A plan for a thrower/sprinter?

Hey guys,

I’ve decided to try my luck with track and field. I was a 100m sprinter as well as a shot and discus thrower in high school. However, I did not take it seriously at all and the coaching I received was to the extent of “run as fast as you can” or “throw this as far as you can”. I would like to try to enter at least one indoor meet this winter (sprints/shot/discus). I would really like to focus on sprints, but I’m not sure it’s realistic due to my size.

I am 23, 6’1, 235, BF% in the high teens, have a max squat in the low 400s and a max bench in the mid 300s. My VJ is consistently above 30". I went to the track the other day and half-assed timed myself (with a “stopwatch” on my HR monitor) for the 400 (75 seconds), 200 (at around 80% effort: 38 seconds), 100 (at around 80% effort: around low 14 seconds (i missed the button once and was at 15 when i stopped it)).

I’ve spent the last 5 years in the weight room (although i started lifting when i was 13 or 14). I decided in the spring that I wanted to get out of the weight room because I wasn’t having fun. Being on the track has been a blast; I look forward to my workouts.

For the summer I’ve been trying to increase my work capacity, lean body mass, as well as my speed-strength/strength-speed. Here is what I’ve done…

Block 1: back squat, bench, OH press, dl = 5/3/1 (Jim Wendler’s program)

squat/jump rope
[li]front squat (3x12, 10, 8)
[/li][li]med ball abs (throw R, throw L, twist) (120 reps, 160, 200, 132); 3, 4, 5x10, x12, x15
[/li][li]jump rope (3min, 5, 7, 4)
[li]slideboard push-up (x10, 3x, 4x, 5x, 3x)
[/li][li]t bar row (3x10, 8, 6)
[/li][li]run @ 165-175bpm (15min, 20, 25, 17)
dead/jump rope
[li]split squat (x12, 3x, 4x, 5x, 3x)
[/li][li]abs (sit ups, leg raise, ab twisting (x10 each, 3x, 4x, 5x)
[/li][li]jump rope intervals (x:30, 6x, 10x, 14x, 8x)
[li]incline push up (x15, 4x, 5x, 6x, 4x)
[/li][li]seated band pull apart (x20, 4x, 5x, 6x, 4x)
[/li][li]run @ 165-175bpm (15min, 20, 25, 17)

block 2

[li]warm up: walk/jog 5min, 1.5min jump rope, leg swings, foot grab, knee grab, lunge, inch worm, scorpion, hip mobility, toe touch/roll out hurdle jumps, MB sq+chest pass
[/li][li]5-10-5: 4x, 5x, 6x
[/li][li]box jump: x10; 3x, 4x, 5x
[/li][li]1 arm MB throw: x10 each; 2x, 3x, 4x
[/li][li] bounding: x4; 1x, 2x, 3x
[/li][li]MB side throw: x10; 2x, 3x, 4x
[/li][li]aerobic fartlek: 15min @165-175 (accel @8.5 for 30s every 4mins, 3mins, 2mins)
[li]warm up: same
[/li][li]DE box squat: 5x2 @ 50%, 55%, 60%
[/li][li]DE bench: 5x2 @ 50%, 55%, 60%
[/li][li]1 leg calf raise: x12; 2x, 3x, 4x
[/li][li]aerobic fartlek: 15min @175-185 (accel @8.5 for 30s every 5mins, 4mins, 3mins)
[li]warm up: same
[/li][li]squat: 3x8@50, 55, 60; 3x6@60, 65, 70; 3x3@70, 75, 80
[/li][li]bench: same as squat (2x instead of 3x)
[/li][li]t-bar row: 3x12, 10, 8RM
[/li][li]calf raise: 3x12, 3x10, 3x8RM
[/li][li]OH press: same as squat (2x instead of 3x)
[/li][li]pull-up: 10x2, 7x3, 5x4
[/li][li]aerobic capacity: 20, 22.5, 25min @ 165-175

block 3: basketball (helping to train a basketball player, so I did the training with him)

MWF: circuit
[li]warm up: jog 1 lap, dynamic stretches, high knees, butt kicks, ect
[/li][li]barefoot: jog down/back, 5 FG post touches w/2 hands, 12 push ups, SLJ into pit x6, 12 band pull aparts, 10 band GM, 12 sit ups, 10/side band twist
[/li][li] M/W/F: x/6/4; 7/4/2; 8/5/3; 9/5/3; 7/4/2
[/li][li]cool down: walk 1 lap
[li]warm up: stationary ball handling, walking ball handling, dynamic stretchs, lunge, reverse lunge, toe touch, 10 leg swings/side, high knee, butt kick, skip, 10 back board touches, 10 lay ups/side, 10 pull ups/side, 10 corner shots/side, 10 foul shots
[/li][li]full coart lay ups
[/li][li]3 shooting drills
[/li][li]high/low post work:
[/li][li]bounding (100M): x5
[/li]jog down/back x2 [/ul]:

I’ve been doing some form of Block 3 the whole summer. For the past 5 weeks I changed it a little and was doing the circuit 2x/week, while doing explosive work and some strength work the other days.

Here is the 4 week block I came up with to start me off:

400s: 2x, 3x, 4x, 2x (full effort, full recovery); 200s: 3x, 3x, 3x, 4x (75%, full recovery); 100s: 2x, 2x, 2x, 3x (75%, full recovery):::: total meters/week: 1600, 2000, 2400, 1900

DE squat: 5x2/185, 205, 225, 2x5 225-265; DE bench: 5x2/175, 185, 195, 2x5 215-235; circuit x1, x2, x2, x2: DB squat x20, row x20, pushdowns x20, pull up x6, bike .5 mile; Hill RUN x4

ABC skips (30M) x2 each, x3, x3, x3; bounding (50M) x5, 6, 7, 5; broad jump 2x6, 2x7, 3x6, 3x7; sandbag throw (length of field, down&back) x1, x2, x3, x2; barefoot jog cool down

Tues/Thur: Recovery on the bike (5 miles, HR 120-140)

I realize this is a lot to read. But, I would appreciate any help on this. I have CFTS, but I’ve been locked up in the weight room my whole life and have some issues practically applying some of the track information to myself because I have very little experience on the track.

Again, I would like to enter an indoor meet in the winter - sprints/throws.

Thanks for reading.

Ehm…all those 400 and 200…won’t make any good on a 235 lbs sprinter /thrower…in a Gpp like format ( check threade as regarding this), there will be room to introduce some throwing days.

If you are serious abuot switching to sprinting than your training should reflect that. where are the sprints in your program? and why are you trying to increase your mass when you already weight 235? …First step would be to plan your lifting around your sprinting and NOT the other way around. lifting is just supplementary…also, decide what distance you are training for, running all these 200s and 400 do not good unless they are specific to the event you wish to compete in.

I agree with Speedster12, I see a whole lot of lifting and jumping in your program and not much sprinting. Well guess what you’ll get good at?

Lifting and jumping

Do some searching and ask some questions, you’ll find the answers you’re searching for.

Your max lifts are quite low for someone at your weight. I’d gander you are at least 20% bodyfat. You probably want to get a recomp. That will require some serious dieting.

I could be wrong here, but it seems a strange combo, thrower/sprinter. Jumper/sprinter sure, but like others have said, you need to recomp your body which will probably entail losing about 30lbs. And that won’t help your throws much. I could be way off base here, but perhaps you should focus on one or the other…be a thrower or be a sprinter.

It depends on the level he wishes to compete at. While not common, there have been a fair number of pretty decent sprinter/thrower combinations at the high school level and D3 college level (under 11 and >50ft with the 16lb shot or >55ft with the 12lb shot). No, you won’t ever be elite in either, but you could still get better and have fun, esp. if you’re just going mostly 60m and 100m (not 200/400).

One of the most famous combos I can think of is Roger Kingdom winning the discus and high jump in high school at the state meet, which are about as different in demands as you can get (much moreso than say 60-100m and the shotput).

Hey guys, thanks for all the replies.

First I would like to state that while I do want to be competitive, I’m doing this have fun again and to get into shape. When I do compete in the winter, I will be to get familiarized with meet procedure, have fun, and to simply get used to being in the atmosphere.

eroszag: I don’t plan on competing until January, so my thought on including 400s/200s is that it will increase my work capacity so that when I do start focusing on the short sprints (and throwing - I need to buy a shot/discus), I will be able to recover better. I ask this with complete naivety - are 2-4 400s and 2-3 200s per work out a lot for someone like me?

speedster: I’m not trying to switch. I want to do both because I like both. I would like to specialize once outdoor season begins. I’m not trying to increase my mass (total body weight), I might have mis-worded that. I want to lose fat and put on any lean body mass I can. I won’t be running the 400s/200s for long. They are in here for this 4 week block with the aim at increasing work capacity and losing fat. The next block I plan on focusing on 200s and less, then continue to focus on shorter and shorter sprints in the subsequent blocks. Does this sounds reasonable?

syrus: I agree. Perhaps I have too much lifting and jumping in there because that’s what I’m used to. I’ll have to re-evaluate that.

Fogelson/Star: I agree, my BF% is high. That’s the reason I have the 400’s/200s in this block. I am making adjustments to my eating habits as well.

Fogelson: I plan on competing locally in open meets (already graduated college and I’m not up to going back right now just so I can compete, haha). Yes, competing in the 60/100 and the shot/discus (probably shot only) is what I had planned. Right now my goals are to simply have fun and get better.

Thanks for all the input. I will be doing some searching on here.

I don’t think the 400s and 200s are a good idea right now. At your size, it could very well be recipe for an injury. I would keep tempo distances shorter, focus more on dietary issues, and do more non-running based things for general fitness and use the sprinting you can do for acceleration work.

I don’t see a problem with you keeping the tempo work in the 200-300m range while keeping the vol on the low-mod end, for example no more then 6x200 or 3-4x300. Also you don’t need some crazy diet, just focus on smart eating decisions for example not eating ice cream late at night etc.

Fogelson: I’ve been doing some form of running since around January. I progressed form doing jump rope and running on the treadmill to doing things out on the track. I feel I’ve given myself enough time to adapt. Do you think it would be smart to substitute some sled drags (walking or jogging) instead of 400s, ect? As far as non-running to build general fitness…I do perform stationary bike rides on T/Th. On these I usually do one mile, hop off and do some vanity work (upright rows, pull ups, neck harness…whatever), then repeat while keeping my HR around 120-140. Any other suggestions? I dont have access to a pool.

RB: Thanks for the suggestions RB. I think I’m going to take out the 400s and do something like what you suggested.

So how about if i have something like this:
monday: sprints (0-30)
tuesday: practice throwing (when i buy implements) and tempo(200s)
wednesday: off
thursday: sprints (30-60)
friday: practice throwing and tempo (200s)
saturday: off
sunday: off

I need to buy a shot so I can start practicing. Any suggestions on site or what I should expect as far as price goes for a cheap one to start out with?


30mins active rest activity.

multi throws 15-20x
power clean
bench press
Stan russ twist

GS circuits
MB circuits
Weight circuits

Multi jumps
spilt squat
db ip
seated russ twist

GS circuits
Mb circuits

Multi throws 10-20x
3 step pc
sq or stepups
Kneel russ twist

mb circuit
hurdle mobility series

RB34 suggested a pretty decent set-up you could try.

I wouldn’t do sled drags or anything like that. That is going to be a waste of time for running. The work you have on the bike sounds like a good start, but you could also do various sorts of medicine ball circuits (throws and other lower intensity exercises for high reps), general strength circuits (various bodyweight based exercises, circuit style, with short rest), and even running in place. Pool work would also be good. I would even go as far as to say doing treadmill walks (~30 minutes on a moderate inclide @ 4.5 speed) could help with recovery. Another option besides doing tempo is just doing a long warm-up, which will let you get some more running and movement type stuff in there without the same stresses as running.

RB: What are GS circuits? general strength circuits (as mentioned by Fogelson), I’m guessing? Also, 3 step pc…is that a power clean complex? ie. rdl + high pull + power clean?

Thank you for the set up suggestion. I looks pretty complete. I’ll give it a try. The only things I’m going to modify are the olympic lifts. I’ve never been an advocate of them. Although I have occasionally performed them in a complex using light weight (ie. 3-5 reps of each: rdl, high pull, pc, row). Instead, I’ll simply modify volume of squats, jumps, and mb work.

Fogelson: The extended warm up is something I’ve been thinking about doing also.

Thanks again guys. I’m looking at shots over at EliteFTS. They have iron shots that are running pretty cheap. The only thing holding me back is the shipping ($11 on a $12, 6lbs shot), so I’m going to hold out until they have another free shipping special. I plan on buying 1 of each (6, 8, 12, 16lbs) and using the lighter ones in place of medicine balls (which I don’t have).

3 step power clean - 1 hip clean, 1 hang or thigh clean, 1 shin clean.

GS: body weights/locomotive drills.
Sample Dan Pfaff GS circuit: perform each drill for 30sec or 10-20 reps.

v situps
leg toss
wrestlers bridge
knee hip ext
toe touchers
back hypers twist
l overs
side ups
leg eagles
pelvic tilt iso
pelvic tilt w/leg crunch

Thanks for the clarification, RB.

Right now, it being pretty far out from competition, I’ll keep sprinting (acceleration) distances 0-30. As competition nears, I’ll pull out an acceleration day in place of 30-60 work (before that, I’ll add in a 30-60m sprint occasionally, in order to prevent stiffness when I do have a full 30-60 day).
In the mean time, weight volume will slowly decrease while intensity slowly increases (55%-70% over the next month), followed by a period of max strength (80-95% over 3 weeks) and then recovery.

How does this sound to you guys?

With my training I am keeping all max strength work in the 75-86% range. I wouldn’t wait until the last min to add longer sprint work.

My strength work will probably actually be around 70-85%, as I low-ball my maxes.

I plan on adding 30-60m sprints in October and gradually increasing volume of them through the late fall/winter.

By the way, I’m enjoying the training. Some things clicked with me on the tempos yesterday.