How to Structure the Best Conditioning Methods during Lockdown

Welcome back to Part 3!

So by now, you hopefully understand WHY you should focus your attention on conditioning during the lockdown. You should now also know WHAT the best conditioning methods are.

All you need to know now is HOW to structure them. This is the REALLY easy part but I plan to make it REALLY, REALLY easy for you. I do not plan to do much explaining here, I just want you to be able to pick up the ball and run with it – IE: GET GOING!

So this is how we are going to do it, we are going to list the best conditioning methods. We are then going to categorize them into levels. The levels are dictated by the amount of stress each method places on the body as well as the effect that each method has on the body. More on this shortly but let’s look at the methods again:

  1. Cardiac Output Training
  2. Aerobic Tempo Intervals
  3. The Tempo Lifting Method
  4. High Resistance Intervals
  5. High Intensity Continuous Training
  6. Explosive Repeat
  7. Alactic Intervals
  8. Anaerobic Threshold Training

So there they are! There are obviously loads more but these are THE BEST methods that you can perform during a lockdown with minimal equipment.

So now place them into categories!

We are going to order them into 3 levels (1,2 & 3). Each level is also colour coded into green, amber and red. Level 1 methods are Green. Level 2 methods are Amber. Level 3 methods are Red.

The number represents how easy the method is and the colour represents the amount of stress it imposes upon you. For example, Cardiac Output is a level 1 method and is Green because it is super easy to perform and places very little stress upon your body. Anaerobic Threshold training however is a level 3 exercise and is Red because it places a large stress upon your body. This means it takes time to recover from. Amber exercises sit in the middle at level 2.

So now we have grouped the exercises into levels and colour. Easy peasy! You will note I have also placed a couple of extra exercises into the level 3 category. This is for those of you that are currently doing home workouts that include HIIT and Tabata etc. At the end of the day, fitness should be about enjoyment and if you guys are enjoying these workouts, by all means continue, I have just categorised them where they belong so you can structure your training week better to gain maximum results!

You will also notice there is something called “Complexes” listed in there too. These are advanced workouts that often use Kettlebells and Bands etc to work the entire body. I will be giving a bonus workout to those of you that have bands and kettlebells at home. They are tough but yield incredible results and for obvious reasons, they are a level 3, red day!

Almost there! – All we have to do now is structure them!

Your Conditioning Week

So here is the ultimate way to structure your week! This format is perfect for beginners, right up to those with higher levels of conditioning. It’s also great for high level athletes who want to build a better structure into their training but it is worth noting that I would normally structure their week a little differently to accommodate more load where necessary.

For the vast majority of us however, this is the perfect structure to your training week!

A word on the order.

So you might be looking at the order of the days and wondering why it the order of the days goes: Amber to Red to Green?

This is down to stress management and how the body responds to each of the methods. Put simply, the “Amber Days” are formed from mostly short, sharp intervals. These exercises develop your fast twitch fibres but also have a “priming” effect upon your body. This priming effect positively transfers into your “Red Days” by getting your body “Ready” to undertake conditioning methods that “Raise” your conditioning levels upwards. Afterall, it’s your “Red Days” that really drive the stress onto your body to force it to adapt and get better.

Due to the amount of stress that “Red Days” place on you means that you need a period of reduced stress whilst your body adapts. This is where your “Green Days” come in. These days are formed from mostly slower, lower intensity methods that focus on laying your performance foundations (slow twitch fibres and heart size). They also have a powerful effect on your nervous system by switching it into recovery mode. This allows you to “Recover” and get ready to repeat the whole process! Ready – Raise – Recover!

Feeling Tired?

A quick word on this one. There is nothing ever wrong with taking a rest day here and there if you are feeling a little fatigued. On these days you can absolutely chill and focus on getting some good food, good downtime and good sleep! This is usually a sure fire way of getting yourself good to go again!

Alternatively, you can perform a “Rejuvenation” activity. This usually consists of going for a gentle walk that lasts somewhere in the region of 20-40 minutes. Whilst this intensity of this exercise is not enough to boost your conditioning, it does have a powerful restorative effect on your body by moving fresh, oxygenated blood around and reducing fatigue on your body. Try it when you’re next feeling tired and I guarantee it makes you feel better!

Pick and Play!

So there’s your structure! All you have to do now is “pick and play! Meaning, you see what colour day you are on and choose the methods available to you! If we look at Monday as an example, it is clear to see that you need to pick amber based exercises (level 2). So you have a choice of:

High Resistance Intervals (Uphill Sprints)

HICT (Sprinter Step Ups on Box)

Explosive Repeat (Explosive Push Up, Jump Squats etc)

Alactic Intervals (Sprints, Bike Sprints, Band Resisted Sprints)

All you have to do is pick the ones you want to do, set your working reps and rest time and OFF. YOU. GO!

An outdoor example being: Alactic Intervals & High Resistance Intervals

Alactic Interval Sprints IntensityRecoveryRepeats
Week 16s60s6-8
Week 26s50s8
Week 38s40s10
Week 410s30s12
Uphill Sprints IntensityRecoveryRepeats
Week 15s60s8
Week 25s60s10
Week 35s40s12
Week 45s40s14

So there you have it!

From my first article – You know WHY you should place a premium on your conditioning during lockdown (CLICK HERE FOR ARTICLE 1)

From my second article – You know WHAT methods to use (CLICK HERE FOR ARTICLE 2)

From this 3rd article – You now know HOW to structure and organise the methods into your week!

In my final article, I’m going to give you full, real life examples of each of the 3 training days (including sets and reps) to make life EVEN EASIER for you as you begin to pick and play!

You will get to see training footage, heart rate charts and some top tips on how to use the best conditioning methods out there during lockdown!

I’m then going to give you MY PERSONAL TRAINING PLAN that I have been performing with my partner Anna since the lockdown started so that you can see exactly how we practice what we preach in the Tier 1 Family!

See you in the final part!

Thank you so much for reading!

Stu Turner

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