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1992 Publications

Endurance Training: How Much Is Too Much?by Nina S. Stachenfeld, MA, Gilbert W. Gleim, PhD, James A. Nicholas, MDThe Nicholas Institute for Sports Medicine and Athletic Trauma, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York, New York - last modified 2013-02-10 00:00
The Physician and Sportsmedicine, Vol. 20, No. 8, August 1992


The term over-distance training describes the practice of training for endurance events at weekly mileages far greater than competitive distances. Many endurance athletes think such training is necessary to improve their performance.

Although collegiate and professional coaches have had success with overdistance training, no scientific evidence suggests that continually increasing weekly training mileage improves performance. In fact, continued or sudden increases in training volume may decrease performance or increase injury and illness rates.

Children who over-distance train may be especially at risk of adverse medical and psychological responses because of their lack of training experience and incomplete physical development. For both children and adults, training regimens must balance the benefits and risks of progressive endurance stress.