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Training Guide

Super Sport Systems Guide to Training:   How to Train and Win With Science-Based Training Program

Super Sport Systems service is designed to satisfy the professional training support needs for different categories of users, coaches and athletes, and offer them an array of useful training design tools and information starting from a professional-grade season plan to daily workouts and to ways evaluate actual progress.   While the outcome of our service is quite rich in data and information, the initial program setup from a user stand point  is very easy.  All you need to do – is to answer several questions related to your previous performance and set your goals.  Everything else is done by us.   Once you start planning or training (depending on whether you are an athlete or a coach), we offer numerous tools to adjust your settings and make them specific to your needs and goals.   You can make these decisions yourself or rely on vast expertise of  Makrotone experts.

To access our suggestions you need to fill in you profile, which usually takes anywhere from one to three minutes, depending on how well are you prepared to answer our questions.  In case if you do not have answers to some of our questions (which is unlikely scenario), we are only a call or an email away to assist you with your profile settings.

Super Sport Systems developed training programs for both athletes and coaches in rowing, swimming, running, cycling, triathlon.   Our methods are applied with undeniable success to special endurance training in many team sports including field hockey, basketball, and water polo.

In a nutshell…   Super Sport Systems (3S), created by Dr. Sergei Beliaev and his counterparts back in 2000, is an online training tool for athletes and coaches of all levels.  It is a tool that enables coaches and individual athletes to better plan their daily and weekly workouts, and prepare their entire season with scientific precision. It does not replace the coach, nor does it interfere with the relationship between the coach and his athletes. In fact it actually enhances both.

What do I get?   3S is a web-based suite of coaching tools and training strategies designed to maximize athletic performance. To get started 3S collects biographical information on each athlete (or group) to create an online profile. This profile uses vitals like gender, birth date, height, and weight in conjunction with the athlete’s best distance, current best time, and the athlete’s (and coach’s) goal time for that season. Using this information along with your meet schedule, the 3S program builds daily training plans over the course of the season. But even after starting to use the 3S System, you are not permanently locked into the training program 3S provides. You may manipulate the suggested plan throughout the season, if conditions warrant. For instance you may want to change some parameters of training due to illness or injury. However, steering too far from the suggested 3S training plan will jeopardize the planned results at season’s end.

How do I use it?   After you create your athletic profile, you will be able to interact with the website and its numerous tools. The jumping-off-spot is the “Training Control Center.” This page is your gateway to the 3S training program. On this page alone you can see the suggested work-outs for that day as well as total volume for the week, planned result on “best” distance for the week, links to a weekly planner, a result analyzer, a season volume adjuster, energy zone descriptions, intensity level charts, and more! The suggested daily workout supplies general guidance as to how much volume should be done that day and at what rate (speed, power, and heart rate) this work should be done. All of this information is very useful, and following these suggestions does not restrict your creativity in any way.

Why our tools are so important?   3S is important because it provides tools needed to help athletes reach their potential. It not only plans the training season towards the desired results, but it also offers tools that will enable you to evaluate performance and monitor progress with scientific precision throughout the season. I really don’t know of anything else that does so much, or works nearly as well.

Why should I use it?    Because it works! All the time, with athletes of all abilities. For experienced competitors and coaches 3S offers the reassurance that what you are doing is scientifically sound, and provides an array of tools that will allow you to experiment intelligently with training plans, season planning, and the design of daily workouts. For eager athletes and coaches 3S will give you insight into planning a season, perhaps more detailed than you have been able to do before. It also presents new methodology, like the way it introduces speed training and parametric training.

The bottom line…    Guaranteed results. Lots of career and personal best times. Record-breaking seasons. Training knowledge you can’t get anywhere else for any amount of money. I can’t think of a better investment.

Matt Barany

Head Women’s Swim Coach

University of Richmond

The Login URL for our private training site is /service-login. Use the ID and Password we e-mailed you when you registered. If you have misplaced these, please call or e-mail us, and we will get you back online as quickly as we can.

Although the 3S System is an online program, it does not require advanced computer skills to use it.  Just login at the URL above with the password and user ID we sent you when you registered, then answer the few simple questions we ask about you and your training.  Please contact us if you have any questions about training setting part. We will be happy to assist you with this process on your request.  From there on we will do everything else for you.

Our helpdesk is always available by e-mail at and by telephone at (804) 519 12-01 during normal business hours (US-EST).

Daily Workouts and Set design
After entering your personal data (or the data on your athletes, if you are a coach), you will be able to obtain your daily workouts from the 3S Control Center. They will be published in the following format, and you will receive a workout like this (the look and some fields can be different depending on sport) for every training session of your season.

swimming workout

Each column carries important information related to the selected set, each of which is designed to address a specific training task. Sets can be divided into two major categories:

  • Functional (Main) sets
  • Recovery (supplemental) sets

Usually, you can find recovery sets after functional to allow proper recovery after them.  Typically recovery sets are shorter by time (around 1-3 minutes) and have a Ib or even Ic energy zone designation.

The functional sets are subordinate to weekly strategy and season goals.  Each set is designed to guide you in the development of a specific functional ability (or energy resource). The training load and its intensity in each set are calculated to be at the individual level of “adaptation threshold” specific to a particular energy zone.

The design of each line (i.e. set) is very specific, and may look somewhat different from ones you may have gotten from other sources.  But if you will just take the time to read through your first set, you will find training with them to be very simple.

The composition of our workouts may look different in many respects from what you may be used to using. It is important to note that daily workouts are designed in conjunction with weekly strategies and season progression goals to maximize the effect of every single training session.

When we prepare your daily workouts, we also take other parameters into consideration as well, including:

  •  Your present “condition” (understanding your strengths and weaknesses, including your “individual adaptation threshold” in each energy zone which is crucial to successful training)
  • Period of your season (season phase)
  • Weekly and daily training strategy (distribution of training work in days of week in a way, which will cooperate, and not conflict with each other).

Once criteria are set and defined, the following steps may be helpful:

  •  Define tools which compliment selected training strategy for any particular week (which can help you achieve your short term, or weekly, goals)
  • “Calibrate” training tools (intensity levels and duration)
  • Devise a plan, which would “sort” selected sets during the week and fit into an overall plan of preparation.

Your daily plan then will become a function of the week’s selected strategy and overall season plan.
 Selecting Training Exercises
The main goal of training is to improve your ability to produce more energy, i.e. the ability to row faster on a selected distance. It is important to understand the types of exercises, which are typically used to achieve these changes. The arsenal of training methods is not that extensive, and can be divided into the following groups:

  •  Distance (or continuous) Training method
  • Interval Training method
  • Repetitive Training method.

You can read more about each exercise type by visiting the  “Design a Set” page. Just make your selection from the “Training Control Center”.

Training Methods and Energy Zones
By selecting the type of exercise you will also determine the focus you will make in terms of reaching different training zones (See table below).



(3S Classification)


Energy Zones Ib – Ia


Energy Zones II – III


Energy Zones IV – V

Several other considerations are connected with the selection of training methods:

  • Different methods are more appropriate for specific training phases in your overall season cycle
  • Different methods may have a different impact on your ability to adapt to on-going training in time (check our articles on Parametric Training strategies)
  • The impact on different energy zones is determined by the type of training method selected, NOT necessarily just by the working distance. For instance, you may train endurance (distance method) using shorter distances
Given the above, you will find quite a few long distance sets. Please don’t be discouraged. Just follow our recommendations as closely as possible, and in a relatively short period of time (3-4 weeks, depending upon your initial condition and dedication), you will be able to start achieving the required target times.

If you wish to learn more about the physiological composition and impact of different types of training exercises on athletes, please be sure to attend one of our clinics, or take one of our online courses. Please contact us for details.

If you are American-trained, the energy zone definitions we use may appear a little different from what you are used to seeing. The categorization we use is based on the energy cycle the body uses to perform at maximum output over a specified period of time. The accompanying chart in your account (“ENERGY ZONES”) explains the physiological basis for this.

It is extremely important to be realistic when establishing your goals. Typically, an athlete may expect to improve about 10 percent a year, depending on the speed achieved on his best distance from season-to-season. Beginners may expect a larger increase, while advanced competitors (who are already functioning at a high level) may expect a much smaller one.

To optimize progression rate, athletes use “Periodization.” The idea of periodization is based on the principle that, when exercising regularly (regular physical stress), an athlete exhausts his adaptation potential in roughly a 16-week period. If that is correct, then it is hardly feasible to stretch the season for a much longer period of time, or cut it very much shorter.  But regardless of what goals you are trying to achieve, 3S experts will help you find a proper solution to your training needs.

The 3S System will start your season with careful planning to avoid injury and maximize performance.  It will also save you a lot of time, as well as provide a more enjoyable training experience. Although the training volumes and/or times may at first seem unattainable, follow our schedules as closely as you can. In general less prepared participants need to place less emphasis on set structure and intervals.  If you are a beginner, or just new to 3S, simply use our schedules as a general guide and pay close attention to how your workouts affect your corresponding heart rate (energy zones).  It may take up to 4-weeks before you start feeling you can actually achieve your projected target speeds.

Once you are on schedule and can meet our suggested goals, your tactics should change.  Speed by itself is not really that important. Rest assured you will reach your desired training goal within the time frame you have selected. The “cost” (heart rate vs. efficiency) you pay, while achieving a specific speed level, is extremely important, however. We call this process “efficiency.” Our program focuses on your ability to do more work, and achieve higher speeds, at the minimum possible cost (greatest efficiency) as determined by your working heart rate levels, accumulation of lactic acid in blood, etc.

Appropriate use of  “Parametric Training” strategies will also help you achieve your training goals.  This jackhammer of a training tool is simply the most effective means of preparation known to contemporary coaching, especially when dealing with endurance sports. The Parametric concept is embedded into our service, and will kick-in automatically when needed (watch for the “Par” sign). Different strategies of Parametric Training methods will be used in different phases of your preparation.

Our experts and 3S Certified coaches are ready to work in partnership with you, offering valuable consultation, reviewing your daily workouts, supervising your progress and making any adjustments, if necessary. Our goal is to help you succeed in all phases of your physical endurance training. Here’s to a healthy and successful season!

Determining how ready and able your body is to train is a very important factor in designing a viable training program. Without being properly “conditioned” your body may not be able to stand up to the punishment of a rigorous training regimen, or reap its rewards. By determining your “preparedness structure”, we can design a program suited specifically to your current condition that will also provide maximum improvement to the endurance component of your training.

The 3S System employs proprietary methodology to do this. Based on “best effort” results for several distances, including the “best distance” (the main distance of specialization), 3S utilizes these times as the criteria on which it bases the measurement of an athlete’s preparedness at specific periods of the season.

The set of full effort results on several distances can then be viewed through the prism of “speed reserve” versus “endurance reserve”. Actually, different combinations of these variables may result in an athlete’s ability to achieve the same result on his main distance. The difference will be in what it costs him in the short or long-term point of view (multi-annual development).

Once we evaluate the present condition of an athlete and his preparedness structure, we can then devise an optimum results progression curve and connect it with partial training loads in different energy zones. This knowledge became available through numerous studies in that field (you may access this information once you become a full 3S member).

Once this is done, we can then devise daily workouts with specific goals and targets for EACH training set with the idea that each set is a necessary component in achieving the desired training goal at the end of the season. With this approach we do not “predict” what an athlete may be capable of doing, but instead what he must do in order to stay on track.

This “required progression” curve is based on our studies in the field of “effective training strategies” which helped us to define the possible and necessary progression of abilities in time when specific training strategies applied, such as Parametric Training Strategies. In short… whenever we apply a training load at an individual’s adaptation threshold level, we may expect to see actual adaptation with a very high probability of success (over 90%), which helps explain why 3S athletes meet or exceed their training goals.

If you follow the daily workouts we have calculated for you, you will reach your training goals at the end of your season. Each custom-prepared workout is part of a master plan, carefully crafted to help you unleash your performance potential. If you deviate from the path we have chosen for you, you may still improve. But we cannot guarantee how much, or at what cost to your body. The daily workouts we provide are based on decades of scientific research, using the actual competitive results of thousands of athletes and the knowledge of hundreds of sports scientists and elite coaches. It’s a proven system, so please… don’t try to outsmart it.

There are many components to training, but we believe the following are integral to your success.

Warm up

Warm up and cool down periods are an essential part of every training session. The value of warming up properly cannot be overemphasized. It can help you:

  •  cope with the rigors of daily training
  • avoid injury
  • increase your athletic “lifespan

When you are training on a daily basis, you should start every workout with a warm up (as well as finish each workout with a cool down). The length of the warm up depends on the starting intensity of the first exercise (set) and should be anywhere between 15 and 40 minutes (even longer in some special cases). The rule is:

  •  higher intensity workouts require more time for warm up
  •  lower intensity workouts may require less warm up time, and in some cases may serve as the warm up itself

A suggested protocol for a typical warm up

  1.  Start slowly at a heart rate between 100 and 130 (depending on age and fitness level). Keep this intensity for at least 7-10 minutes.
  2. Increase the intensity to between 130 and 145 bpm and maintain this level for another 7 – 10 minutes.
  3. Increase again to between 155-160 and keep this intensity for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Slow down to 110-130 bpm and maintain for at least 3 minutes.
  5. Take a few (3-6) accelerations (6-8 sec. in duration @ 90-95% of maximum effort).
  6. Slow down, and prepare yourself mentally for the upcoming workout.

Our daily training schedules typically start with distances that are designed to serve as a warm up. You may expand your warm up time and distance, if you are so inclined. Please note that you may need a different (longer and more specialized) type of warm up before a competition. Please contact one of our expert 3S coaches to receive advice on pre-race warm up strategies.

Cool Down

Allow yourself to cool down at least 10-15 minutes after the end of the last exercise (set). Try to find an intensity (speed) at which you’ll be able to lower your working heart rate from 130 to around 100 bpm.

 Rest Periods

Choosing the appropriate period of time to rest (recovery) between sets is crucial to successful training. However, rest periods in sets cannot be viewed without their relationship to the type of exercise selected, and the goals you are trying to achieve with them. Their impact should be balanced and well coordinated in time. The 3S system is based on these principles, and therefore each set and provided parameter have a meaning. The times we suggest for resting are calculated with the same precision we use to determine the amount of time you are exercising. Following these times will ensure your body will make the appropriate physiological response to the stress of training.

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