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Old 04-24-2009, 10:34 PM   #1
Júlíus G. Magnússon
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Iceland
Posts: 555
Default Programming Sprints

I've just realized after doing a Helen outside with a friend that my running sucks balls. Partly because I haven't run at all in the past year or so, but what ever.

I want to get better at it and I do have access to a track, so I was wondering about programming for sprints. I never intend to run anything longer than 400m at a time. May make exceptions for 800m if someone holds a gun to my head... Distance running just doesn't appeal to me.

Currently my training looks like this:

Back Squat
Bench Press
Deadlift/Power Snatch





Power Clean
Push Press
Weighted Chin-ups



Metcons are usually the shorter heavier kind and I like my workouts that way these days due to a busy schedule.

I was thinking about replacing one of the metcons with sprinting at the track. Lower volume / more intensity is more appealing to me than long grinds.

I've seen workouts like three rounds of 400m, 200m, 100m and 50m suggested to people on the CF boards, but that seems like too much volume to me... The intensity would definitely be dropping even during the second round.

Should I start by doing something like 4x400m and work my way down to 6x200m and 8x100m or something similar week by week? Should I start with the shorter distances? Should I limit my rest times?

Should I be worried about Pose for sprints like that? 400m probably... but 200m and below? I read the book early last year and was slowly getting better at it, it'd probably take me a little while to get back into it.

Just looking for some feedback because I have no idea where I'm going with this. I'd really appreciate any input from someone with some experience with this kind of training.
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Old 04-25-2009, 02:28 AM   #2
Blair Lowe
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 593

Based on your training log, I would reccomend these:

100-200-400 x3. I would not run the 400 at a sprint pace but go for the distance at 65-75% just a bit more than a jogging pace. You'll hate life if you do these as hard as you can since it will interfere with your recovery ( as in your calves will be destroyed and you'll walk funny if you run on the forefoot in a sprint ). You could also do 50's. You can probably get by walking the distance you ran or walking double the time you ran ( it's easier to distance as that gets you back to a mark ).

50-100-200 x 5 This is mostly about pure sprinting and speed. Fun to do, not so tiring.

200-400-800 x2 Interesting short workout. Or add a 100 and do 3x.

100-300-600 x 3 Little bit tougher than the first, something to think about in the future. Good for training the 800.

100-200-300-400 x 3, 4 if you dare. Starting to do any more of those longer distance runs gets mentally dehabilitating. Maybe it's the CNS just wearing out.

50-100-200-400-50-100-300-600 x2 Throw an 800 after 2 rounds or do an 800 2x or 1200 if you so wish.

50-100-150-300 x4 basically, good for training segments of a 400

I used to use these varying distances because I ran everything from a 100-2m mediocrely and had to do them after polevault training for 2 hours or so. I like the idea of 8x100 or 6x200 but haven't tried them honestly.

I kept the volume kind of low since you can also do other training before so they arent such a time guzzler.

I think you get the idea.
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Old 04-25-2009, 07:04 AM   #3
Ari Kestler
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 156

You could do tabata sprints as one of your metcons or after a lifting day once a week and then see how you feel...
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Old 04-25-2009, 10:28 AM   #4
Andrew Wilson
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
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I'm gong to start this 1500m next week wfs
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Old 04-25-2009, 12:13 PM   #5
Alex Bond
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Posts: 130

Blair, what kind of rest within rounds and between sprints would you recommend? I generally do "rest for as long as the run you just did took" but I don't really know how sprinting workouts are "supposed" to be done.
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Old 04-25-2009, 01:38 PM   #6
Júlíus G. Magnússon
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Iceland
Posts: 555

Did a couple of 400m at the track to see where I'm at. Rested about 5-6 minutes between attempts with a best one of 1:16.96.

I have a feeling my running technique is lacking as my shins where absolutely killing me in the last run.

I guess I'll just black box this. Today I did 4x400m. Next time I'm at the track I'm going to do 6x200m and then 8x100m. Before repeating the whole process (possibly lowering volume).
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Old 04-25-2009, 02:10 PM   #7
Jon Brody
Join Date: Apr 2009
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I'm kinda undulating my 'distance' sprints, but always finishing w/ at least a few 50s -- sprint, jog back, sprint, jog back, etc. Each week per month my 'distance sprint' drops -- 800's, 400's, 200's -- and my set of 50's at the end increases -- 3, 5, 8, 10.

Only doing this 1/wk now, but looking to incorporate one more sesh were i really focus on explosiveness thru a short distance w/ a good chunk of rest between.
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Old 04-25-2009, 09:05 PM   #8
Steven Low
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You need to be more specific with your goals....

And running a lot of metabolic work isn't going to make him faster guys... at least I think that's what he was after?
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Old 04-25-2009, 09:55 PM   #9
Júlíus G. Magnússon
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Location: Iceland
Posts: 555

Originally Posted by Steven Low View Post
You need to be more specific with your goals....

And running a lot of metabolic work isn't going to make him faster guys... at least I think that's what he was after?

RE: Goals
Sub one minute 400m. I'm not familiar enough with the other distances to be able set a goal for myself there.
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Old 04-26-2009, 01:00 AM   #10
Blair Lowe
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Julius, I'm not sure what my current 400 times are but let's just say for the count of cause that it's around yours possibly closer to 1m ( I was typically around 55 in HS and it wasn't my race at all-preferring the 200 but doing all of them poorly from 100-3200 jack of all trades like ).

I do notice that my ability to run 400s seems decent but can be pretty horrid when mixed with stuff like KB swings or DB goblet squats or box jumps, rowing, light thrusters, Helen or Nancy. I think this is because it's a matter of how much metcon endurance-work capacity I have.

Based on this, I will put forth the conjecture that the ability to do runs such as the 400 in WODS in metcon WOD's with ease or high performance is a matter of metcon work capacity.

Your log hasn't been updated in nearly 3 months. Based on it, you have intermediate upper body strength and just around 2xBW BS and DL.


Oh, you want a sub 1m 400. If that's the case and not just the ability to kill 400's in metcon WOD's, you need to train the 400 specifically. Use the longer rest times in concert with training. If you think about it takes 3.5m to walk 400 and just under 2 for a 200. Pretty ideal though I'm sure Steve would prefer to just use 3-5m for the shorter runs as well.

Steve said Barry Ross ( look up the thread for strength training for sprinters ) favored of course the DL and 60m runs.

Our 400 runners back in HS typically trained the 50, 150, and 250 besides the 200 and 300 and *some* 400's during the practices. I can't remember volume but I'll say 4 or 5 of each. These were supposed to be down at % of our max times if I can remember.

I remember running the 400 was all about setting a good pace for the first 150, keep on pushing ahead for the next 100, staying in the game for the next 50 as it started to burn and burning it all out in the last 100. Making sure to being around 85, 90, and 95 percent of what I could give in the first 3 stages.

Back then and currently I run the 400 still with a mild sprint technique compared to the pure sprints. Sometimes it could have been standard heel to toe and then get on the forefoot for the last 100. I wouldn't stay on forefoot the entire race as that just kills the calves at those speeds. Hitting midfoot maybe, but I wouldn't say the strides were as small as POSE seems to describe with a higher frequency of rate-step.
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