One of the hot topics of Social Networks and the Blogosphere is the morphological changes to high intensity training such as sprinting and olympic lifting. This is old news and what is necessary to see the combinations of all the methods of training since we are likely not to be just doing 4-6 30 sec sprints only. Bodybuilding circuits, high volume olympic style weightlifting methods, short sprint
Give me Kenenisa Bekele’s cardiovascular system but it wouldn’t make me a faster sprinter. For sure there are some physiological changes in cardiovascular system from training, but even for endurance athletes main improvements come from adaptation of muscle fibres and improvements from certine physiological changes in cardiovascular system are very minor. Distance runners can still improve at great without changes in VO2max and even improved VO2max isn’t an indicator of improved cardiovascular system. Talking about sprinters, training mainly slow muscle fibres (tonic fibres) through strength training of lower load/longer duration and by running slower/longer duration during begining of preparation have certine value.
What effect does tempo do for the Jamaican sprinters since they have such a high volume. What about GPP? Is their a need for work capacity not specific to pure speed? I don’t think people do volume to help with speed, I do think endurance like work capacity helps people tolerate fatigue. I would be interested to see workouts and how you address the above.
Could you share some GPP microcycles?
Carl, I still need to learn a lot that’s why it’s not worth writing a GPP microcycle for me. I don’t work with high level sprinters, at the moment I work just with young ones who are only 12-13 years old. Plus I’m not sure how long they are going to do sports. If I knew that best of them would stay long enough so better choice would be to have a long term plan. If all of them finishes sport untill 16-18 years old, so generally less volume more quality work should take place. Of course it a bit risky due to injuries. I do have some practical experience training on my own as a 400m runner running under 48 and I trained 48sec sprinter during those few years as well. Now being 28 I’m still experimenting with some things on myself during training.
Talking about best Jamaican sprinters, they have long macrocycle b/c most of them don’t compete indoors. During such a long macrocycle is not the best idea to do high quality low volume work in my mind. I do thing that higher volume/lower intensity work during GPP helps at some point to better tolerate higher quality work during later training phases. Plus I think it helps to keep more stable results during competition season. If Jamaicans GPP microcycles consists of higher volume, some days are with two sessions like gym in the morning and running in the afternoon, so it doesn’t mean that such a microcycle would be best choice for a typical high school sprinter.
Another thing is that two sprinters of the same age and same training background might need to do a bit diferent training sessions during GPP. We know that our composition of muscle fibres is diferent. One sprinter can have higher percentage of fast muscle fibres than another. Even if these two sprinters have simmilar percentage of fast muscle fibres it doesn’t mean that these fibres have same characteristics for both sprinters. For example for one sprinter these fast muscle fibres are more resistant to fatique than for another. Now both sprinters are doing tempo session like let’s say 8x300m and running reps for the same set of time and using same rest. What happens is that for a sprinter whose fibres are more resistant to fatique, such a workout would be less demanding and for another already might be too demanding. Of course good coach can adjust volume and intensity to different athletes during such sessions.
When you look at energy systems in sprint races, you notice the increasing anaerobic component as the duration decreases i.e 400m – 100m. But you cant just generate a training program solely based on the percentage of energy systems used for the race distance. Its important to keep in mind that bigger proportions of the aerobic system will be required to complete the sessions which do have a positive effect on speed. I.e you have to train to train.
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