Background. Altitude training has long been used by elite endurance athletes to attempt improving sea-level performance. Traditionally, Live High-Train High (LHTH) interventions were adopted, where athletes trained and lived at altitude to try maximising the benefits offered by hypoxic exposure. However, inconsistent scientific research proposed that the possible haematological benefits of hypoxia would be offset by the inability to maintain high training intensity, mainly due to altitude-induced reduction in maximal oxygen uptake. As a consequence, LHTH was progressively abandoned in favour of the Live High-Train Low method (LHTL), which better allows athletes to combine the haematological benefits of hypoxia with the ability to maintain an adequate training intensity. However, “true” elite athletes have been rarely used as experimental population, and training intensity has almost never been monitored during altitude research. This led to confusion regarding the applicability of LHTH with world-class endurance athletes. Purpose. This case study is an attempt to provide a practical experience on successful LHTH interventions and subsequent performances in two Olympic gold medallist endurance athletes. Methods. The training diaries of two Italian elite endurance athletes were collected during 9 weeks of training, divided in three 3-week periods before, during, and after a LHTH camp, respectively. Total training volumes and volumes at different intensities (expressed as percentage of race pace) were recorded. Also, sea-level performance was recorded before and after LHTH. Results. Both athletes successfully completed the LHTH camp (2090 m), maintained absolute training intensity and training volume at high-intensity during LHTH, and improved performance after the intervention. Discussion. This case study provides a view of a unique LHTH experience of “true” elite endurance athletes. In our opinion, LHTH interventions can be used as a simple, yet effective, method to maintain absolute and improving relative training intensity in elite endurance athletes.

Altitude training for elite endurance athletes prior major competitions: a simple means for increasing the relative training intensity? / L. Pugliese, F.R. Serpiello, G.P. Millet, A. La Torre - In: Book of Abstracts of the 18th Annual Congress of the-European College of Sport Science / [a cura di] N. Balaguè, C. Torrents, A. Vilanova, J, Cadefau, R. Tarragò, E. Tsolakidis. - [s.l] : Institute of Physical Education of Catalonia, 2013 Jun. - ISBN 978-84-695-7786-8. - pp. 580-580 (( Intervento presentato al 18. convegno Annual Congress of the-European College of Sport Science tenutosi a Barcellona nel 2013.

Altitude training for elite endurance athletes prior major competitions: a simple means for increasing the relative training intensity?

L. Pugliese;A. La Torre
2013-06

Abstract

Background. Altitude training has long been used by elite endurance athletes to attempt improving sea-level performance. Traditionally, Live High-Train High (LHTH) interventions were adopted, where athletes trained and lived at altitude to try maximising the benefits offered by hypoxic exposure. However, inconsistent scientific research proposed that the possible haematological benefits of hypoxia would be offset by the inability to maintain high training intensity, mainly due to altitude-induced reduction in maximal oxygen uptake. As a consequence, LHTH was progressively abandoned in favour of the Live High-Train Low method (LHTL), which better allows athletes to combine the haematological benefits of hypoxia with the ability to maintain an adequate training intensity. However, “true” elite athletes have been rarely used as experimental population, and training intensity has almost never been monitored during altitude research. This led to confusion regarding the applicability of LHTH with world-class endurance athletes. Purpose. This case study is an attempt to provide a practical experience on successful LHTH interventions and subsequent performances in two Olympic gold medallist endurance athletes. Methods. The training diaries of two Italian elite endurance athletes were collected during 9 weeks of training, divided in three 3-week periods before, during, and after a LHTH camp, respectively. Total training volumes and volumes at different intensities (expressed as percentage of race pace) were recorded. Also, sea-level performance was recorded before and after LHTH. Results. Both athletes successfully completed the LHTH camp (2090 m), maintained absolute training intensity and training volume at high-intensity during LHTH, and improved performance after the intervention. Discussion. This case study provides a view of a unique LHTH experience of “true” elite endurance athletes. In our opinion, LHTH interventions can be used as a simple, yet effective, method to maintain absolute and improving relative training intensity in elite endurance athletes.
altitude training ; high-intensity ; elite athletes
Settore M-EDF/02 - Metodi e Didattiche delle Attivita' Sportive
Book Part (author)
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.
Pubblicazioni consigliate

Caricamento pubblicazioni consigliate

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2434/222477
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact