T Nation

Sprint Work and Tempo Running


Hey Coach,

I wanted to add some tempo running and maybe some sprint work to my routine. I am currently looking to put on size using the HSS-100 split routine.

Quads (Priority Day)
Back (Priority Day)
Arms (Priority Day)

My priority days are the higher carb days, I would say moderate intake as I am around 12% BF.

Lifting would be in the AM and running in the PM. Which would days would be the best for the tempo running? I am not planning any acceleration work at this time, but maybe some buildups to full speed? Or should I stick with tempo only at this time? For tempo running I was thinking like 4-5 200 meter runs with 200 meter walks in between.

Thanks for the time.


Put them on quads days and hams days.

  1. otherwise the legs will be trained 4 times a week (2 strengths 2 track) better do more work for the legs on those two days while giving them more days to recover

  2. the strength work is often prevent you from doing stupid stuff and going too hard on sprints and injuring yourself. A slight fatigue will keep you more focused on your running form.



I am not coach Thibaudeau and I don't want to be anal but 4-5 x 200 m with 200 m walk's break = interval training. Tempo run means that you will run non stop during 20-45 min at 85% MHR.

Have a nice day


Thanks Coach, that does make the most sense.


I actually see that as long duration cardio when you get into the 30-45 min range. To me, and I am not saything this is officially right anywhere, tempo running means that I am not running all out, like true sprints. And when I think true intervals, I think all out.


Actually no it doesn't. Tempo running in sprinting terms refer to running a certain sprinting distance (e.g. 100m, 200m) at anywhere between 75 and 85% of your max SPEED ON THAT DISTANCE. It is also called 'form running'.


Ok, my apologies to both of you. Probably in bodybuilding you don't used the same definitions. I will remember to be careful with terms when comparing different sports.

Since I am an endurance athlete (runner), I was refeering at our definition of this kind of training (see below). It is a quite hard training session, more than steady-state running (65-75%). So, it will have a different impact on your recovery. For a runner, sprints are all out for short burst of 30 sec and intervals are something like 4x1000-1600 m, 4x800m, 8 x 200 m with warm-up and cool down jogging.

This "comfortably hard" run is the key to racing your best, at any distance. Here's how to add tempo runs to your weekly mix.

By John Hanc
Image by Dung Hoang

PUBLISHED 05/23/2007

A classic tempo or lactate-threshold run is a sustained, comfortably hard effort for two to four miles. The workouts below are geared toward experience levels and race goals.


For some reason Runner's World seems to have little interest in sprinting.


Sprinting is not running, you know that Bill :slight_smile: Just like bodybuilding is not training.



English is not my first language so I am not sure if there is a second level behind your comment .... My reply to the first post was that according to my definition, Tempo runring will not be a good option to fat loss since at long term, it will be detrimental for lean mass maintenance.

Endurance runners and sprinters are definitively different athletes. Many top 5000 and 10000 m athletes make a move toward half-marathon and marathon distances with really impressive results but the oppposite is quite impossible!!!! Sprinters have a lot of strenght training session in their weekly schedules, just look at their shoulders & legs!!!!!. My speedwork will be a light jog for them but anyway, I still proud of me and my weekly mileages.

Nevertheless, sprinters, endurance runner, bobybuilder or powwerlifter have to be 100% committed to their discipline to succeed. I have huge respect for effort.


Yes, if the original poster, Seabass, had meant tempo running as according to the endurance running meaning that you have explained, then absolutely, as you say it would not be a good option for him.

But he did mean it as running for example 200 meters at reduced speed.