recovery. The yellow line shows not enough training and red line shows too much. Of course, with enough recovery the red line will eventually return to the baseline and sometimes peak above, providing an over-trained state wasn’t present for too long. The yellow line may also peak above baseline, but, not with as greater benefit, as is shown by the green line.
Checkout the letters A, B & C. They are placed where you might start training again after allowing some recovery time (perhaps a week or so). If you were to apply new training stimulus too early, as shown by the letter A, you wouldn’t have allowed enough time to recover and therefore essentially starting from baseline rather than a fitter state (thus potentially wasting the previous phase of training or not allowing you to be sufficiently recovered to complete the next phase).
If you apply the new training too late, as shown by the letter C, you have allowed too much recovery and subsequently detrained (essentially, as with A, you are back to baseline fitness). With letters A and C you can see that all the previous training, fatigue and recovery have been for very little, if any, improvement.
The best time to apply new training stimulus is shown by the letter B. This is the point where the body has recovered just the right amount in order to have seen adaptation and then be effective in upcoming training. You can see the longer term benefits of this (and what happens if you get it wrong) in the Ideal Training & Recovery Model.
The hard part is timing it right. There is no one size fits all approach to this and it can take years to get it right. If you decide to go it alone the best advice I can give you is to keep a training diary so you can look back on previous phases of training and see how and what worked and more importantly what didn’t.
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