Here is my quest to break 50 seconds in the open 400m dash.

I will also be posting about exercise physiology and nutrition.

Who am I? A former collegiate sprinter, graduate student in the medical sciences.

Personal bests? 400m 50.52 (indoor), 800m 1:59 (outdoor), 200m 23.52 (outdoor)

PC 102.5kg BS 335 BP 225

Where am I training? In an urban area. Due to time constraints access to the track will be limited.

GPP Began 5/6/11

MB tosses circuit

Hills - 1x10m, 2x20m, 3x30m in the parking garage

Tempo - Big Circuit

I will follow the GPP program through week 6.
The 60m hills scheduled for week 7 won’t be possible in the garage where I train.

In the SPP track sessions will hold at 2/week. Wednesday Special Endurance e.g. 2x200m off 8min and Speed on Friday or Saturday. The speed session being something like 6x30m, 2x60m (fast), 2x4x60 (smooth) out of the blocks. The Special Endurance runs will progress 200 -> 250 -> 300m as will the rest times 10 -> 12 -> 14min.

In the competition phase Special Endurance will be reduced to 1 repetition over 350m and the speed workout will not change.

Of course tempo will be done 3x/week throughout as will the abdominal exercise circuit 20 on 20 off. Medicine ball toss or ground circuit will be done once/week. Weights will not be done due to time constraints, nor will plyometrics or explosive throws.

Now for a rant; creatinine.

Use: explosive-type activities, does not improve performance in “endurance” events
Mechanism of action: increase ATP via the cytoplasmic creatine-phosphate shuttle
Adverse effects: may cause cramping in some athletes (CF) but otherwise is totally safe to use according to the literature.
it does not alter kidney function tests e.g. creatinine (common misconception)

Do you mean Creatine? I’ve read research that says it does improve endurance performance (via increased LA threshold).

Yes that was at typo thanks Herb and thanks for your comment as well. Here are my thoughts…

At rest we make Creatine Phosphate (CP) from Creatine by the reaction: Creatine + ATP -> CP (stores energy for release)

During exercise the reaction runs in reverse: CP -> Creatine + ATP (energy)

By taking creatine, energy stores increase BUT this energy is only tapped during the initial seconds of intense exercise. Increased energy stores could be thought to delay LA accumulation by delaying anaerobic glycolysis but I’m not sure if it’s relevant.

Once an athlete is moving at a steady pace aerobic respiration takes over producing 36+ ATP/glucose so the 1 ATP from the Creatine Phosphate isn’t all that exciting. Furthermore, the athlete @ steady state is having to USE ATP to make CP from creatine again. There is not net gain of ATP! Again, supplementing creatine only makes the ATP “pool” larger. On the track this means extending the alactic phase of the race (most of the 100m dash).

Abdominals 20s/20s + MB ground circuit 500
extremely sore from the hills on Monday

5/10/11 (Thursday)
still extremely sore from Monday speed
will warm-up likely decide to do tempo

Rant: Delayed-onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)

When? 48-72h after exercise, as opposed to acute muscle soreness which occurs within minutes after exercise.
Why? Free-radicals produced by inflammation damage muscle fibers

What to do about it?
Provided you are training correctly (most important) a good diet is the next most important factor. Vitamins like A, C, E and other antioxidants in plants will take care of the free-radicals tearing up the athlete’s muscles. Taking capsules after exercise isn’t going to cut it, consistency is key.

Ice is effective if used within hours of exercise.

Heat/massage will increase local bloodflow enabling the body to clear free-radicals and delivery nutrients for repair!

Week 1 totals:
Speed: 600m (hills)
Tempo: 3600m

Week 2:
18x40m hills

Rant: The 10s 20s and 30s hill workout was a monster. With the short recoveries quality was too low for speed work but thats the point? That workout MWF must be extremely challenging and require lots of restoration off the track. It took me 1 week to recovery from. Then on the 18x40 I was flying through the last rep.