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With college semesters ending and high school/middle schools entering holiday break we must make sure we are getting some time away to rest and recover from a long semester of training and sport.  

With that said we still need to make sure we have a plan for our training.  A lot of you will travel home and flip though your training packet and others will head back to work with your local trainer.  All of these options are fine as long as we are hitting the big rocks of training.  

The big rocks

  1. Sprinting
  2. Jumping/Med Ball Throws
  3. Recovery
  4. Weight training

Interesting to see that weight lifting is last on the list, but is the one that everyone will spend the most time on.  

Why do I have the exercises in that order? 

For starters, I am not saying don’t lift, I am saying that its not the most important.  

Sprinting/Jumping/Medicine Ball Throws

If you were to go home and do nothing, but sprinted 2-3 times per week while you were home id be willing to bet you’d be happy with the results.  Sprinting is the greatest CNS stressor there, yet has the shortest yielding effects.  Your max velocity qualities only last 5 days +/- 3 days.  That means for some the qualities from sprinting will only last 2 days and for others it could last up to 8.  Implementing/continuing to sprint over break will also help you get faster, help mitigate soft tissue injuries and improve strength. The same can be said for jumping and throwing medicine balls.  On a motor unit recruitment chart you can see that Sprinting/Throwing/Jumping all fall in the top left end of the chart.  


Want to train at an optimal level you better be living right outside of the 1 to 2 hours of training that you are doing each day.  If you are not taking your recovery seriously then you are missing out.  

What is considered good recovery?  

-Sleeping 6-8 hours of sleep per night 

-Quality Nutrition and Hydration

-Water Immersion (Cold/Hot) Contrast 

-Compression, Active Recovery, or Stretching


Weight Training

Finally, comes the weight training.  People may agree or disagree, but during winter break your body should be recovering. Most high school athletes have just wrapped up their fall seasons and some are likely playing a winter sport or gearing up for a spring sport.  On top of it all most have played throughout the summer, so taking a few weeks to reset it never a bad thing.  Your body cannot grow if it does not rest.  Likewise at the college level athletes have just wrapped up a fall season or fall ball and were training for near 16 weeks straight.  Just to be clear, I am not saying do not lift! I am saying that in level of importance for sport lifting over winter break can take a back seat to sprinting, jumping, throwing and recovery. 

With Strength,

Colin Masterson 


“Building the best athletes”