Benefits Of A Longer Training Cycle
1. Improved Recovery
By implementing a longer training cycle, you can afford to be more liberal with your recovery days and give yourself a few more days to absorb your hard workouts. Instead of trying to cram a long run, speed session, tempo session and a steady state session into a 7-day stretch (leaving just three days total for recovery), you can still get in all of those same workouts in a given training cycle, but also give yourself the proper amount of recovery between each workout. This will decrease your chance of getting injured, becoming overtrained, or breaking down during your training segment.
2. Better Quality Sessions
Along the same lines, by implementing a longer training cycle you’ll have more productive quality sessions. In a 7-day training cycle, it’s possible that you’ll hit your Tuesday speed session still fatigued from your long run, meaning you can’t hit your prescribed paces or you’re too tired to finish the workout strong.
Instead of maximizing your potential physiological adaptations, you only absorb 80-85% of the benefits. During a 10 or 14-day training cycle, you can attack that speed workout completely recovered and ready to fully capitalize on the potential benefits.
3. More Flexible Schedule
Finally, a longer training cycle actually provides more flexibility should you miss a workout or need to rearrange your training. Instead of being stuck having to do your threshold run on Friday because you need Saturday to recover before your Sunday long run, you can more easily shift your training schedule to accommodate almost any hiccup.