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Will Running Long Distances Ruin Your Sprinting Ability?
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PVTrackRunner
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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 7:56 pm    Post subject: Will Running Long Distances Ruin Your Sprinting Ability? Reply with quote

I'm a high school student (freshman) and am wondering if running long distances will ruin my sprint ability. I only ran sprints in Track this year, not long distances, but have friends on the distance side who want me to join XC next year. If I do join XC, will it affect my "fast-twitch" muscles negatively in sprinting?

Thanks to anyone who can reply!
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Dan
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PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2006 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've seen it go both ways. The conditioning helps some sprinters but the grind of the training hurts others. I've personally seen more examples of the negatives, but that's not very conclusive. The important thing is to not over-do the volume and to keep the program tailored enough that there's still a steady speed component.

Dan
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Indeurr
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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Most likely the answer is: Yes.
If you are a pure (up to) 100 m type of a dasher, you should try to run at most up to 1K or up to 1 -- one mile. However, if you are a 400/800 meter--specialist, you can get away with running long distance; and in the case of 800 meters, even if approach from the dash--perspective, some long distance running is necessary (up to 6 miles -- you want to avoid building too many capillaries, if you want to run 800 m as a dash). There are, three ways, however, to run 800 meters.
A distance--approach: 800 meters 'is' a fastest long--distance race, in this case.
A dash--approach: 800 meters 'is' the longest sprint, in this case.
Finally, race--approach: 800 meters 'is' its own race.
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Last edited by Indeurr on Mon Jun 26, 2006 7:05 am; edited 1 time in total
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Fry the Sailor
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PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2006 1:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've seen it do absolutely nothing at all too! I have a classmate that has very steadily improved year to year in 110 h hurdles going from roughly 20 to 18.4sh to under 16 and he ran XC every one of those years! Another classmate, a girl, has been an all-area XC and track star in distances all the way to 200m! Important thing with distance, from my perspective, is the nature of the training. How many miles/week will you run for XC? Is there some flexibility for some solid weightlifting?

The style and tempo of the running is different, I think that is what throws some people off form. My guess is that it kind of comes down to your motor and mental power along with co-ordination. If I were a sprinter considering doing XC I'd put a priority on learning the running styles and making them distinct and if you don't know what I'm talking about I suggest some reading! I can't think of any particular reading out there, but I'm sure you'll find it.
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Conway
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PostPosted: Fri May 26, 2006 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The key is when you do it ... Off season long distance work can be a very good base for a sprinter ... Just as it is for a middle distance runner ... During the season a nice two mile warm up will keep the aerobic base strong that was built up ... But then, the "regular" work out should consist of the normal speed work for a sprinter ...

You'll be surprised at how that can help a 100 guy perform better over the deuce ... And even help with guys you want to run on the 4x4 ...
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Paul
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 12:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my way of looking at this, I think the key is that the other fellows want you to be part of the team. If you decide to do this, it will hinder any flexibility you have, to do different kinds of training during the Fall. It is one thing to put in some hard over distance interval training a couple of times a week with the team, vs the steady aerobic training necessary for XC. To me, Dan's statement about volume is exactly right.

Bottom line:?? Dan, Conway... what would Charlie Francis do!! Laughing
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As many of you know, Felix changed coaches last year, and is now in the Bob Kersee camp. She had some problems adjusting to the workload last year, this year has been much better. She says all the sprinters train like they are 400m runners. Apparently, Kersee is big on over distance. I get the impression Hart is the same way.
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Dan
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 5:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think a lot of coaches at the higher levels are scared to hurt the athletes through too much intensity, so they go conservative with the over-distance. Really, it should be flipped around, with the longer stuff for younger, less conditioned athletes who need it more, and the shorter/faster stuff for the pro's who have years of speed endurance built up.

Dan
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