Split Run Periodization for 200-300m

I am playing around with my split run periodization over the next 5 weeks.
In approx 5 weeks I will be running the 300 meters which I open up with every year which will set the tone for the rest of the season.
My PR in this events is 36.18.
Last year I opened up with a 36.23.

Anyhow I am working on short to long both ends to the middle periodization scheme I have read the Lactate threshold thread and took 8 pages of handwritten notes on it. Right now I am on week #9 of my program and am aiming to break 36 seconds in the 300 in dec.30th.

All speed work has been done as accel up to 50 meters and we have done speed endurance in the form of 3x3x50. Intensive tempo has went from sessions such as 3x4x100 to 2x3x200 to 5x200 with a very good outcome. This is the specific way I periodized the sessions but you get the main idea. Today we did a time trial and I ran 36.4 from a standing start. After 20 mins I ran a 150 in 17.2. I felt very strong perhaps the strongest I have ever felt this time of the year. I will not be starting special endurance until after the meet on the 30th. So I am looking what way in periodizing my split runs would help me achieve my best 300 time possible. For the rest of the season 200 meters will be the focus.

Option 1
Week 1- 3 x (200+100) Rest 90" Rest 15’
Week 2- 3 x (150+150) Rest 90" Rest 15’
Week 3- 3 x (200+100) Rest 90" Rest 15’
Week 4- UNLOAD… Not sure what may be best.

Option 2
Week 1- 3 x (200+100) Rest 90" Rest 15’
Week 2- 2-3 x (250+80 rolling) Rest 60" Rest 15’
Week 3- 2-3 x (250+60+50+40+30) Walkback Rest 15-20 between sets
Week 4- UNLOAD… Not sure what may be best.

Again I’m looking for some ideas to specifically improve 300 meters which will also probably improve my 200. I just threw out some ideas. Anything is welcome.

Thanx guys.

So you are showing 4 weeks then on week 5 you are racing right? What are you doing that week?

I’d be inclined to do at least 2 quality runs without too much fatigue before i ran the real thing. In some ways you have this in the first part of the 250+60+50… session. So that will give you a nice indicator of your shape that week if you do Option 2 with only 2 sets.

If you are coming up to racing I would try and keep away from quite so much lactic work for at least 2 weeks before hand (longer if i was planning further in advance). While the split runs with 90 seconds build great mental toughness I find they also seem to increase lactic levels more than running the full distance.

So maybe i’d go with option 2 but 2 reps (not 3) on week 3 and then drop in two runs at 95% on week 4 to unload. Its a one off easy special endurance session to help you feel confident going into the race. Perhaps 250, 150 with a 20 min break real relaxed.

By this time you either have it or you don’t so its time relax and try and install confidence via training. I find relaxed running over close to competition distances helps in this respect.

In general i’d unload via intensity rather than volume. This keeps your work capacity up but saves you the cns stress. This goes for any unloading weeks except the final taper.

Also for 300m i’m not sure if you really need such a short rest breaks? Perhaps 3-5min between reps would keep it lactic based but keep the quality high as 300m is still a quality sprint. I know Charlie has talked about amazing 300m times for Desai and i guess he was using longer rest breaks. Maybe the shorter breaks are really only applicable to the last 100 of the 400m? I’d like to hear other people’s opinions on this thought.

You probably know more than I do regarding if this would work for you so be confident about your own judgement.



Kitkat’s reply to this thread over on the lactic tollerence thread

Hi Quik,
I’m not sure what else you’ve been doing (other than the tempo) , but on the face of it I think it might be a jolt to go from accelerations (up to 60m) and then straight up to distances of 150-200m in a backup situation.

Maybe you could fit one session per week (or a mini block of two sessions per week for, say, two weeks) of full recovery extended sprints of something like 40, 80, 120, 160. Maybe do one set with full recovery. I know it’s special speed endurance but I reckon that’s what you need more than anything to run a good 300m.

I’d be thinking to extend the range (“short-to-long”) over which you can hold a high percentage of your max velocity (as it is right now) before going into severe split-runs.

What I’d be concerned about should you go from stuff like 5x200 tempo into 200+100 (or any of the other examples) is that your running “may” be a bit too “soft” from about 70 through 200 or 250.

Why not simpy do 2 single runs, such as 2x300 off full recovery bringing the distance down over 3 weeks unloading the 4th week for the 5th week. We’ve been doing this over a peroid of time following are GPP and had alot of sucess with fast 300s. We have never done more then 3x300 off 15 and everyone is running in the 36 range already.

I don’t see a huge need at this point in the year to run split reps and stress the lacate system in that manner. Unless your planning on running a qtr later in the year. If your goal is a fast 200 why would you need the split rep to acheive the fast 300. Plenty of fast 200m runners can run a faster 300m then 400m runners from there speed reserve. I think to much attention is played to high intensity temo or split reps/repeats low break. If your going to run a 300m close to maximal effort why train the system fatigued. You dont need to race simulate by splitting reps. If you want race simulation run 2x300 or 3x300. bring the distance down leading into the meet. I beleive thats the same system used in charlies long to short, or in a combo s-l-l-s

yeah i couldnt agree more! i think split reps target the final stretch of the 400m only! i dont think they would have any significance for the 300. Im thinking, the faster you are, the more you will accelerate in and hold your form, but split runs are beneficial when ENOUGH SPEED is there, and i beleive it would influence the last run in the 4.
If you dont like blasting 300s like zenoth mentioned earlier, then why not 250s, 280s or even 320s full out! cause at the end of the day, thats whay youll be doing
Goodluck man

Thanx for the replies guys. I have used that approach you guys have mentioned in the past and althogh I have opened up decently fast my 200 times the past 2 seasons have been pretty much stagnant as the season goes on. So this year I spend more time early on intensive tempo which has now changed to split runs and will later change to special endurance and I have been feeling stronger than ever. And of course Acceleration has been a big part and Max V will be starting soon. I am just trying to drag out the split run sessions as long as possible. Personally I have seen it help bigtime in the past with myself and a few of my athletes. Why should the lactate system not be stressed early on?

Quik, Z is right on, but you know what you need, right. Sounds like speed reserve, having a 400m in the spring not just a 200m, you want to run it all with your new team. Also, you’re hitting all PR’s in the weightroom, training with competition everyday, go for it, you know what’s best…

all i can say about 200m split runs is that my friend ran 10.69FAT 100m and 20.91FAT 200m. It sounds ridiculous but thats cause ALL his training is based on INTENSIVE tempo.
He did sessions like 10x100 at 10.7 hand time with walk 100 recovery and 6x200 at low 23 with walk 200 recovery. From that fitness he is capable of running 33.9 hand time 300m and 47.61FAT 400m.

So really, i think there are many ways of approaching the 200m distance, intensive tempo, split runs or just pure speed work through special endurance runs. i think it depends on what type of athlete you are and what background you come from. They have all worked for different people. Maybe a combination of all?!? why not…
what do ppl think?

for 200m split runs i have used these.

150+50 or 120+80 but not sure if repeat sets of 60m runs are better suited to the event.
ie 3 x 3-4 x 60m @95%.

suring the SPP could you progress to 80m in these sets.

dazed what served you best???

Although I am interested in the use of split runs (especially for 400m training) as opposed to pure special endurance i have the following questions with regards to thier use in a less lactic intensive event such as the 200m…

Why would you want to use the split runs for the 200m? You have to accelerate again, surely this changes the focus of training… by this time in the season you already have acceleration in place and a submax 2nd acceleration (cos you are tired) seems like a bit of a waste of energy when you are trying to learn to maintain the speed you already developed during the first 80-120m.

This is a question for people in general, it isn’t specifically aimed at nanny (sorry to put u on the spot). I’m just trying to develop the debate because I couldn’t figure out the answer while trying to answer your question.




How did the 300m race go? I guess it must be this week - that or a boxing day special!


p.s. This thread seems to link with the 200m thread so here is the link:


No offence taken “tc” just throwing ideas out there myself.

Quik, sorry!
Here is my answer again -I just realised this is the one you want everything posted on the subject…

how would you target specific 200 m training with no split runs? I am not implying for a minute that this is the only way, just curious though!

PS trying to maintain the speed developed over 80-120 m till the finish line I don’t think is the most efficient way of running 200 m anyway. Thoughts?

have dug this quote from charlie from another thread…

“First off, if you compete at 200m, you need something beyond the race distance, even if it is a split run, ie 180 + 50, 150 + 50”.
Second, you may need options and should never close the door on possibilities. For example, in 1988, Ben needed some high level SE, and, in the limited time he had left to perfect not only SE but top speed as well, the SE couldn’t be so close in distance or it would compete too directly for the needed CNS resources. In that case, 2 x 200m was appropriate, even though this was not usual for him. He ran 2 x 19.5 in the same time frame in which he PBd in the 60m."

and doesn’t the arguement of re acceleration apply also to the 400m split runs.


Yes I think it does but with the 400m it is traded off better against the other option which is to run for 350m+ in one go which is just pretty much impossible until a good way throught the season so you don’t really have much of a choice. Also with the 200+200m example the relative intensity of each 200m will be lower than say a 120+120 - at least I think they will (comments?)

For example 44s 400m runner will have 200PB of say 20.2. When in good shape they may run first 200m in 21.5 and second in 22.X. The first 200m is going to be at around 95% perhaps slower and the second will be probably no more than around 90%. I don’t know how close to reality these times are its just a guess - perhaps someone who has coached a 44s runner could let me know!

Compare this to a 120+120 where you are looking more at something like 97%+93%. Plus to hit 97% on the first run you will have to accelerate harder than with a 95% 200. So the intensity will be both higher in relative terms and higher because of the rate (distance) of acceleration. So CNS wise the 120+120 is going to be very hard.

Also take into consideration what else a 200m runner is going to be doing in other parts of training (pure speed work) and consider how best you want to develop the characteristics simultaniously. If the special endurance runs are going to really tax the CNS then the speed has to be less to compensate and vice versa.

I assume this is why CF chose 2x200m for Ben. It isn’t as intense as say 80, 100, 120 so the pure speed work at maximum intensity can can also be done symoltaniously to raise both characteristics to as high a level as possible by avoiding overlap.

This is basically my thinking for using pure Special Endurance rather than split runs for the 200m but I guess with clever planning you can do anything!

I guess this is what Nik had in mind? Somthing clever to do with planning the split runs when you have lower levels of pure speed work and then switching before competition to pure Special Enduance and Pure Speed Work?

Is this what you were suggesting Nik?



I suppose, you could do that, yes. And in order to avoid an overlap, as you suggest, you could even come from the other end of the spectrum -if the athlete is accordingly prepared (e.g., longer split runs).

Also, we should keep in mind that the worse someone is prepared for good speed work, the more there is to be gained from such workouts close to competitions, I believe.

Of course, all these become even more critical at the highest level, as Charlie suggested; before that there is some margin for error! :slight_smile:


Does my stuff about relative level of intensity make sense?

the worse someone is prepared for good speed work, the more there is to be gained from such workouts close to competitions, I believe.

Do you mean the more there is to be gained from Longer Special Endurance (2x200) + High Levels of Speed Work or the opposite Split runs (180+50) + Lower Speed Work?

  1. It makes sense to me, yes!

  2. This comes from Charlie’s graph, if you are behind with your speed work and competitions are approaching, there is more to be gained from your Speed/Special Endurance; there is not much time for anything else.
    In your question specifically and for 200 m, both options seem more or less the same to me, as in both cases you are avoiding a conflict (:)) -you could even bring the split runs further down in the second option.