I have made an interesting observation when analysing my current and past training journals, which I thought I’d share here to see if others have had similar experiences.
I like to time my runs in training using video footage. When I time a run from a standing start I start the timer on the first foot contact. When I time a block start I time from when the hand of the lead arm loses contact with the track.
At a time in the past when I was performing well in competitions, the difference between the two has been around 0.40s (I.e. 6.70s over 60m from first foot contact with a standing start corresponds to 7.10 from first hand movement with a block start, which, in turn, corresponds to about 7.20 FAT in competition).
These correlations come from a period when I was regularly doing workouts including sprints of 60m or more from blocks.
Recently, I have done very little work from blocks, and have done most of my training runs from a standing start (as I’ve been focussing more on the LJ). I ran 6.77 from first contact in training recently and have consistently been in the 6.8s range. Based on the above correlations, I should thus be able to run around 7.30 or faster in a 60m race. However, my last two races were 7.49 and 7.56 under good conditions.
When looking back at past training logs I found that this mismatch between standing start and block start times was also present when I had done little block work for a while about two years ago. Similarly to what I’m observing now, the difference between the two was about 0.65s back then, instead of 0.40s.
To summarise, it seems I miss out on about 0.25s in a 60m race compared to what I should be capable of if I do the bulk of my training from a standing start rather than a block start.
The difference seems to be in the maxV section of the race, btw. If I don’t do runs of at least 60m from blocks in training on a regular basis, I’m not able accelerate to a decent maxV from blocks. This makes little sense to me, as the difference between the two types of start should be minimal after the first few steps.
Has anyone else experienced anything similar?