400 Meter Training: Pace Calculator

How do you train your 400 meter athletes. What times do you use for intervals? Here is a simple formula that you can use to design workouts and improve your 4oo meter times

In the clip below Tony Veney, Head Track Coach at Ventura College, talks about the demands of 400 meter training and shares a simple formula that he uses to determine the pace at which to train his runners.

He begins with by explaining that you must train all of the systems that a 400 meter runner will experience. These include: Speed power, Seed endurance, Lactate and SpeedĀ maintenance. In order to train a 400 meter runner he states that you will have to “burn” them sometimes. You will have to get them running multiple 100’s, 200’s or 300’s at race pace with very little rest.

To design those workouts he shares a simple formula for calculating pace for each of the four 100’s:

First 100 – take your 400 time and multiply by .245

Second 100 – Subtract 5% from the first 100 calculated pace (the second is a flying start and should be faster)

Third 100 – Add 7% to the second 100 calculated time. (this slower as they approach lactate and they are on the curve)

Fourth 10o – Add 9% to the third 100 time.


Example: lets say the 400 time is 0:52

Step 1- Take 0:52 x .245 = 12.74 first 100

Step 2- Take 12.74 – 5%= 12.1 second 100

Step 3 – Take 12.1 + 7% = 12.95 third 100

Step 4 – Take 12.95 +9% = 14.1

These are just approximations, but it is a simple way to figure out how fast you should be running. You can of course add the first two 100’s to get the first 200 meter time. The same can also be done for the second 200 meter.

This clip is just a portion of Coach Veney’s presentation at a recent Glazier Track and Field Clinic. For information about how to gain access to his entire presentation, as well as hundreds of other track and field presentations, click the link Glazier Track and Field Clinics

The YouTube video below has audio, so please make sure your volume is turned up and that you have access to the site. Note some schools block access to YouTube





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