Anyone Know A WEIGHT training program for increasing speed?

Hi,

I want to improve my overall speed, so I was wondering if you guys know a good weight training program (2-3 days a week max) that will help for developing speed? Some people have said to try Bill Starr 5x5 Intermediate since it involves squatting 3x a week, but what about plyometric training? Does anyone have a good plyometrics workout that involves weights?

My only requirement (aside from the 2-3 days a week thing) is that when I do lift, I'd like it to include the Big 3 movements (squat, deadlift, bench), and maybe rows for extra bicep and upper back, so anyone have a good one off the top of their heads or can help me design one for myself?

thanks
 

cadfael_tex

Professional
No expert but don't think weights will help much with speed. I've always heard fartleks (sp?) are the best way to go - ie interval speed training. You really want to develop the fast twitch muscles with repetition not slow rep heavy weight.

If this is wrong then please point me to something proven because I would be REALLY interested :)
 

mike53

Professional
No expert but don't think weights will help much with speed. I've always heard fartleks (sp?) are the best way to go - ie interval speed training. You really want to develop the fast twitch muscles with repetition not slow rep heavy weight.

If this is wrong then please point me to something proven because I would be REALLY interested :)
Ya gotta practice fast to get faster. Hard to run fast carrying a barbell.
 
No expert but don't think weights will help much with speed. I've always heard fartleks (sp?) are the best way to go - ie interval speed training. You really want to develop the fast twitch muscles with repetition not slow rep heavy weight.

If this is wrong then please point me to something proven because I would be REALLY interested :)
I know plenty of sprinters that make use of explosive weight training (i.e. doing olympic lifts like snatches, cleans, deadlifts, squats etc). It's true that if you just develop strength, that doesn't necessarily correlate to increased speed, but if you do it properly, and can turn that strength into power, which can be used for speed, that's how you become faster. Believe it or not, weights are an integral part of increasing speed.
 

Gmedlo

Professional
No expert but don't think weights will help much with speed. I've always heard fartleks (sp?) are the best way to go - ie interval speed training. You really want to develop the fast twitch muscles with repetition not slow rep heavy weight.

If this is wrong then please point me to something proven because I would be REALLY interested :)
Firing of fast twitch muscles is not dependent on the speed at which they contract (which you would assume by the name) but by the force which is required to move the load present. When you sprint, you are moving faster than when you jog, so the total force required is higher, thereby requiring the use of higher-twitch muscle fibers. When lifting a maximal load (any load that is moving at maximum speed; this load is not being intentionally "slowed down" at all) will cause fast-twitch muscle fibers to contract, not slow-twitch, even though the movement may often seem slow.

Fartlek isn't optimal for developing fast-twitch muscle fibers because it won't cause those at the upper end of the threshold to fire because you never reach maximum exertion using Fartlek methods.

Bill starr's would be great for building up a base of strength, but squatting 3x a week + optimal speed training probably isn't possible unless you are a very highly conditioned sprinter. The idea with Bill Starr's would be that you use it in the offseason to build strength, then as you transition to preseason, you switch to a program with a little bit less volume and maybe a little more variation so that the sprint training isn't impeded (at this stage you are working on taking your strength and increasing your rate of force development, and therefore your weight training should not interfere at all with your sprint training, for optimal results.)

I'd recommend trying to design a program that has you lifting twice a week using the big compound movements that you like, as well as one day devoted to plyometrics (assuming you have a decent base of strength; if not, it may be more beneficial to use this day for extra agility drills or another day of lifting.). Use the other days for rest or agility drills. Just remember when designing a program that you can try it out and if there isn't enough work in it for you to see progress, you can always just add in another set of something or another exercise; as long as you obey the overload principle you will see progress somewhere. For it to be speed, you'll probably be looking at increasing the % of your 1rm that you work with or increasing the load on your plyometrics by increasing height/depth.

Edit: don't be afraid to spend a little money on a book. Go to half.com and search for the book you're after, and you'll usually find something lightly used in the $3-7$ range. I picked up a virtually new copy of Power Training by Robert Dos Remedios (per recommendation of Ano) for $7, $10 shipped. (by the way, Power Training looks to be an amazing program. I've only just started it but I literally got my ass kicked the first day and got DOMS for the first time since I started lifting. Anyone would have ZERO trouble obeying overload with this baby.)
 
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Firing of fast twitch muscles is not dependent on the speed at which they contract (which you would assume by the name) but by the force which is required to move the load present. When you sprint, you are moving faster than when you jog, so the total force required is higher, thereby requiring the use of higher-twitch muscle fibers. When lifting a maximal load (any load that is moving at maximum speed; this load is not being intentionally "slowed down" at all) will cause fast-twitch muscle fibers to contract, not slow-twitch, even though the movement may often seem slow.

Fartlek isn't optimal for developing fast-twitch muscle fibers because it won't cause those at the upper end of the threshold to fire because you never reach maximum exertion using Fartlek methods.

Bill starr's would be great for building up a base of strength, but squatting 3x a week + optimal speed training probably isn't possible unless you are a very highly conditioned sprinter. The idea with Bill Starr's would be that you use it in the offseason to build strength, then as you transition to preseason, you switch to a program with a little bit less volume and maybe a little more variation so that the sprint training isn't impeded (at this stage you are working on taking your strength and increasing your rate of force development, and therefore your weight training should not interfere at all with your sprint training, for optimal results.)

I'd recommend trying to design a program that has you lifting twice a week using the big compound movements that you like, as well as one day devoted to plyometrics (assuming you have a decent base of strength; if not, it may be more beneficial to use this day for extra agility drills or another day of lifting.). Use the other days for rest or agility drills. Just remember when designing a program that you can try it out and if there isn't enough work in it for you to see progress, you can always just add in another set of something or another exercise; as long as you obey the overload principle you will see progress somewhere. For it to be speed, you'll probably be looking at increasing the % of your 1rm that you work with or increasing the load on your plyometrics by increasing height/depth.

Edit: don't be afraid to spend a little money on a book. Go to half.com and search for the book you're after, and you'll usually find something lightly used in the $3-7$ range. I picked up a virtually new copy of Power Training by Robert Dos Remedios (per recommendation of Ano) for $7, $10 shipped. (by the way, Power Training looks to be an amazing program. I've only just started it but I literally got my ass kicked the first day and got DOMS for the first time since I started lifting. Anyone would have ZERO trouble obeying overload with this baby.)
Alright, so 2 days of lifting coupled with 2 days of sprinting, 1 day core training (weekends completely off) is enough then? I was thinking about doing one day push, one day pull for the weights, and doing them with heavy weights (3 sets of 4-6 reps), but I need help picking exercises for each section.

For push: Flat Bench, Dips, Military Press, Squat (I'm guessing Squat is more of a push action than pull)

For Pull: Power Cleans, Stiff-Legged Deadlifts, Chins.

Am I missing anything/are there any exercises you would substitute/remove?

thanks again
 

Ano

Hall of Fame
I picked up a virtually new copy of Power Training by Robert Dos Remedios (per recommendation of Ano) for $7, $10 shipped. (by the way, Power Training looks to be an amazing program. I've only just started it but I literally got my ass kicked the first day and got DOMS for the first time since I started lifting. .)
Good luck following the program. Please update me with your results.

However, be careful when performing the explosive exercises. Make sure that you perform the explosive exercises with good form.
 

tricky

Hall of Fame
Some notes:

Yeah, you want to separate your strength and power phases. And speed-specific training (including plyometrics and some kinds of specialized sprinting drills) qualifies as a form of power training.

Ideally, you want to train the muscle 2-3x-a-week. 5x5 facilitates that. If you plan to incorporate a lot of sprinting anyway, then you *may* want to look at Dual Factor 5x5. Of course, that is advanced level stuff.

I think squatting with chains is awesome for quickly improving power output if you have a solid squat foundation and the opportunity. I like it better than plyo.

If this is related to tennis though, of course developing lateral speed is crucial.
 
Alright, another question. Is it ok to do weighted (as in barbell) jump lunges/squats, or is that really bad for your knees? Obviously, if my 5 rep max is 140, I wouldn't do it with 140, and would probably do around 50% of my 1 RM, but is doing this too hard on one's knees, even if they do it with light weight?
 

tricky

Hall of Fame
Definitely not a fan of jump squats. Most squatting form is so sloppy that destabilizing your base is just setting you up for a bad result.

To me, the most effective squat modality for explosive skill transfer is still squatting with chains. But it's more difficult to get that opportunity unless you have a home gym or a gym owner who understands WSB.
 
So anyone want to help me out and see if this looks good:

Monday-Upper body:
1. Bench: 4x4 (4 reps, 4 sets)
2. Push Press: 4x4
3. Power Cleans: 4x4
4. Weighted Chins: 4x4

Tuesday/Wednesday/Friday-HIIT (1 min on, 2 min off for 15 mins) and abs work

Thursday-Lower Body:
1. Squats: 4x4
2. Deadlifts: 4x4
3. Jump Lunges: 4x4
4. Calf Raises: 3x8-12

On all my reps for all exercises (except chins and maybe deadlifts), I'll be focusing on exploding on the positive and controlling on the negative to improve explosion.
 

tricky

Hall of Fame
Prefer that you'd squat twice-a-week, since you want to develop the legs.

What will be your HIIT exercise? Bikes? Sprints? Jump rope?
 
Prefer that you'd squat twice-a-week, since you want to develop the legs.

What will be your HIIT exercise? Bikes? Sprints? Jump rope?
I'd probably switch it day by day, but I would probably do 1 day on the treadmill/stairs for speed (increase speed on the sprint part) and 1 day on the bike for resistance (go to max effort on higher resistance). I know I should probably be running on a track or something for the speed part, but I want to first get used to that intensity before I hit the track because my shins start hurting easily.

If you were to design the weight training thing, how would you change up the exercises?
 
So anyone want to help me out and see if this looks good:

Monday-Upper body:
1. Bench: 4x4 (4 reps, 4 sets)
2. Push Press: 4x4
3. Power Cleans: 4x4
4. Weighted Chins: 4x4

Tuesday/Wednesday/Friday-HIIT (1 min on, 2 min off for 15 mins) and abs work

Thursday-Lower Body:
1. Squats: 4x4
2. Deadlifts: 4x4
3. Jump Lunges: 4x4
4. Calf Raises: 3x8-12

On all my reps for all exercises (except chins and maybe deadlifts), I'll be focusing on exploding on the positive and controlling on the negative to improve explosion.
Just be very careful not to end up like Nadal, and missing months of tennis because of bad knees. Navigating between improved performance and an overuse injury is going to be the hardest part of your regimen.
 

cncretecwbo

Semi-Pro
So anyone want to help me out and see if this looks good:


On all my reps for all exercises (except chins and maybe deadlifts), I'll be focusing on exploding on the positive and controlling on the negative to improve explosion.
3 questions...

Why 4x4 for power cleans?
Why 4x4 in general?
How do you plan on "controlling on the negative" for power cleans?

1 suggestion...

Calf raises are pretty useless imo, especially since you have squats and lunges in there, so unless you have aesthetics in mind skip them and go with something else. Or just dont add anything. If you are going 4x4 on both squats and deadlifts in the same day you should be pretty worn out from just that.
 

AuraInfinity

New User
So anyone want to help me out and see if this looks good:

Monday-Upper body:
1. Bench: 4x4 (4 reps, 4 sets)
2. Push Press: 4x4
3. Power Cleans: 4x4
4. Weighted Chins: 4x4

Tuesday/Wednesday/Friday-HIIT (1 min on, 2 min off for 15 mins) and abs work

Thursday-Lower Body:
1. Squats: 4x4
2. Deadlifts: 4x4
3. Jump Lunges: 4x4
4. Calf Raises: 3x8-12

On all my reps for all exercises (except chins and maybe deadlifts), I'll be focusing on exploding on the positive and controlling on the negative to improve explosion.
What you can also do with your bench and squats is do your set then do 4 reps of clap pushups after your bench and 4 reps of box jumps after your squats. When doing your cleans remember to bring your hips forward!
 

tricky

Hall of Fame
How do you plan on "controlling on the negative" for power cleans?
Presumably he won't. Then again, I'd love to see somebody try??? :D

I'd probably switch it day by day, but I would probably do 1 day on the treadmill/stairs for speed (increase speed on the sprint part) and 1 day on the bike for resistance (go to max effort on higher resistance)
If it's available, I found working with a ladder climber without using the hand bars works well. The ladder climbers gives you more ROM than a stairstepper and lets you run on the balls of your feet. Also, because the resistance of ladder climbers are isokinetic, you get a flat resistance curve. Of course, nothing replaces running on a track.

I know I should probably be running on a track or something for the speed part, but I want to first get used to that intensity before I hit the track because my shins start hurting easily.
Whenever you get to running on a track, consider running while dragging a weight with a belt. Say a tire, sled, plates, etc.
 

cncretecwbo

Semi-Pro
What you can also do with your bench and squats is do your set then do 4 reps of clap pushups after your bench and 4 reps of box jumps after your squats. When doing your cleans remember to bring your hips forward!
so dont let yourself recover between sets? that doesnt sound brilliant for a power-focused workout.

i mean yeah you "bring your hips forward" when you clean, but i hope they arent forward when you receive the bar.
 

snoopy

Professional
If you're bench pressing make sure you also do back exercises to maintain shoulder balance.

What are your speed goals? Do you want to get faster for a sport of are you doing this just for fun? What distance are you trying to get faster at? It's impossible to time yourself over short distances.

Sprints are fun and really whip you into shape.
 
If you're bench pressing make sure you also do back exercises to maintain shoulder balance.

What are your speed goals? Do you want to get faster for a sport of are you doing this just for fun? What distance are you trying to get faster at? It's impossible to time yourself over short distances.

Sprints are fun and really whip you into shape.
Yeah, I do rowing and chins that work the upper back, deadlifts for the lower back.

I'm just trying to get faster and more athletic and build a sprinter's body. I guess if I were to pick a distance, I'd say that I'm trying to get faster at the 40 and the 200 meter dash.
 
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