Depending on who you ask, CB stands for confidence-builder or character-builder. In truth, you must possess both to close out the final leg of a race—which is why two world-class American sprinters run CBs at the tail end of their speed workouts.
In the world of track and field, CBs are specific-distance runs performed at the end of an on-track workout. Whether you’re a 100-meter sprinter or competing in the 400, you need more than sprints to improve your time. CBs will expand your speed endurance, keeping your body in top running form from start to finish.
For sprinters Carmelita Jeter and Leroy Dixon, the CB comes in the form of a 300-meter “character builder,” as elite sprint coach John Smith calls it. He says, “The key is to bring the fundamentals that you’re working on [for speed work] to the 300.”
Speed coach Cedric Hill says his “confidence-builder” is “good for familiarizing yourself with creating proper force into the track when fatigued and [learning] technique endurance.”
Hill uses a 250-meter CB to assess and develop a sprinter’s speed endurance. The goal is to “to have the capacity to run a certain time and cover that kind of distance repeatedly,” Hill says.
Get your confidence up. Add a CB to the end of your workout. Whether you build confidence or character—or both—is up to you.