Some might argue that altitude training is best scheduled for the preseason. The theory makes perfect sense: build your fitness to a high level before the games start, and then simply maintain and recover during the gruelling 26-week grind that makes up the regular season. But, even if you only take a passing interest in the Warriors, when you consider their results in recent years, an alarming pattern shines brighter than a full moon in the middle of the desert: year after year of slow starts and mid-season surges, followed by catastrophic collapse after catastrophic collapse as the finish line approaches. Clearly the status quo isn’t working. All signs point towards the need for some new tactics.
So, after spending four rounds based at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, USA, I return to Warrior Nation with both a renewed lung capacity and a sense of endurance that certainly did not exist upon my departure. Again, you may wonder why anyone would voluntarily decide to leave the comfortable shores of Warrior Nation from Round 4 to Round 7, why anyone would forego two opportunities to sit in hope with nervous excitement in the East Stand for winnable games against Parramatta and the Gold Coast. To give that up for a little extra fitness sounds crazy, I know, but if you dig a little deeper, the rationale becomes clear.