Training HS Sprinters Properly

I have a problem. I train sprinters and I seem to be doing something wrong. My runners peak very quickly and then they die when it comes to Region/State.

I can only train them from the beginning of February through the end of State in May. State rules say we can’t train them before a specific date in the beginning of Feb. We have about 13-14 weeks of training and I need to set them up for sucess to get more people in States.

Normally, during Feb., we have no competitons, and we just train 5 days/week. I have them go hard everyday. We usually try to do hills 2x a week and track work 3x a week. A sample track session would be 10x200m at near full speed…usually under 28seconds for boys and 33 secs. for girls.

When the season starts we either have 1 or two meets a week. When we have 1, we go hard everyday except the day before the meet and when we have 2 meets I will have them go hard only 1 or 2 times that week. Same basic workouts apply.

I also like to have them do plyos, pull weighted sleds and occasionally some block starts over short distances for times to evaluate the kids.

Our fastest 100m time for boys is in the low 11’s and our fastest 200m is in the 23’s. Our fastest 400m is in the 51-52 second range.

Can I get some help? I’ve been searching around and you guys keep making references to different types of workouts like Int. Tempo, Ext. Tempo, SE, speed endurance, acc. dev. and things like that. What are those?

Thanks for any help you can give me. I really would appreciate it.

A lot of the workouts you have are Intensive tempo, and that mey be one of the main reasons for not peaking at the right time, as well as not having a structured perodization plan. I’m not sure if you do or don’t i’m just assuming. But it would help you get everything in order. That way you can get the most out of the time you have to work with.

Couple things. I don’t know if you planned on doing intensive tempo, but if your gonna do it out to 200m, you wouldn’t do that many. You would probably do half, and get the same amount of rest, maybe a minute or 2 more. So lets say one guy runs 22.5. He would have to run his in 26. But then again, since it’s the pre-season, he’s not exactly ready to run 22.5 so you can guestimate and have him run it a little slower. But if you have them do 10x200, have them run em at 75% or less. So now their doing extensive tempo. So since the fastest guy is running 23.7, no one should be going faster than 32sec. In the preseason you can have em go at 34sec, since he’s not in 23.7 shape yet. Same goes for the 300’s. Using the 23.7 guy again. He’s probably capable of running about 3

Also when you do speed work, you wouldn’t do that much. And you would have a lot more rest than 3min. The athletes won’t be able to give as much for every rep if they go full blast, and only get 3min rest. This would apply even if they only did 2 reps of a given distance. Unless it’s less than 30m. When you do speed work in practice, you want each run to be technically sound. If the athlete is tired, no matter how hard they try their form is gonna suffer. And all that does is teach them how to run with bad form. And again if you do anything fast you wouldn’t do that much. I don’t mean too much as far as distance. Just the overall volume.

As far as the regular season goes, I say piss on all those little meets on Tue, and stuff like that. You can either train through those, or use them as part of the training. I’m starting to think thats the main reason for some of the athletes not peaking at the right time. If you cut the training short, just to run in a dual meet, you won’t see much improvement if any. This is another reason why a periodized training schedule should be made. So make a plan and piss on the dual meets, etc.

Extensive Tempo - Runs at 75% or less of current pr.
Intensive Tempo - Runs higher than 75% but lower than 90%
Acceleration Development - Speed out to the 30-40m.
Special Endurance I & II(SE)
Special Endurance I - 150 - 300m
Special Endurance II - 300 - 600m
Speed Endurance - 80 - 150m

For Special Endurance & Speed Endurance, I like doing them based on time instead of distance.
Speed Endurance - 6-15sec
Special Endurance I - 15-40sec
Special Endurance II - 45sec+

I’ll post more later, I already wrote too much. lol

Intensive tempo are workouts in between above 75% (usually well above) but below 95% with short rest periods so that the intensity stays in that area. Its usually used as preparation for special endurance and speed endurance, but not to build endurance specific to events.

Extensive tempo (people usually specify int. tempo, but refer to ext. tempo as both tempo and ext. tempo). Workouts at 75% or below (possibly up to 80% but only in special occasions) used mainly as a contrast and means of restoration from high intensity work. Rest periods are short enough to make it somewhat challenging but still make it recovery and distances of runs vary up to 600m with total session volume going up to about 2200m; 3000m for 400 runners.

Special endurance 1, 2, and speed endurance (the SEs). Many people will tell you special endurance 1 is from 150-300m and special endurance 2 is from 300-600m, while some go by time. These can obviously be specific training elements for 200/400m but also general training components. Speed endurance are 70-150m runs, which is after top speed has ended for most runners and definitely high schoolers. All of these are performed with complete recovery from the last rep.

Acceleration development is work on distances up to before a runner reaches top speed. MaxV work is work on when he does reach top speed, either through overspeed methods of prolonged acceleration before top speed, technical work on max speed mechanics from shorter accelerations, or runs of however long an athlete can accelerate and then hold top speed.

I’ll edit and add more stuff later.

Damn it treble, you beat me to the punch. Damn it.

Future coach, I believe you edited your original post and I think I saw a workout focusing on starts where you did up to 30 starts out to as far as 30m. Does that still hold true or did I did you not actually have that written? If so, you should greatly reduce those numbers because that makes for an absolutely insane speed session in terms of volume. If you did not have that written in your original post, sorry.

guys good job posting.

I strongly recommend you purchase “TRAINING FOR SPEED”. It will elaborate on everything these guys are saying and some. It will also help you set up a program and give you an example of a sample week.

Ahahahahaha :smiley:

I’ll post a some sample macrocycles as well. But i’m gonna help Speedphenom real quick. He probably thinks I forgot about him. lol I’m kinda in the same situation as you, as far as the start dates of the season. It’s real lame how they expect teams to prepare for competition in one month. Sometimes less. It’s even harder when you don’t have an indoor track.

Thanks for all the info guys. I really appreciate it. I look forward to future posts because I have nothing but time right now and I need to do some serious research and planning to get an idea of how I am going to get these kids better. Keep it coming guys :smiley:

The important thing to realize is that though most sprint coaches advocate a less is more attitude when it comes to hard speed work which means stopping as soon as work declines, and full recovery outside of intensive tempo, it is still very important to get HS athletes to a good level of general fitness. So for an athlete who hasn’t done anything in a while you might do something like:

8 weeks of GPP with the first four weeks focusing on getting the athlete into good tempo shape (i.e. able to do around 2000m or 3000m in various ways at 75-80% while still not acting as that much of a challenge) with accereration development on grass (only until work starts to decline) once per week. In the second four weeks you might want to start doing intensive tempo or split runs (i.e. 500m split into 5 100s with a 90 second rest after each for a 400m athlete and then progress from there). Start adding bodyweight exercises into the tempo, like lunges, bodyweight squats, pushups. If you’re not doing acceleration development the next day you can make it hard. But remember that for all the anti-ciculatory work you do (hard bodyweight exercises done to fatigue, sprinting, plyometrics etc.) you have to balance it with circulatory work (ext. tempo or easy circuit bodyweight exercies like jumping jacks). During these next four weeks start working on max velocity work with acceleration development twice weekly and then during the last two weeks replace special endurance for the 100m/200m runners (do special endurance up to 300m for them) with speed endurance, slightly overdistance runs for the 200m guys, and both for 100/200 guys. Remember that your athletes have to be fully recovered to do speed development. With the special or speed endurance they can be a little less than fully recovered, but doing something like a day of hard depletion bodyweight work and then a day of special endurance is asking for trouble. If meets are entering the picture during towards the end of this time they can act as speed/special endurance sessions, but some overdistance is necessary as well. More to come later.

Sorry Pete, someone posted that already :smiley:

Hey…how would you periodize the phases? I might be able to start “working” with them in December (“indirectly”…“If I were you guys, I would…”).

Also, what are some weekly setups?

Can you guys give me examples if I can’t start until February and if I start them in December?

Thanks guys.

Well if December is 24 weeks out, maybe:

GPP 12 weeks for guys that are really out of shape, maybe eight for those that are coming in in good shape. I suggest you don’t get them into shape by doing mileage though, do tempo it’ll work.
SPP (accel. development, maxV, speed endurance or specific special endurance reps, MS weights, 3/1/3, which is 3 loading weeks one unloading and 3 loading) 7 weeks
Pre-comp/early comp (Train through the meets)3
Comp/late comp(Last big important meet taper five days out unless you’ve got some guys that are really fast then consider seven days. For lower level athletes 3 days might be fine.)

If you have 16 just chaange accordingly, but I would try to stick with 6-8 weeks GPP, maybe focusing more on split runs and accel. development developing a bit into max speed toward the end.

i just skimmed over the other posts but just to add my 2 cents… here is what i would advise you to do…

Your general prep phase comes first… This typically last 4 weeks but can be longer depending on training age. This phase is to get the body ready in in some type of general strength. It can be considered your base. A typically weekly setup in this phase would be something like…
Monday-Intensive Tempo Tues.-Extensive Tempo Wednesday-Warmup/drills Strides/hurdle mobility Thursday-Hills Friday-Extensive tempo After a week or 2 of that you can add in Acceleration developemnt if youd like on Monday and push everything foward a day.

That is basically what you first few weeks should look like. Ill post more when i get a chance.

Everything pete said in his last 2 posts were exactly what i am thinking.

Okay, I think I’m getting it now.

So, for this GPP do this:

Monday - Int. Tempo
Tuesday - Ext. Tempo
Wednesday - Hurdle Mobility/strides
Thursday - Hills
Friday - Ext. Tempo

Do that for 2 weeks, then…

Monday - Acc. Dev.
Tuesday - Int. Tempo
Wednesday - Ext. Tempo
Thursday - Hills
Friday - Ext. Tempo
Saturday - Hurdle mobility/strides

Saturdays they have to work alone all-year because we aren’t allowed to work with the kids on the weekends. Everything they do then is voluntary.

Then after that 8 week cycle start doing more maxV work and stuff? Can you guys give example weeks of the SPP and other phases you guys mentioned? I’m still a bit confused.

Don’t do intensive tempo at any time(imho) unless you are training for middle distance.

i tend to disagree. persoanlly i feel intensive tempo is a good way to get in shape quick and makes a smmoth transition to split runs follwed by Sp.End later on in the Macrocycle. I know some others on here tend to disagree but i feel intensive tempo at the begining of the year for a short period of time has benifited me.

I think someone like futurecoach has to just make a choice, intensive tempo or not. A lot of very smart people use it, a lot don’t, the point should just be if you do a program based upon cycling speed and MS weights and do decide to do IT it should be for a very small amount of time.

I don’t at all like using Int tempo and we did include it for the first three years of my coaching. Since the time we eliminated int tempo in the program we have gotten much better results in all of our sprint and hurdle times. Also, we seemed to have eliminated many nagging injuries which tended to hang around all season with the intensive tempo. To be honest we have made other changes along the way but that was probably the biggest change. If you had less time to train it might serve as a bridge between the speed and the speed or special endurance but given enough time to train I would not do it. In fact given a shortened season I would probably still avoid it. If I want my sprinters to become milers eventually then I might look into some IT but not until then.