Back in the day, endurance athletes used traditional threshold training encompassing both high volume and high intensity. This technique might work for novice athletes, but it only slightly improved the performance of highly trained runners and cyclists, and may contribute to overtraining. A study published in theJournal of Strength and Conditioning Research compares this program to polarized training.

Analyzing 5 studies, scientists put the traditional model up against an undulated non-linear periodization program where individuals limit time spent training at race pace by separating high-intensity workouts with one or more slow long-distance sessions. They found this new model superior to the old school approach for increasing aerobic endurance, especially when high-intensity sessions were performed as intervals.

True Strength Moment: There’s always a new way to train for performance improvement, and this one might help elite athletes keep on top of their game without overdoing it.