Polarized Versus High-Intensity Multimodal Training in Recreational Runners

Click name to view affiliation

Andrew J. Carnes
Search for other papers by Andrew J. Carnes in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
and
Sara E. Mahoney
Search for other papers by Sara E. Mahoney in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
Restricted access

Purpose: This study longitudinally compared changes in running performance (5-km time trial) and fitness (maximal oxygen uptake [VO2max] and body composition [BC]) between polarized training and CrossFit Endurance (CFE) in recreational runners. Methods: Participants (N = 21) completed 12 wk of CFE or polarized endurance training (POL). Both groups trained 5 d·wk−1. POL ran 5 d·wk−1, whereas CFE ran 3 d·wk−1 and performed CrossFit 3 d·wk−1 (run + CrossFit 1 d·wk−1). Intensity was classified as low, moderate, or high (zone 1, 2, or 3) according to ventilatory thresholds. POL was prescribed greater volume (295 [67] min·wk−1), distributed as 85%/5%/10% in Z1/Z2/Z3. CFE emphasized a lower volume (110 [18] min·wk−1) distribution of 48%/8%/44%. Results: POL ran 283 (75.9) min·wk−1 and 47.3 (11.6) km·wk−1, both exceeding the 117 (32.2) min·wk−1 and 19.3 (7.17) km·wk−1 in CFE (P < .001). The POL distribution (74%/11%/15%) had greater total and percentage Z1 (P < .001) than CFE (46%/15%/39%), which featured higher percentage Z3 (P < .001). Time trial improved −93.8 (40.4) s (−6.21% [2.16%]) in POL (P < .001) and −84.2 (65.7) s (−5.49% [3.56%]) in CFE (P = .001). BC improved by −2.45% (2.59%) fat in POL (P = .02) and −2.62% (2.53%) in CFE (P = .04). The magnitude of improvement was not different between groups for time trial (P = .79) or BC (P = .88). Both groups increased VO2max (P ≤ .01), but with larger magnitude (P = .04, d = 0.85) in POL (4.3 [3.6] mL·kg·min−1) than CFE (1.78 [1.9] mL·kg·min−1). Conclusions: Recreational runners achieved similar improvement in 5-km performance and BC through polarized training or CFE, but POL yielded a greater increase in VO2max. Extrapolation to longer distances requires additional research.

The authors are with the Dept of Exercise Science, Bellarmine University, Louisville, KY.

Carnes (acarnes@bellarmine.edu) is corresponding author.
  • Collapse
  • Expand
  • 1.

    Hydren JR, Cohen BS. Current scientific evidence for a polarized cardiovascular endurance training model. J Strength Cond Res. 2015;29(12):35233530. PubMed ID: 26595137 doi:10.1519/JSC.0000000000001197

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 2.

    Seiler S. What is best practice for training intensity and duration distribution in endurance athletes? Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2010;5(3):276291. PubMed ID: 20861519 doi:10.1123/ijspp.5.3.276

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 3.

    Running USA. US Road Race Trends. Running USA. March 23, 2017. https://runningusa.org/RUSA/News/2018/U.S_Road_Race_Participation_Numbers_Hold_Steady_for_2017.aspx

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 4.

    Muñoz I, Seiler S, Bautista J, España J, Larumbe E, Esteve-Lanao J. Does polarized training improve performance in recreational runners? Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2014;9(2):265272. PubMed ID: 23752040 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2012-0350

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 5.

    Billat VL, Demarle A, Slawinski J, Paiva M, Koralsztein JP. Physical and training characteristics of top-class marathon runners. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2001;33(12):20892097. PubMed ID: 11740304 doi:10.1097/00005768-200112000-00018

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 6.

    Fiskerstrand Å, Seiler K. Training and performance characteristics among Norwegian International rowers 1970–2001. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2004;14(5):303310. PubMed ID: 15387804 doi:10.1046/j.1600-0838.2003.370.x

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 7.

    Arne G, Eike E. Training methods and intensity distribution of young world-class rowers. Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2009;4(4):448460. PubMed ID: 20029096 doi:10.1123/ijspp.4.4.448

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 8.

    Orie J, Hofman N, de Koning JJ, Foster C. Thirty-eight years of training distribution in Olympic speed skaters. Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2014;9(1):9399. PubMed ID: 24408352 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2013-0427

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 9.

    Sandbakk Ø, Holmberg HC, Leirdal S, Ettema G. The physiology of world-class sprint skiers. Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2011;21(6):916. PubMed ID: 20500558 doi:10.1111/j.1600-0838.2010.01117.x

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 10.

    Seiler KS, Kjerland . Quantifying training intensity distribution in elite endurance athletes: is there evidence for an “optimal” distribution? Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2006;16(1):4956. PubMed ID: 16430681 doi:10.1111/j.1600-0838.2004.00418.x

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 11.

    Steinacker JM, Lormes W, Lehmann M, Altenburg D. Training of rowers before world championships. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1998;30(7):11581163. PubMed ID: 9662689 doi:10.1097/00005768-199807000-00022

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 12.

    Esteve-lanao J, San Juan AF, Earnest CP, Foster C, Lucia A. How do endurance runners actually train? Relationship with competition performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2005;37(3):496504. PubMed ID: 15741850 doi:10.1249/01.MSS.0000155393.78744.86

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 13.

    Esteve-Lanao J, Foster C, Seiler S, Lucia A. Impact of training intensity distribution on performance in endurance athletes. J Strength Cond Res. 2007;21(3):943. PubMed ID: 17685689

    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 14.

    Neal CM, Hunter AM, Brennan L, et al. Six weeks of a polarized training-intensity distribution leads to greater physiological and performance adaptations than a threshold model in trained cyclists. J Appl Physiol. 2013;114(4):461471. PubMed ID: 23264537 doi:10.1152/japplphysiol.00652.2012

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 15.

    Stöggl T, Sperlich B. Polarized training has greater impact on key endurance variables than threshold, high intensity, or high volume training. Front Physiol. 2014;5:33. PubMed ID: 24550842 doi:10.3389/fphys.2014.00033

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 16.

    Thompson WR. Worldwide survey of fitness trends for 2017. ACSM’s Health Fitness J. 2016;20(6):817.

  • 17.

    Van Gent BR, Siem DD, van Middelkoop M, van Os TA, Bierma-Zeinstra SS, Koes BB. Incidence and determinants of lower extremity running injuries in long distance runners: a systematic review. Br J Sports Med. 2007;41(8):469480. PubMed ID: 17473005 doi:10.1136/bjsm.2006.033548

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 18.

    Mackenzie B. A new way to train: interview with Brian MacKenzie. Competitor. November 10, 2014. http://running.competitor.com/2014/11/news/new-way-train-interview-brian-mackenzie_1175232014.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 19.

    Hak PT, Hodzovic E, Hickey B. The nature and prevalence of injury during CrossFit training [published online ahead of print November 22, 2013]. J Strength Cond Res. doi:10.1519/JSC.0000000000000318

    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 20.

    Mackenzie B. Brian MacKenzie’s 12-week CrossFit Endurance advanced training program. Competitor. May27, 2011. http://running.competitor.com/2011/05/training/brian-mackenzies-12-week-crossfit-endurance-advanced-training-program_284002013.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 21.

    McCrory MA, Molé PA, Gomez TD, Dewey KG, Bernauer EM. Body composition by air-displacement plethysmography by using predicted and measured thoracic gas volumes. J Appl Physiol. 1998;84(4):14751479. PubMed ID: 9516218 doi:10.1152/jappl.1998.84.4.1475

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 22.

    Lucía A, Hoyos J, Santalla A, Earnest A, Chicharro J. Tour de France versus Vuelta a España: which is harder? Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2003;35(5):872878. PubMed ID: 12750600 doi:10.1249/01.MSS.0000064999.82036.B4

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 23.

    Foster JP, Carl H, Kara M, Esten PL, Brice G. Differences in perceptions of training by coaches and athletes. South African J Sports Med. 2001;8(2):37.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 24.

    Sweet TW, Foster C, McGuigan MR, Brice G. Quantitation of resistance training using the session rating of perceived exertion method. J Strength Cond Res. 2004;18(4):796802. PubMed ID: 15574104

    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 25.

    Tjelta LI. The training of international level distance runners. Int J Sports Sci Coach. 2016;11(1):122134. doi:10.1177/1747954115624813

  • 26.

    McLaughlin JE, Howley ET, Bassett DR Jr, Thompson DL, Fitzhugh EC. Test of the classic model for predicting endurance running performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2010;42(5):991997. PubMed ID: 19997010 doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e3181c0669d

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 27.

    Greenlee TA, Greene DR, Ward NJ, et al. Effectiveness of a 16-week high-intensity cardioresistance training program in adults. J Strength Cond Res. 2017;31(9):25282541. PubMed ID: 28820847 doi:10.1519/JSC.0000000000001976

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 28.

    Berryman N, Mujika I, Arvisais D, Roubeix M, Binet C, Bosquet L. Strength training for middle- and long-distance performance: a meta-analysis. Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2018;13(1):5763. PubMed ID: 28459360 doi:10.1123/ijspp.2017-0032

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 29.

    Saanijoki T, Nummenmaa L, Eskelinen JJ, et al. Affective responses to repeated sessions of high-intensity interval training. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2015;47(12):26042611. PubMed ID: 26110694 doi:10.1249/MSS.0000000000000721

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 30.

    Carron AV, Widmeyer WN, Brawley LR. The development of an instrument to assess cohesion in sport teams: the group environment questionnaire. J Sport Psychol. 1985;7(3):244266. doi:10.1123/jsp.7.3.244

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 31.

    Carnes AJ, Mahoney SE. Cohesion is associated with perceived exertion and enjoyment during group running. J Exerc Physiol Online. 2016;19(6):2439.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 5769 937 43
Full Text Views 181 58 1
PDF Downloads 142 24 1