Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Speed Day's finally coming together

Someone once said that when you are really sprinting it feels like your floating, almost effortless. Therein lies the parodox; how do you get your body to perform a movement so ballistic and aggressive, yet at the same time totally relaxed? It's a difficult thing to do. Today was the first time in years that I actually felt the speed I used to have years ago. I felt like I was floating and almost airborne. Sprinters run in the air, barely making contact with the surface, and only briefly each stride. Contrast that with distance runners who run on the ground and make lots of contact with the surface. What I learned today about sprinting performance:

1) You only get better at sprinting by actually sprinting (duh!!!) The last 5 weeks of sprinting have made a HUGE difference and I can feel my body starting to get the GROOVE back.

2) Keeping my head down for the first 30 meters helps me focus on accleration, why,I'm not sure. I feel that the sooner I lift my head I lose my acceleration. Interesting!!!

3) Powerful arms and shoulders make a difference. KB Snatches, Swings, Cleans and Rows help alot. Loose, lightening quick arms help me explode out of the blocks. Running the stadium stairs has basically turned into an ARM SWING exercise for me. That is my focus on the stairs: Pump my arms as powerfully and quickly as possible. THIS HAS HELPED TONS!!!!

4) Maintaining stiffness in the TORSO / CORE is essential for speed. Get too loose in the mid-section and bad things happen. Sprinting is one of the BEST CORE MOVEMENTS you can do. Don't believe me, get out on the track and run 5 x 50 meters sprints focusing on keeping the CORE still while sprinting. Of course it won't stay totally still but that focus of keeping slight stiffness in your torso and spine will allow you to sprint much more efficiently


Warm up
Track Drills
Dynamic Hip mobility

2 x 20 meters (100 %)
2 x 50 meters (100 %)

1 x 100 meters (felt good)

That's it. Great weather today. Nice and sunny, & warm. Thank you God for today!!!


Mark Reifkind said...

now you're cooking. great post, great workout and excellent insights.this is just what I was talking about in regards to kbs really being effective as a speed strength tool, as well as strength endurance, rather than a limit strength one.or for hypertrophy.

manI know exactly what you are talking about running in the air and just barely making contact.

I used to get tha alot running down hill, especially on trails wher eyou have to dance your way down the rocks.a freefall with bounces off the side of the mountain.

keep up the good work!

Mark Reifkind said...

oh and as far as the head thing, its probably what pavel told me about when we were talking aobut head position at the start of the dl. if you look down you activate the knee and back extensors more; when you look up you activate the hip and back extensors( olympic style dl).

Franz Snideman said...

Thanks for the comments Rif. I appreciate them. It's finally coming together and even though I have long road ahead of me, there is LIGHT in the tunnel. My body is learning how to sprint again. The tension I've developed in my body over the last couple of years has not been good for my health, sprinting or work. There is a balance and I realize I violated that balance for years. Thank God for second chances.

Interesting comment about the eyes, I've heard that before. I think maybe when I look down it keeps my body more at an angle and in an optimal DRIVE stance. If I stand straight up I don't drive.

Joefitness said...

All I remember about head position was the longer I stayed lower and my eyes focused down (say the first 30 meters or so) the better drive I had and true acceleration. Head down makes a difference. My fastest 30 meters, 2.79 seconds out of the blocks after 4 weeks of training specifically at 26 years old