So the Olympics are almost upon us. While you have the chance, compare the differences between a marathon (long distance) runner’s body and a sprinter’s body. What do you notice? The long-distance runner is skinny, frail, kind of bony, thin and almost sickly looking. On the other hand, the sprinter has well developed muscles, and looks strong, fit, healthy.
Of the two, which one would you rather look like?
Well, this is what should determine how you develop your own training program. If you want to look like the sprinter — and about 98 percent of people desire a sprinter’s body type — why do you spend all that time doing cardio on a treadmill while you watch CNN? In order to look and feel like a sprinter, you must train like one.
Remember, start out slowly. You’re probably not a sprinter now, and if you went out and followed their regimen, tomorrow you’d be insanely sore and probably give up exercising altogether.
Let’s consider, for a moment, these creatures (sprinters). They only move rapidly for about 10 to 60 seconds at most, during a single sprint. Well, that isn’t very much time, if you compare it to long-distance runners, who run for three to four hours, without stopping.
So if long-distance runners are active for much longer periods of time, why do sprinters have more attractive bodies?
The reason is this: sprinters maximally contract their muscles, which requires a lot more work from their bodies than a slow, staggered, constant run. Not to mention that with the short maximal energy bursts, testosterone and growth hormones are released in greater amounts. These hormones are anabolic in nature, which means bodybuilding — they build your body up. On the other hand, running for long durations releases cortisol, a catabolic hormone, meaning it breaks the body down. This effect is associated with muscle wasting, and over time, it is extremely bad for the body. It also is the reason for the ultra-skinny, no-muscle look of a long distance runner, versus that of anaerobic athlete like a weightlifter.
If you think about our anthropological history, we were designed to move rapidly, so we could catch our food back in the caveman days. We weren’t built to run our food to death by having the animal get so tired that it just fell down and collapsed because it was exhausted from our chasing it. Well, that same design serves us today. We may not have to track, catch, and kill our food anymore, but our bodies are still meant to MOVE.
So if you want to look like a sprinter, with a lean, athletic physique, you must train like one. Limiting the aerobic exercise and incorporating an anaerobic weight-training program will cause you to look better and burn fat much more quickly. Anaerobic weight training will elicit more results, both in terms of gaining muscle and melting fat, than any other method of training.