I always tell our coaching staff that you have to understand the “whys” of fitness in order to design and develop programs that deliver both short and long term results. I have developed the Maximum Overload training program from that philosophy. Most of the fitness programs today are exercise. Not to say there is anything wrong with exercise, but just as your body is a dynamic organism you have to have a dynamic design to your exercise in order for it to be considered training. You have to develop a strategy that evaluates where you are starting, strengths, weaknesses, and then a plan to get you better.
The problem with most programs developed today is that they do not answer the “whys”. Most designs for strength and power training is based on someone doing what has been done in the past and just passed down from generation to generation. The why is often times never really understood.
The decision to write this book was based on this concept of both why and why not. Why not really develop a strength and power program that does not just “strengthen the core” or just adding strength with no regard for both absolute power and Maximum Sustained Power. This book is based on answering so many “whys” over a long evolution of thought and training that originated back in the late 1990s.
So why Maximum Overload Training and what is it? As you will read in the following chapters all roads in sport and movement lead to the concept of power. Not only on an absolute basis but then subsequently improving your ability to win races by dramatically improving your ability to sustain the highest percentage of your Maximum Power the longest! This is defined as Maximum Sustained Power and is the ultimate goal of the Maximum Overload training program.
Endurance athletes, and particularly cyclists, require a high power to weight ratio. Most of the coaching community in endurance sports focus most of the time on the aerobic engine and how to sustain the highest percentage of an athletes Vo2max (absolute aerobic power) for the longest period of time. Little attention is spent on how to produce more sustainable power in the muscles, particularly the legs. If you can train your legs to produce greater amounts of power on both an absolute basis and also the highest Maximum Sustained Power, your wattage goes up, your overloads on the bike are improved, and your ability to hold the highest percentage of maximum power (functional threshold power FTP) skyrockets.
Why look only at Aerobic Power? Why not see if our bodies with proper training design will be able to produce greater and greater amounts of power? Could you train less? Could you be a better version of your current highly fit self? Could you take power outputs to a level you never thought possible? These are the “whys” of this book and this is the foundation of Maximum Overload training to develop Maximum Sustained Power.