fat guy in a little coat

Hey All,
For some reason, when I think of myself wanting to do a 400m sprint, I think of Chris Farley desperately trying to fit into a small(er) man’s coat. That’s because I’m 5’10", 220 lbs, and 183 lbm (about 17.3% bodyfat).

I’ve heard that 400m sprinting is the best of the best for fat loss (that and general fitness is my main goal). I can sprint 200m all out before getting tuckered out and in general, can only do tempo-style pace to get to 400m. I’m not so much about time as I am about completing the 400m in under 50 seconds. So, here are my questions.

  1. On my tempo running days, should I jog between 400-800m?
  2. I am a student first and a recreational athlete second… meaning that a 400m sprint followed by full recovery doesn’t fit into my time schedule. I’ve got about 1 to 1.5 hours a day to train… maybe I should train with hockey-style energy work (lactate threshold training)?

Thanks for any and all help!



Im no expert, and I have no clue what kind of shape you are in at the moment, but since you compared youself to Chris Farley, you probably should work on general fitness workouts first:

Weight lifting with medium to high reps focusing on the core exercises like pullups, bench, squat, presses, deadlift? ( you can even start with bodyweight stuff first if you havent lifted in a while)

lots of extensive tempo work (for example 8x200 with 45 seconds rest,2x10x100 with 30 sec rest between reps, 5 minutes between sets, 6x300, 3 sets of 100,200,100,200,100…etc. Since your focusing on the 400m you can do more tempo than a 100m guy so start slow and do what you can do, and try to work up to around 3000m per session. I wouldnt go higher than 400m for a tempo rep (and really wouldnt go higher than 300)

also do some abdominal work

In the mean time as you get into better shape and build up your work capacity, you can do some research oo this site, buy CFTS (its not too expensive and is a valuable tool to see where all these ideas come from) and plan the program you will do when you are ready.

Here’s a little help for your program planning.
You can read the lactate threshold thread (its extremely long), but id recommend reading the posts by kitkat, who has trained champion 400m runners. Most notable of this thread is in the middle of p22 where he outlines a 12 week GPP (General Prep Phase), which would give you an idea of how you can schedule your GPP.

Also Pindaman summed up the lactate threshold thread nicely in one of his posts
Id read that first to give you a gist on what to expect in the lactate thread.

Finally an inseason plan, which before you do this you can do a modified version of kk’s transition phase (4 week phase after Gpp and before competition)
(middle of page)

For the inseason plan i posted the one i did last year with some success (i was training for 200 and 400). It can be found here. Im not sure how good it was, but like you I didnt have tons of time to work out. And I did have some good results before i stupidly hurt myself (not program related tho).

Well here are just some ideas, i hope i was able to at least point you in a viable direction.

Good advice above. Also, at your wieght and fitness level, I would add in some pool running and low intensity med ball work inplace of tempo if your feet, shins and and joints start to hurt.

How’s your diet?