3 Tools, Apps, and Resources to Aid in Sprint Training and 4 Common Stumbling Blocks to Overcome to Increase Running Speed
Tools, Apps, and Resources to Aid in Sprint Training and Stumbling Blocks to Overcome to Increase Running Speed
We’re currently living in the midst of what people are referring to as the ‘digital age’. Everything is seemingly based around online connectivity, with smart phones, tablets, and devices reigning supreme. While this tech is not without its flaws, for the most part it can offer us a wide range of advantages. The fitness industry in particular, is benefitting hugely from this technology, thanks in part to apps. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts are currently all the rage, and for good reason. HIIT has been found to be incredibly effective when it comes to getting in shape, which is why there is now such high demand for apps, tools, and resources designed specifically with HIIT in mind. If you’re looking to get in shape, here’s a look at some of the more popular apps, tools, and resources currently available.
Sworkit – We’ll begin by looking at Sworkit. Sworkit is an app that is considered by many to be t he ultimate HIIT resource. There are currently more than 25 million people utilizing the Sworkit app, and that number is increasing by the day. There are plenty of HIIT apps out there, but a lot of them are clumsy and amateurish. Sworkit however, is incredibly well designed, and is formatted perfectly. It also doesn’t just look great, it is also incredibly functional. The app lets users create their own workout plans, or choose a guided fitness and workout plan to follow. The app lets users choose from an enormous database of HIIT-based exercises. Users can even select a six-week training plan based upon the info they enter regarding what they want to get from their training. It integrates with Spotify and iTunes effortlessly, and even has its own pre-made playlists for you to choose from. There is a one-month free trial, otherwise it’s $29.99 for 3 months, $79.99 for a year, or lifetime membership costs $297.00.
Livestrong – Another fantastic resource for HIIT enthusiasts to utilize is Livestrong. The website is packed full of helpful articles based around HIIT, diet, training, and supplements. There’s also the YouTube channel, which features HIIT workouts hosted by celebrity trainer Nicky Holender, who provides helpful tips and instructions for performing your HIIT workouts. Workouts are tailored exclusively for people short on time but rich in motivation and enthusiasm. The HIIT workouts are quick, simple, and highly effective.
Interval Timer – They say that simplicity is key, and this is very much apparent when it comes to this next app. This app and the Sworkit app couldn’t be any different, yet they go together perfectly. Interval Timer is completely free to download and utilize, and to be perfectly honest, it is nothing more than a glorified timer. As you know, HIIT workouts require individuals to alternate between periods of low intensity exercise, and high intensity exercise. The Interval Timer app lets users know exactly how much time they have rested, and how much time they’re spent training at full capacity. Available for IOS and Android devices, it may be simple, but it is a very useful tool to utilize as part of your HIIT workouts.
Stumbling Blocks to Overcome to Increase Running Speed
Running is something that people either love, or, hate. One thing we can all agree on however, is the fact that running is tough, and running fast is even tougher. That is of course, unless your name is Usain Bolt. Olympic sprinters are athletes of a whole other calibre, and while you may not plan on breaking the World Record for the 100-metre sprint anytime soon, you may be looking to increase your running speed. You may be interested in athletics, you may be a sprinter, you could play football, you might practice a lot of HIIT, or you may simply want to run a little faster. Whatever your goals may be, if you are serious about increasing your running speed, there will be several common stumbling blocks to overcome. Here are just a few examples of typical stumbling blocks sprinters may need to overcome to boost their running speed.
Not sprinting enough – It may be tough to believe, but one of the most common mistakes people make when trying to increase their running speed, is failing to do enough sprinting. They instead tend to focus on their endurance and fitness and will perform low intensity steady state cardio, as opposed to something like HIIT in the form of interval sprints. If you think about it, it actually makes perfect sense. If you’re serious about running faster, one of the first things you need to do is focus on sprinting and running as quickly as you can while training.
Poor head positioning – When you’re sprinting, the last thing you will be thinking about is where your head is positioned, as you will be far too busy focussing on your feet instead. Despite this however, many top-tier sprinters recommend that those looking to increase their running speed, should focus on getting their heads in the correct position. So, what is the correct position for the head when sprinting? Well, your head should be firmly fixed in place and should remain stationary at all times. your chin should be tilted down ever-so-slightly, and your gaze should be fixed firmly ahead. Keep your eyes on the prize, as they say, and keep your gaze fixed firmly on the finishing line ahead.
Swinging arms – When some people run, they try to use their arms to gain momentum. The problem is that swinging the hands and arms across the centre of the body, actually creates drag and serves as nothing more than a means of slowing you down. When running, what you should do instead when trying to generate more speed, is tuck your elbows in at your side, and “brush” their elbows along the side of their torso as they run, similar to how you would see the driving wheel on old steam locomotive trains working.
Low knee lifts – Finally, the last mistake we’re going to look at today, is practising low knee lifts when running. This means that their stride length is negatively affected, which in turn means that they are unable to cover as much ground and generate as much speed. To overcome this obstacle, athletes are encouraged to pick up their feet, and to perhaps imagine that they are trying to sprint through shallow water.