There are 3 main methods that we like that can be used on high intensity days (aka Development days).  These methods are called:

  • Extensive (aka Lactic) Intervals
  • Threshold Intervals
  • Cardiac Power Intervals


Completing these methods and spending time in the Morpheus red Overload Zone can aide in improving your max capacity and power while developing high-level energy systems and fast-twitch muscle fibers.  These methods place a great deal of stress on the body's internal systems, so it is important to balance these with appropriate recovery strategies and lower intensity methods.


NOTE:  All heart rate training methods should be placed into a customized plan that allows for alterations each day depending on recovery score, how much time you have, and your mindset that day.


Note:  During high intensity methods you will get better heart rate accuracy by using a chest strap as opposed to using an optical sensor such as the M5.



Extensive (Lactic) Intervals


This method be be focused toward lactic power or lactic capacity.  The only difference is the duration of each interval.  

  • If the goal is more lactic power then the interval should be in the 30-40 second range
  • If the goal is more lactic capacity then the interval should be in the 60 second range


One of the most important aspects of this interval is to maintain good form and good technique with the exercise, because this method is very taxing and you may start to lose focus on your form and technique when you start fatiguing.  


This is not a rush game.  The goal is not to see how many reps you can do in a certain amount of time; it's all about quality reps.  So use as much rest time as is needed to ensure max intensity can be achieved each rep with good form or technique.

During the first minute of recovery after each interval you'd like to see your heart rate drop from the red zone to the blue zone.  



Below is an example of what this type of workout might look like in the Morpheus app.  


The graph represents the following:

  • 8 minute warmup
  • 5 minute recovery with mobility and breathing focus
  • 5 - 45 sec intervals with 2 min recovery between
    • This particular person used 2 minute recovery because of high level of conditioning and ability to drop from red zone to blue zone in about 30 seconds.


Note that because the intervals are short and because it takes time to get heart rate up to the red zone even when at max intensity, the total amount of time in the red zone will be small relative to the blue and green zones.  But the work effort level during the intervals should definitely feel like a 9 or 10 on a 1-10 scale of how hard the workout feels.




Threshold Intervals


This method is simply training right around your anaerobic threshold (AnT).  It represents the balance between the aerobic and anaerobic systems.  By training right around this balance point you improve your body's ability to train at maximum aerobic capacity before getting overly fatigued.


In Morpheus, your AnT range represents the bottom of the red zone when your recovery score is 90% or higher.  


For some people, the calculations that Morpheus uses for your 3 zones might provide enough accuracy such that the bottom of the red zone is very close to AnT (both in terms of actual measured range and how it should feel).


Other people may need to complete an AnT test of some kind to get a more accurate estimate of this number or range.

More info on how to do this can be found at this link:

http://support.trainwithmorpheus.com/support/solutions/articles/4000148448-max-heart-rate-and-anaerobic-threshold 



During this interval you want to work at an intensity that allows you to maintain your heart rate at the bottom of the red zone.  As your ability to control your energy output improves (dynamic energy control) you will notice that you can maintain a faster speed or power while remaining right around your AnT range.


One of the easiest ways to progress this method is simply to extend the duration (or distance) of each interval.


The example below represents several reps of 3 minutes each with 2 minutes active recovery between reps.



Cardiac Power Intervals


The goal of of this method is to try to drive heart rate as close to maximum as possible in a 1-2 minute time frame.  


In order to reach maximum heart rate you're going to have to use total body exercises such as running/sprinting, versaclimber, jacobs ladder, sports-specific exercises, etc


You may need to complete a field test of some sort to measure your maximum heart rate.

http://support.trainwithmorpheus.com/support/solutions/articles/4000148448-max-heart-rate-and-anaerobic-threshold 


After each interval you want to focus on breathing to drive heart rate down as quickly as possible (trying to go from red zone to blue zone in 1 minute) and then allow for easy active recovery for a couple of minutes prior to the next rep.



Below is an example of what Cardiac Power Intervals may look like when using Morpheus.These are 2 minute intervals followed by 3 minute recoveries.