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Training ideas specifically to help racers get faster, quicker.

by Doug Ritchie

I recently had a discussion with Andy Bridge and I asked Andy if he could shed some light on training ideas specifically to help racers get faster, quicker.

First I should say that if you don’t know who Andy is you can look at his bio on the USA Wildwater site (

I asked Andy if there were specific workouts that he thought produced better results in terms of actually improving his performance. He suggested the following workout routine and mentioned that it was really oriented towards the Classic event rather than the sprint.

The routine is to be done weekly on a measured course, i.e. between two markers like a tree and a rock, or, by using a GPS to measure a specific distance.

The workout is done every week (at least) over a period of months leading into the key race. The rest component gradually declines as the race date approaches. Each workout consists of 4 or 5 reps. The first month has a 2 minute rest between reps. For each successive month, the rest is decreases by 30 seconds. He might have started with a point to point piece that took 4:15 and gradually worked it down to less than four minutes.

Andy kept track of every piece in each workout and collected literally hundreds of data points, so he really knew how well it was working.

Month one: 4 or 5 X (4’ X 2’), done point to point so won’t be exactly four minutes.

Month two: 4 or 5 X (4’ X 90”) the rest component begins to drop.

Month three: 4 or 5 X (4’ X 1’) rest is now one minute.

Month four: 4 or 5 X (4’ X 30”) rest down to thirty seconds.