How they train – Rhys Williams

Welshman not satisfied with two medals after years on the injury sidelines

Posted on April 21, 2011 by
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Rhys Williams (Mark Shearman)

Ninth on the UK all-time 400m hurdles list, Williams has unfinished business and earlier this year he was training hard in South Africa.

“I’ve just changed coach and I am now based in Lee Valley, London, and this helps as I can train indoors during the winter,” he says. In addition to Dan Pfaff, he also receives help from a range of people such as Stuart McMillan and Ayo Falola, who work for UKA.

He adds: “Everyone is really helpful and my training partners include Rob Tobin, Christian Malcolm and Dwain Chambers. We have a great group with athletes from different events, which also helps.

“This is the second time I’ve been on a UKA camp to South Africa. It’s great as you can eat, sleep, train for three weeks solid. The weather is the main plus, as you tend to do repetitions much quicker in this type of heat and with the quick surfaces.”

His favourite session is 2x250m. He says: “It’s quick and closely mimics what type of shape you would be in if you were to race.” His least favourite is 6x300m – “I hate it, as there’s no easy way of running that session,” he says. “It’s designed to produce fatigue and aimed to benefit the last part of the 400m hurdles race.”

He has happy thoughts about 2010. “I’ve progressed my way back, had my first full year’s training since 2006, so it’s onwards and upwards really,” he says. But he expected to run much quicker times last season and thought the times he achieved did not reflect how he was running and is expecting a chunk to come off soon.

His aim for this year is a medal at the World Championships. “The World championships will be a dress rehearsal for London,” he says.

Williams leaves no room for emotion in his quest for perfection: “I detest my rivals on the track and that’s why they are your rivals,” he says.

Typical winter training

» Monday
Sprints: (4 sets of 4x40m). Medicine ball throws and weights.

» Tuesday
Technical runs, circuits*, weights.

» Wednesday
Speed endurance on track (600m, 500m, 400m, 300m, 200m, 100m with three minutes recovery). Plus jumps and weights.

» Thursday
Technical runs, circuits* and fartlek.

» Friday
Sprints: (20m, 30m, 40mx4). Medicine ball throws, jumps, weights.

» Saturday
Speed endurance: (6x300m with three minutes recovery).

» Sunday
Rest.

* Circuit training includes: V sit-ups, back hypers, leg toss, wrestler’s bridge, crunch with twist, prone flexed knee hip extension, toe touchers, L-overs, sideups, double-leg eagles, low level bicycle, pelvic tilt isometrics, pelvic tilt with leg crunch and single-leg raises (prone, supine and lateral).

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