This is a two-part article series where I will discuss sprint training, benefits of sprinting, and how you can get started with my three simple sprinting workouts.
OK…I’ll admit it.
I get this very confused look when I tell people I like to sprint for fun.
Once a week, I make my way to a local high school track and perform a few simple sprinting workouts. Nothing crazy.
But a lot of people tend to confuse the word simple for easy. These sprinting workouts are far from easy.
If you want to get lean, ripped, cut (or whatever adjective you can think of that represents a solid muscular physique), sprint training will get you there, and get you there fast.
Sprinting is a very functional exercise – something that may come in handy in your every day life. Think about that bus you’ve been trying to catch.
Sprinting may be one of the most efficient and intense exercises you can add to your training repertoire. It requires no equipment and you can always find an open field if you don’t have access to a track. All you need is a little over 50 meters of unobstructed space and a little bit of time. My sprint training very rarely lasts longer than 30-40 minutes.
Sprint training is a full-body workout that targets a number of muscle groups.
A sprint consists of a series of short but very intense concentric contractions by several muscle groups. This consists of flexion and extension in your calves, quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes (maximus and medius), hip abductors, pecs (chest muscles), lats, biceps and triceps. There is further horizontal rotation and flexion of the abdominal obliques as well as contraction of your deltoids (shoulders). Each muscle contraction during a sprint consists of explosive accelerations and decelerations that leave your body sore from head to toe.
One of the amazing benefits of sprint training is its effect on weight/fat loss. Aside from dramatically improving your athletic ability, sprints have been shown to have a very positive effect for elevating your metabolism for multiple DAYS! Regular jogging elevates your metabolism during the run and for a very short period afterward (small oxygen deficit). But if you include some simple sprinting workouts once or twice a week to your routine, you could have your metabolism continously revving in high gear for maximal fat loss.
To get a better understanding of how this works, read my article on epoc training.
Before I get into my three sprinting workouts, here are some things to consider about sprint training:
Before you start
Sprinting is an extremely intense form of exercise. Start off easy and try and improve a little bit every week.
A dynamic warm-up is CRITICAL before sprinting. You need to loosen up your muscles and prepare your tendons, joints and ligaments for intense stress. This is the warm-up I perform before I begin sprint training. You can modify it to suit your needs.
- Jog 2 easy laps around the track (roughly 800m at an easy pace)
- Wall swings – find something you can hold on to and perform wall swings forwards and wall swings sideways (10 each)
- High knees – run with high knees (as high as you can) for 20m
- Butt kicks – run and kick your butt with your heals for 20m
- Lunges – perform bodyweight lunges for 20m
Water is extremely important. Make sure you are drinking it before, during and after all your workouts.
The manner in which you sprint is very important in terms of preventing injury. Check out this article on sprinting mechanics to get a better understanding of proper technique.
This is the end of Part 1 of this article series – all about sprint training. In Part 2 I will be going over my 3 Simple Sprinting Workouts.
Check it out at Sprint Training – My 3 Simple Sprinting Workouts (Part 2)