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Planning the Middle Distance Pre-Competition Period

A properly schemed middle distance training macrocyle should be set up to be between fifteen and twenty weeks in length.  For planning purposes the macrocycle is divided into two phases which are called preparation and competitive.  In essence, the first half of the macrocycle focuses on preparation, while the second half focuses on competition.  The two phases are sub-divided into four training periods (two periods in each phase) which are used to plan and implement different types of aerobic and anaerobic training sessions depending on the time of the season.  Here we will discuss planning the middle distance pre-competition period. The pre-competition period, or pre-comp for short, is the early portion of the competitive phase and is characterized by two important thoughts: 1). meets consist…

Specific Preparation Period Workouts for Middle Distance

Ideally, a typical middle distance training macrocyle is set up to be between fifteen and twenty weeks in length and divided into four training periods.  The difference in macrocycle time lies in the number of training sessions dedicated to the first period, or general preparation period.  Once general prep is completed, the next stage is termed the specific preparation period, or specific prep for short.  For middle distance runners who are able to manage a long general prep period, specific prep is set at about half the length as general prep.  For those runners who could but manage general prep time to the minimum length, then specific prep is about equal in length to general prep.  In the longer training model it is three, twelve…

Why Coaches Should Attend the 2017 CTF Summer Clinic

When most coaches think of summer track and field camps/clinics, they assume they’re strictly for the kids. So, you may not be aware that the Complete Track and Field Clinic is different. Of course, our focus is on the athletes. But, we also encourage high school and youth coaches (and parents who work with their kids) to register and attend as well. We’re confident when you attend the 7th Annual Complete Track and Field Clinic, you’ll agree it is a World Class event. And you can get Complete Access (more on that in a moment) for FREE when you encourage 3 of your athletes to register. (Just send us the names of the athletes and we’ll register you. If you already paid, we’ll send you…

Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment of Running Injuries in the Middle Distance Athlete

Running injuries of the leg and lower back are the most common types of acute or chronic ailments found in distance runners.  Aches and pains are common in runners training in excess of 15 miles per week, but these transition to injuries when the ailment is severe enough to reduce the number of miles run over the course of at least one week and/or cause the runner to take medication or see a health care professional. Most running injuries are musculo-skeletal overuse syndromes related to cumulative stress and strain of the legs.  All of the common injuries have noticeable symptoms, related causes, and training characteristics as to what to try/avoid and how to treat the injury from a training perspective.  An observant coach will take…

Planning the General Preparation Period for Middle Distance Training

The first training segment of time is called the general preparation period, or just general prep for short.  This stage sets the tone for the season.  The middle distance training macrocyle is ideally set up to be between fifteen and twenty weeks in length.  The greater the amount of overall time available, then the longer the first training stage can be.  There are two middle distance general prep models found in this country.  One is the collegiate model which is characterized by a long fall training period of both general endurance and general strength building activities which leads into an indoor competitive season in the winter.  The collegiate coach can personally direct the middle distance runners through general prep in an unhurried, non-specific training scheme…

The Four Stages of Team Development

The start of a cross country (or track and field) season brings plenty of excitement for both athletes and coaches.  The anticipation of all of the adventures that are about to occur is what makes activities such as this so much fun.  Even teams that practice all summer seem to shift their level of anticipation as the official date of the cross country season approaches. Successful cross country running needs both individualized training plans for the athletes and an overall organizational plan for the team.  Both plans need to be structured with as much quantitative, measurable focus as possible.  The plan for the team should revolve around where the squad is today and where it should be at the end of the season if the…

12 Days of CTF Holiday Sale

Our ’12 Days of CTF Holiday Sale’ will begin on Monday, December 12 and will run through Friday, December 23. Here’s how it works: From MONDAY 12/12- FRIDAY 12/23, every Complete Track and Field program is on sale for 20% off when you use coupon code: 12DAYSCTF. HOWEVER: Each day of the 12-day sale we will be featuring a specific program where you can save 30% on this season’s popular programs BUT ONLY ON THAT DAY. This time of the year can get hectic, so I recommend bookmarking this page and scheduling a reminder in your phone so you don’t forget to come to the site to grab these holiday offers. In the meantime, you can plan ahead by visiting our full list of Complete…

Black Friday/ Cyber Monday Sale- Massive Savings

Our Black Friday/ Cyber Monday Sale will begin on Friday, November 25 and will run through Monday, November 28. Here’s how it works: From FRIDAY 11/25 – MONDAY  11/28, every Complete Track and Field program is on sale for 25% off when you use coupon code: CTFSAVINGS.  HOWEVER: Each day of the sale we will be highlighting a specific event group/category where you can get up to 50% off our most popular individual programs and program bundles ON THAT DAY ONLY. For example, all Sprints programs will be 25% off all week. But, on 11/25, all Sprints programs will be 40-50% off for that day only. On 11/26, sale prices go back to 25%. If you’re in the market for programs addressing 55m- 600m, be sure to get…

Epidemiology of Running Injuries

Running injuries can be defined in numerous ways and their treatment suffers from the lack of a consistent set of defining parameters.  The scientific literature variously defines a running injury to have occurred when it is severe enough to reduce the volume of miles run and cause the runner to take a medication or see a health care professional.  Others define a running injury as an incidence that hampers training for at least one week.  When the literature is examined to determine the incidence of running injuries (in studies of 500 or more participants) the yearly incidence rate ranges from 37% to 56%.  Despite the relatively high incidence rate of running injuries per runner per year, this incidence rate is still 2 to 6 times…

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