T Nation

100 Meter Sprints

I am going to start doing cardio 4-6 times a week. 3-4 low intensity days and 1-2 days using 100 meter sprints. I am wondering how I should go about doing these? I was thinking of seting my watch for 15 minutes and then running as many 100m dashes as I could EDT style, each week trying to beat the record. Or maybe just run 100m rest 2min or so and just run a certain number like 5 or 6. On the other hand I don’t want to overdue it with these and hurt my squat. I know CT in the Black Book advised against running 400m dashes more than once a week. And only doing 2 sets per session.

Any ideas?

[quote]snippdawg wrote:
I am going to start doing cardio 4-6 times a week. 3-4 low intensity days and 1-2 days using 100 meter sprints. I am wondering how I should go about doing these? I was thinking of seting my watch for 15 minutes and then running as many 100m dashes as I could EDT style, each week trying to beat the record. Or maybe just run 100m rest 2min or so and just run a certain number like 5 or 6. On the other hand I don’t want to overdue it with these and hurt my squat. I know CT in the Black Book advised against running 400m dashes more than once a week. And only doing 2 sets per session.

Any ideas?[/quote]

If you’re still lifting weights during all this, 6 days of cardio will probably be too much, especially if you’re doing sprints on two of those days. Why not just do two days of sprints instead of 2 of sprints and 4 of “light” cardio? I would err to the lowside until you’ve seen how your body responds, as it is easy to overtrain with regard to sprint training. I don’t like the idea of doing as many 100s as you can in 15 minutes unless you are going for more of an aerobic workout…if so have at it, but if you’re training for speed I don’t think that is the way to go about it.

Thanks. So would you say instead of doing a 15min EDT style sprint workout I should just run a predetermined number? Say 4 or 5 to start and then see how it effects the rest of my lifting and go from there?

Do the 400s. A workout of 100s is no less taxing at max effort than 400s in terms of recovery, yet the 400s provide the time period needed for aerobic carryover you seem to be seeking. 400s are a miserable experience, btw. Pick them up slowly even if you’re already in fairly good shape.

You could also look up Christian Thib’s “Running Man” article, and follow his “Interval Build Up Running” program - it covers sprint training in a systematic manner. Do an article search for “Running Man” if you’re interested.

Regards,

WiZ

Thanks guys. Actually I have the Black Book which has the Running Man program in it. I prefer sprinting to interval running however.

I would love to do 400m dashes but I just don’t have the conditioning for them yet.

But this has gotten me thinking about doing 4x100m once or twice a week and slowing decreasing rest periods until I can do a straight 400.

But I also really like doing 100m in themselves.

EDT is a very bad idea for running sprints of any nature. Your run quality (form intensity etc) will suffer and you wont get much benefit as just 15 min of steady state cardio. The thing with sprint training is you cant just go and run 100% on a sprint else (especially if you are not conditioned) you will suffer very large and very quick drops in intensity you can put out. I would say if you are in decent shape to start out with maybe 6 reps of 100s with 90 sec rest, running at about 90% of what you think is your best sprint ability. You can do that twice a week as suggested and do another couple days with 8-10 reps of 100m strides; this wont hurt you at all and should 1)help recovery 2) help you improve your running mechanics. Build up over time, a workout I really like is varying sprints over the same workout. For example usually once every 5 or so days I will run 5 reps of 400s with 2min rest, then 5 reps of 200s at 90 sec rest, then 5 reps of 100s at 60 sec rest. Usually I just try and run them within a time frame (1:05 or less for the 400s, :34 or less for 200s and so on) to keep up a good intensity level. BTW to the poster who said 400s and 100s are the same, I can run 100% of a 100 and like 80% of a 400 and still want to die after the 400 lol. But I am about 218 lbs so carrying it over a longer distance does some damage. Take care and remember to build up the sprint volume and intensity over time.

If you haven’t been doing any running then I would recommend you begin very conservatively. I would do a total of 3 days running. I would do 2 days of speed and 1 day tempo, if my primary goal was to increase speed. You could eventually progress to 3 days speed and 3 days tempo a la Charlie Francis or you could include the sprints as your speed-strength exercise during some or all of your workouts (whichever best suits you).

For the speed days, I would find your best time for whatever distance you want to run. Then determine what a 6% dropoff would be for that distance (it will be a slower time). Keep dong the sprints until you can no longer get them completed during the 6% dropoff time. The drop off technique has been discussed by DB Hammer and Charlie Francis determines “dropoff” by visual inspection with his athletes (he can tell when there form deteriorates or they need more recovery and he will stop their session at that time). Unfortunately, I am not as well trained as he is, so the timer comes in handy.

For tempo runs, I would run sets of 100-200 meters at 60% of your top speed for a total of 1000 yards initially. As you progress you can gradually increase to 2000 yards total. These runs are for active recovery and some aerobic conditioning (but mainly active recovery). Example
Set 1: 100+200+100+100
Set 2: 100+100+200+100
+=50-100 meter walk between tempo runs
Walk 100-200 meters between sets.

Hope that helps.

IMO, jumping into 6 days a week of conditioning right off the bat is a potentially good way to end up injured. I also don’t think it’s neccessary. As a few others mentioned, 2 days of sprints and one fartlek type or even steady state conditioning would be a nice balance. As for the 100’s, I simply do 10 at 90% intensity with a walk back for the rest. As I get in better condition, I speed up the walk.

All good ideas to consider/implement. Thanks a lot for the help.

I think I should state here that my primary interest for doing the sprints is more for heart health/conditioning and to Stay lean/fat loss.

I train powerlifting style but don’t compete. So I will start out more conservatively as I am trying to build my squat up.

Thanks again for the imput.

[quote]Magnus157 wrote:
IMO, jumping into 6 days a week of conditioning right off the bat is a potentially good way to end up injured. I also don’t think it’s neccessary. [/quote]

I wouldn’t even jump into 100m sprints, start off with shorter distances such as 30m and 60m, where you can run at high intensity without sufferring a drop off in form.

Start off with maybe 5x30m and 3x60m in a session. If you put everything into the sprints you will feel it, trust me! After a week or two when you start getting used to it increase the session to include 5x60m. When that becomes comfortable you could then throw in some 100m sprints so the workout could be 3x30m, 3x60m, 3x100m etc. When you have built up to being very comfortable with multiple sets of the 100m it is probably worth splitting the sessions between short (30-60m) and long (100-200m)sprints.

As in the gym you should mix around the parameters as well. Do one day of short sprints, one of medium (100-200m) and one long (400m or CT’s Interval Build Up Running)

As a lot of the guys are saying I think it is important to work into it gradually rather than jump straight in. You will still see improvement and won’t lose motivation or risk injury as much this way.

As has been suggested build up to the longer distances.
Maybestart running the 100’s at 3/4 pace and then do shorter sprints flat out say over 30-40m - slowly increase the distances and as your conditioning improves you can increase the workload.

Good luck with it

[quote]snippdawg wrote:
I think I should state here that my primary interest for doing the sprints is more for heart health/conditioning and to Stay lean/fat loss.

I train powerlifting style but don’t compete. So I will start out more conservatively as I am trying to build my squat up.
[/quote]

This is the most relevant information.

Since you train PL, I imagine maximal strength is important to you. If so, then I wouldn’t recommend any 100m sprints. Stick to low intensity cardio (for health) and 400m tempo runs (for conditioning) and that will keep you lean provided your nutrition is good.

Okay, forgive me, but what exactly are 400m tempo runs?