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How much cardio should I be doing during the football season?

The typical football schedule consists of one game every seven days, so an in-season conditioning schedule is much more dense than other sports which often have multiple games in a week. The general rule when training in-season for any sport is to perform two high-intensity cardiovascular workouts in a week. The game is considered one of these high intensity days. This means if you don't play in the game, then you should do some high-intensity intervals that day or the next to keep your fitness level up. If are playing, then you should participate in just one additional high-intensity training day for 10-20 minutes. This is typically done three days before your next game. You might complete an additional day of endurance training a couple times a week, and at least one day of recovery using low-intensity activity.  Endurance training for football can be simple drills using ladders, position cone drills, or light shuttle runs. The goal of endurance training is to get the heart rate near the anaerobic threshold for up to 20 minutes with little rest.

Traditionally, 2 cardiovascular sessions work well for in season training. Usually, the day after competition is a good day for a recovery session (A session lasting 20-30 minutes with a heart rate around 60-70% of your max) along with treatment and any therapy needed. On your third day after competition you should perform your high intensity cardiovascular day. Sprint drills, agility drills whatever are prescribed for your particular skill (Linemen=shorter bursts, skill positions= a little longer bursts) usually lasting 20 minutes. Heart rate for this session is 85-90% of your max. This will allow for 3 days of recovery before your next competition.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.