400's for 200's?

Why do some coaches have athletes run 400 races so that it improves their 200’s? I was talking to someone on Saturday who was running their 3rd one since mid October, Nationals are in March. The other times they have run 100’s & 200’s.

Wouldn’t 300’s in training suffice? :confused:

Running 400s didn’t hurt MJ. I think it depends on the standard of athlete. If their natural inclination is to be fast then running 400’s are not a bad idea. It gets them fit without placing high neuromuscular loads. I think Patrick Johnson could have run 20.0s if he raced & trained for a few 400s. Patrick has run 10.32e repeatedly on the first bend. He usually ends up with 20.5 because the final 100 is in 10.2. However he should be coming home in 9.8 to 10.0 at worst. PJ has run 32.8 e 300 yet still fades towards the end of the 200m. In his case SE qualities need to be extended out to 400m.

In most cases running 400s are not specific for the 200. However for the really gifted fast guys, it does make sense.

There could be a few reasons why an athlete would run 400’s to assist their 200’s.

Running 400’s early in the season to help one’s 200’s would be a normal graduation from a Long to Short regime. It’s part of building the fitness base, specifically to help the athlete’s speed endurance.

It’s probably not something you would do, once you are deep into the competition phase. Particularly tapering for a major 200m race. Unless of course you are very good at it, eg: Michael Johnson.

And I wouldn’t recommend it if you are doing a short to long type program - not until you have had sufficient races at the shorter distances. Not that you will get injured - just that it could be quite ugly!

The other issue that needs to be considered is the availability of races. Sometimes the 400m might be the only race available or an athlete is seeking multiple races in the one meet, hence they would double up on a 100/400 combination.

I personally like my athletes to be able to run a strong 400m as it offers another option at the various meets.

At various pro meets? Certainly when there could be coin to be made.

Patrick was telling me how he feels he needs to be doing more speed work to improve both his 100m and 200m times.

He was saying how you can run tempo/longer distance sprints until you drop, but if you’re not sharp enough, then you won’t run fast times. This is fair enough.

It makes sense, however I can’t help but agree with what you’re saying, Sharmer, and that the 400m strength he would gain would help him remain smooth for that last 50-60m of the 200m.

Personally, I think he should can his 100m goals totally, since as an older man now (he’s 35 this year I think), he’d probably fair better over the 200m.

When was the last time he ran a 100m in less than 10.2x?

What do y’all think?