More Zone 1 Work

How much Z1 work are you doing?

Image courtesy of bengreenfieldfitness.com

Energy Systems

We have three main energy systems that are utilized everyday we breathe and exist. In fact most of you are utilizing your Oxidative energy system while reading this blog post. When you come inside the gym however usually our heart rate pumps a little bit higher, and our rate of perceived exertion seems higher as well which may lead us to tap into our Glycolytic and our Phosphagen energy systems. These system help us change our bodies and help us get fitter without actually us realizing it.  If you wanted to graph yourself throughout the day utilizing the Zones we have above you'd see a shift from Zone 1/2 to Zone 4/5 (depending on the Workout we have planned) to Zone 3 (post workout) and back to Zone 1/2.  If you stayed in Zone 1 all day, you probably wouldn’t get very fit.  And if you stayed in Zone 4 all day, you'd be over trained and get injured. 

What we are noticing inside the gym is that many of us feel that when we get sore we should be resting for 2-3 days at a time. This in fact will not make the soreness go away it will only make it persist. What we need to be doing is MORE Zone 1 WORK. 

Why? Let's look below and see why:

Zone 1 Goals: Recovery

Energy System: Oxidative 70-76%

After hard workouts or tough blocks of training, very easy workouts can accelerate recovery more than complete rest. Easy aerobic training stimulates blood circulation, which can assist with removal of inflammation and increase your tissue healing response. The intensity in this zone is enough to increase blood circulation and trigger a growth hormone response, but not intense enough to cause any muscle damage, and very little energy and fluid depletion. An example of a Zone 1 workout would be: 

1) 25 Min EMOM:

Min 1: Row (conversational pace), Min 2: Bike (conversational pace), Min 3: Jump Rope, Min 4: Plank Hold, Min 5: Farmer Carry

There are numerous modifications you can use to allow your body to recover through Zone 1 work and it is important to keep your heart rate low otherwise you will be entering into another zone which will not accelerate recovery. This Z1 work will allow you to build a bigger aerobic base which will also help you perform better on the longer endurance type workouts.

For those of you who are instagram/facebook savy there is one athlete out there who has been incorporating a ton of Z1 work in his training. You can follow him @marcusfilly and Marcus Filly on Facebook. Some of his Z1 work includes: 

Wall Facing Handstand Holds, Sled Drags, Waiter Walks, Ring Push Up Holds, and a ton of Rowing and Air Assault Biking!

Stay Tuned for our next blog post and as always stay fit for life!