special endurance

When training for the 400, when do you do special endurance workouts? Can you do them once a week, or should it be cycled less frequently? Is there a certain time of the season that it should be done? Is it more demanding of the CNS than SE or pure speed work?

Year round. At some point I think you would do 600m/400/200m or 400m/300/200 some variation of SE at above 85% of your best time with as much as 6-12 minutes rest. Use a gradual progression through out the year. And SE should be conducted once a week. Check charlies 400m threads.

special endurance work is less demanding on the CNS than true speed sessions.

So if special endurance is less demanding then speed would it be smarter for me anyway to drop a speed session in its place a spec. end one.

I plan to do 2 speed sessions plus short hills (20m). Hills are easier to do and organise (outside house)

If you are doing two speed sessions a week, then either the Wed. or Fri. could be a special end. day. (so yes, you can use on of your speed days out of the three for this longer workout)

There are several ways to view the 400m, depending on level and aptitude. If strength predominates over speed, it must be emphasized (or vise-versa). A typical strength set up would be to do speed Mon, Fri, speed end to spec end 1 on Wed (ie 2x300m, full recovery), with Spec end 2 and strength end on Sat. (ie 2x600m, full recovery and 2 to 3 reps of running As over distances of up to 120m) Sat’s workout is pssible after Fri speed because it has a reduced CNS demand, even though the work is incredibly hard!


I presume that one tempo session is dropped (from 3 to 2 per week) to make way for spec end 2 session but with such a set-up, how would you modify weights sessions to allow for this extra track session (particulalry on Friday with spec end 2 the next day)?

You would move the weights to Sat and, yes, one tempo session is gone- at least throughout the main prep period.

What type of tempo workouts would be involved in training for the 400m

You would elevate the volume done, but can follow the same format. You could also increase the distances to 200m -300m intervals in the sessions.

posted by charlie

If strength predominates over speed, it must be emphasized (or vise-versa).

this may sound stupid but how do you know which is your strength? thank you

Thanks Charlie.

I like following speed work with weights - I feel they complement each other and I lift better. Would I get this same synergy doing weights after 600s? I wouldn’t have thought so.

But then its all down to priorities isnt it…:wink:

How would you set up a week like we deal with in the high school setting where I coach in that you compete in dual/triangular leauge meets on Thursday that have a decent amount of importance (our league is weak so can train through it) and you run at pretty high caliber invites on Saturday?

The meets become your main special endurance session.
How do you tell if speed or end are your strength. Time your runs from shortest to longest in training and you’ll soon be able to compare the relative quality.

So if I am understanding you correctly use the meets (i.e. she runs the 200, 400 4x100 and 4x200) as her SE day and use the others accordingly. If Monday is a NM day and Tuesday is Tempo running say 8x200, knowing that Thursday is a “meet” but more of a train through…would you do another NM day on Wednesday or make that a more general day, keeping in mind that Friday will have to be a pretty low key day for travel or light stuff before the Saturday meet.

If ben was running 400m instead of 100m. How many times a year would he compete on a world class level. If in one year of the 100m he had over 40 rounds. How much for the 400m. It seems that michael johnson runs alot of rounds but most are not at top speed. Could you comment further on this. Thankyou.