How To Improve Your Lactic System Conditioning
The lactic system is long hard sprints lasting from 30 sec – 3 min. Once again we can break down this system into 2 parts. The first is the time frame of 30 sec – 1 min and the second one 1 min – 3 min. The reason we can split this up is because of the demand for the intensity. Now a 30 sec sprint is tough, but a 2 min sprint is going to require greater intensity.
Just like in the alactic system we want the rest to be longer than the work period in the lactic system. An example here would be 2 min sprint on the bike with 5 min of rest. Now that rest may seem long to some of you, but 2 min flat out sprint is very demanding and hard. Your body needs ample time to recover and to repeat itself with the same power output.
Remember you want to be able to repeat the same power output over and over again. That is how you improve your conditioning not by running yourself into the ground. When it comes to training we can vary up which part of the lactic system we want to focus on. During the training week if the athlete is well rested then go with a higher intensity of 2 min. If they are not fully recovered then going with 30 sec would be a better option.
An example of training in the lactic system in the first part would be doing 6 sets of 30 sec sprints on the rower. Resting anywhere from 1:30 to 3 min. An example of training the lactic system in the second part would be doing 5 sets of 2 min sprints on the bike and then resting anywhere from 4 to 6 min.
You want to make sure you have some kind of benchmark when training for conditioning so you know that you can sustain your power output. On the bike and rower, you can easily use distance or watts to measure your performance. The goal is to keep hitting that same distance or watts on each set. If you fail to do so then stop you are done for the day.
Here are 3 ways to train the lactic system: bike (preferably an assault bike), rower, and sprints.
The assault bike is easy on the knees and hard on the lungs.
The rower combines a lower-body push with an upper-body pull.
Sprints the bread and butter of conditioning.
Another option for training the lactic system is kettlebells. Doing swings or snatches for 3 min straight will greatly improve your conditioning as well. Here is a video explaining how to do the snatch with a kettlebell.
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