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Get On Your Marks For This Sprint Cardio Challenge

cardio
(Image credit: Unknown)

If your regular plod takes you past, but never on, a running track, here’s a great excuse to hit the lanes and run like the wind – this heart-pounding workout from Beth Thayne, PT and coach at Ministry of Sound Fitness (opens in new tab). The challenge will see you sprinting, crawling, lunging and then lying… on the floor at the end, because you won’t be able to do much else before having a jog to warm down.

“It’s a sprint challenge that pushes both your anaerobic and aerobic fitness, as well as being a great core and leg burner,” says Thayne.

How To Do This Workout

“You alternate between three travelling exercises,” says Thayne, “sprinting, bear crawls and walking lunges. Each time you complete a round the distances go up.

“There’s no rest within rounds – once you’ve started you’re in it until the end. You use the lunges as active recovery, but other than that it’s pretty relentless.

“It can be used as a mean finisher or a high-intensity workout. For the latter, repeat the whole thing five times with a two-minute rest between circuits.

“The main struggle from a form perspective will be the bear crawls because the sprints will take it out of you. Focus on keeping a tight core and not letting your knees come too high.”

Because sprinting is an all-out, maximum effort it’s imperative to warm up first. If you haven’t got a personal routine, use this warm-up drill which includes strides (fast but relaxed efforts).

If you have a 100m track handy, great – set up a few markers every 10m on the outside lane and use it as an out-and-back course (sprint out, return to the start using the bear crawl and walking lunge). You can also just mark out the distance in a park using your stride length.

Round 1

1 Sprint

Distance 20m

Bear crawl

Round 2Round 3Round 4Round 5

Distance 10m

Drop onto your hands and toes with your knees hovering a few centimetres above the ground, and your hips and shoulders directly above your knees and hands respectively. Keep your back straight and parallel to the ground throughout. Move opposite limbs at the same time to travel forwards.

Walking lunge

Distance 10m

From standing, take a big step forwards, then lower until both knees are at a 90° angle. Then drive off the front leg and bring your rear leg through to step forwards into another lunge.

Round 2

1 Sprint 40m

2 Bear crawl 20m

3 Walking lunge 20m

Round 3

1 Sprint 60m

2 Bear crawl 30m

3 Walking lunge 30m

Round 4

1 Sprint 80m

2 Bear crawl 40m

3 Walking lunge 40m

Round 5

1 Sprint 100m

2 Bear crawl 50m

3 Walking lunge 50m

Jake was formely an intern for Coach and now contributes workouts from some of London’s top trainers. As well as training in the gym and running, he’s competed in the eight-hours-long overnight event Europe's Toughest Mudder twice and the 24-hours-long World's Toughest Mudder once.