Friday, 5 April 2013

Sprints for the win

Summer is just around the corner here in the UK (whether we actually get to see any sun is another question). This means a great opportunity to train outside and get a change of scenery from the same old 4 walls of the gymnasium. I love training outside, but you need some of your own kit to do it right? Wrong! You can do sprints. All you need for this is a length of grass or Tarmac and your body. Sprinting is a great fat loss tool. I reccommend starting small and working up, so try a 20 metre sprint followed by a walk back repeated 4-8 times. Like with all training this should try and be progressed either by increasing the sprint distance, decreasing rest periods or increasing number of sprints. Still need some persuasion as to why you should start sprints? Here's 5 reasons:

Sprint for fat loss

Sprints melt fat fast. Studies have shown a 10-20% reduction in body fat over a 12 week period. This obviously depends on previous exercise background and the protocol followed.

Sprint for fast twitch muscle activation 

Sprinting is an extremely explosive activity, which means it is fantastic for activating the fast twitch fibres which could lead to hypertrophy is these muscles. Sprinting is also great at releasing anabolic hormones, testosterone and GH. Both are great for muscle building and losing body fat.

Sprint for a time saving workout

You can have a good sprint workout in 20-30 minutes, warm up included!

Sprint for increased endurance

Don't be fooled into thinking for increased endurance you HAVE to train for endurance. Sprint training can help increase endurance. It does this by teaching the muscles to store more glycogen, meaning you'll have more gas in the tank when you need it and sprints teach your body to remove waste products more efficiently from the muscles during training.

Sprint for improved heart health

It goes without saying, any form of exercise is going to improve your heart health which has a positive knock on effect throughout the rest of your life. Sprinting makes your heart work very hard, compared with aerobic training. 

Last summer I combined sprint training with weight training and did 3 days in the gym followed by 1 day outside doing sprint drills. Such a great way of training! Check out the workouts for that program here:

...Sprints for the win!