You compete on race day and sacrifice in the gym. Don’t be one of many athletes that are in the gym all day, but it seems like their training is not going anywhere.
Does this sound like you? If so are you need a tactical approach to your training, that is where benchmark testing comes in.
Benchmark testing is an in-depth evaluation of your fitness capabilities and current physical abilities.
When you take a benchmark evaluation, you are made aware of any blind spots or potential weaknesses in your current training level.
So, you are wondering why you need benchmark testing, and what it is.
What is your current fitness status? How do you know?
You may have an idea, but to determine where you are at you need to get tested.
Benchmark testing is preferential to other forms of testing when it comes to athletics, especially triathletes. As a triathlete you are swimming, biking, running and putting more demands on your body than the average athlete, as an elite-level athlete you need elite style training and programming to optimize your performance.
After getting tested, you will know where you stand at your current fitness level.
Your test results allow for a training program based on your individual needs, ensuring you are receiving a personalized plan specific to what you need, eliminating guesswork and improving training efficiency and saving you time in the.
Tracking progress allows for you to elevate your training to the highest level.
When it comes to training and performance, we need to monitor & test where we are in our practice. Establishing a baseline is essential in putting together a personal training protocol.
As a triathlete you are exposing your body to a variety of stressors, running, biking, swimming all take their toll on the body, you are putting more stress on your body than the traditional athlete.
Benchmark testing allows you to track if your training plan is working for you, and adjust as necessary.
When you are striving towards a goal, you will work harder and are more motivated to stick to your training routine. Staying accountable ensures you are putting in the work, you know you will be competitive.
Testing your performance determines if you are working hard enough in the gym.
Are you putting in the work?
Let’s see; if you are putting in the work, I want to know if you are doing what you are doing. Seeing the fruits of your labor translate into improvements in the competition will motivate you to work harder, and keep you accountable to your goals.
Do you know what your current performance is at? How are you adapting to the current workouts that you are doing? What is improving your training?
The only way to know the answers to these questions is to establish a baseline of what your current performance is and go from there. Without testing and measuring what you are doing in the gym, you will end up spinning your wheels.
To perform to the best of your ability and dominate the competition, you need to do what other people are not doing; we need to make sure you are working hard enough to be where you want to be in the sport.
Establishing a baseline helps determine what percentages we need to be using when we are in the gym, and what we should expect for recovery time based on calculations.
Knowing how and when to train is as essential as the training itself. Understanding what needs improvement in performance, saves time and energy.
Recovery & Injury Prevention
Monitoring heart rate variability, one-rep maxes, lactate tests, allow working to the most of your ability without injuring yourself.
Preventing overuse injuries is crucial. You do not want to lose the race before you even start from crappy training protocols.
If performance is decreasing, and you are not making progress, something is up. A Benchmark testing is a powerful tool in preventing overtraining and potential injuries.
Just shooting from the hip may work, but there will come the point in time when guesswork in your training is not enough.
The worst-case scenario is that you overwork yourself, and get an injury keeping you out of the competition for months. That sucks, we both know guys who have been sidelined because they did not see the limit of their abilities. Don’t be that guy.
The best-case scenario that comes out of you continue to train the way you have been without monitoring progress, is maybe you win a few races, perhaps you are doing everything the best you can, maybe you are working hard enough, maybe you are recovering enough.
Don’t take a chance on race day; you have put in countless hours, blood sweat and tears into making it this far, don’t leave your performance up to chance or a sheer whim.
Remember people do not remember the runner-up when it comes game day, they only remember the people that win. You won’t have any regrets when you step to the starting blocks, the only regret you will have on race day is that you did not start tracking your performances sooner.