I used to do some basic drills/plyrometrics, but want to get back into them to help with flexibility and form. I was thinking of doing them twice a week on my 5 and 8 days, but wasn't sure when I should do them. Would it be better after a 10 min warmup prior to the 8 or after the 8??? Also, any recommendations on good excercies? Thanks.
I just did mine at lunch. I think it is best to do "Plyo's" at least once a week, after your normal run. It is best to be very loose, if not tired when doing them. I figure if I can run with High Knees or do Lunge Walks when I'm tired, I should be able to call upon that form when I am fatiguing at the end of a race!
If on the track just Jog/walk turns and alternate different drills/strides on the straights. Do 2-4 miles of continuous laps. I even run backwards on a couple of 100's!Just watch out for others. A grass park is great too!
Start with some jump rope just to strengthen the lower legs to handle impact. These light plyos are also known as "core jumps".
As far as timing. Many coaches are adamant about doing the plyos before the workout when your legs are fresh etc. But it really doesn't matter. From a specificity standpoint, I feel that there is an advantage to calling up explosive neuromuscular recruitment AFTER you are already fatigued..i.e. at the end of a run. The same goes with strides.
Now with that being said. You don't want to be doing hard core plyos (that require total concentration) such as depth jumps after a 15 miler.
But drills and jump rope are fine after the workout. The drills/ ballistic movements are nice because they stretch you out too.
10 min is not enough for me.
I would do 10 minutes at very easy jogging pace then do another 10 minutes at easy run pace. Then stretch for 10-15 minutes from top(upper body) to down under(lower body).
Do 2-4 repetition of sets (A set consists of 6-10 'games'). Then do 5-10 minutes jogging then STRETCH then do STRIDING like 10-15 x 100m/150m ON TRACK WITH SPIKE SHOES. no more than that. Then warm down and stretch again.
You will be fine on the next day.
what plyos do you do all do to increase speed??
Do you know of some good books/websites with plyo programs for different levels?
Actually, it is best NOT to stretch before doing plyos.
You will notice the best sprinters like Tim Montgomery, Dwain Chambers, etc. do not stretch AT ALL before the race.
Your objective is to feel warm from the easy jogging, NOT loose.
Stretching will loosen the muscles and take away some of the explosive plyometric reaction that is trained through plyometrics.
Best warmup for plyos= 12-20 min. jog, 6x100-150m progressively faster strides, PLYOS.
One of the best plyo exercises you can do, especially during your basework, is one-legged jump rope. It closely duplicate Lydiard's hill springing. It helps with reducing contact time and toe off, things lost during mileage.
Don't worry too much about stretching vs. non-stretching..or before or after the workout. Just get the plyos into your schedule on a regular basis.
Light plyos are advantageous before a competition or a hard workout during the warmup..and in these cases you may want to keep stretching to a minimum.
But if you are going to skip streching/range of motion (ROM) before workouts then you should have a dedicated ROM session the week where you really get good and limber..and be doing ballistics with exaggerated movements. Otherwise you are setting yourself up to be a cripple.
The one legged jump rope is excellent for lower leg strength. But first start with jump regular jump rope first as you build up the "core" jumps. In general you should gravitate towards 1-legged jumping as it is more neurospecific to the task of running. It also works to improve proper proprioception and balance.
Plyos work specific power recruitment patterns within the muscles without a concurrent increase in muscle mass. This is advantageous to distance runners. We want to be strong and explosive but also light.
The strengtening effect can help reduce injury by increasing efficiency of foot strike. Recovery is also enhanced because the increased proprioception and decreased contact time. That is, your eccentric pounding is greatly reduced. Don't forget power expressed as speed too. Plyos increase your raw speed. They are the ultimate derivative of pure speed.