Advice for Teenagers Starting Out

I recently exchanged some PMs with one of the newcomers, and I wanted to expand on one of my messages because I thought it might be useful for some of the kids on the forum just starting out. My advice is based on 20 years of mistakes and frustrations. I hope you can avoid them:

I would have given anything to have a web site like this available when I was 17 and competing in track. I might have been fairly decent if I had. Consider yourself lucky. I would strongly recommend investing in the ebooks available here. They’re the best source of information on sprinting available anywhere. You can’t find that kind of information anywhere else. I know what it’s like to be a broke student, but if you can manage it, buy those books. Spend money on that before buying any supplements (most of which are useless anyway).

At your age, the best advice I can give you is to not neglect your recovery work like stretching and soft tissue work. Regular massage is ideal, but on a budget a good $10 foam roller is your best friend. As much emphasis needs to be placed on recovery as on training. Recovery work is kind of boring so it gets neglected. Most people would rather run and lift than stretch and roll. The sooner you learn that lesson, the better your training progress. Most people don’t really appreciate this point until after age 30, mostly because they’ve exhausted all other alternatives and beaten themselves up in the process.

The second most important piece of advice I can give you (if you’re really interested in sprinting) is to ignore the bodybuilding literature and forums and put the weight training on the back burner. As Charlie mentioned in a post recently, people tend to concentrate too much on the details of the strength training component and it ends up becoming primary and overshadowing the track work. Keep the weights as a supplemental afterthought, even if that means your weight workouts seem somewhat random and unorganized at times. The track work will determine how much energy you have left for lifting afterward, which can fluctuate quite a bit from day to day. In other words, go to the weight room with the mentality of “Let’s see what I’m up for today,” instead of “I have to complete a planned workout.” The same holds true for the sprinting, but it’s easier to predict your work capacity for the stuff at the beginning of the workout. It’s the tail end of the workouts (when the lifting takes place) that fluctuate more. Ironically, I made my greatest jumps in strength when I stopped emphasizing the weight training, because my body could actually recover. Don’t underestimate the amount of power you’re producing on the track. It’s an incredibly strong stimulus, but you have to recovery from it. That’s the trap. Most people don’t realize how much work they’re doing on the track. If you don’t have much energy to lift after speed work, remember that’s because you already put out that power on the track.

Great advice! Also applies (perhaps even moreso) to some of us oldies plugging away too.:cool:

True, but I think the older guys are more receptive to it anyway. It’s much harder to get those points to really sink in with the young bucks. I speak from experience, but then again, I didn’t have anyone to tell me otherwise when I was that age.

I should add that YOU MUST BE OVER THE AGE OF 16 to actively participate on this forum.

Thank you,

(insert hall monitor)


Once again thanks for this message. I will follow all guidelines:).


Incase you were wondering about me, I’m 17.


good advice…i just bought the e book master set…i bought it in 2 april…when should i be able to download it…i submitted the payment…

You should be able to download it as soon as paypal clears it- go into your account and check

went to paypal it says status completed…in my account it still says pending

suggest you PM Rupert with order reference

or contact

I PAID USING PAYPAL USING A DIFFERENT EMAIL ADDRESS THAN MY ACCOUNT…EG MY ACCOUNT EMAIL AND NAME IS…the paypal account is brother)…got email to confirming payment for the product…maybe the different email address made it look like i didnt submitt payment…

I think that may be a problem- you need to contact

i sent a email to rupert explaining the situation…

sorted …downloading now…thanks