Harry is a National Sprinter suffering from fatigue in his quads

April 6, 2016

Hi Guru,

Over the past few months I have been training hard and I have been feeling a fatigue in my legs in particular the quadriceps.

I went to see a physio who suggested I cut down on training which I have now done. However, after around two weeks of minimal exercise and stretching the fatigue has lessened but not disappeared. Before this I cut down to around 4/5 hours of training a week for two weeks.

I am a national sprinter in the 100m/200m/400m and so performance is in my best interest but I feel I am not reaching my full potential due to this constant tiredness. I have multiple other injuries but this tiredness is stopping me from training as much as I can and working on fixing my other biomechanical issues.

I was wondering if you had any suggestions on why this might be and if it is over training? I was doing around 2 to 3 hours a day of high intensity sprinting or rugby every day of the week, rarely taking rest days. If so, how long of a break should I be taking away from training in order to allow my body the rest it needs?

Thank you

April 6, 2016

Hi Harry

This is hot off the press from our National Level Coach, Gary Telfer

Thank you for contacting us from your note, I understand the following:

You describe your symptoms as:

  • Fatigue
  • Quadriceps issues
  • Multiple Injuries

Your current situation is:

Training daily and now reduced 4 to 5 hours per week following physio advice Small improvement following reduction in training. You are a junior athlete competing nationally as a sprinter 100m; 200m & 400m and playing Rugby. You would like to be able to perform as a sprinter (pain free)

Advice / recommendations

Well there is a lot going on here Harry and my alarm bells are ringing with your multiple injuries as sometimes the cause and effect is not highlighted in the same area.

I would be interested to understand more about your symptoms of fatigue, so when does this occur, when does it stop (if at all) what does it actually feel like?

I need to know about your training to make a diagnosis and recommendation and this would include the nature of your training – ie do you do many repetitions, weight train, circuits, where you might do these activities ie at the track, on the road in a gym and the frequency of the training for example do you train daily / every other day and what is the duration of your recovery.

I am interested in areas such as your growth – height, weight etc


The possible causes of your problem can relate to over training, lack of recovery, your own growth in line with your age, your current level of fitness, the nature of the training, your own running style What you need to have in mind is over training won’t always mean you will improve your overall performance, often better to have quality training over quantity.

Rest in all its forms is extremely important to training, performance and the developing body.

Ensure you are getting the right nutrition and hydration as part of your recovery, in your situation I would seek out a nutritionist for advice on how to maximize your daily food intake (I would make sure that you check all products offered with the UKA drug list to ensure compliance)

I would organize a full checkup with your doctor which I suggest should include a blood test for any possible deficiencies

Check your present lifestyle as several sports, study, exams, work, home life, all play a part in overall performance.

Repetition running is not always right for juniors and not every session should be performed flat out, your coach if you have one should have a handle on this.

It would be good to see you for an appointment in the practice.

Hope this helps.

The Guru

Guru Responded

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