In order to build your engine and increase endurance one must look to all mans different forms of exercise in order to increase both your anaerobic and aerobic power systems. By doing this, you will ensure that you are an overall athlete and able to cope with the demands of all different types of sports/activities, or more specifically you can train one of these systems more to fit your specific sport.
The anaerobic system is used in bouts of exercise in which you are going all out at a maximum effort for up to one minute at a time. This means that within this one minute you are pushing your body to the limits and exhausting your energy systems. With anaerobic training you are not using your oxygen levels, instead your body turns to glycogen as a form of energy until this energy store is completely depleted, which is dependent on just how far you are pushing your body. As a result of such high-intensity exercise, lactic acid can build up within your muscles causing discomfort and fatigue. Despite this pain, the results you’ll experience will be more than worth it.
Sports that use Anaerobic Exercise
- Running (Sprinting – 50m,100m,200m,400m)
Anaerobic Training Methods
There are many different ways to train the anaerobic system, however whenever I am asked the best way to do so I only have one answer “HIIT” (High Intensity Interval Training). Not only is this training method effective, it can be done in 15 minutes or less. That means there is no excuse for not finding time during the day to get it done.
Here’s an example of a HIIT workout you can try:
* This can be done outside, or in the gym on any piece of cardio equipment. The principle and outcome will be the same for any type of exercise you choose
* Be sure to stretch both before and after the workout – this is key to avoid injury
0:00-2:00 Warm Up 6:30-7:30 Low/Medium Intensity
2:00-3:00 Low/Medium Intensity 7:30-8:00 Maximum Intensity
3:00-3:30 Maximum Intensity 8:00-9:00 Low/Medium Intensity
3:30-4:30 Low/Medium Intensity 9:00-9:30 Maximum Intensity
4:30-5:00 High Intensity 9:30-10:30 Low/Medium Intensity
5:00-6:00 Low/Medium Intensity 10:30-11:00 Maximum Intensity
6:00-6:30 Maximum Intensity 11:00-13:00 Cool Down
The aerobic system is simply defined as exercising in the 50%-90% of your maximum heart rate zone for a sustained period of time, normally longer than 20 minutes. The main difference between aerobic and anaerobic exercise is that during aerobic training oxygen is present, carried to ones muscles to allow you to go for longer. As well as oxygen, aerobic exercise also uses glycogen and fat as energy hence this is why you are able to perform for longer during aerobic exercise as opposed to anaerobic exercise. Although this type of training can be mentally taxing as well as physically toward the end of the workout it is extremely beneficial in terms of your ability to exert yourself for long periods of time.
Sports that use Aerobic Exercise
- Long Distance Running
- Cycling (Not Sprinting)
- Cross-Country Skiing
Aerobic Training Methods
To put it simply there are no real special training methods to target the aerobic system. In order to do so, you would exert yourself at 50%-90% of your maximum heart rate for longer than 20 minutes, both heart rate and time depending on exactly what you’re specifically training for.
Take Home Message
In order build your engine and increase endurance you must be sure to train both these types of training methods to make you the overall athlete, and allow you to go harder for longer. However, if you are training for a specific sport that uses one of these systems more than the other be sure to prioritize your training program accordingly.