By Craig Friedman, Athletes' Performance
At times in your cardio plan, you’ll train in the Blue Zone for longer periods or entire workouts, also known as “steady-state training.” Your initial steady-state training in the Blue Zone will help you establish an aerobic base. This base is essential in helping you train harder and longer without burning out or suffering an injury.
Steady-state Blue Zone workouts are optimal for your body to make several key physiological changes that will help support harder and longer efforts. While these adaptations happen within all of the miCoach zones, the Blue Zone helps your body recover best with the least amount of work. Increased blood flow to your muscles removes waste (lactate) generated by a previous hard workout. You don’t generate as much new lactate in the Blue Zone compared with other zones, so your body uses these workouts to actively clear the buildup, which in turn helps reduce soreness. All told, this lessens the cumulative stress on your body and helps you feel fresh for your next workout. Your body benefits and heals from this break, as does your mind.
At first, training in the Blue Zone for an extended period of time might feel hard, depending on your fitness level. But as you begin training in the higher-effort zones, training in the Blue Zone will become easy.
For more advanced runners, the Blue Zone can seem tireless and slow. Don’t give in to the temptation to blow off the Blue Zone and run hard. Trust in the miCoach workouts and you’ll see big payoffs. Although it sounds counterintuitive, running slow will train your body to become faster over time