Call To Schedule

Increase Endurance Using Athletic Performance Training

A woman in a wetsuit running in the ocean.


Athletic performance training is a journey that every sports enthusiast embarks on to push their limits and achieve new milestones. One key aspect that plays a pivotal role in this journey is endurance. Explore how athlete physical therapy, integrated into your personalized endurance training program, can optimize your training and prevent injuries in the pursuit of athletic excellence.


In this article, we’ll delve into the nuances of athletic performance training, with a specific focus on the critical element of endurance.


Stamina vs. Endurance: What Is the Difference?

Before delving into the specifics of endurance training, it’s essential to clarify the distinction between stamina and endurance. The Master Class distinguishes between endurance and stamina based on the metrics they assess.



Stamina measures how long one can perform at peak levels before fatigue, often improved through intense exercise intervals enhancing metrics like maximum heart rate and oxygen capacity.



On the other hand, endurance assesses the maximum time and distance for strenuous activities, with metrics like total exercise duration or distance covered in activities such as running or cycling.  In the next section, we’ll explore what does endurance mean and its role in sports performance.


5 Sports That Require Endurance

Sports require more than just strength; they demand endurance that goes beyond limits. Now, let’s dive into the specifics of sports that require endurance, exploring the unique challenges and strategies to bolster your endurance. Discover how to increase endurance and meet the demands of various athletic disciplines



Long-distance runners rely on sustained energy levels, requiring specific training techniques that build cardiovascular strength and mental resilience and develop mental resilience to overcome the challenges of extended runs.


Target Muscle: Primarily engages leg muscles, including quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves.

Frequency: 3 to 4 times a week.

Challenges: Long-distance running poses challenges like monotony and fatigue.

Strategies: Incorporate interval training and mental conditioning to combat monotony and focus on pacing for sustained energy.



Cyclists, whether on the road or mountain trails, need exceptional endurance. Specialized training programs for cyclists, whether on the road or mountain trails, focus on sustained power output and recovery strategies.


Target Muscle: Engages quadriceps, hamstrings, and calf muscles.

Frequency: 2 to 3 times a week.

Challenges: Cycling, especially on challenging terrains, can lead to muscle fatigue and strain.

Strategies: Incorporate recovery rides, proper stretching, and periodic rest to prevent overuse injuries and enhance cycling performance.



Pool and open-water training methods enhance swimming endurance, overcoming hydrodynamic resistance and maintaining efficient stroke mechanics.


Target Muscle: Involves a full-body workout, engaging muscles in the arms, shoulders, back, and legs.

Frequency: 2 to 4 times a week.

Challenges: Open water swimming presents challenges like unpredictable currents.

Strategies: Simulate open water conditions in training, practice sighting, and focus on stroke efficiency.



Triathletes face the ultimate endurance challenge through triathlon. Training adapts to competition distance, incorporating swim, bike, and running workouts with concepts like LSD, intervals, Fartlek training, and recovery.


Target Muscle: Engages multiple muscle groups, including those used in swimming, cycling, and running.

Frequency: Varies, with focused training in each discipline, 2 to 3 times a week.

Challenges: Transitioning between disciplines poses unique challenges, including muscle fatigue.

Strategies: Incorporate brick workouts, practice transitions, and gradually increase the intensity of combined training.



Rowing-specific training routines focus on prolonged effort, making endurance a cornerstone of rowing success.


Target Muscle: Primary engagement of muscles in the back, legs, and arms.

Frequency: 2 to 3 times a week.

Challenges: Long-duration rowing can lead to muscle imbalances and back strain.

Strategies: Include cross-training to address muscle imbalances, focus on proper form, and incorporate flexibility exercises for back health.


Types of endurance training


A woman and a man doing trx slings in a gym.


Endurance training isn’t one-size-fits-all. Tailoring programs to suit the demands of specific sports is crucial.


Interval Training:

  • Involves alternating between high-intensity efforts and periods of rest or lower intensity. It is commonly used in sports requiring bursts of speed and power.
  • Effective for improving cardiovascular fitness and pushing anaerobic thresholds.
  • YWCA suggests using a heart rate monitor to keep your heart rate between 160-180 bpm during interval workouts for optimal oxygen intake and maximum benefits.

Steady-State Training:

  • It involves maintaining a consistent, moderate level of intensity throughout the training session.
  • Ideal for building aerobic endurance and improving overall cardiovascular health.
  • Frequently used in long-distance running, cycling, and swimming.

Long Slow Distance (LSD) Training:

  • Focuses on extended periods of low to moderate-intensity exercise.
  • Aims to improve aerobic capacity and endurance for prolonged activities.
  • Commonly employed in endurance sports like marathon running and triathlons.

Circuit Training:

  • Incorporates a series of exercises targeting different muscle groups.
  • Combines strength and endurance training, promoting overall fitness.
  • Suitable for athletes looking to enhance both muscular and cardiovascular endurance.


  • It involves engaging in a variety of exercises and activities beyond the primary sport.
  • Reduces the risk of overuse injuries and enhances overall fitness.
  • Beneficial for athletes in sports with repetitive movement patterns.

Tips for improving your endurance

Achieving peak endurance is a journey, not a destination. Now, let’s delve into specific strategies that will elevate your endurance to new heights.


Consistent Training: Vital for building and maintaining endurance and maximal power, especially during pre-season. Set up a routine that steadily pushes your limits for continuous improvement.


Gradual Progression: Gradually intensify and lengthen your workouts to prevent overtraining and minimize injury risks. Listen to your body, adjusting intensity based on your fitness level. Consider consulting a conditioning coach for expert guidance and a safe progression in your fitness journey.


Balanced Nutrition: Maintain a balanced diet, stay hydrated, and seek nutritional advice for personalized guidance in meeting your fitness goals. Pay attention to body composition for insights into overall health and effective tailoring of your nutrition and exercise plan. Understand energy systems for optimized workouts and efficient performance in reaching fitness objectives.


Adequate Rest and Recovery: Give your body ample time to rest and recover between intense training sessions. Prioritize quality sleep for physical and mental recovery, reducing the risk of injury and promoting optimal performance in your fitness journey.


Mind-Body Connection: Develop mental resilience to push through challenges, aligning with your athlete training philosophy. Practice mindfulness and visualization techniques to enhance focus, endurance, and mental performance, ultimately contributing to improved performance in competition.



Change The Game Endurance Performance Comprehensive Training


A man is punching a boxing ball in a gym.


For those on the quest for a groundbreaking approach to endurance, the Change The Game program provides a comprehensive personal training experience tailored to your skill level. This innovative method seamlessly blends physical and mental conditioning, incorporating science-based approaches and propelling athletes beyond their perceived limits in a customized endurance training program.


Success stories and testimonials underscore the program’s effectiveness, showcasing the transformative power of personalized training. The conditioning program, meticulously crafted to enhance performance and guarantee athletes surpass their peak potential, is guided by our dedicated sports performance professionals. Tailored to individual needs, this program not only meets but exceeds specific performance goals.



In the domain of athletic achievement, endurance emerges as a pivotal factor, acting as the bridge that separates the good from the exceptional. In your pursuit of fitness goals, bear in mind that endurance isn’t merely a physical trait; it’s equally a mental prowess. Incorporating purposeful endurance training into your routine is sure to enhance your overall athletic performance.


Elevate your overall athletic performance by incorporating purposeful endurance training into your routine. Curious about the transformative benefits of sports performance training? Check out Change the Game Performance Therapy to discover how you can change the game in your fitness journey!





Q1: Can endurance training benefit non-athletes?


A1: Absolutely. In addition to enhancing cardiovascular health and stamina for various physical activities and daily life, both athletes and non-athletes can further optimize their overall fitness with the inclusion of strength training.


This holistic approach, informed by exercise science, not only promotes endurance and strength but also emphasizes injury prevention, ensuring a well-rounded strategy for physical well-being.


Q2: How does performance training differ from regular fitness training?


A2: Performance training differs from regular fitness training by focusing on sport-specific goals, incorporating skill development, and employing intensity variations. It’s a specialized and wide-array approach tailored to enhance athletic abilities and achieve specific performance outcomes, a methodology commonly embraced by elite athletes striving for excellence.


Q3: What are the potential risks or injuries associated with endurance sports, and how can they be prevented?


A3: Engaging in endurance sports comes with potential risks and injuries, including overuse injuries like stress fractures and muscle strains. Prevention involves a holistic approach to movement, incorporating proper training progression, adequate rest, cross-training, and regular body conditioning exercises tailored to address weaknesses and imbalances, especially considering your injury history. In the unfortunate event of injuries, incorporating acute injury rehabilitation practices is crucial for a safe and effective recovery.

A man in a blue shirt smiling in front of a brick wall.

Dr. Ryan Godfrey

PT, DPT, Owner of Change the Game Performance

We help athletes get back to training pain free, injury free without taking time off.


Want To Get Relief Faster?

Choose which option works best for you
Scroll to Top