Preparing for multiple rounds in the 400m

Is there anything you can do to help you prepare better for multiple rounds in the 400m?

I read on the Lactate tollerence thread that Clyde Hart thinks that you need to make sure you don’t get too much lactic in earlier rounds or you cannot make it.

I ask this because now one of my athletes is making senior national level competition they have to run a PB or very close to it in the heats just to advance. Then in the next round thier CNS is so fried they are 0.6-1s off that time if it is held the next day. What can be done in this situation?

Is the only solution to improve thier PB so they are running at a lower relative time to qualify? One coach suggested running back to back training days to prepare them but this just sounds like a recipe for disaster to me.

Any takers?

Thanks for all your help.


If they have to run close to their PB in trials then there is no way around it. As far as training for multiple rounds… this is what special endurance takes care of. Sessions such as 3x350 with 20-30 mins should be sufficent. Also as you said back to back training days occasionally may help this, just do not overdo it. In preparing for this he may even want to try to find 2 different meets 2 days in a row. Run a 400 at a meet on a Friday then go and run one on a Sat to get prepared.

True for a 43sec runner who has to run 45 to qualify.

You need to plan some lactic capacity workouts in the season, but never in the last 10 days before the multiple round meet. 3 x 350 like said Quikazhell, or 400-300-200-100 or 2 x 500, etc, that depend on your program type. Note that workouts are hard as hell so shouldn’t be too much frequent in the season.

You can also look at the tactic in rounds, knowing that a fast first 100m section will increase the lactic level at the end of the race. More even pace causes less trouble. In Sevilla’99, MJ’s plan was basically to run 100m in heats, 200m in qf, 300m in sf and … 405m in final. No way it can be done by 45sec runners.

I like how the english is coming along PJ. :smiley:

Thank you for your help everyone. This kind of confirms what I was thinking.

Thinking back to what Charlie says, I guess i can also use massage to lower the muscle tone significantly so it will be “perfect” (ummm I’m still not sure what this feels like) for the semis.

One problem I am also having is that because of minor gate problems the calves seem to get very knotted after a hard run. I am then left with the decision as to whether to loosen them but probably bruise the athlete or let them run with them tight. Unfortunitly, I do not have a regeneration specalist at hand to loosen them witout bruising (though I am working hard to achieve this aim myself)! What can you do to prevent bruising with massage? More faster passes over the muscle?

For the calves, i would do soft passes and manual localised compressions from up to down (hairs direction) during 5-10 minutes (less than 5 minutes has boost effects), in order to promote blood flow (notice what’s happening on veins) and then pump on the opposite direction (heart direction). Finish with some lengthen/shorten muscles passes in order to not losen too much the muscle (important between rounds). But i think i would work on thighs too or other parts of the body depending on the moment feeling and body reactions. More than theory, work on your athlete and notice body changes: cold/warm, hard/soft, dark/light, etc… sometimes explain to the athletes what you are doing on them (their mind can double the effects of your massage).

However, after lactic capacity workouts, i don’t touch 400m runners though, i prefer let the body fight itself against lactate, since it is the day’s workout theme.