Phase Length

Ive read two idea’s about phase length. I think the first is charlie’s(sorry if Im wrong), that acc is the first 60m, top speed 20m, then the remaining 20m is maintainance.

  1. Now from my understanding of John Smith’s structure it would be acc(i believe he called it drive phase) is the first 40m, max speed the next 40m, and the remaining 20m is maintainance.

  2. The last 20m are both the same, but with John Smith’s idea one is in top speed for double the distance.

  3. Could this be attributed for their strong finishes, hitting top speed while others are still acc, then having that top speed while others are just reaching it? How would one alter training to be able to maintain top speed for 40m?

  1. Another question, since Charlie has said that bench pressing is a way to stimulate the CNS and excite it

  2. could one plan to perform it on days speed session days but rather than after a speed session, before it in order to potentiate and excite the CNS making for a more productive speed session?

Also could the use of hills as the second speed session in the week allow for a better recovery since they do not stress the CNS as greatly as flat sprints but help with speed and power development? Kind of like a speed day between speed sessions that allows for greater CNS recovery because it is not as hard hitting to the CNS as full speed days. And follow with a couple of flat sprints?

in reference to the acceleration patterns for elite male athletes.they would usually max out at 60m,maintain for 10-15/20m and maintain for the remainder.this is not always the case for all elite sprinters as some sprinters take different apporaches on how to run their 100m race.

max speed is only held for 10-20m at max but the dropoff canbe be added by proper relaxed running.the decelleration would not be as steep as in amature athletes

SO the idea is to hit max speed sooner so as to pull away, and giv the idea that it is being sustained for longer because deacc. is shortened as much as possible through relaxation and end techniques?

First off, top speed depends on the level of the athlete. A great athlete not only accelerates faster but will accelerate longer into the race- so the fastest race segments occur around the 50 to 70 section. Although acceleration is tailing off in this segment, it rises to an absolute peak around the 60m mark and tails from 60 to 70 very slightly, even though the segment times are likely the same. Lesser athletes will reach their relative (lower) top speed sooner.
CNS stimulating activities, like the bench press will have a carry-over effect relative to the level of the athlete. A mediocre performer may need to stimulate within a few hours of a peak performance, but top performers can maintain the stimulus for days- and need to, as the stimulus itself can be so high that activation a few hours before might be enough to wipe out their performance potential for a race. (More white fibre=more output=more rapid fatigue)
Lets look at activation for a top performer. Since it is critical to keep the sprint- work at sub max in the final stages for safety sake, you must look to the weigths for max stimulus.
Say a near-max triple in the squat is chosen at 6 days out (using approximately 65% of the motor units in the body and muscles directly involved in the pending sprint) This is as close as you’d want to cut it with this lift- BUT- it’s too far away from the event to maintain maximal CNS stimulation. NOW add the bench press at near-max for a double to RE-STIMULATE the CNS to a peak 3 to 4 days out(using approximately 35% of the body’s motor units and none of the muscles directly involved in the upcoming action). Now you’ll be “ready to rock” when the time comes!

I was referring to elite level sprinters.

Also how would each phase change with a 55 or 60m, I dont think thered be any endurance component, just acc. and possibly an attempt to hit top speed for 10m…?

Yes, the emphasis is on pure acceleration and top speed.

  1. I understand, I think,

  2. general stimulation of the CNS prior to an event “fires” it up without muscular fatigue

  3. the higher up in the rankings of athletes you get, the longer the carryover can be maintained,

  4. thus a greater effect because of longer rest between stimulation and the event without the effect of the stimulation wearing off?

  5. How would one achieve the transition to top speed quicker? Would it not be disirable around 40-45m in order to max out top speed phase(which is only around 10-20m anyways) and this early top speed is allowable because of the short distance of the race?

Improve acceleration and top speed and you’ll improve. Don’t worry about where it will occur!

Thanks, sorry for all the questions, Ive ordered your book CFTS but its been pending for two days now so i havnt been able to read it.

Not sure what’s up. I’ll get Rupert to have a look tomorrow.

Thanks, and I just wanted to let you know its appreciated that you take your time to discuss these subjects with us and your site is by far the best as far as useful information in training. I hope to run track again and am thinking my times would be good because of info learned here. I ran mid 6.9’s for 55 as a frosh @235lbs(im 217 and much stronger now), and feel if I can get my weight under control I could excel at shorter sprints(55 and 60m). Thanks again.