Sprint training program

I am trying to get a good sprint program for a 17 year old, he is in High school and he runs the 60 in 7.20, the 100 in 10.8, 200 in 22.9 and am trying to build him into running a decent 400. He is currently running indoor track and have been working on his breathing because he holds his breath instead of exhaling and he is an outstanding starter but finds himself behind about 40 meters. Can anyone help. Thanks

I’m not an expert on developing athletes but it would be my opinion to leave 400m specific training for now and continue concentrationg on devloping the 100m & 200m. The 400m is very much an endurance sprint and endurance is much easier to develop than max speed and can be improved in a relativly short time. I would therefore suggest developing his speed to its potential before focusing on the greater endurance training required for the 400m which would hamper speed development and may even be detremantal to it.


Yes he is a 100 and 200 runner. He has ran 400,s before and in his High School this year since he is one of the fastest guys he ran a 10.6 (H) they also want him to runthe 400 relay. The problem is that they only give him 200 repeats for his training. They give him stairs and weight training but I would like to find out a training program to get him prepared for the event s that he will endure. Thanks for your reply

If you have a schedule for the up comming Spring Schedule post that, it will be easier to to develop a program for him if we know the dates of meets. If he is only doing 200 Meter repeats he must have some real good speed, because repeat 200’s are not speed work, 30’s, flying 30’s and 60’s must be done to improve speed and Max Velocity. And Phazes must be done. If he’s running indoor right now, I would give you some workouts, but it might be late in the season and switching to a new program might injure him or throw his body off. But Post the schdule and I’ll post a program. I’m sure other people on this forum will help you out to.

Thanks, I will.

His season starts at the 28 Feb until District meets which end about the end of April. I will have to get the dates and post them later. All these are for his outdoor meets. He is currently has ran one indoor meet and will run possibly two more this weekend and the weekend of the 7th of Feb.

I am not familiar with some of the track lingo as Phazes, could you explain and also you say that 200 repeats are endurance builders not sprint training. Is 150 meters on down speed training?

I am not familiar with some of the track lingo as Phazes, could you explain

Basically your season is broken down into phases where each phase introduces or emphasizes particular qualities at different points throughout the season.

and also you say that 200 repeats are endurance builders not sprint training. Is 150 meters on down speed training?

No! 30m and down from flyin starts (run up) are speed development. Typically it’s more like 20m. This is the upper most dist where max speed can be maintained anything after that is speed endurance.

200 repeats would fit into the ‘intensive tempo’ bracket and really are not all that effective for training a sprinter (except in small doses) compared to say ‘special endurance’ because the speeds are to slow and therefore not specific for the events. Special endurance would be full recovery between sprints; probably 15-20min which means each run is realistic pratice for racing which is what it is all about.

Plus from what you say it sounds like he is doing a long-to-short programme i.e. he is building endurance now with the plan to work on speed later in the year. This will make it interesting sorting out a programme because a short-to-long programme is more beneficial to a sprinter (except maybe 400m but i don’t think 400 training is the way to go). 400’s can be run off 200m training and i think this would be the way to go because adequate strength required for the extra 400m endurance training would probably be lacking at that age. Probably training for 200’s would be enough and use 400m races to bridge the gap if he want’s to run 400’s.

His coach wants him to run in the 4x400 relay this year and he uses the 200m repeats most of the time and nothing less than 100m for sprint training.
He does give them block training , weight lifting and plyos ie stairs.

This is in reply for ACOOPER and to anyone that can help me…

This is his meet schedule

Feb 28 - Sat

Mar 4 - Thur
Mar 5 - Fri

Mar 11 - Thur
Mar 12 - Fri

Mar 27 - Sat

Apr 1 - Thur
Apr 2 - Fri

Apr 8 - Thur

Apr 14-15 - District

Apr 23 - Regional

Apr 30 - May 1 - Regional

May 14-15 - State Meet

Thank you

I will post a program when I get back from practice. I’ll break down some terms, and explain the phazes that sprinters go through. I’ll try to work that phazes around the schdule you posted.

Thank you for the help

Ok this is what I am doing with the athlete I have. He is currently playing basketball and will be out on the first day of Spring Practice March 1st. The first 4 weeks I will be using a General Prep Phaze, which is used to get athletes in shape for the season. My first 2 weeks we will be doing Int. Tempo, Ext. Tempo and Hills. Intensive Tempo is at 75% of the athletes best time, so my athlete has a Personal Best of 22.6, so if we do 5x200’s with 2-3 minutes rest and it is a Int. Tempo workout, he should be hitting about 30 seconds for each one, although I tell him in between 28-30 seconds. Extensive Temp is like a day of recovery but helps improve general fitness, so you could do 8x100’s hitting them in 17 seconds each, this in my opinion is better then having a sprinter do a 2 or 3 mile road run for a day of recovery. Here is my first 4 weeks

Monday- 2x6100. 100’s in about 17 seconds, 43 seconds rest.
Tuesday- If athletes are sore then 8x100 on grass same as Monday. If not sore then 5x200’s with 2-3 minutes rest.
Wendesday-Same as Monday
Thursday- 30-40 Meter Hills
Friday-2x4x100, so 2 sets of 4 100’s in 17 seconds

Monday-2x3x200, 2-3 minutes in between reps, 5 minutes between sets
Tuesday-Ext.Temp so either 10x100 on grass with 30 seconds recovery for each rep or easy 5x200, hitting 200’s in about 34 seconds, and walking 100 meters in between reps.
Wendesday-6x30 or 40 Meter Hills All out.
Thursday- Ext.Temp 1200 Meters, so break it up to like sets of like 200-100-200-100, then 100-200-100-200. I make my athletes walk 50 meters or sometimes 100 meters in between reps, and 100 in between sets. Sometimes they may need longer recovery though. Always ajust to the athletes needs.
Friday- Another workout or a day off to rest.

Weeks 3 and 4
Monday-Accel- This is developing Speed Work, so I would do 5x20 meters or 10x10 with 2-3 minutes of rest for each set.
Tuesday- Ext.Tempo 1200- 2x6x100’s, 16-17 seconds, 30 second rest for reps, 2 between sets.
Wenesday-Int Tempo 1200 Meters, I would do 2x3x200’s(2-3 minutes rest for reps, 5 minutes for sets) or you could do 2x300 and 2x250. 2-3 minutes between reps.
Thursday- Ext Temp 1500 Meters- 3x200 and 3x300’s. Easy work on form walk 50 or a 100 meters between sets.
Friday-Accel 4x20 down starts, and 4x20 rolling start. 2-3 minutes for each set, 5 for set.

I will post the rest a little later, but I have to ask how many weeks your season is. When is the first day of Spring Practice? Because I do 3 phazes for the Spring Season, simply because our Spring Schedule is short. We do 4 weeks of General Prep, 4 Weeks of Pre-Comp and then we are in Competition Phaze. Differnet workouts are done for each phaze. Anybody else got thoughts?

From Feb to April is the season. Spring break is after March 12 and his nest meet is March 27th. So the 1st 2 weeks are the base training for the athlete?
Week 374 are for speed work? How many times a week do you do plyos like stairs, hurdle hops, bounds. Thanks again for the help

No problem, I like to help out.
The first 4 Weeks I use for getting my athlete in condition. Weeks 3 and 4 are not all speed, because I do my speed work on mondays and then a Int. Tempo Workout on Wendesday(ex 6x200’s or 2x300 and 2x250’s). I would say for me speed development starts the 3rd week. You do not have to do that though, you could start your speed work the 2nd week, just start at like 10 or 20 meters and work your way up, because a athlete in my opinion has to develop accelaration before he jumps into doing Max Velocity work (flying 30’s, and 60’s) The reason I do not start speed imediatly is because in my experience my atheletes get sore when we jump right into speed the first week. I do plyos 2 to 3 times a week at the beggining, then like 2 times a week say 4 or 5 weeks into the season. But These are the phazez

General Prep- I do speed the 3rd and 4th week and continue after that

Special Prep- Include splits runs(ex: A split 300 would be 200(For my guy runs 22.6, in about 26-27) rest 90 sec or walk 100 meters then run 100(as hard as he can go hopefully 12 or 13 seconds)

Pre-Comp-Special Endurance 2, Speed Work, Max Velocity

Competition-Special Endurance 1 and or 2

For my season I do General Prep, Pre-Comp and then Competition, because of the short spring season. I’ll try to make a tentative schedule from Feb to April, so that you can understand better.

Thanks again for your help and to (Charlie Francis ) I appreciate your site it is a great help for people like us jjust starting out.