I’ve started running with and coaching a local college track team this year. I compete as an “unattached” runner while the kids run for the school. Anyway…
I’ve got a kid who was at 11.0 at the end of last season as a sophomore (coached by his HS coach) that we’ve worked down to 10.7 to open the season this year. I attribute it to everything I’ve learned on this website and from the Charlie Francis books/videos. He’s amazed by his transformation and the fact that we do so much less than his previous coaches did - he’s used to doing 6x300 at “full speed”, 15x100 at “full speed” with 1 minute in between each, etc. I only started in December so there wasn’t any time to do much of a GPP and we began with a 2 week GPP and then got into a short SPP. Now we’re in-season.
This is where I’m less comfortable. I don’t know how to handle in-season training and I don’t know which CF product covers this best. Leading up to the first meet, where he ran a 10.7, we did :
Monday: Bad weather ran us off of the track after we only got some starts and 1x120 down. We went to the weight room and did deep squats, hamstring curls, and bench.
Tuesday: Tempo - 15x100
Wednesday: Again, bad weather kept us from doing much… we did relay exchanges (which was nice for speed work), and some starts, all on the dinky indoor track which has practically 90 degree “curves”
Friday: Meet. He ran a 10.73 100 meters and a leg on a terrible 4x100 (45.something!!!) that our next two fastest guys couldn’t be on (I was working, other guy is still in basketball season). We were VERY happy with his 100 time.
Soooooo, next week rolls around
Monday: Caught inside again. I wanted us to do SE work outside (my main guy is running the 200 too) but we settled on 5xEFE (20 meter increments), and 5x20 meter starts. We then did basically the same weights as the previous Monday - deep squats, hamstring curls, and a little bit of bench.
Tuesday: Tempo - 15x100
Wednesday: 5x10 meter starts, 1x220, and relay work.
Friday: Meet. It was about 35 degrees Fahrenheit out there and it looks like everyone from every team ran about .4-.7 off their best in the 100. My guy went 11.6 into a -1.9. This was after he ran a great 4x100 leg (and I ran a pretty good one too!). He then ran a 24.0 200 meter into a similar wind; he was practically dead at 130 meters in. We knew that it wouldn’t be great this early in the season because we’re doing a S-L but didn’t expect it to look that bad.
It seems to me that he was running significantly worse than he had the previous week, even when taking into consideration the wind and cold; the winner of the race went 11.1 and is a 10.7 guy, 3rd place went 11.3 and is a 10.8 guy, etc - based on that, my guy should have probably been somewhere between them.
Looking back, I was desperate to get him some SE work and that, combined with the overdose of speed work from Monday and Wednesday (relay exchanges) probably totally drained him. I feel really bad now because his confidence is a little shot and it’s probably totally due to me overdoing it that week. I think he still finished in the top 8 but he was 3rd overall the previous week.
My girls faced similar drops. Our top girl went from running a 13.0 in the first meet to 13.7; next one went from 13.3 to 13.9.
So, my proposal for the rest of the season for weeks that we have a meet is:
Monday: Speed work, SE work (moving towards more SE as the season continues), and weights
Wednesday: Starts - maybe sticking around 10x20 or 5x30 or something.
Thursday: Tempo (or rest if a Friday meet)
Friday: Rest (or meet day if a Friday meet).
Does this make sense?
We’re aiming to peak in mid-May. It’s so strange going from an SPP where we can get 2/3 real workouts in a week to in-season where we can only get 1 (or 2 if we count the meet…). Does this basic outline give us enough work to keep improving?