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Starting the preparation in the best way is essential to achieve your goals. But how can you not go wrong?  

The answer is simple, following an annual periodization that consists in defining, organizing and planning the workouts in order to arrive at the competitions in the best possible physical shape and athletic condition. In fact, it is important to know that you cannot maintain the same level of physical status for the whole year.


Defining the annual training structure is of fundamental importance. If you continue to train always with the same program, the same identical loads and maybe running along paths or roads with the same characteristics at some point you risk reaching a stalemate or, even worse, a decline in general performance and a loss of motivation.

The annual periodization system is based on the subdivision of the year into different phases (periods) each characterized by different objectives. In the case of athletes who do not have ranking goals and, therefore, compete more frequently, the various phases of the periodization can be partially reduced and merged, but it is never recommended to eliminate them.

All the various phases of periodization, transitory, formal preparatory, special and competitive preparatory, are then divided into smaller training cycles, each with a more defined and precise objectives.

Why? The answer in this case too is simple. Your body works like a machine, it needs precise and limited inputs and limited, it is unable to work on many different aspects at the same time.

For example, if you are working on the thresholds and the goal is to recover basic speed, you will not be able to simultaneously develop your endurance skills that would force you to train at a slower pace.

The transitional period is the 1st and is located between the end of the competitive season and the beginning of the fundamental preparatory period. How long does it last? For the TRM Coaches about 1 month.

The main objective is recovery from the efforts made and the verification of your general state.  

We can distinguish 3 phases in the transitional period of 1 month:

  • Phase 1, in which running is replaced by other motor activities without impact. It can lasts about 7/10 days up to 15 days after your last race of the season. During this phase you can alternate rest with bike / exercise bike or swimming with short sessions of up to 1 hour at low intensity
  • Phase 2, cross-training phase, in which you can alternate easy runs from 30 ‘up to 1 hour with aerobic activities (cycling, swimming, ski mountaineering) increasing a little the intensity of the workout
  • Phase 3, during which you progressive return to a normal training schedule, starting to plan 1-2 quality session. Obviously, you should first verify various parameters through medical tests (blood and urine analysis with markers related to endurance sports) and functional tests (VO2max; Threshold Test, etc.).

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Cristina Tasselli

Digital Strategic Marketing Director - certified Innovation Manager - in multinational companies, she is still today the only Italian female athlete to have ran 900 km and 55,000m D+ in the mountains in a single stage race (Transpyrenea 2016, 3rd women overall). She counts numerous Podiums and international Victories on races over 100k. She holds a SNaQ CONI certification as a Trail Running Coach, Athletic Trainer and in Nutrition and Sports Supplementation. Since 2014 she is President and sports executive of innovative technology startups and companies, including Trail Running Movement and Digital Sport 360. She trains elite trail running athletes and she teaches in trail running coach certification courses. She is an author of sports articles on training, nutrition and supplementation in trail running and running, both in Italian and in English and Spanish. She manages relationships and collaborations with Federations and Race Organizers.