100m sprinter to 400m sprinter?

Ok here is my situation. I am 23 years old and I am in my second year of sprint training. I have PB’s in of 10.80 in the 100m and 22.46in the 200m. The only problem is I haven’t completed an entire season without getting injured. My first season I pulled my hamstring three different times and this put me out for about 2 1/2 to three weeks at a time. I think this was due to my overtraining in the weight room and the lack of development in my hamstrings because I had not done any type of sprinting in the last three years between high school and college. After this season I was really feeling burnt out so I decided to take the summer off. I quickly found out that this was the worst thing I could do. I lost alot of muscle bulk, my muscle strength decreased, and I lost my speed.

My second season to say the least was another disappointment. I had lost much of the things I gained from the previous year. I also ended up injuring my hip which put me out for a good month and a half. This eventually resulted in only a 10.97 performance in the 100m on the year, which makes me want to improve more and learn from my mistakes.

This has left me in a position asking “where do I go from here”? I really want to try running the 400 (48.9 split 4X400), but I keep on getting injured during the season and the only thing I am really good for is the 100m by the end of the season. So basically what I am trying to ask is whether it would be a good idea to try to move up to the 400m? Is it possible to make a 100m, 200m sprinter into a 200m, 400m sprinter? I just figure with the combination of my speed and my tenacity to work hard that I could make a good 400m runner. But I just read that since I have only been running for 2 years that I should focuse on developing my max speed. Is it possible to train to run at your max speed while training to run the 400m?

Currently I am done with my season and I am just trying to figure out what I should do for next season. If anybody could give me some advice I would really appreciate it.

Aside from the technical aspects of speed work, and the range of therapies for hamstring injuries, there is a logic to running the 400 in your case…

the shorter the sprint, i.e. the 100m, the longer the acceleration period.

In the 400, you can have a shorter acceleration and then hold a good pace. this is less stressful on the hamstring muscle.

acceleration preserves the hamstrings. maxv and SE are most stressful. though i would say your least likely to hurt a hammy in the 400 cuz of lower speeds.

Short-term, you can try 400 m.
Long-term, you should try and put in a solid season for 100 & 200 m and see what happens first before deciding to move up. If the latter proves “impossible” to work, you can always go up (i.e, 400 m); getting back to shorter distances might be more difficult, if you decide to do so later on.

Also, watch out for your “tenacity to work hard” and your hamstring problems; you may have your answer there among other factors.

Hope it helps!

Have a look close look at your technique. Alot of hamstring problems are caused by overstriding + most overstriding is caused by poor toe-up.

It´s real that the stile of steping ( foot landing ) are completly different from 100 to 400m ? I´ve heard that, 100 it´s more a pushing action and 400 is more pulling.
Is that true ?
If yes, i guess the muscle structures is lot different between a sprinter and a 400 guy.

During 400m you spend spend a greater proportion of the race in an upright position (using hamstrings) - which i think is what you are decribing.

During the 100m once you reach top speed it is all hamstring (or should be). Pulling/pushing is dependant on where your foot lands in relation to your centre of mass, the more you lean forward the more you have to use your quads to push you back up and stop you falling on your face. So coming out of the blocks would involve pushing while running upright would involve pulling - using your terminology.