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Regaining my skating power & endurance

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06-26-2010, 10:29 PM
  #1
Ozz
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I figured HFB would be one of the better places to ask this question, so hopefully I can get some ideas to help me out. I'll put cliff notes at the end for those who don't want to read it all

I played hockey for about 10 years as a kid to my early adulthood and was always an extremely explosive skater. Very fast, rarely tired, I could just turn on the jets and fly from the get-go. I was 5'10" and only 155lbs. and didn't lift or exercise at all except for a lot of skating. The rinks in my area all had trouble keeping pickup & leagues going, so it was always trouble finding time or schedule to play with any sort of structure. I kind of fell out of it.

Fast forward another 10 years (WOW does time fly), I've moved to a different location, and play weekly pickup w/some guys in the area. Trouble is, in the past 10 years I'd taken up bodybuilding and am now 70lbs. heavier! That is NOT good for hockey legs, let me tell ya! My legs are now built for strength and "show", definitely not "go". Bodybuilding actually took over for hockey in my life as far as what sport I was obsessed with.

So now that summer is here I thought I'd swap my leg training out for something that'll be more beneficial to getting my skating chops back.

My problem is mostly that my quads just fry out on me after a good rush or after some hard stopping/skating/chasing/running. I have no problem with my actual skating, just my leg endurance.





CLIFF NOTES: speedster had a 10 year layoff, gained 70lbs., now has a bodybuilder's physique, wants some weight training ideas to help get my quad endurance back.

Now obviously I realize simply skating will help me get use to it, but there's only so much that alone feels like it's doing. For those here who supplement weight training, plyometrics, or whatever into their hockey training routines, please share your thoughts - thanks!

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06-26-2010, 10:53 PM
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Raym11
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power cleans? biking, sprinting? If you're a body builder i take it you already have the muscle strength, you just need to get it attoned to skating?

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06-26-2010, 10:57 PM
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SpringfieldSkins
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I'm no trainer but I could imagine quite a few things to help you out.

On the ice:
- Suicides, start at the goal line and go to the blue line and back, then to the center line and back, then to the opposite blue line and back and then to the opposite goal line and back.
- Laps, lots of them.
- Bend your knees more when you are at a public skate.
- Public skates. You'd be amazed by the amount of endurance and improvement your quads can get from skating in circles for a couple of hours.

Off the ice:
- Aerobic activity. Jogging, walking, biking. Things where you need to move your legs for an extended period of time.


When doing your activities focus on length of the activity not the strenuous effort you're putting into them. As a body builder you're probably used to shorter, more strenuous workouts. For endurance you'll need longer, less strenuous workouts.

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06-26-2010, 11:41 PM
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Ozz
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The thing is, I can skate with moderate effort for hours and not be phased. Once I dig in and try to project my now-220lb. body fast down the rink, I just burn out.

There's not much opportunity for me to do extra skating drills unfortunately, but so far I think I'm going to switch the non-hockey training to plyo work and see if I start responding to it positively. I definitely have the strength, it's just a matter now of keeping it going without the killer lactic acid buildup after each intense skating moment.

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06-26-2010, 11:57 PM
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Just keep working on sprints and suicides whenever you can.

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06-27-2010, 04:53 AM
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Dreakmur
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ozz View Post
The thing is, I can skate with moderate effort for hours and not be phased. Once I dig in and try to project my now-220lb. body fast down the rink, I just burn out.

There's not much opportunity for me to do extra skating drills unfortunately, but so far I think I'm going to switch the non-hockey training to plyo work and see if I start responding to it positively. I definitely have the strength, it's just a matter now of keeping it going without the killer lactic acid buildup after each intense skating moment.
You just have to find something that closely resembles a skting stride off the ice. It's not easy, but try to be creative.

At the arean that I work, we have a set of conrete stairs that are about 4 feet wide, and there are concete walls on both sides. If I brace my right foot on the right wall and jump up and across to the left wall, it almost exctly simulates a skating stride. I actually use it as a warm-up every time I skate at that rink, and it works really well.

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06-29-2010, 12:29 AM
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agentzzz
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When you were younger and not lifting you developed long twitch muscle fibers from skating which enabled you not to fatigue quickly. Bodybuilding and heavy lifting produces short twitch muscle fibers, which gives you lots of strength, but no endurance. You need to cut back on strength exercise. Just distance run upping the intensity over time. although, as a fellow bodybuilder, the hardest thing for us to do is cut back strength training.

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06-29-2010, 08:49 AM
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220lb eh? Out of curiosity... how tall are you?

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06-29-2010, 11:19 AM
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Look into a HIIT type program. I use a variation on a stationary bike, including lots of biking with some very fast sprinting mixed in. It's working decently well for me personally.

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06-29-2010, 11:32 AM
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Dump and Chase
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Your body has forgotten how to deal with lactic acid. You need to increase your anaerobic tolerance.


Running, skating, biking for short intervals at high intensity is the way to go.

eg. 30 min on the bike. Cycle between 40 seconds at 90% of your capacity (all out) followed by 2:20 at a low capacity say 20% Could do the same intervals for running or skating.


You could even do this cycle using power cleans for 40 secs and rest for 2:20

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06-29-2010, 12:00 PM
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Gino 14
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I still lean towards kettlebells.

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06-29-2010, 12:12 PM
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I get the best results from quadricep machines. But power on your legs doesn't mean squat when you're skating stride is inefficient. Maybe a power skating course to clean up bad habits, or refurbish your technique?

You can also look into profiling your skateblades to enhance your skating strides. But again, this won't help you much unless you've already got efficient skating strides.

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06-29-2010, 03:23 PM
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Badger36
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Cycling or running would be my suggestion. Short sprints followed by lots of endurance training should help you get back close to where you were.
That and skating, lots and lots of skating. There is no replacement for ice time.
Probably the biggest thing you are going to find is that your 10 year older body isnt going to respond and perform like it did when you were in your teens.
Its a cruel fact of life.

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06-29-2010, 05:02 PM
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Ozz
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Yea, that's what I fear. Aside from my legs getting too hot too quickly, everything else feels about as good as back in the day except my hands are a bit slower.

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06-30-2010, 08:02 PM
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Badger36
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Bah, youll be fine. It just make take you longer to get back to where you were and your body will need more rest and more time to heal.
I wouldnt let the fact that you are a little bit older bother you in the least.
If I can learn to skate and learn how to play this game at age 30, you shouldnt let anything stand in your way. At least your body already knows what to, Im still learning.

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07-04-2010, 04:40 PM
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I have the same basic build as you (6' 0" 215lbs). I found that interval training and doing my resistance training in a circuit format (no more than 45 sec rest between sets) really helped improve my cardio and overall speed. I am still finetuning for that 1st step speed...or at least I will once my broken leg heals up.

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07-04-2010, 04:53 PM
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Ozz
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I do interval training for cardiovascular purposes, I agree it's great for getting into shape. I've got to move it back into my routine.

FWIW I've started a plyo leg routine outside of the rink in conjunction w/my normal weight training.

I'm also in weight-loss mode as far as my bodybuilding is concerned, so I'm hoping that soon enough the combination of skating weekly for the first time in 10 years (we play for 2-3 hours so it's a killer grind), the newly-added plyo work, and the return of my interval sprinting will get me back into hockey shape.

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07-04-2010, 10:49 PM
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Let me try to explain as simply as I can, because I am simple Michael Johnson, the famous sprinter, was 6'3 and 205. He was fairly muscular looking but cut. He was once asked about gaining more muscle to aid his speed and pointed out he was already at the point where gaining more weight of any kind would ultimately slow him down.

First suggestion, lose 15-20 lbs, even perhaps some muscle. Second suggestion, you need to retrain your muscles slightly. I know you're going to laugh at this, but walk every day for 60 minutes for a full week. Then the second week, alternate walking and jogging for 60 minutes for 6 out of 7 days. Then jog 45 minutes, walk 10-15, 5 out of 7 days the third week and you will see a very good result. This was a problem I faced after a leg injury some time ago. I tore a muscle, let it heal, built leg strength in the gym and fell into this same boat! If it doesn't work, I'll give you a full refund!

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07-05-2010, 07:41 AM
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Ozz
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I completely understand that having much bigger legs is going to hinder me in hockey as opposed to help me. Bodybuilding has that effect on most sports since it's quite 'anti-sports training' by its very nature.

Since I stopped playing competitive hockey, bodybuilding filled that void in my life in regards to what kept me active and exercised so to say it's consumed me would be quite the understatement. With that, I'm not exactly interested in sacrificing my leg size just for the sake of becoming a speed demon again for a pickup league. If I were playing competitive it might be another story.

I can skate, power walk, or light jog for a long, long time. When I start w/the sprints, that's when I feel it. And it stands to reason, given that they're built on fast-twitch muscle fibers now as someone stated earlier. Such an instance is absolutely not conducive to explosive skating

One thing that is good, is that I can hang w/most guys on the rink going at full steam while I'm dragging ass and coasting. It goes to show what I had in the tank back when I was a kid/teen playing competitively when I didn't lift a single weight and was just naturally fast. But I'm not used to just hanging w/them at all. I've always been able to smoke most anyone at the drop of a puck.

I had Malkinesque chicken legs that everyone liked to joke about, but they were built to go go go. I was friends w/speed skaters at my old home rink, and we used to race a lot for fun. Only one guy on the whole team would always beat me, and only one other ever beat me even once. I really was fast. But I was tiny and light, now I'm neither. If I were still that light I have no doubt that I could still burn it up, but that's a lot of weight to all of a sudden put on each leg as I try to skate explosively. To get an idea I'd recommend putting on a 70lb. training vest the next time you skate and see how different it feels, and that's not even taking into consideration the 10-year layoff of even playing hockey at all.

I don't need to get back to that level, but I don't want to always be coasting either. Some sort of balance between BB & hockey would be ideal, and that's what I'll aim for. I realize they're counterproductive to each other. As I said we skate for 2-3 hours one day a week, and after the first hour I know I at least am really digging to continue to play hard. I see those extra hours as paying my dues and don't let up on myself as much as I can get away with it. That along w/the sprint intervals off the rink should do me well in due time.

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