T Nation


Hello all, I have been reading the forums here for awhile now and I figured it was time to make my own.

I am a 32 year old washed up college sprinter. I have spent the last 10 years trying to find a program that will get me back to my college days. The first 8 years were all trial and error years based on the long to short method. Burnouts and lack of excitement for essentially 3 lactic days a week lead to taking periodic breaks throughout the training year. I also don’t believe it to be a good methodology anymore despite all of my old coaches believing in it.

The last 2 years have been much more evidence and research based. I became a fitness specialist at a gym, I read countless articles on sprinting / muscles, and I was about to get my CSCS before the COVID. I now train using the short to long method which seems to be working and I enjoy it much more. I wasn’t able to race this last summer but I did a few self timed trials and I am slowly getting that speed back.

I haven’t taken the test but I am fairly certain that I am a HARD 1A. As I learn more things I have to add them into a workout. I rarely make it more than a week or so before I make a change of some kind. I have about 40 minutes of hype before I crash and don’t want to lift anymore.

Currently, I am in a strength building phase and I am not running. I plan to start again on the first of the year. 1 max velocity day, 1 acceleration day per week, and 1 lactic or specific endurance day. I am going to do these in the morning and lift in the evening. As the season progresses I will extend the distances that I do for these and the acceleration day will turn into a speed endurance day. I am hoping to continue lift throughout the season undulating power / Plyo and strength every other week.

Okay the moment you have all been waiting for, my numbers.

I’m a fat 180lbs (I was 165lbs in college)
Power Clean and Jerk 252
Power Clean 280
Squat 324
Deadlift 425
Power Snatch 186
Hip Thrusts 395

I can’t do bench or much arm stuff because I think I sprained my AC joint. Going to give it a month or so to heal. If it doesn’t get better I will go to the doctor.

Right now I do a giant cluster of 1 of these main lifts at about 90% then 1 accessory exercise, usually quad based because everything other than squat is posterior chain. I was also doing a giant cluster of an arm push or pull until I hurt my shoulder. I take a day off if I need it but otherwise I will go 7 days a week. I did this for a month with no burnout or fatigue and massive gains. When I begin to run again I will take a full day off between the acceleration and max velocity days.

Let me know what you all think, I am always looking for ways to improve my workouts.

Well that didn’t last long. My shoulder got worse after an extreme game of volleyball. Not only that, but the gym I go to is now in full lockdown and the gym I work at won’t let me workout there!

Perhaps this is best though, it will give my shoulder a chance to heal. I think I will begin the track workouts when my shoulder feels better and do body weight stuff mixed with plyometrics. Once my gym opens up I can add strength training back into the mix.

Ok gym is open. I am going to work on maintaining as much of my leg strength as I can without using my arms. I am going to do a giant cluster of the main lift then a crossfit style workout. I am going to try to avoid over working myself by going back and forth between a 3 rep cluster for 12 mins and a 1 rep cluster for 12 mins @ 80% and 90% respectively. Hope to stay on this one until my shoulder feels better then start to do sprint workouts. After 4-6 weeks I’ll slowing bring back olympic lifts and upper body.

Day 1
WOD involving: Step Ups/Deck Squats, Sled Push, and Plank Abs

Day 2
Hip Thrusts
WOD involving: Pike Leg Extension, Standing Leg Extension, and Sled Pull

Day 3
Adductor Abductor Machine
WOD involving: Sled Drag/Pull and Stability abs

What distance do you specialize in?
I’ve never done track but I like training for speed. Look up Mikeyoungphd on Instagram, he has some good stuff.

I’ve had multiple shoulder tears and surgeries, you just need to learn what you’re capable of doing and stick to that.

That’s also an insane power clean to squat ratio

I mostly did the 400m (I’m borderline psychotic) and the relay events.

I am always looking for more training perspectives, thanks for the suggestion!

Yeah power clean has always been my favorite lift. Before I learned about clusters I sucked at training them though. My grip would get tired before my legs so I plateaued around 245.

Check out Tony Holler and feed the cats for a low volume short to long approach for the running work.

I love feed the cats!!! I basically follow the same principles but with less emphasis on sprinting mechanics and recording times.

Tony Hollers approach to rigorous recording of times sounds to me like a way to motivate teenagers, which is fair enough but less relevant to adults.
The “gap” in his programme is the amount/type of strength and jump type training. I wonder if his athletes achieve this via training in other high school speed-power sports such as football and basketball.
Unfortunately you cant tell if his view of strength training matches his high quality/minimalist view of the actual sprinting.

Whats your view on weights for sprinting - general strength, Barry Ross type of heavy deads and BPs but not much else, HIT …?

Most of what I have read says that it is much harder to build coordination than it is to build strength as you age. Therefore, focusing on the neurological side of training, i.e. max velocity training, should be the priority when young. Strength training can be implemented more as one gets older.

There are some sprinters that never touched weights for most of their careers like Carl Lewis and Kim Collins and there are sprinters like Ben Johnson who could squat like 600lbs. CT talks about it in the following forum post.

My personal theory is that your stride length and turnover rate are 2 of the most important keys to running fast. I believe your stride length will naturally get longer as you get stronger. Therefore, increasing your max will increase your speed if you are able to maintain weight and turnover. Focusing on posterior chain and explosive movements like oly lifts are ideal. I am not sure about the hip thrust but I keep reading about it and want to try it.

Edit: I don’t believe that lifting is bad for young athletes wanting to get faster, in fact I think it is very beneficial. However, coaches typically don’t have very much time with athletes in high school and youth sports. In the case of limited time speed work is substantially more important.

Was finally able to get my butt into the gym yesterday.

Squats 10 sets of 3 @ 265 in 12 mins

My legs were burning so much that I couldn’t remember if I did 9 or 10 sets! I was supposed to do some sled pushes or single leg squats or whatever but my legs were toast.

So it has been only 8 days since my last workout and 12 since my last squat day. I don’t plan on having such long breaks between lifts ever again. However, my legs are exceptionally sore! Is this just because I am getting old? Is this because I have a high protein turnover rate? Or is this pretty standard for taking that much time off?

Either way it felt good to get back in there even if I am walking like Frankenstein’s monster

DOMS are standard if you’re inconsistent. With consistency you shouldn’t get sore.

In regards to timing your runs, I picked up a Jawku speed this summer. Great tool for the price.

Tell me all about the Jawku. It seems really cool from what I have read.

Easy to use and seems quite accurate.
You basically just wear a wrist band and setup your phone’s front camera as the finish line. Times can be initiated with a gun (sound emitted by the wrist band) or on motion.
I found a 20% off coupon code online with out much trouble.

It doesn’t have the ability to give you split times unless you wear multiple bands at once.

Hip thrusts with a pause at the top 12 sets of 3 @ 315 in 12 mins

My butt cheeks were on fire!

Was going to do some sled drags but my quads were very sore still. Will try to work more things in the workouts as my soreness starts to dissipate.

8 min incline walk on treadmill
Hip adductor/abductor machine 3 x going to failure
Sled push/pull 4-5 x 25 yards each

Legs are still very sore. Did sleds to get blood flow to my legs. Hopefully the concentric only nature of the sleds will not contribute to my soreness.

Sled push/pull 20 yards??? 5 Plates??? for 18 mins.
Legs were sore still but they felt much better as the day went on.

Took Monday completely off because my next workout is supposed to be heavy squats and I felt too sore. I may try to do them today but my legs are still a bit tight and I did not get very much sleep (Like 4 hours).

Squats 10 sets of 1 @ 315 in 12 mins

I only got 9 but couldn’t get out of the hole on the 10th one. I was supposed to do 310(308) but was too lazy to put all of the different plates on. It felt great to move some real weight around again. Knees felt great too.

Hip thrust 10 sets of 1 @ 385 in 12 mins

Only did 4 reps because I realized that the machine was only rated for 370. I will do standard hip thrusts from here on.

One leg maybe?