Introduction to Mitochondrial Training: endurance

Written by Angelo

Categories: Nutrition | Healthcare | Sport

August 23 2018

For almost 20 years I have been desperately trying to apply the paleo diet to my sporting activity.

di Angelo

I tried in 1000 ways, I got excellent results, even won races, improved a lot ... But unfortunately, it must be said in no uncertain terms, the endurance sport (competitive!) Does not adapt well to the According to Nature diet as it is not in line with the our evolutionary principles.
The same happened to the many people I met and they tried like me ... SERIOUSLY.

The book by the Cordain / Friel duo remains a cornerstone for those wishing to train in a "classic" way (which I do not recommend) and, if desired, we can manage it for anyone.

The nutritional need for carbohydrates is not easily manageable to simplify the problem. Furthermore, depending on carbohydrates in training and in competition, over time, reduces the number, size and activity of the mitochondria, our energy plants ...

We are at an impasse! On the one hand we want to go faster and we need carbohydrates to do it, on the other hand by using carbohydrates, we go against nature and, in the long run, we get sick ...
A dog chasing its own tail.
We are designed to use glycogen (sugars) for very short periods, escapes, fights, hunting… Certainly not for races of 1-2 or 5 or worse 10 hours! These are CONTRONATURA!

The mitochondria therefore thrive on fats. But fats are a fuel that makes us go slow compared to carbohydrates ... So it doesn't come out ... NATURE IS INDIFFERENT… IT CANNOT BE TURNED!
But perhaps indulged ...
Do not believe the fairy tale of adaptation to fat which is partially true, but the biochemistry is not so debatable, if you do not believe it, read this article that will dispel all doubts:

Low carb diets for endurance sports: another media hoax or total ignorance! (Part one).

The rest, what your low carb guru or, worse still ketogenic, tells you is total pseudoscience ...

Obviously I appeal to endurance athletes who train to improve performance, themselves or to beat their neighbor, as well as an advanced amateur or even a professional ...

Let's talk about running, cycling, endurance swimming, triathlon, duathlon, mountain running, cross-country skiing ...

A historical article that is still relevant today!

Can endurance hurt?

In the last 2 years I have studied mitochondria in depth together with my friend and partner Alessio Angeleri, who is also an engineer like me ... And we realized, studying at the same time the principles of the great Phil Maffettone, Mark Sisson, Daniele Vecchioni (which will be present at the next paleomeeting), the same Cordain, Friel, etc ... and others who could make ends meet ... We put their ideas together, reasoned, tried ...

In the beginning, in Coppi's time, an athlete's capacity was commensurate with lung capacity, then with resting heartbeats, then we started talking about hemoglobin with the various doping scandals ... Finally, here we are at the new frontier: THE MITOCHONDRON, precisely!

Our method is based on some important principles that go in this direction:

  • First and most important: FIRST MACROCYCLE. reprogram the hardware, as Daniele Vecchioni calls it. This is the most important phase of the program which requires perseverance, self-denial and, above all, TRUST… As it contravenes all the principles of modern sports training (obviously wrong)… COMPLETELY. Both from the point of view of training and from the food point of view. This phase lasts at least 3 months and up to 5-6 months. The password is: SLOW DOWN! Go slowly! Long too, but slowly! Power supply: ACCORDING TO NATURE (paleo) rigid. No offenses are allowed at this stage! NEVER! Because the reprogramming involves an increase in the volume and concentration of the mitochondria that will then come to the rescue, pissed off, in the subsequent stages of training and competitions, suddenly increasing performance to levels never achieved before. In the following seasons this phase can be shortened to 2-4 months if well done and repeated in the first year.
    It may or may not be supported by specific tests (not included) for the measurement of lipid power (initial, intermediate and final) to establish the right intensity of training with more or less accuracy (e.g. watts on a bike or running pace or swimming ...), or by empirical tests at ZERO cost. The progress of training can be measured with simple field tests designed by us. They are used to verify if it improves and to make evaluations.
    In this phase you can do specific technical training for each sport in order to improve the "software" as well as the hardware.
    Furthermore, a not insignificant detail, it will dramatically improve body composition and endogenous hormone production (due to the improved mitochondrial power that will raise your metabolism in a frightening way). This will also happen according to the simultaneous indications (included in the price) of circadian reset and HRV measurement (not included for some programs). You will also be told how to breathe in training, it seems trivial but it is of fundamental importance.
    Possible study of integrations included.
    The workouts will be customized according to the goals and needs.
  • SECOND MACROCYCLE: it is shorter than the previous one (6-8 weeks) and perhaps more fun. It involves very short but very intense workouts in the “alactic” gym for agonists / amateurs (or anyone who wants to perform them). For the others also free body workouts studied. Also sprint workouts to be performed separately or together at the gym. Diet to be evaluated in person. Tendentially pure paleo. In some subjects with some small recharges to be evaluated.
  • THIRD MACROCYCLE: RACES. After the second macrocycle you can start directly with the scheduled competitions. Periods of 2-3 weeks of "classic" training alternate (you will finally feel your muscles burn !!!! Fake feeling of "having trained") and competitions, followed by as many periods (same length) of "hardware" reprogramming where obviously NOT you compete and resume training from the first macrocycle, both to recover your energy, but above all to regenerate / reprogram the mitochondria burned (literally) by the sugars of the “races” micro cycle. You will see that, all of a sudden, you will deliver totally unexpected power and speed ... The diet will be: "Paleo for athletes" in the competition periods, with technical integration studied ad hoc and "pure" paleo in the reprogramming periods.
  • FOURTH MACROCYCLE (optional, to be evaluated at the moment): in summer (for example) you can have a rest period, followed by a mini-macrocycle of the "first" type (eg one month) and then by another mini-macrocycle "second" (eg 2 weeks).
  • FIFTH MACROCYCLE: equal to the third.
  • SIXTH MACROCYCLE: minimum 3 weeks of absolute rest. Better 4. Without thinking about competitions and training.

Proper training cannot ignore nutrition, integration, management of circadian rhythms (at least 8-9 hours of sleep per night), LIVING ACCORDING TO NATURE and TOTAL RECOVERY ... The workouts must always be performed by "fresh ", For which also the evaluation of HRV is very important, often the" sensations "betray, especially for the agonists ... All this will allow to prevent, as far as possible, overtraining.
I remember that I was the first in Italy to talk about HRV and this article, when there were no modern tools and applications, certifies it:

Cardiac Variability Analysis: or how to train less and better!

Let me give an example for a cyclist:

  • first macrocycle 4 months: October-February
  • second macrocycle: March, until mid-April
  • third macrocycle divided into several microcycles until the end of July (14 weeks divided into 2 races, 2 mitochondrial, 3 races, 3 mitochondrial, 2 races and 1 mitochondrial, 1 rest
  • fourth macrocycle (optional) August until mid-September
  • fifth macrocycle: 2 weeks races, 2 mitochondrial, 3 weeks races. STOP

Who is the method aimed at?


To the novice, novice ... He will make an impressive cultural leap ...
For those who want to lose weight while having fun with bike or running workouts ...
Who wants to beat the friend who takes him for a ride ...
Who wants to do the first race ...
To those who want to improve their rankings ...
To those who are already strong and want to do something "different" ...
Especially to those who have passed the "door" ... And has a natural decay that must be managed ...
For a professional at the end of his career who wants to extend it by 2-3 years ...
But in particular: FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO TRAIN WITH THE ENDURANCE AND STAY 365/365 IN HEALTH, despite all the studies that certify its hormonal destruction, premature aging ...

Good workouts to all!








Recent articles ...



GAMMA WAVES AT 40Hz AND ALZHEIMER'S The studies of the MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, we are practically talking about...