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Distance vs. Sprints & Knee Highs... need help

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So I've got two goals with my running.  I wan't to be able to run a 5K, but I also know that I need to work on my intervals/sprints.


My body "type" seems to be naturally inclined to long distance running.  I'm not in shape yet, but I've managed to work up to a 5K in about 40 min. on the treadmill  (outside is a totally different story, but I'm working on it).


I've also got an alternate training workout of doing interval "sprints" on the treadmill for 20 minutes:  1 min. walk-1 min. run (which is actually a jog - but at least I'm doing it). 


I started with the Academy Body-weight routine, and the warm up calls for 30 seconds of knee highs.


So here's my question:  Why if I can run a 5K for 40 min do the knee highs kill me in about 15 seconds?  - I'm totally out of breath and my quads are burning!


Any info about what is going on?  


Any insights, suggestions, recommendations to improve my ability to do the knee highs?  

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If I were going to guess, I'd guess specificity of training.  Knee highs have a lot more range of motion than running, and that last bit at the top is using muscles in a new way (compared to running).  A lot of cardio/warm-up stuff that I don't usually do will make my heart rate shoot up (and muscles burn) a lot faster than the stuff I do usually do (like running).


I don't have any suggestions for improving on knee highs, but on the off-chance that no one already told you: those things will improve your power in running, which will help with your sprinting intervals.  So, nice choice!

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2013 Running Tally: I lost track in July, at 148.925  ((plus 0.5)) but I finished a Very Slow marathon in October. Then I mostly stopped.
2014 Running Tally: 134.1 miles plus 5k (as of 17 September) lost track again, but I know I had at least 147.2 plus 5k for 2014.
2015 Running Tally: 41.2 treadmilled miles & 251.93 real world miles

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The burning is most likely lactic acid build up and your body just doesn't know how to dispose of it efficiently yet, that will come with time, not training it is also why most people puke during\after a hard highly intense workout. Ease into it slowly, lower the time or number or reps and then work your way up to where you want to be and your body will figure it out, like magic.


Running at a slow pace, what most people consider jogging, vs things like sprinting and high knees take a whole different form of muscles and energy expenditure.  Short powerful movements don't have time for your body to rely upon stored energy to fuel them so they have to use what is available and that isn't much. That then gets your body working into over time to start getting more energy ready since it believes you will continue to need it.


You can read more about it here than I can explain http://www.ideafit.com/fitness-library/the-three-metabolic-energy-systemsbut basically you have 3 type of energy; burst (think 10s or less, ready (maybe 1m), and producible (until you collapse). Those of course aren't there scientific names. As you burn out of the first 2, that's why you're out of breath and feeling useless. This little picture shows them and their usable times if you don't want to read the whole article.


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