Iñigo San Millán training model

Yeah perhaps. My question wasn’t in any way contentious.

Edit: Just read the tweet. In the words of a football (soccer) song over here (UK): “they’ve all gone quiet over there”

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I don’t expect this to change anything, though. This and the other “polarized” thread has plenty of evidence cited that directly contradicts Iñigo’s claims and basis for his “method” and we’re still plowing ahead so this should just be more of the same.

It does remind me more and more of the Carmichael craze before Armstrong’s downfall. It’s what happens when a system is based on idols and beliefs rather than science.

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Not sure if great training systems are necessarily based on science. Looking at what the East Germans or the Norwegians did was not really science based (ignoring the juice effect for now, they still had to train). The East Germans started documenting training protocols and outcomes in the 1970s. And made sure that this experience got shared among coaches (examples shown in the pro/elite thread). The Norwegians did the same in the 1990s which led to this huge dominance in Nordic skiing. It’s more trial and error of coaches than hard science.


Do any of you ISM, Z2, Z3 nerds listen to Steven Magness?

They had a really good podcast on polarized vs. medium intensity training.

The most interesting part was that polarized was good for making new mitochrondria. Basically, volume builds mitrochondria. Studies show this. Intensity doesn’t make more mitrochrondria. Polarized was also good for new athletes and those that are having trouble recovering. Read, need more base. It also makes the case for sweet spot not really building base.

Middle intensities were good for improving mitrochondria respiration.

They have been doing a lot of podcasts on middle intensity (broken interval training, Igloy training, flux training, Nowegian, Marius Bakken, Ignbritsen training).


In several episodes Marcus has been talking about David Bishop mitochondria studies. One thing he mentioned is that lots of top runners are doing doubles and triples (days). Easy morning run, easy lunch run, afternoon workout. He said that when he ran in college, starting to do doubles 4x per week really propelled him to a new level. He said that the mitochondria studies show PGC1 Alpha stimulated after 20 minutes of exercise and that the signal peaks 3 hours later. I suspect he was theorizing but he was making a connection with double and triple days and re-stimulating PGC1 Alpha multiple times per day.

It got me thinking that we hardly ever hear about double and triple days in cycling. The “pro” thing to do in cycling is the 5 or 6 hour endurance ride. It makes me wonder if this kind of stuff is just tradition rather than optimal in cycling. For a masters athlete who struggles to find time for 8 hours per week, maybe an extra 30 minutes of easy endurance every morning levels them up. Double mitochondria stimulation and pushes them over 10 hours.

This also makes me thing about ISM/tempo/Neal intervals. People talk about sets like 2x20, 3x30 or even hours (probably low tempo). Do we know if that is even necessary? Rather than a big set of very fatiguing tempo once or twice a week, maybe shorter sets done many times a week sends the signal for adaptation more effectively?


World class marathon runners always did doubles or triples as it allows them to run 20+ miles/day with less injury risk and as we know volume is king. I think for top pro bike riders who are riding 5-6 hour stages daily (rather than a 2 hour and change marathon) then long days in the saddle incorporating intervals throughout is probably optimal. That said for us mere mortals them maybe 2 x shorter rides if you can fit them in before and after work could help - need a lot of pairs of bibs though! :laughing:


Bishop himself noted in a later review paper on mitochondrial biogenesis that there is confilicting research on the the importance of training volume. This strong relationship could be shown in the data he pooled but there is other research that shows that intensity can boost biogenesis equally. So once again, we don’t know anything. And social media picks out one paper and creates false realities.

With all the time pro cyclists interrupt their training rides with coffee breaks, not sure we can say they don’t do two a days :slight_smile:

We should also recognise that pro cyclists spend a ton of time descending, many of the live in Andorra or other mountainous regions. 1/3 of a 5 hour ride can be descending.


Not only Pros.:grin:


A lot of that is coaching wisdom and tradition but I don’t think we know for sure. Are double and triple days good solely because of the extra volume or is the metabolic signaling occurring several times per day? Or, maybe it’s a combination? Maybe a pro cyclists would benefit from triple days several times per week and then only put in the 5-6 hour single ride once or twice per week?

Amateurs often try to scale down pro training but maybe us mortals would benefit more from the double/triple days more than pros. A lot of us work from home now and multiple 20-30 minute sessions throughout the work day might be easily achievable whereas leaving the desk and computer behind for 3-4 hours would be impossible. I used to think that a 20 minute ride on the bike was worthless but now I’m not so sure, especially now with smart trainers and being able to jump on the bike with less than 5 minutes of prep.


I found this interesting. (There are 1286 posts on here, I definitely haven’t read them all and possibly I am duplicating a link, apologies if I am).

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I’m not sure if it’s so efficient on the bike. Pure anecdote, but I don’t seem to settle in in a metabolic sense for at least 20min. If I am doing a high intensity workout I can just about force the body to ramp up quicker, but that’s different to LT1 for 20min.

When I was at school, there was a theory that 20min was the minimum for a run to start being beneficial from an aerobic conditioning sense, and I think it was 45 or 60min for riding. No idea where that came from, but it always stuck with me in a small way :sweat_smile:


My big book of cycling training from 1987 stated that everything <30min is useless for the reason you mentioned. While I’ve been doing 2-a-days for the last 2 years a so I would never do anything below 30min. Actually, nothing below 60min.


My 2c on this topic is that my commuting has bumped me up tremendously :slight_smile: 90min in the morning, 90min in the afternoon.

And in between the two rides its an eating contest :smiley:


Well, it wasn’t science-based then but most of that eventually became literal science, i.e. knowledge. Even sans-drugs that’s when Bompa et al came out with periodization bibles that have stood the test of time.
Difference here is that ISM makes claims he doesn’t back up even if he says they are evidence-based and, in the face of conflicting evidence (i.e. evidence that his claims are actually wrong such as the lactate infusion here) everyone just plows ahead because I guess Pogačar would be nowhere without him?

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Long ones as well… when I was in Alicante Quickstep used to have mid ride coffee and lunch for an hour or so… just chilling in the sun!

Which in my head also goes to show that it doesn’t always have to be so perfect, just ride :slight_smile: I have some people in clubs here in Sweden that fly to Mallorca only to ride on the flats because “training is too inefficient when riding uphill since you have to descend”… yes fellow rider, its the 10min descents that keep you in Cat.5. :upside_down_face:


Seiler agrees with coggan (vs ism) point on the fat metabolism controversy from 1:17:12 here:

Seiler again in solid presentation mode and nice to see „Agrees with Andy Coggans points that lactic acid does not inhibit fat oxidation

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It’s all relative though… 30 minute ones when first starting out with 2 or 3 a days will have a benefit… until they don’t. You have to start somewhere. My own anecdotal evidence is that using shorter more frequent workouts gets me where i want to be fitness wise better than trying to fit in longer less frequent workouts. (Trading time between 3 sports does factor in to this)

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Apologies for being vague but the post was in context of @mailman 's post (last sentence) and not meant serious (in the context of physiology)

But serious in the context how our belief systems get conditioned.


It is not ISM Z2 training (my ISM Z2 range would be 210-220 based on an LT1 test) but I did an endurance test. Goal was 200km at 30/u.

6h40min at 0.73IF. Last hour I felt the legs. I did this ride also to test some DIY home fueling…