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Answered By Jeff Arbogast


I have one week to improve my time and get into shape! Last year i got medals in all my events but we have a new coach and we don't run. I run the 200m , 400m and 800m is there anything i could do to improve my time and get into shape in a week? I don't know what to do and i want to do well! Thanks for your time, Hannah


Hannah, your goals are admirable, but you will need to temper your expectations if you only have one week. The events you have listed, the longer sprints, will take a bit more time than you have available. You can certainly improve in a week, but your actual potential will not be seen until a season of work has passed. You also have quite a range of distance here. The 200 and 400 can to some degree be helped by the same type of workout, but adding the 800 means a speed-endurance component that will take time. With just a week, you only have the chance to do perhaps 3 harder workouts. Depending upon your condition (you have said it needs help), I'd do one speed-endurance session (5 x 500m in your 800 goal pace with an identical rest), one pure speed session (Flying 40s--an all-out 40m burst followed by 360m around the track slow--6-8 laps), and one hybrid workout (ins-and-outs---100m accelerations on the straights with slow jogs on the curves, working on sprint form with your coach--4-5 laps). This would work on M-W-F or T-Th-S. On the other days, a long warm-up and stretch followed by an easy 15-20 minute jog to stay loose will be super. Eat right, get plenty of rest as your ramp up your training, and hydrate well (some water, some Gatorade). Keep your long-range goals in mind too; no real important improvement comes fast. The best satisfaction will come from realizing your long-range goals! Train hard . . . have fun . . .

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