There are times during endurance events when the acceleration needed to climb a hill, break away from a group, or pull off a long sprint to the finish line demands that we deliver energy at a rate resulting in a build-up of lactic acid. We can convert lactic acid back to something we can burn aerobically. There is an enzyme responsible for this. The more of the enzyme we have, the better off we are at staving off that lactic acid burn. We can train in a way that promotes the production of the enzyme (known as lactate dehydrogenase).
Doing repeats at an effort level above your “threshold” followed immediately by an effort below your threshold will promote production of this enzyme making you a better racer. Here’s an example of a swim workout that trains for the production of this enzyme. The gist of the workout can be applied to any discipline with the same kind of result.
An extended warm up of 2500 yards/meters can be reduced. Cut out the middle of the warm up if you are not accustomed to this kind of distance in your training.
Total yards = 3900 without the cool down
100 swim w/:05
300 pull-no strain
400 swim-negative split build to moderate
10x50 w/:10 build to strong first 25 then 25 ez
400 pull, no strain
300 swim as 50 build to strong-25 ez four times straight through
200 swim last 100 strong
100 swim all strong
250 pull-250 swim continuous
The meat of the workout is designed to allow for accelerating and then recovering while racing.
Hard-EZ Set: 7 times through the following.
(100yds at 92-95% effort, check time, swim 100 EASY, then take :20 rest and repeat)