Dwain Chambers gave a Q & A session at my university today, and while most of the questions were about a topic that can't be discussed here, I thought I'd post some points from what he said in regards to his training methodology.
He said that he is hoping to run both the 100m and the 200m at the World Championships this year and is thus doing more endurance based work than usual. I asked him whether he follows a short to long or long to short approach, and his answer was "definitely long to short". He said he recently ran 400m in 48.5s in training. He did, however, mention that he is trying to hit certain split times in training using infrared speedgates, and the one split time he mentioned was 6.3s for 60m. This is in contrast to another statement he made, which is that he's only running at 75% in training. I assume that this is referring to perceived effort rather than time, but it still seems to me to be an understatement. He also mentioned that quality is more important to him than quantity, especially as he is getting older. I asked him if, from the time he spent with Glen Mills in Jamaica, he can explain to me why the Jamaicans are so dominant in the sprints. He couldn't really, but mentioned good funding and a great talent pool. He also mentioned that his fitness improved greatly from football and rugby training, and that he still uses some of the training modalities from these sports in his sprint training. The examples he gave were repeated accelerations and fast changes in direction.
It would be interesting to hear from anyone who’s actually observed his training, so we can get a better idea of the programme he follows.
He was asked about his previous statement that he thinks he will be able to challenge Usain Bolt, and his explanation was that he has analysed Usain’s runs and concluded that Usain has a larger stride length but lower stride frequency than himself, and that Usain gets into his running stride 20m into the race as opposed to his own 30m. Over the last five months, he said, he has thus worked hard on improving his stride length in order to be able to get to Bolt’s level. He stated that his 6.5 over 60m equates to 9.84 over the 100m and that he will be able to run 9.7 if he can get his 60m time down to 6.4 (I didn’t have the audacity to ask him how he has come to these conclusions).
I hope this is of interest to some of you.