Sprinting is a major component in many sports and requires the athlete to perform explosive running for short distances. An unconditioned athlete may find himself lacking the stamina needed to maintain a fast sprint long enough to keep up with the competition. This is because blood lactate accumulation can leave the muscles feeling fatigued. Training can boost the rate at which lactate clears the muscles and reduce the rate at which it forms, according to SportsFitnessAdvisor.com. Performing sprint endurance drills as well as strength training can help condition your body to give you the stamina needed to sprint longer.
Sprint Endurance Drills
Perform sprint endurance drills during late pre-season training and throughout in-season training. Do these drills one to two times a week, for no more than 20 to 30 minutes per session. Walk or jog slowly during the rest periods between exercises.
Perform shuttle run drills by marking out 30 meters with cones, on either the grass or a track, and place cones in between at 5-meter intervals. Sprint from the starting cone to the first cone 5 meters out, then sprint back. Sprint from the starting cone to the second cone 10 meters out, then sprint back. Continue in this manner all the way out to 30 meters and back to complete one set. Do six sets with 90-second rest periods in between each set.
Perform hollow sprints by marking out five intervals of 30 meters with cones. Sprint 30 meters to the first cone, then jog 30 meters to the second cone. Alternate between sprinting and jogging as you make your way to the last cone, turn around, and continue this process on the way back to the starting cone. Do this drill for up to two minutes to complete one set. Rest for two minutes, then continue the hollow sprints for another two minutes. Work up to six sets total.
Perform cross drills by marking out a 30=-meter by 30-meter square with cones and placing a fifth cone in the center. Begin at the center cone and sprint out to each cone, going clockwise, and then rest for 60 seconds after sprinting to the last cone. Do this six times to complete one set. Work up to four sets.
Engage in lower body strength training exercises. Perform squats, lunges, calf raises and leg presses to increase strength and stamina in the muscles used for running. Hold dumbbells while doing squats, lunges and calf raises, and use a leg press machine while doing leg presses.
Build up power during the off season by lifting three days a week using a weight amount that allows you to complete five to eight reps per set with rest periods of 90 to 120 seconds in between sets, according to OutofLane9.com.
Build muscular endurance during the pre-season by training two days a week using a weight amount that allows you to complete 10 to 15 reps per set with 45- to 90-second rest periods in between sets.
Perform low-intensity lifting during the in-season by doing strength training once a week, at least five days before competition, using a weight amount that allows you to complete 12 to 20 reps per set; this will help you avoid overexerting your muscles.
- Always stretch and warm up properly before you begin exercising to avoid injury. Warm down after exercising to prevent cramps.