Michael Johnson, Jeremy Wariner’s Magic Workouts (Part 2)

This is Part 1 of a 2 part series.  Click here for Part 1.

There are numerous articles on the 300-350 meter distance for special endurance workouts.  It is no co-incidence they are all within the “40 second zone”.

  1. Clyde Hart 300 meter Workouts (with beeper)
  2. Clyde Hart’s Split 400 meter Workout
  3. Mike Holloway’s 2 x 320 meter Workout
  4. Why the 352 Yard Workout?
  5. Which is Better- 3×300 or 2×350 Speed Endurance Workouts
  6. Anaerobic Speed Reserve and the 2 x 325m Indoor Workout
  7. 400 Meter Training- 2 x 300m or 2×40 second Workout
  8. Jeremy Wariner’s 2 x 350 meter workouts

Let’s take a detailed look at some more examples with real split times and recoveries.

2 x 350 with 5 minutes rest

Prior to his 43.18 WR in Seville, Michael Johnson quoted on a Sports Illustrated interview that he did 2 x 350 with 5 minutes rest in “42 and 43 seconds”.  Obviously, he meant to say 42/43 second PACE, and that gave him the confidence he needed to determine he was ready to assault the WR.  It is possible the article was wrong and he was referring to doing 3 sets of 350 meters (see below).

Jeremy Wariner quoted in an IAAF interview with a similar workout in 2007 with split times of 40.09 and 41.60.

Just a reminder that 40 seconds for YOU may be 325 meters, or even 300 meters, so adjust your workout accordingly.

3 x 350 with 5 minutes rest

Michael Johnson would run 3 x 350 meters in 45 seconds with 5 minutes rest. When he ran 3 reps in 43 seconds with 4 minutes rest, that, too was a confidence boosting workout to run with lactate.

2 x 450 with 10 minute rest

Another gut-wrenching butt-locking workout is Clyde Hart’s springtime 2 x 450 meters with 10 minute rest.  He suggests aiming 57 to 58 seconds for College kids.  Originally, he started with 15 minutes recovery and worked his way down to 10 minutes.

Now, you didn’t think I would end this article without revealing Michael Johnson’s splits?

Well, he did 2 x 450m in 50 seconds with 6-8 minutes rest!

At first when I heard “50 seconds”, my jaw dropped. (I can barely run a 400 in 50 seconds, let alone 2 x 450)

But it does make sense.

A 400m in 43.18 average speed is 9.26 m/s and factoring acceleration with blocks.

A 400m with a running start in 43.18 average speed is 9.48 m/s (i.e. run 410m, time the last 400m)

So to run 450 meters in 50 sec is 9.00 m/s.



Basically, magic workouts exists IF you can reach your target goals for the performance you desire.

So it’s not really the workout that makes it magical, it’s really the athlete performing to your expectations.

… and the confidence you need going into the next race!

That could be a Season Best, Personal Best, Masters Age Group Record, or even better, a World Record!

Jimson Lee

Jimson Lee

Coach & Founder at SpeedEndurance.com
I am a Masters Athlete and Coach currently based in London UK. My other projects include the Bud Winter Foundation, writer for the IAAF New Studies in Athletics Journal (NSA) and a member of the Track & Field Writers of America.
Jimson Lee
Jimson Lee
Jimson Lee
  • 50seconds for 450m is very fast….he may well have gone through 400m in sub44

    43.18 50m splits from the biomechanics team were:

    So 6.00 for 350-400m section, and MJ is decelerating and increasing 50m times estimate 400-450m split would probably be around 6.20-6.30, 400m en-route 43.8? haha guy was a beast

  • More than likely that workout is describing 50 sec for his split at the 400. I know Michael Johnson was fast but to run within a second of WR pace at practice twice with 6-8 minutes seems impossible.

  • He’s correct – I have JWs workouts from Baylor. They quote overdistance (ie 400m+) as pace for a 400m…so if you were doing a 90s 600m the workout would state 600m @60s , 5 min rest. So he was probably doing the 450m workout at 56s. I think it has a lot to do with the beeper they use.