July 10th, 2012
by Jodi · Filed Under: Training
Let’s jump (wow, unintended bad pun right there) right into this:
BEFORE YOU START
Sneakers: Running shoes. Do not wear minimalist sneakers if you have never sprinted before, you will blow out your shins. Bring those in slowly. Sneakers are personal so no, I do not have a recommendation of a brand.
Time: NOT HIGH NOON. I always see at least one crazy person on a track sprinting at high noon at least once a year. And don’t ask why I’m there to see it–I’m nosy ok? You feel better now? If you go early morning, the grass will be wet. Don’t walk through it, soak up your feet and then try to sprint with maximum traction. Stay off the grass. If you go later in the day, close to evening, the mosquitoes will make a meal of you so bring some OFF to show them who’s boss. Track mosquitoes are a special gigantic breed that has been brought over from the Amazon. Take heed.
Water: If it is hot, water may not be enough. Nuuns are easy to bring with you in case you need them and are way better than any kind of Gatoraide product that’s going to kill your physique.
Assuming this is a standard track, the straightaway is 100m; the curve is 100m. Altogether the entire way around is 400m. Don’t try to stay in your lane or get all technical, just get around the track. Be mindful of other people and don’t hog up a whole area like we can in the gym because most tracks are for public use so they’ll be all types roaming around when you get there.
If it has bleachers, fabulous! Make sure they are sturdy. TEST THEM OUT before you barrel up them like Chariots of Fire on crack. You’d be surprised at how many good looking but falling apart bleachers there are out there.
Dynamic warm ups are best done on the straightaway that is separated from the track. Typically it’s about 8 to 15 feet that is set aside and leads right into the straight portion of the track. Most people will not bother you if you use that as your warm up area. Do not start your sprint from there, though, because it adds to the length of the 100m sprint.
WHAT YOU ARE WORKING
Overall: Conditioning. We do not use these for anything other than to give you a nice tight body. However, there is a nice side effect to sprinting which is your overall lung capacity. If you are a runner, you’ll be able to run faster, longer after a few weeks of sprinting. If you’re a gym rat, you’ll notice that your intense days of cardio in the gym are no longer intense and you’ll have to kick it up a notch.
- ‘Start block starts’ work the glutes, hamstrings and calves.
- The first ten steps work the quads, hamstrings, glutes and calves.
- Top speed running works the hamstrings.
I left out the hip flexors and other terminology like push/pull phase or return swing on purpose. Unclog your mind of those things for now. This is about appearance–not performance.
Mental stamina: There is something about sprinting that makes us feel fierce and productive. Capitalize on this; don’t shy away. Sweaty, smelly workouts that are directly correlated with a sense of being uniquely strong keep us focused on the task at hand, dieting, more than anything else we’ll do all week long.
A true track workout should not take more than 15 min. We use them for conditioning only. When used as cardio, lots of fillers are put in to add to the length of the workout and all fillers MUST BE less intense than the sprint portion of the workout or you will fry yourself. Adding too much stuff into the workout is a great way to get injured but this happens because we feel like we can conquer the world once we start releasing speed. Get your head together, girl. You’re coming back next week. No need to shove it all in at one time. Here are the components:
- Dynamic Warmup
- Warm up sprints
- Full out sprinting
- Add ins, fillers and rest periods
- Cool down
I will break all of these down for you tomorrow. I’ll give you things to think about, how to do them, where you get yourself into trouble and how to keep it fresh. Today, though, I’m just going to give you a sample workout to sink your teeth into so you have an idea of what I’m going to walk you through tomorrow and because I promised that I would. I don’t want you to think I’m holding out.
You can google any of these exercises if you don’t know what they are:
DYNAMIC WARM UP
Performed in a straight line, over 15 feet or so. Backslash BP means to return to start with a back pedal.
- 8 “runs”—each way is 1 run
- High knees/BP
- Butt kickers/BP
- Skip for height/BP
- Skip for distance/BP
- Prisoner walks
- Round house shuffle
- Monster walks
WARM UP SPRINT
Start at the beginning of the straight away
Run at a fast, but easy, pace half of the distance of the straight away.
Walk back to start.
Do this 3 to 5 times depending on how long it takes you to loosen up and feel comfortable.
Start in start block position, run faster speed than before the entire length of the 100m strip. Walk back. Repeat 2 more times. Take a walk around the track or put a filler here. I’ll explain tomorrow what fillers are.
Begin another set of sprints again only this time, empty everything you have into the pavement. You will only feel fast for the first one. You will get progressively slower after that. Walk around again or add another filler.
Last set of 3. Feel this one out. If you feel good, do them full speed. If you’re new to this, just “run fast” but don’t empty your tank into the track or you could get hurt. Walk around the track or last filler.
You’re done. This is as basic as it gets. It’s time to cool down.
- Prisoner walks
- Lunge and rotate
- Over the fence, under the fence
- Hip hip
Tomorrow we’ll do a “fancy” track workout with plyos and cranks before we move onto the park and the beach. Sound good? Woop woop!!