Playing football required me to have explosiveness, power, speed, endurance and toughness. Almost 90% of my workouts were resistance regiments. I began by running up hills. which was one of the best training regimens I did because it developed all of the tangibles I noted above. Find a single hill that's a minimum of 50 yards in length; the ideal length should be 100 yards. Circumstances may prevent the ideal yardage so with any and every regimen, you must be prepared to improvise. Improvising will prevent ‘excuses’ for not doing workouts. Prior to working out, you should warm-up and stretch out your muscles. It is important to get your heart rate up before you do any workout. Beginners should always start off with less than half speed. Start off by running a couple of hills at less than half speed, maintain good running form at all times. Your arms should swing from front to back, never from side to side; you want to keep your body as aerodynamic as possible. You must maintain good ‘head’ posture; try to prevent the ‘bobble-head’ motion, this will make it extremely difficult to keep a steady breathing rhythm resulting in early fatigue. For maximum end-results, train your body to run on the ‘balls’ of your feet. This style of running will strengthen the Achilles tendon, while strengthening and developing the calf muscles. This style of running will also develop muscle endurance. You must have a way to measure your development, so you should always do everything under the eye of a stopwatch; even go as far as timing your warm-ups. After you’ve warmed up with a couple of steady-paces hill runs; start increasing your speed, but not exceeding past 75% of your top-speed. Always start off with an amount of hills that are attainable to complete. So the number of hill runs will vary depending on the individual.
Running in Sand:
Another regimen I used was running sprints on the sand. This is an endurance muscle-builder for your legs. You would find a lot of boxers doing this regimen. Begin by marking-off 40 yards and run 5 warm up 40’s at half speed with 2-minute rest in between. Then do 5 x 40’s at full speed, but don’t exceed 4-minute rest in between. Then run 5 more 40’s back at half speed with 2-minute rest in between. Reminder: Use a stopwatch at all times.
Running in Water:
I started doing water work outs when I got to college. Athletes that are not accustom to working out in water may find this to be extremely difficult, but like everything else, if you do it often enough, it gets easier. Sprinting in water is a fantastic work out because it will develop muscles that you seldom use. Start off by locating a place in a pool or lake that will put you "shoulder-high" in the water. Start by jogging in place in the water, while maintaining proper running form. Note: You will need a waterproof stopwatch. After running in place for 5 minutes, be sure to catch your breath completely before going into the next phase. Unlike running on land, you don’t need a lot of yardage space to conduct your work out; all you need is about 10 yards. You’ll understand once you try it the first time. Start on one end and sprint to the other end. Use the same running form as if you were running on land. Complete eight ‘Runs’ for the work out.
Running with a Parachute:
Back when I was doing this work out, I couldn’t afford a parachute… so I had to improvise; used a rope and a spare tire. You can easley locate a parachute at any major sporting goods store… or you can order one on-line. The open field would have to be at least 80 yards in length. If you don’t have cones, use anything you can visibly see (hat, towel, shoes…) to mark the field off. Your first mark should be at 20 yards; from there, mark off 30 yards, and then mark off 20 more yards. These marks should be in a straight line. Attach the Parachute to your waist, with the shoot fully extended behind you. Start off by doing a couple of half speed runs to get the blood flowing. Now, start at the first mark. When you take off, the first 20 yards should be at half speed. Once you get at the 20-yard mark, shift a gear and go to full speed for 30 yards. Once you get to the end of that 30-yard mark, down shift your gear to half speed again. Your rest (Recovery) time will be your walk back to the starting line. Complete eight ‘shoots’ for the work out.
Pulling a sled/weight is designed to develop power but it also helps with your explosiveness as well. Again, I couldn’t afford a weighted sled so I used a rope, potato sack, several 1 gallon plastic milk jugs or a couple of big rocks. This work out is a great resistance regimen; you will develop mega explosiveness and power with this work out! Find an open flat level field to run on. You could go to any sporting goods store or go online and order what you need. All you would need is 50 yards of open flat field. The weight that you pull will vary depending on how strong you already are. You should be able to run at least full speed for the entire work out. You MUST keep your body at a low center of gravity while pulling the sled; you’ll understand once you try it the first time. These are straight run sled pulls; there are no slow-downs, you run as fast as you can for the entire 50 yards. Your rest (Recovery) time will be your walk back to the starting line. Complete eight ‘sprint-pulls’ for the work out.
Explosiveness + Power + Quickness = Speed!