Advice for new coach

Alright guys and gals…

I am starting my first year as an outdoor track coach, I’ve been researching different methods of planning and periodization. But I can not figure out what is best for me…

This is what I’ve been doing these past 2 weeks. Please tell me what you think and any advice you might have.

4 wks till 1 meet… so, 3 weeks gpp, 2 weeks spp, comp phase

Mon- accell: MAC drills, stick drills, Hills or resistence runs no more than 60m, speed spikes 3 sets of 200-200-100

Tue - Tempo: MAC drill, stick drill (stride), 10x200 75%

Wed - Max Velo: MAC drill, Stick drill (frequency) 10xin’s & out’s (60m), 60m fly w/accell

Thur - accell: repeat with alternative running in place of speed spikes

Fri - strength & power: hills, sleds, MAC drills, Plyo’s

weight room 3x per week

Please advice…

I’m not sure what exactly all that stuff is, so maybe I’m wrong, but I think most people will tell you you’re doing too much.
Pick 3 of your harder / high intensity days and put them on MWF. Don’t sacrifice quality for quantity. I’ve found that it is better to do too little than too much, especially early in the season.
Put tempo on T/TH. 10 X 200 at 75% is pretty tough for most HS kids unless you are giving a lot of rest, which you don’t want to do if you’re doing real tempo.
Hope that helps a little. I look forward to hearing what others have to say.

I’m sorry about the confusion…

MAC drills: the progression to “A” skip, “B” skip, etc… they are used to train the kids how to run properly. I figure I would use them early and spend some time on them to really focus on running skills. Next week they will be incorporated into the warmup.

Stick drills: a series of paint stick spaced out ascending to a total of 30 m. the spacing is used to either work acceleration or rhythm or stride

speed spikes: 200-200-200-100 = 1st 60%, 2nd 75%, 3rd 85%, 95% all based on hitting a particular time

I thought the 10x200 would be too hard for them also but I actually had trouble keeping them at 75%. They wanted to go faster then that. So what do you think means? Their in shape and move on to another aspect of sprinting?


This looks more like SPP than GPP…

GPP is usually characterised by lots of general work such as hill runs, med ball, hurdle walk overs etc…

As for 10x200m at 75% being too easy. It is supposed to be “easy” its recovery stuff. If it is too easy then cut the recovery but I doubt they are running these all with good hip height etc so I would suggest closer observation of thier form.

I’d look at purchasing the VAN’02 and 04 DVDs from the store as well as the CTFS…


Your GPP is more of a GPP/SPP hybrid, which is probably good given your short timeframe.

For some kids, 75% may be too fast for tempo, depending on your rest interval. Also depends on surface. Keep them on grass if you can, which will be slower. Remember, this is work for recovery and general conditioning. I’d go for lower intensity and shorter recovery rather than higher intensity and longer recovery on the tempo runs – at least initially. And they should never get more intense than the 75% level.

I’m no fan of stick drills. Hills or resistance runs are good. I’m guessing your MAC drills are Mach drills.

My suggestions for your first few weeks …

Mon - Accel, hills or resistence runs no more than 40m, explosive medball and/or weights.

Tue - Tempo: 10x200 75%

Wed - MaxV 4x20m fly, 4x30m fly. weights.

Thur - Tempo 10x150 (diagonal on football or soccer field)

Fri - strength & power: hills, sleds, MACH drills, Plyos, weights. Note: After 2-3 weeks, you may want to put speed endurance in here.

And you probably will need some technical work for blocks, relays, etc., so you may need to mix that in on the speed days.

I don’t see the point of the speed spikes. I would drop that. I’d rather focus on acceleration and maxV early in the season, and then add the speed endurance and special endurance as you progress. You could put the 2x4x60s in at the end of Monday’s workout but you would need to reduce the acceleration work accordingly – maybe in week 3 or 4.


thank you very much…a couple of questions…

the temp work: 10x200 at 75% - what are some things that you suggest to keep them at 75%? You don’t want them going too much slower than that, do you? Also, are there other things you might do for tempo? Could you also have them run alternatives to the 10x200, say like 2x10x100 at 75%?

First, help me understand what the speed endurance and special endurance really are? And what are some recommendations for them? I’ve thought that when meets begin in April, I would spend every other week training through the entire week even though we have meets every Wednesday (dual or tri meets) and Saturday (invites… I would relax more on friday before). Then I would make more a 2 week SPP plan with: max velocity, accel/weights, high intensity tempo, and technique/weights. Then during the last week of April (2 1/2 weeks till championships) go into a comp phase. This is the point I want them to start peaking at… correct? NOt too soon where it doesn’t matter but not too late where they are going to miss it.

Advice, suggestions welcomed…

For tempo, I time the kids in a 100 and 200 all out (their best effort / PB - or close to it). Then I make a chart of 60% and 75% of their best time. EX: 75% of 21 = 21 X 100 / 75 = 28. 60% of 21 = 21 X 100 / 60 = 35. A kid who runs a 21 200 (which we don’t have), would run his 200s between 28 and 35 - hopefully right in the middle. The first one should be a fast as the last with about the same effort needed throughout.

They need a range to shoot for as they run as the previous post suggests. But there’s also a fitness question as well as speed. In other words, you may have some kids who can run fast for a rep or two but are so poorly conditioned that they might not be able to run the tempos well with the short recovery. It’s OK for them to go slower. They are still getting the recovery and conditioning. If they push too hard to stay at 75%, they will be too fatigued to call this recovery work. Let them go down to 60 or 65% – maybe slower if conditions (rain, cold, soft grass, etc.) prevail. The 2x10x100 is a good option. I often use 4x5x100. It doesn’t matter much. The volume and quality is all about the same. All I adjust is the rest interval, shortening that as the season goes on. And reduce the volume, too, as you progress.

I think you’re on the right track, but I would start the competitive phase a little sooner and then go to peaking the last couple of weeks. Basically, we’re just talking a reduced volume of high-speed efforts with more recovery and higher quality. The meets themselves will serve as special endurance so you won’t need that in the workouts. As for speed endurance, 2 to 4 sets of 60s is fairly standard. Anything beyond 60, especially for kids, would likely fall into the special endurance area.