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Who Is The World's Best Coach For Distance Runningvote for your pick


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Poll: Who is the world's best coach for distance running? (87 member(s) have cast votes)

Who is the world's best coach for distance running?

  1. Arthur Lydiard (42 votes [43.30%])

    Percentage of vote: 43.30%

  2. Jack Daniels (9 votes [9.28%])

    Percentage of vote: 9.28%

  3. Ma Junren (2 votes [2.06%])

    Percentage of vote: 2.06%

  4. Franz Stampel (1 votes [1.03%])

    Percentage of vote: 1.03%

  5. Pat Carroll (10 votes [10.31%])

    Percentage of vote: 10.31%

  6. Peter Coe (1 votes [1.03%])

    Percentage of vote: 1.03%

  7. Percy Cerutty (11 votes [11.34%])

    Percentage of vote: 11.34%

  8. Mike Kosgei (3 votes [3.09%])

    Percentage of vote: 3.09%

  9. Bill Bowerman (8 votes [8.25%])

    Percentage of vote: 8.25%

  10. Greg McMillan (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  11. Nic Bideau (4 votes [4.12%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.12%

  12. Wolde Meskel Kostre (4 votes [4.12%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.12%

  13. Said Aouita (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  14. Dr Gabrielle Rosa (1 votes [1.03%])

    Percentage of vote: 1.03%

  15. Victor Conte (1 votes [1.03%])

    Percentage of vote: 1.03%

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#51 Nobby

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 04:00 AM

I'm not quite sure if it's a good idea to make Rich a "legend" but here goes...

Honesly, I'm not quite sure if most people understand what "coach" is.  Sure, undoubtedly, Lydiard will get my vote; not because of his contribution to training which, I'm sure most of us agree upon, really goes on and on through different coaches in the different parts of the world simply because it is probably most sound physiologically and mechanically.  The argument of Coe vs. Lydiard surprisingly still goes on everywhere; but the fact remains; you need high oxygen uptake level in order to succeed in middle distance and distance running.  Whether you run 40 miles a week or 140 miles a week, one way or the other, you've got to get it up high.  If you already have it high; well, lucky for you.  You may not have to struggle as much as most others.  You still need to work on your tolerance against oxygen debt and, for that, you'd need to do fair amount of fast running as well--which, against many people's belief, Lydiard system does have plenty of.  You can twist things around, do something else before others or whatever; but the bottom line is; you need to balance it and develop each and every necessary elements as much as possible according to your own strengths and weaknesses if you want to succeed.  So that's the program side of Arthur Lydiard.

Barry Magee said that Arthur was a great motivator; a great psychologist.  Anybody who actually met him and talked with him knows what I mean.  He was, in a way, lucky that he had so much more advanced system back in those days; but even without that, he probably would have done fairly well as a coach (maybe not 6 Olympic medals but...who knows?).  It's his drive and committment to "coaching" you that made his runners to do what they did.  Planned, or conincident, there are so many occasions he just seems to have known the right things to say at the right time.  That is the kind of characteristis other coaches such as Percy Cerutty, Bill Bowerman, Pat Clohessy (whose name wasn't on the list), Kiyoshi Nakamura (whose name also wasn't on the list), Bill Squires (whose name also wasn't on the list) or Frantz Stampfl possessed.  Without that kind of personality, it is very difficult for anybody to actually "coac" someone, "drive" someone to do such "uncommon" things.  Sure, Lydiard may have had much more physiologically advanced training system which he pretty much more orless stumbled upon.  But if he didn't have a kind of personallity that he did have, those young kids would have not had such strong faith in him; to slog hundreds of miles in the winter, rain in New Zealand winter, when everybody else is shouting at them, out of their cars, that "that lunatic's gonna burn you out!"  

Who's the best coach in the world right now?  I'd say coach Yasushi Sakaguchi.  His team, Chugoku Electronics, just got 2 runners on the Japanese Olympic marathon team.  It's not that easy to get on the Japanese marathon team as some of you might know.  When the entire American runnng fans are overjoyed that Ryun Hall ran 2:08, his team, a single team, has five sub-2:10 runners with 3 of them had run 2:07.  This is just ONE team!  I'd put Yoshio Koide very close second--he would have been first a few years back.  He coached Yuko Arimori, a double Olympic medalist (silver in 1992 and bronze i 1996), Hiromi Suzuki (world champ in 1997) and Naoko Takahashi, the 2000 Olympic marathon champion.  I'd say this is as close to Lydiard's accoomplishment as can be--3 Olympic medals and the world title with 3 different individuals.  And anybody who knows the background of Arimori and Takahashi should know that he actually "developed" these ladies--the argument Rich had on the meaning of "coaching".  I have a lot of respect for Dr. Rosa and coach Canova.  I really do.  But if you call what they do successful coaching, you've got to include coach John Chaplin.  If you don't know who he is; he's the coach at Washington State University who "coached" Henry Rono and several other Kenyan runners such as Samson Kimonbuwa and John Ngeno.  

Coaching is very much different, as far as I'm concerned, from simple schedule writing.  You give a part of your life to the athletes.  Without that, no amount of physiological knowledge or college degree would do you any good.  Som people believe that athletes choose to be good; coach's contribution is less than 10% or whatever.  That's a total BS if you ask me.  Anybody who reads any story of how Bud Winter put Lee Evans' mind at ease at Mexico City Olympics, how Dellinger tried to console Pre right after the terrorists attack at Munich, how Bowerman trick with your mind to get some points crossed, etc.  Coaches' job is so much more than MOST people realize.  It is quite interesting to me; in Japan, we consider coaches as investment--coaches being someone who "teaches how to fish" and continue to produce great athletes.  They are treated well; financially as well as in the social status.  In the US, or in most Western countries it seems, coaches are nothing more than volunteer.  Some people call them "manager".  In Japan, managers are more or less a caretaker.  Coaches coach.  Bill Squires created a marathon dynasty in the late 70s and early 80s.  He coached 4 people go under 2:10.  He tried to continue his program but no one helped him.  What followed was a terrible marathon draught in the 90s.  Of course, I'm spoiled.  I was a corporate team coach in Japan.  Over there, coach would be treated as a manager within the corporation and get paid accordingly.  In the country where pro athletes get paid in millions surely don't understand the importance of coaches.  Well, so much for my bitching...(pardon my Japanese!?)

Edited by Nobby, 16 March 2008 - 08:13 AM.


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#52 Ron1

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 06:48 AM

Doesn't Dick Telford deserve a mention?  At least he explained the science behind Lydiard et al.  Gave the ancedotal a scientific basis.

Sensible and thought provoking post Nobby.     Some good points made.

Edited by RonnieRennen, 15 March 2008 - 06:52 AM.


#53 lactatehead

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 08:45 AM

View PostNobby, on Mar 14 2008, 11:00 AM, said:

Coaching is very much different, as far as I'm concerned, from simple schedule writing.  You give a part of your life to the athletes.  Without that, no amount of physiological knowledge or college degree would do you any good.

Yes, I agree.  My own club`s coach puts in so much time and commitment to his runners. If not directing their running he is consoling them, motivating them, driving them around, watching them race etc. He is probably typical of many club coaches who hardly receive any credit for what they do.

#54 Still Building

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 09:44 AM

Interesting posting, Nobby. Thanks. It was interesting to read about the Japanese coaches.

You (I am assuming it was you) once wote that Peter Coe rang Arthur in the build up to LA. Do you know they discussed?

#55 pjw

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 06:59 AM

I am wondering if you are Nobby Hashizume? If so i would like to thank you for the wonderful expression of coaching above and for the other insights you have given me into Arthur Lydiard in the other examples of your written word i have come across. I feel you may know him best of anyone alive. I have a couple of questions and maybe bring up a point you made again.

Firstly, you mention Arthur was sound mechanically. Now i already believe this as i have seen him in hill running  position in his training manual, however, could be be specific on any mechanics he talked about? It is my pet area if i had one.

Secondly, is it true Snell, Magee and one other all grew up on the same street in Auckland? I have heard this rumour a few times.

Thirdly, if Arthur had come across Soviet periodiation do you think it may have modified the way he  was looking into things.

Finally, in your message above you mention a few things a good coach should possess. A sound physiological and mechanical understanding, a good understanding of the psyche, psychology or human behaviour and plenty of personal passion which can be transferred to the athletes when they lack theirs. Are there any other factors that make a good coach you could talk about?

thanks and i'm hoping you are the real Nobby
see you in Japan it just sounds too good!

#56 Mars

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 08:51 AM

View PostRudolf, on Feb 20 2008, 03:05 AM, said:

I am glad Zatopek was already mentioned few times.
He definitely coached himself without having any help to bounce the ideas from or to prepare the infrastructure for sessions etc, everything he had to create in his head from whatever little it was available.

Hi Rudolf I would love to see you post in the Zatopek method from your reading of his book in original language.

That would be very informative and instructive for all Cool Runners to hear from Zatopek on how to train for distance events...

Can you post it in or start a thread ?

Love Mars.

#57 Rudolf

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 09:29 AM

View PostMars, on Mar 16 2008, 09:51 AM, said:

Hi Rudolf I would love to see you post in the Zatopek method from your reading of his book in original language.

That would be very informative and instructive for all Cool Runners to hear from Zatopek on how to train for distance events...

Can you post it in or start a thread ?

Love Mars.

Hi Mars, that looks like a big project, have to think about that, perhaps will start tu put something down bit by bit.

In the past in few discussion I mentioned some Zatopek's principle as well as principles of Kratochvilova's training

Last night I did follow the link provided in 1 of the above post to Glenthuntly site about 800m base,
and from there the link to Renato Canova interview.

The ideas Canova is using if really understood could be seen very well in Zatopeks system, but as well, what could be seen is, that if Zatopek have changed it slightly, he could have been even faster than he was.

I suggest anybody to read Canova interview slowly and split in to parts - how the idea is applied differently to marathon, how is applied to 5-10km and how differently to 800-1500m.

#58 Easy Tiger

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 01:33 PM

The success of the Japanese at marathon level definitely indicates that we should be focussing our attention to their systems and coaching methods.

This from Running Times Jan 2008:-

Quote

In the past 13 Olympic Games and world championships, 14 different Japanese athletes have garnered a total 17 marathon medals for their country.

This is my favourite part of the article, this is one hardcore program:-

Quote

Distance, Distance, and More Distance. With a steady eye toward the marathon, the core training of most Japanese is distance. Yuko Arimori says, "For us, distance and time are both important. I would do up to 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) per month in my main training, whether at sea level or at altitude. I always liked to feel I was doing training that nobody else could do." Arimori recalls a session of six laps of the 5-and-a-quarter mile loop around the Boulder Reservoir while preparing for Barcelona. Looking through her 1996 summer training log, Arimori herself is amazed. "It wasn't just that 31-mile run. The day before I did two 20-kilometer time trials, one in the morning, one in the afternoon. The morning of the reservoir workout, I had also done an hour run. Then the following day I did 3 x 10,000m as a speed session."

How does this type of training or system differ from the Chinese, who i saw in a recent documentary, who are aiming to change their program of attrition, with the last athletes standing destined to get great results to an approach which will lead to longevity and a lasting and continuing legacy?

Where are the Japanese middle distance athletes? I often watch the Kenyan 800/1500 runners and wonder how many of them were born to run 400's and the same when watching the Japanese marathoners.

I'd love to head over to Japan and spend some time training as part of a squad, do you need to be an elite or is it possible for anyone to find a squad to train with?

#59 JR1500

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 06:56 PM

Does anyone know of a good book About the  Lydiard training system? Did he write a book himself?
cheers

#60 Digger

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 07:49 PM

View PostJR1500, on Mar 16 2008, 02:56 AM, said:

Does anyone know of a good book About the  Lydiard training system? Did he write a book himself?
cheers


Its called 'Running to the top",

not to be confused with a book by the same name written by Derek Clayton.

#61 RichEnglehart

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 01:03 AM

Easy Tiger,

I think you're getting into differing world views when you start comparing Japanese and Chinese training with what we do in the US or Oz. It seems to me that in Japan the whole point is as much to see how much effort you can put into preparation as it is to see what sort of results you get.

One of the Japanese or Koreans who came to the US as a Major League baseball pitcher was becoming progressively less effective as a pitcher. I can't recall definitely which particular player this is so I won't use a name that might be wrong. Anyway, the entire coaching staff of the team he was playing for thought his arm was worn out from all the throwing he did in practice, much more than American pitchers do. They wanted him to do much less. But his response was that he needed to work harder to regain his effectiveness. Didn't work and he was released, picked up by another team who gave him the same advice as he'd gotten from his previous team. He wouldn't do less. I believe this guy has been bouncing around as a marginally effectiev pitcher for a few years now, still working like a maniac but not nearly the player he once was.
In the late 90s, when US marathoning was in its sorriest state for at least a decade, a US runner called David Morris went to Japan and ran for one of their corporate teams. He did the whole Japanes schtick, the office job with shortened hours, the Eikeden races, the massive mileage, much but not all of it done quite slowly. And at a time when the best US marathoners were squeaking under 2:13, Morris ran 2:09.
Then he left Japan, moved back to Montana, stopped training like he did in Japan and more like US marathoners do, i.e. with lower volume but more of it at higher intensity. Nobby was talking to him about this and Morris told Nobby that while he'd run fast under the Japanese system, he was tired all the time. That was evidently why he gave up the Japanese approach. Of course, he never again came close to running as fast as he did as when he trained like the Japanese do, but he probably felt better most of the time than he had under the Japanese system.
Nobby and I have often said that in the US the idea seems to be to figure out how little you can do to run as well as possible. In Japan the idea is more along the lines of seeing how MUCH you can do and run as well as possible. It's a mindset that's much more like the one shown in the Ted Corbitt quote than most western runners exhibit.

Edited by RichEnglehart, 17 March 2008 - 01:04 AM.


#62 Nobby

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 11:15 AM

This is Nobby Hashizume, or also known as "the guy called Nobby".

It was 1983 actually in November if I remember it correctly.  Arthur took me to his office; he was at the time working for a company called Winston as a public relation officer.  His assistant brought him a note that read "Peter Coe called.  He wants you to call him back."  If you remember, it was right before LA Olympics and Coe was having some glandular fever or something.  Arthur just grumbled and said, "He's doing too much speed work.  He needs to back away from too much anaerobic training..."  I don't know the exact conversation.  They might have just said "hi" for all we know.

Thank you, Peter, for your kind word.  Actually I think people like Barry Magee knows a lot more about "Lydiard".  I guess I just have a bit more access to general public (or more time at hand???).  I always thought of Barry more or less a perfect student at Lydiard school; he listen to what Arthur had to say and he did everything as told.  If I have any question, I'd go to Barry.

In regards to Lydiard and mechanics; he's always talked about correct running form as far back as I can remember.  Now I personally think some of the "terminology" or the way he put it may not be all that correct; but when you understand what he's trying to say and what he was doing with it, you'll see his point.  Japanese are quite nortorious about biomechanics.  Every time I go back to Japan, I look for some running books (serious running books--yesterday I went to the book store and, here in the US, sometimes running books are under the category of "Health and Fitness", not "Sports") and I always pick up at least one book on biomechanics.  I've got 2 DVDs on biomechanics; one was made by a coach who trained Shingo Suetsugu, the bronze medalist in 200m at Paris World Championships.  I've been applying some of these drills to the girl I'm coaching; a group of high school rugby team for their speed development program, and putting some video together for some of the coaches (Dick Brown, Steve Plasencia, etc.).  One of the rugby coaches came to me the other day (now, mind you; I only get together with them once a week and we do only the basics.  And even then, most of them are quite hopeless.  And 2/3 of the time we just do some exercises "leading up to" the actual drills!) and told me that, this big strong girl, he said, she tends to hunch-back when she runs.  But now her upper body is getting more upright and she can now pick up speed much more efficiently.  For that, incidentally, I did spend whole session doing Arthur's "stride-outs".  His hill training exercises are designed, not only re-introducing power in your legs, but also working on more correct and supple mechanics.  Now, interestingly, I met with one of the biomechanics guys in Japan a few years back and talked to him about Arthur's hill training.  I've read somewhere that he doesn't believe in ankle flexibility--it's all in the "pressing" with your entire leg.  He said, "But by performing Lydiard's Hill Bounding/Springing, you'll natrally develop such skill anyways."  Same with various sprint drills that he recommended.  

I'm not sure if Peter Snell lived near-by neighbour but I guess Barry Magee, Bill Baillie, Jeff Julian...could be Halberg too, all lived in 2 or 3 blocks of each other.  Actually, once again, here's the thing; it's not that Arthur recruited all the top athletes around the country or tested 30 or 40 athletes and picked top 10 and coached them.  They were all neighboring kids who came to him.

In regards to Russians; I wasn't quite sure what your question exactly was but I know he had quite a bit of interaction, as for a Western athletic coach, with Russians and East Germans.  I've been re-producing his 1970 talk in Washington DC and he mentioned quite a bit of East Germans and Russians.  Can't exactly remember what it was but I thought it was something to do with too much anaerobic training and not peaking right.  

I can't really pin-point all of the characteristics of good coach but I'm sure there a lot more than we know.  A coach is, or I believe should be, an educator.  Nakamura used to always say that a whole person runs as an athlete.  If you're not a "whole" person, or you may call it "well-balanced" person, you will not succeed as an athlete.  Lydiard emphasized, more than anything else, "sincerity" as the most important element in an athlete.  Some people are not sincere and he didn't want anything to do with that kind of people.  

By the way, in terms of his book, I think, if you want to get to know Arthur Lydiard a person, "Running to the Top" is good.  if you want to know more about Lydiard training program in detail, I think "Running with Lydiard" is good.  

So Peter, what do you mean by see me in Japan?  Are you in Japan now and are you coming to Snell/Nobby clinic next week?

#63 pjw

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 01:00 PM

Hi Nobby

Firstly, thanks for all of the information, i love it. If you enjoy imparting it, you have at least one person here absorbing it as best he can.

A Snell/Nobby clinic for me right now sounds like Mecca for a Muslim. When and where will i find it? I was planning on New Zealand for a few weeks next week and will try and chase up Barry on your suggestion. Arthur's best devotee/discliple? The only problem for an ex-decathlete who now coaches is money, hence my throw away comment about coming to Japan to work, as sytemically it is now impossible to 'just' coach in this country.

I was a student of Applied Science and learned biomechanics during those three years. It was very helpful in learning to think into what i was doing as an athlete at the time. Later, i found another way to look in and this is called mechanics. I've found natural mechanics to be more descriptive and precise in creating techincal change than biomechanics can be. When i see the few things Arthur has said and the pictures of him standing and running, i realise he knew natural mechanics as well. Even if some of the things he has said do not seem to sound correct out of context, i would appreciate it if you could tell me some that you remember. It is funny what you say about the Japanese and biomechanics. Now that i think about it one could say they have excellent biomechanics, it is the area of natural mechanics that they may not be attending to with as much devotion to my eye. I will investigate further on youtube but what do you think about this?

I'm glad to hear that the local neighbourhood story had some truth in it. My coach told me that Arthur did that. Simply took those kids who were around him at the time, no special searching etc.
The conclusion i have is that talent is everywhere, it just needs the right guidance. Everyone is fighting over here, most of the talent gets lost.

My question regarding whether Arthur came across Soviet periodisation and if so did he take anything from it? I ask this because my coach (Efim) is an ex-Soviet coach. He said he met Arthur once back in the Ukraine before he headed to Australia (early 70s?). He also said Arthur's work modified Efim's own periodisation and that i recieved the end-product as one of Efim's athletes. The end product being Soviet periodisation modified by some of Arthur's basic principles. I found this out only recently when, after discovering some things about Arthur and reading his schedule, i went to Efim and said i would like to blend together the periodisation i have learned from you and the Lydiard way i have just come across. That's when i received the above information from Efim. Efim has already done it to a level.

Sincerity is a great place to start, thankyou.

Peter

Edited by peterwinter, 17 March 2008 - 01:05 PM.


#64 Rudolf

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 04:12 PM

ZATOPEK

the following link at the bottom has few paragraphs about Zatopek :


http://magstraining....m_The_Past.html


The date are accurate enough to get the rough picture of the method.
Explanations and conlusion are bit more questionable, but is great starting point.

I do not have the book anymore so do have exact numbers etc.

The isssue is for anybody intersted how to aplly the program and mostly how to individualize it.

Zatopke worked with the seituation he was in (seasonal weather patterns, technology etc). so to copy Zatopke without understang what and why in differing condition is again questinable.

There is one more point - Zatopke was not tallent and had no natural speed and had terrible biomechanics.

So this needs to be evaluated when considering his traing methods vs his results, mainly his PB's at distances.

If his method was applyed correctly with talented runners and teh proper biomechanics would be applied, than the Zatopke method I am sure would achieve much more as far as performance goes.

#65 pjw

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 12:42 AM

I think the problem with this way of thinking Rudolf, is that the aerobic system is the continuous system of the body, it continues on and on, just like the rest of the autonomous system, which is a different system to the voluntary, where the anaerobic systems do their work.

Since the aerobic system is a continuous system, it would make sense for the background training to be mostly continuous and not of a stop-start nature. The stop-start activites are in the realms of anaerobic training and this i why interval training works well for anaerobic development.

I would agree that longer repetitions would be helpful in making the transition from longer running to trackwork, but only to ease the transition. I think in the Lydiard system the hill running phase, if all elements are done correctly and in balance with each other, sufficiently prepares for this transition already.

The one thing that still freaks me out about Lydiard, and i realise a lot of people are freaked out by some of his concepts and what it entails to achieve them, is that full anaerobic capacity can be achieved after only 4 weeks of 3 hard lactic sessions a week, notwithstanding the 4-6 week hill phase done prior to gain the base of the anaerobic development, instead of in the gym, and only done after the aerobic development in finished with and maintenance takes over.

Nobby is this 4 weeks true? Is it for example the second time in that year it was done? Or is it for a highly developed athlete and more developmental athletes need longer. I have seen it as 4-6 weeks allowing for individual adaption i'm assuming, but still 6 weeks is short. But then 6 weeks is about the maximum i pursue developing any one thing with the athletes I coach, from technical to fitness. I find the adaption is almost done within 6 weeks. After this any more adaption is minor and not worth chasing. Four weeks Nobby?

Rudolf is it possible that interval training is a very powerful tool but can be as equally dangerous. I like the safety factor built into Gerschler's system. Kind of an antidote to over training. Zatopek survived from durability? He also did 2 hour long runs and massive miles assuming a lot of which were long running. I think isolating the Anaerobic Threshold and developing that specifically can only go so far. I think this is because the Anaerobic Threshold is directly linked to the Aerobic threshold. So an under-developed Aerobic acts like a rubber band and begins to retard the further progress of the Anaerobic. On the flipside of this and something i believe that is inherent in Lydiard's system, is that as you raise the threshold you automatically get a raising of the anaerobic. I could, of course, also be tripping.

Edited by peterwinter, 18 March 2008 - 01:13 AM.


#66 RichEnglehart

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 06:21 AM

Peter,

I really like the idea about the aerobic system being "continuous" and that therefore it makes sense to develop it with continuous runs rather than with intermittent work like intervals. I've been involved in some discussions with people who do interval work year round, even when trying to build an aerobic base and who've claimed that Lydiard would have been better off with interval work in the base phase. That's a really good answer to those people.
As to the 4-6 weeks of anaerobic work, yes, it was that short. I was getting advice from Arthur in 1998-99 and we only had about four weeks of anaerobic work scheduled. He thought it became counterproductive after more than about six weeks and you'd erode your fitness to do more.
Of course you have to remember that the 4-6 weeks of anaerobic work was part of a continuum in which the running got progressively closer to race-like efforts and what came next was the coordination phase when you'd run pure "speedwork" (remember that Lydiard did NOT think of repetition running as "speedwork"), time trials, preparatory races and so on.
Also, he had a version of his system in which limited amounts of anaerobic work were done nearly year round; the largely overlooked "race week/non race week" schedule that I think is the best option for most of today's road racers and club runners.

#67 Rudolf

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 07:42 AM

Peter, I agree with Your reasoning, but it also shows, that nobody understood Zatopek training at all,
it was all lost and missinterpreted in translation,
and the commentary later on on Zatopek system was actually influenced by thinking of German interval training and perhaps even by analyzing british milles system (Coe etc).

The most important point in understanding Zatopek is that the system has all the goodies which could be found in every system, listed in that long article, and most important idea to take form Zatopek, is that it was all aerobic running, none of those interval were anaerobic at all.

the article has error in teh fact staing that recoveries were 200m, thats not true recoveries were the same lenght as fast interval, so the core of teh session was 400m/400m.

Zatopek build over the years from 3x100m/100m (his first individual training session) to 10x100m/100m
and when comfortable switched to 10x200m/200m, this progress was achieved withinh few months of his first year of track training, say from march to september.

Few years later his typical session was :

5x 200m/200m
20x 400m/400m
5x 200m/200m

which is in total of 20 km continuous running, as there were no breaks between 200 and 400 sets.

This was 5 x week = monday-friday, saturday evening or sunday morning was race (track 1500 - 3000 - 5000)
or Xcross country races which were comparable to mountain-hill funruns these days,
or road races of various innacurate distances up to say 12 km,
rest of the weekend was traveling to a race and back so 1 day of it was nonrunning rest day

So the translation of Zatopek system could be that after few years he build up to 5 x 20km long runs per week

all aerobic.

Now for how aerobic or the paces etc.

To symplify the issue, take first few years when he was getting ready to be competitive runner at 10km, his beggining was at 1500m, than he progress to 5000m.

So the pace of fast 400m was 75 seconds, the pace of recovery 400m was 90 seconds.
Of course with different state of teh body, tiredness etc, teh times were few seconds plus or minus but thats teh main idea.

400m at 75 secs, was very close to his 10km race pace, or just slightly slower, but considering the volume and accumulation of tiredness over the week, the effort was teh same, even the speed was few secs slower, so if using of HR or someting like that, it would mean 10km race effort.

This could not result in building of lactate and is in no way anaerobic.

The rest=recovery 400m in 90 secs is no slow jog, it is still high quality aerobic work, since it is between race pace interval.

Zatopek has few ideas for designing his system :

- each session to run race distance at race pace : 10 km = 5x200m + 20x400m + 5x200m

- reasoning for this structure was, that in race on track the first km is allways faster jostling for position etc till the pace settles, so teh faster km is represented by 5x200 (they were faster than 400m)
that the 8km is run usually at settled pace, so teh 20x400m
and teh last km is allways faster so thats for last 5x200m
So this simple thinking was modelling teh race strategies and condition, similarly what is said about Kenyans doing in training preparing for pace surgees during race, these days teh pace is much more variabkle than it was in old era of Zatopke, but idea is teh same - to prepare for paces as in race.

- recovery running was not slow or easy, and Zatopek was forcing his body to recover in relatively fast pace,
so teh 400m in 90 secs was solid aerobic run and relatively short, and if using ideology from teh article, we can say, that
Zatopke was using Greschlers ideoilogy (without knowing him or ever heard of him) of getting HR to 180,
slow down to HR 125 and again etc, although nobody ever measured Zatopek running HRs, I would assume
that for average runenr this would be achieving 160-170 HR at the end of fastyer 400m and getting diown to 140 at the end of recovery 400m.

so we have 20km run with HR constantly fluctuating between 140 and 160-170. This is all hight quality aerobic run.


Using Lydiard terminology, and his pace description we can say that he was getting down to Lydiard 1/4 effort and high to Lydiard 3/4 effort, perhaps even for short period to Lydiard 7/8 effort.


Or take another vocabulary - Monnas fartlek or floats, If I am correct Monnas fartlek on track is running 5000m
with fast 100m straights and slow 100m in bends, however it can be roughly explained as 100m ar race pace
and recovery 100m only say 2 seccs slower, no slow jog etc, it is just swithing off the effort but legs keep turning over and it is teaching to run for free but fast - so called floating and forcing body to lear to recover at this fast pace.
It is exactly the same ideology, just using much shorter interval and teh session is much shorter, but thats teh pace for 5k.

Or it is teh same as structured fartlek or fartlek by the feel (if the runner is hard on himself).

- periodization - was enforced by weather seasonality. November - February often frozen and under the snow those year in middle europe, there was absolutely no traveling to warm climates etc. So his training was highly improvized, like heavy boots in snow-mudd-horse poo mixed with hay in army horse stables etc, was skipping at home in bath with washing, and was skipping - high knees barefoot indoors. Each such session was typicaly 1 hour, so it was very high quality aerobic work
but was much harder for muscles so it was at the same time as crosstraing or strenght training, muscle endurance training
it has elements of hill training . So this very tough winter preparation made him already highly aerobicaly developed and very fit, with strong muscular-tendon etc development to get ready for specific track traing. Track season was racing june-august, hower the weather in march would allow for his typical track session already.

Of course if possible in some winter weather breaks he would do his track stuff.

So as far as periodization per year we can say, that it was about 4 months of winter maybe 6 x per week of minimum of 1 hour of high quality aerobic stuff, than it was about 6 months of track training at high volume high quality aerobic stuff comprising of all parts of aerobic development, typicaly 5 x 20km per week, with 1 day off and 1 day of race = treshold possibly lactate run.

End of september - october would typicaly recovery period, with some hollidays in mountains consisting of long hiking
occasional funruns at road or Xcountry, and if traing on track, than it would likely be more even session not structured intervals.

This sytem made him WR holder at various distances, but was also pushing him to longer and longer distances.

Zatopke soon lost his competivness at elite level at 1500m for teh lack of anaerobic training in his system,

was getting bit less competitive at 5km, was quite unbeatable at 10km.

His world dominace was most obvious at distance 20km or 1 hour run. There were official WR at this distances as they are now, but they were more popular with races orghanized on track regularly as 1H race or 20km race often combined together as split performance of the other.

In these days racing calendar situation Zatopke would have been teh absolute king of halfmarathon distance, but it did not exist  at that era.

So teh conclusion is that his absolute lack of any anaerobic work made him to slow for 1500m and making it very hard to winn at 5000m.

Later he increased the sessions to more than 20x400m/400m, so the daily track sessions increased from 20km to typicaly 40km = 20km close to race pace and 20 km at perhaps Lydiards 1/4 pace.

This increased volume further challenged his high end aerobic developmnet and treshold, and allowed him once more to take teh 5000m WR back and winn teh 5000m gold at the same olympic when he gor 3 gold medals.

The story with his marathon gold medal was - the officials simply entered him without telling him, and than shortly before olympics simply said to him _ Ypou eneterd in marathon as well, it is last days, so if something goes wrong and You do not get any gold at 5 or 10 km You still have a chance to give it a go, with argument - You run 40km few times each week, so what is the big deal anyway ?

#68 lactatehead

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 09:35 AM

I have often followed Harry Wilson`s coaching advice which seems to be a variation on Lydiard. His base building period, which lasts for 6 months appears to have a lot of interval work. When you scrutinise the sessionns that he advocates it amounts to more aerobic conditioning so 5 x 2000m with 2 min jog recovery is like a good steady paced 10k run. The only time he actually suggests running at race pace or faster is for a short period before the competition period. As Rudolf was saying about Zatopek, it is the building of the aerobic system that seems to be the key element to all these great coaches.
A lot of runners must see it for themselves when they are banging away at 2 or 3 track sessions a week while one of their mates decides to train for a marathon. After a few months of training the marathon guy starts beating everyone else over 5 and 10 k. I have seen this happen so many times but it never seems to occur to people that aerobic fitness trumps everything else for any distance over 5k.
I remember watching an IAAF meeting on TV in England and a very fast 5000m was run by a kenyan guy. When they interviewed him he said he was very pleased and he had not begun to start his speed training yet which stunned the interviewer. Obviously the anaerobic training is just the finishing touch.

#69 pjw

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 01:25 PM

So much good stuff

Rich, you were getting advice directly from Arthur himself! What do you remember as this is him at his most mature. I would love to know. I re-read the Lydiard Clinic last night and realised a few more things as usual (it is like the bible). One was that the repetitions were longer than i expected in the anaerobic phase. I like the sessions of 4x400/5 and 5x300/4 for maximal lactate production whereas he is talking anything totalling about 5000m so 8x600 or 5x1000 as examples.

The continuous idea is from Lydiard and it relates to him talking about pressure. The internal pressure in the body under load. I think firstly he talks about evening out this pressure throughout the body and this can only be done at sub-maximal efforts and takes time. Later this pressure, in order to facilitate all of the aerobic adaptions to exercise, must be continuous. For it is the continuous pressure and not intermittent pressure that causes these changes. Once the continuous state is achieved and is solid then i see change of pace stuff being introduced which takes one above and then below this steady state intensity. Later this variation increases more and we get interval or repetition training. It moves from jog recovery to walk recovery and ends in that single repetition at maximal effort, the peak race of the season.


Rudolf thanks for all of that information. Emil Zatopek sounds like an amazing individual. Can i rely on the validity of your information> can you tell me the source? I don't mean to question it's just i would like to rely on information i analyse. If 400/400 is correct at 75/90 then he was doing a form of fartlek i guess that is close to continuous running.

If this 20x400/400 was his core/favourite session, was he preparing to race over 10,000 more than any other distance?

The long running of building up to 100km per week eventually over 5 runs of 20km sounds good and you say there might have been variation on the intensity but not the length of the long run? Or did he vary them as much as he varied the otehr aspects of training according to his daily feel?

You say he gradually lost his competitiveness at the shorter distance of 1500 (his initialy distance) and then later at 5000m all whilst he was unstoppable at 10,000. You say it was because of the lack of anaerobic training. Was it just this? Firstly, did he do anaerobic work as a younger athlete which led to the fast 1500m times? Or did those times come naturally and just off the aerobic running. If that was true then i assume all he did was detrain his speed over time. Were there sessions approximating 5000 pace of 1500 pace or faster?

And this was gold

"You entered in marathon as well, it is last days, so if something goes wrong and you do not get any gold at 5 or 10 km You still have a chance to give it a go, with argument - You run 40km few times each week, so what is the big deal anyway ?

They must have seen him like a superman. Unstoppable.

Lactate head - your name seems contrary to your beliefs?

Edited by peterwinter, 18 March 2008 - 01:45 PM.


#70 lactatehead

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 02:25 PM

View Postpeterwinter, on Mar 17 2008, 08:25 PM, said:

Lactate head - your name seems contrary to your beliefs?

I am a late convert to Lydiard. Funnily enough when I took up running 20 years ago my uncle told me not to bother with all the running books on the market and just follow Lydiard. I thought I knew better but I should have listened to him as he had run  a 2.20 marathon and obviously knew what he was talking about.

#71 HillsAths1

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 02:42 PM

Sorry if I am not understanding all of the talk about Aerobic and Anaerobic training, but to me where Rudolf is talking about Zatopek doing 20km in his sessions at Aerobic capacity, I dont believe that it is all Aerobic(or pure Aerobic) I am sure that the speed portion of the 200m and 400m were done using some portion of Anaerobic running. I believe that it is the management of the the anaerobic capacity that makes the good runner good. As you get better and better at your management of the Anaerobic capacity then you can delay the onset of lactic acid build up in the muscles and as such can then continue to run at a higher speed than would have been possible otherwise.
This I would suggest is even more important for the recreational runner as if you do all of your running at your aerobic capacity then you are less likely to improve as you are not pushing yourself to your full capacity, and when you try and run faster(say in a race), you can only do so for a very short duration as lactic intolerance will hit pretty quickly.

#72 Rudolf

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 03:32 PM

Zatopek - He wrote his own biography together with his wife Dana, elite javelin thrower - olympic gold etc.

The book was about 20% of training system and racing experiences, the rest was about his life as a kid, student, traveling the world for competition, his family life, his marriage etc. There was lot about life in Czechoslovakia during the first republic- the capitalist regime before and during the war, teh change after war, teh new socialist regime, about corrupted and bastard athletics officials etc.

I guess because odf all of this teh book never got translated to other languages - and later did not have additional reprints, I had original first and teh only edition, got it from seconhad bookshop but do not have it here, and am not sure if it still exist, since the stuff I left in europe with my parents - wree floded in the basement and nearly all was thrown out.



But I memorized the book read it few times each year as an relaxing enteratinement, so remeber the detail very well
(the same way was erading later on Kratochvilovas biography writen with her coach.


Zatopek never counted the whole session as a 20km run, he was simply after maximum distance accumulated at racing pace or effort, so to him it was 10km at race pace split into 200 and 400s.

I intentiionaly interpreted it as continous 20km structured fartlek, as this is easy to understand in current terminology.

Later in his carreer he was extending volume, got to 30x400/400, 40x400/400 etc allways in round numbers of reps, there was no any reason as to why, just possibly like the whole tens (easy accountancy).

The idea could be seen in many training system - accumulate the volume at racing pace,
and very little if any work was done at faster than racing pace.

This can be seen everywher, the need for faster than racing pace is missunderstood and unfortunately very popular at running comunity on club level or funrunning level.

When I was coaching I also did missused it and made lots of mistake with it, that time I did not understand Zatopeks training either, and was taking the wrong interpretation as a volume of anaerobic stuff.

So Zatopke was not after running longer runs. like it is currently talk of marathon preparation - runs of 30km, 32, 36 km or over distance.

He was simply after accumulating more distance at race pace, and was not counting the slower recovery 400s.

It remains of 1 procyclist who would only count kms in training uphills or into head wind, and would turn the bike comp off on downhills or back winds or cruising hidden behind teh pack etc.

Of course the increased sessions of 40x400/400 = 32 kms.

But this was already after he had WR and gold medals.

He ste his mind to achieveing the 100 x 400/400
and become obsest with the idea.

He comented in his book that increasing the volume was probably a mistake, and he was wandering what would have happened to his later part of running life, if he would simply stay at 20 x 400/400, but each year and each month try to run each fast and as well slow 400m say 1 secs faster.

Zatopek managed perhaps only 1 session of 100 x 400/400, ceratainly not more of them than 3-5.

Many times he had to quit session after 60, 70 sometimes 90 x 400/400.

Complete exhaustion and appearance of injuries, which he did not have nearly any before, ended up with inuries in groin tendons and that was end of his running.

Of course teh session of 100 x 400/400 = 80 kms and that was quite an ultra on the track.

Those days there were no sport drinks, gels etc, and nobody would even think of eating during training session.

So what was happeninmg at his extended 40-100 x 400/400 :

he would be completely depleting glycogen, and running with muscles not functioning the body would take the natural stride and softenning the impact etc, he would be jarring the body against the track same way as every day funrunner with nonrunning body.

Also he was simply not able to replenish the calories glycogen etc after this session from his daily diet, so next day he would attempt new monstrous session still partialy depleted.

This resulted in what he clearly said - not able to run fast 100 any faster than recovery 100, times of them would be nearly same, but hje just had a feeling that he is trying to run harder the "fast" one.

Zatopke never had a coach and so national coaches would try to make his life hard, and often would go secretly to the track with stopwatches and measure every 400m, write the whole protocols etc, they were trying to get info of he is progressing so they can be smart arses in predicting his next performance etc.

When Zatopke increased his volume, and the speed of fast 400 droped down, there was no way for outsider to tell what is actually happening, the coaches measured teh 400m splits, than shaked theior hhhhheads and said - he is finished, no more medals at comming championship.

They were keen to kick him out of the team but of course the WR holder and past gold medal winner could be kicked out
(the countryu did not have other good runenrs anyway).

Zatopke was running say for 3 weeks in the depleted state huge volume of relatively slow pace 400s, but it that state teh speed was not relevant since teh effort was flat out, so thats similar to studying Keneyans running paces at high altitude etc, it is teh effort not actuall speed-pace Lydiard got that right.

After say 3 weeks torture like this he would take 2-3 days completely of and just eat, and tahn come next week to track to do shrot sessions like years ago - just 10-20 x 400/400, after few days ebnergy would return, glycogen restored and suddenly he felt all the spring in his legs and so would try few of 400m very fast full on just to see.
and would travel to champs and winn again.

So tere is an aspect of huge overload, glycogen depeletion, running on fat only etc, that severe tapering down, supercompensations etc, some short brief sharpenning before race and the gold medal was his again.

#73 RichEnglehart

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 03:37 PM

Peter,

Knowing Arthur was one of the best running experiences I've had. But it's difficult to explain him to people who have read his stuff and have their own ideas of what he was like and thought you should do. Maybe that's why Nobby and I have gotten on so well.We each knew him well enough to recognize this.
Anyway, when you're talking about his anaerobic phase it might help to put it into perspective. If he had his athletes building to two peaks in a year and they were doing even six weeks of anaerobic work for each peak, that's 12 weeks out of 52 when anaerobic training was the focus, so anaerobic work got 23% of his attention.
But for SO many serious and even semi-serious runners interval training is seen as the most important thing and those athletes think long and hard about whether it should be 400s with a 200 recovery, 400s with a 400 recovery, 1,000s, 1500s, 200s, and so on. And Arthur would say stuff like, "Run hard to that third tree and then jog back and do it until you're really breathing hard."
Honestly, I don't think he thought it mattered all that much what sort of anaerobic work you did just as long as you did some and did enough of it to make yourself tired and out of breath.
Now you might be training for something long, a 10km or marathon and take his ideas to mean that you can go to the track and run an all out 400, jog for a minute, run another all out 400, be totally knackered and gasping and be done.
But no. You need to use some common sense. What I just described might be fine if you're running the 800 and even tolerable if you're running the 1500/mile. But when you apply his advice you want to think about the length of the race you want to run and make the anaerobic session resemble that race to some very general degree. So if you're looking to run well at 8-10 km, you'd want to do an interval session that will last ROUGHLY as long (including recoveries perhaps) as the race will.
So that could be, what, 5-6 x 1000, 6 x 800, 12-20 x 400, or 17 times to that third tree and back. He would not necesarliy have objected to the short, fast sorts of sessions you describe, particularly as you got to the later stages of your anerobic phase and if you had something that took longer to do for your other interval session of the week.
But here's another thing he told me that I have found works much better for me than any sort of repetition work. "You can just do basework and then race yourself fit." If you bump into Ron Clarke as you're roaming around Oz ask him about that. It worked very well for him and for me as well though on a  much smaller scale.

Edited by RichEnglehart, 18 March 2008 - 03:40 PM.


#74 HillsAths1

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 04:00 PM

Rich thanks for your reply, to cut through all of the words what you are talking about is to be specific in your training. This is the key to training. If you want to be a slow 10km runner do lots of slow work, if you want to be a fast 10km runner do fast work, the secret is determining what is fast for the individual.
I dont think that long runs make you a faster runner. I know from the many runners that I come across that those who specialise in the long slow runs only method of training end up being slow runners. The benefits that these runners get is that they lose bodyfat and as they are lighter it is easier for them to run, so yes they could run faster due to that. They could have just gone on a diet and got the same effect.

Edited by HillsAths1, 18 March 2008 - 04:01 PM.


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Posted 18 March 2008 - 04:26 PM

I was very much the classic example of that last winter Rich. I had been nursing some injuries so had a low base coming into the winter xc season. I tried to make up for this with harder race pace type work but my race performances were crap and I seemed to have a new niggle every week.
After one particularly disappointing race I decided to go back to basics. Basically just run an hour or so a day regardless of pace. That first week saw me barely shuffling along at 10kph yet on the sunday I ran my fastest of the season. I stayed with the slow easy runs and racing every week, within a few weeks I had improved about 10-15secs a km on my race times. As the season progressed my easy runs got to a more respectable pace but were still very easy. I started adding a few pickups once per week but no hard sessions except my sunday races. I ended up having a good season xc season despite my shaky start.
I suspect my ageing body does best with moderate paced aerobic work and just a little dose of fast stuff or a race to sharpen it up.
Interestingly my 800m pb came a few weeks before my marathon pb, the week before I had done my one and only 200km week. The week before my 400m pb I ran the 4 Peaks( 4 days of long mountain racing) and then a 10mile race. Being very fit endurance wise always seemed to also make me faster.

#76 pjw

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 05:00 PM

Hills, i agree both are aerobic training farlek/intervals and long continuous running. I just feel strongly now that the body needs the continuous running. I think this because the continuous running apllies pressure internally that is pushing to the edges of the aerobic system. It literally applies pressure into the capillaries and forces them to expand deeper and with more density into the muscles. When pressure is applied intermittently the stimulus to create this deepening is not present. Once the steady state is achieved for long enough (Arthur say 2 hours plus is great for this at an easy 1/4 pace).

This type of training is injury preventative as well. With this type of training as the background you are guaranteed that as it does it's faster stuff, your body is bathed in more oxygen than otherwise . Also, the hill phase is so highly aerobic and you could say out of 15 mins, 2 mins are slow but hard anaerobic. This is followed by a few mmins of steady aerobic followed by fast but easy anaerobic downhill and finishing the set with wind sprints - to return to that normal feeling after the under and over speed work i assume. As you don't stop throughout, it is effectively 15 mins of aerobic as the continuous factor with different types of anaerobic taking up smaller segments of that 15 mins as the intermittent factors. Of course i assume this as i don't have direct experience.

The problem with seeing the specificity between marathon training and the 800m is it is counter-intuitive. You train the opposite of the apparent specifics first, then the specifics later. But for Arthur it was not counter-intuitive, it was intuitive. He just saw differently.


Rudolph is it possible that if Zatopek had a balance of this steady state running to go with his aerobic interval sessions he might have avoided these later injuries? Possibly he not only allowed a detraining of his anaerobic side but the underlying continuous endurance capacity also fell away?

Edited by peterwinter, 18 March 2008 - 11:22 PM.


#77 Rudolf

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 07:39 AM

View Postpeterwinter, on Mar 18 2008, 06:00 PM, said:

Rudolph is it possible that if Zatopek had a balance of this steady state running to go with his aerobic interval sessions he might have avoided these later injuries? Possibly he not only allowed a detraining of his anaerobic side but the underlying continuous endurance capacity also fell away?


nobody knows what if, and Zatopke himself was wondering what if ? However teh conclusion of his thinking, he would doiit very likely exactly teh same over again, perhaps with the cganhge only last few years.

So He thought that what he did was ideal, he just shoukld not go too much or too often above the 20x400/400,
possibly only allowing few weeks to peek the volume at 40x400/400, but never to attempt the famous 100x400/400 or come close to it.

Injuries happende only than, when he was leading and achieving the territory of 60-100 x 400/400.

He never specificaly has done any anaerobics, so it was only when he did races at 1500m as that was too fast for him, and the end of 5000m races and of course hills parts of Xcountry races etc.

So it is hard to talk about detraining of speed or detraining anaeribic resistance and capacity, it was allways teh same.

Zatopke also mentioned group of international runers who decided to copy his system, he was allway open about what he was doing and allway helpfull to anybody who would listen, and sometimes he had either international visitors or he would spend time with them while traveling on racing trips etc. Australians should know aussie runner, who after training with Zatopek and using his system set aussie record at 6 miles (from memory, but cant recall his name). The most famous of his international group was rusian Kuc (*Kutz). He later took away some of Zatopek's world records. Kuc builded up to Zatopek classical scheme of
5x200/200 + 20x400/400 + 5x200/200

much faster than Zatopke did, but what was different, Kuc never moved away or better say uip from it, never increased teh volume or number of intervals etc. Instead he focused on slowly taking some seconds of each intervals, and that got him the WR and beating Zatopek in his own game.

So that was the only issue Zatopke was wondering about what if, and that would probably be only difference he would implement if born again with keeping the knowledge.

1 intersting point comes from detailed study of some top runner over the history and this day Kennyans is :

there are no long runs, no long runs of 2 hours or longer, no long runs of 25+ kms or 30+ kms. Say the Kenyans hard training camps have 3 x day session, but the single longest run is 20km done in 62 minutes.

This theme of longest runs of the week being only 60-75 minutes is quite common and bit surprizing, but it even comes from Busters-Bideau as the long run is 90 minutes only.
seems that the run of 2 hours is just taking too much out of the runner.

#78 RichEnglehart

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 01:26 PM

View PostHillsAths1, on Mar 18 2008, 12:00 AM, said:

Rich thanks for your reply, to cut through all of the words what you are talking about is to be specific in your training. This is the key to training. If you want to be a slow 10km runner do lots of slow work, if you want to be a fast 10km runner do fast work, the secret is determining what is fast for the individual.
I dont think that long runs make you a faster runner. I know from the many runners that I come across that those who specialise in the long slow runs only method of training end up being slow runners. The benefits that these runners get is that they lose bodyfat and as they are lighter it is easier for them to run, so yes they could run faster due to that. They could have just gone on a diet and got the same effect.
Be specific. Well, at times. Yes if you mean that you need to run fast at times if you want to race fast at times. But I'm not sure how specific things like, "Run hard to the third tree and jog back was" or the classic,
"We all go to the track. I run 440s, you run 880s and the other guy runs 220. We all create a big oxygen debt and we all improve. It's a lot of eyewash" is.
Compared to many approaches where people are to run at specific heart rates or a precise number of seconds above and below, say 5 km pace I don't think Lydiard was all that specific.

#79 RichEnglehart

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 01:52 PM

1 intersting point comes from detailed study of some top runner over the history and this day Kennyans is :

there are no long runs, no long runs of 2 hours or longer, no long runs of 25+ kms or 30+ kms. Say the Kenyans hard training camps have 3 x day session, but the single longest run is 20km done in 62 minutes.

This theme of longest runs of the week being only 60-75 minutes is quite common and bit surprizing, but it even comes from Busters-Bideau as the long run is 90 minutes only.
seems that the run of 2 hours is just taking too much out of the runner.
[/quote]
As to Buster/Bideau, the two hour run is there. From Bideau:
training
  

More Info  
Elite coaching special - Nic Bideau, coach to Craig Mottram
Page 5: The fundamentals of successful training Previous Page | Next Page  

The fundamentals of successful training
Nic is open about what it takes to succeed at the top level.

The base is good aerobic conditioning. Nic said: “There’s a lot of aerobic running. There is regular speed work – for me that means something like 3 x 120m fast and relaxed with plenty of rest in between.

“Lots of good volume aerobic work means running 90min to 2hr once or even twice a week. Then lots of one hour runs.
“If you just did that you would get to a good level.”

Edited by RichEnglehart, 19 March 2008 - 01:54 PM.


#80 pjw

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 02:00 PM

thanks again Rudolph, interesting about Kutz. Limited the volume and increased the intensity instead. could this be said to be Zatopek's flaw, one that was taken advantage of by Kutz? Perhaps the balance of the volume and the intensity as the primary variables needed to be more even than Zatopek assumed? I think that 5x20 miles a week might have covered the long running but the lack of higher speed training from time to time may have caused him to move from 1500 and out further and might have been the unbalancing factor that caused the injuries. Perhaps the extra volume was not the primary cause, that cause was an imbalance of too much slower over faster work. perhaps if he had maintained the quicker stuff he would not have been able to achieve such volumes. But without it there was more time and opportunity to do the hyper-volume.

I am surprised about the avoidance of the 2 hour+ runs. I feel this is taking a shortcut. You say some are saying they take too much out of the runner. I think that once the adaption has taken place then there is no more negative effect on the rest of the weeks training. Prior to the adaption, 2 hours would be very heavy. I think the idea of the base phase is to build up to these two hour runs. If you don't build up enough then they just don't happen yet. Ultimately I think they are essential, but in reality i don't know. So it is time to experiment. I reckon i'm good for a slow 20mins at the moment.:D

Edited by peterwinter, 19 March 2008 - 02:15 PM.


#81 Rotokiwi

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 05:15 PM

:D Ok :I see Nobby and Rich have started posting here, so I am going to jump in too.
I am part of this "group" who were posting on Letsrun and Coolrunning (US). I usually posted under my name : Kim Stevenson.
As for the topic. Rich and Nobby have addressed a lot of questions so i wont dwell. As for Arthur being the greatest Coach, argumants will go on forever. BUT I will say that Arthur is the "greatest influence" on Coaches and I consider he was the "Greatest Coach of Coaches".
Great to join my Aussie cousins !!! Great thread.

#82 Rudolf

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 05:26 PM

Peter it was 5 x 20 kms per week not 5 x 20 miles.

Zatopek was not competitive interantionaly at 1500m long before he went up with volume he simply was distance runenr not middle distance runner.

He just strated with 1500 as junior at students games etc as that was only distance available, and yes he set national record at 4: 01 for 1500m, not for 1 mile, and got under 4 mins for 1500m, later but that is not elite running internationaly it just shows how low level of middle distance in hat country was.

He was not loosing teh ability at 1500m as such he even improved tiny bit here and there, but he was out of the elite level so thats why he never competed at the distance at major champs.


It is allways the principle of progress You need to increasinbg the traing at least in 1 aspect to kepp improving or actually even to stay at the level, as teh body adapts to some system it stops being challenge or significant stimuly and fro fitter body teh same old training means like less of training.

So it is constantly about increasing teh training as body adapt that goes for every sprot not just running.

It means in this case either adding volume or increasing the speed.

Zatopek was adding volume so was increasing teh stimuly so was increasing the training.

Kuc was increasing teh speed so was also increasing teh training.

Both were improving so both approaches are correct.

Zatopkes problems was that he increased too much well above acceptable level, running in the rnage of 40 - 80 km during week each day is out of this world.

If Kuc increased the speed too much and got to anaerobic speed he would have cracked as well although slightly differently.

With Zatopke incresed load there is also the issue of food drinks and suplements as I mentioned briefly,

running daily 40+ kms without food during session ( in any form solid or liquid ) is just not possible and also teh fact of the need of special nutritional suplemnts of highest quality _ Zatopke did not have any - they were either not available at that time or not available to him or he simply did not think about that and he did not have support of sport science, doctors nutritionist behind him.

To understand this issue do some reading about top world ultrarunners - Scott Jurek is great starting point.

So what I am saying is, that Zatopke increased volume is not necessarily proven as wrong or impossible, but he just did not have righjt tools available and these days woyuld be intersting if somebody was testing Zatopek system with increasing volume and having access to top live nutritional resources...


Re Kuc - to clear up the issue little bit - it is roumored that Kuc was teh first experiment of russian doping for distance runners perhaps even the first running steroids experiment and experiment going wrong he died very soon very young officialy as heart attack, so perhaps if he was already on a juice while increasing the speed of intervals, that might helped him, so his way of aplication of increased training is also not sufficiently proven as we all know that with steroids normal training criterias do not aply.

Edited by Rudolf, 19 March 2008 - 05:29 PM.


#83 pjw

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 11:50 PM

Rotokiwi, glad to see you. i will be in NZ in a week and Nobby suggested i should speak to Barry Magee if i can. Do you know how to find him?

Rudolf i am thoroughly enjoying this debate, i hope you are as well. You said

"Zatopek was adding volume so was increasing teh stimuly so was increasing the training.
Kuc was increasing teh speed so was also increasing teh training.
Both were improving so both approaches are correct.
If Kuc increased the speed too much and got to anaerobic speed he would have cracked as well although slightly differently."

I agree and both approaches were correct, but we are not talking about correctness as an absolute thing are we? Correctness is on a continuum stretching into infinity - towards the ideal of perfectly correct. Thus one approach could be more correct than the other or they could be equal in their correctness/incorrectness balance. I would argue that the finding the right combination or balance of volume and intensity is going to be more correct than emphasising one over the other. I see Zatopek as emphasising volume and Kuc addressed this a little by adding more intensity. Prior to Zatopek one could argue the balance of the right training was even less correct. Today you could successfully argue it is better than in Emil's day.

When i see the hyper-volume of intervals that Zatopek did i see an awesome level of training at stage two with inferior development at stage one. The 20km continuous runs a day (stage 1) were eclipsed by the interval/fartlek training volume (stage 2). It needed to be the other way around in my mind and there needed to be a period of no intervals where just the steady state was trained. Of course i am being quite arrogant in making such a statement about Zatopek but i think a Lydiardite would agree with me. I think the internal pressure from exercise, to develop the base aerobic capacity, needs to be continuous. If continuous it can create a pressure seepage effect across the edge of ones capacity. This can only occur below a certain threshold of intensity. Any higher and the pressure is too high for this effect and another effect is stimulated instead. In Zatopek's case the intervals don't allow for this specific low level pressure effect. The pressure effect he creates is higher and is a stretching one. On strongly then off a bit and so on. This creates great elasticity at the edge of your range and takes out your threshold but doesn't allow for a deepening effect of the aerobic. I see this development is more surface than the true base.

The true base may not need to be emphasised so much if we had not lost most of it due to our way of living.

Nobby are you out there?

Edited by peterwinter, 19 March 2008 - 11:57 PM.


#84 Rotokiwi

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Posted 20 March 2008 - 07:28 PM

[quote name='peterwinter' date='Mar 19 2008, 11:50 PM' post='304674']
Rotokiwi, glad to see you. i will be in NZ in a week and Nobby suggested i should speak to Barry Magee if i can. Do you know how to find him?

:D Peter, I don't know Barry other than to say Hi, HRE does know him nd could tell you how to get hold of him

If you are in NZ are you coming to "Geyserland" ie Rotorua. We have some geat runs here. One of the last times I spent with Arthur was when he was here on a visit and he said this area was the best in the world for conditioning runners.

#85 RichEnglehart

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 06:16 AM

Nobby is on his way to Japaan with Peter Snell for a speaking tour so it might be a while until he sees this thread again.
But he and I have talked about Zatopek.
At one time I don't think there was anyone whose training was referrenced more than Zatopek's. My frst exposure was in the 60s when I was dying on about the seventh repeat of a session of 400s to be told that Zatopek would still have something like 93 of them still to do an look athow good he was. Advocates of hard training loved pointing out that he ran hard 400s and not long slow distance. Later on word crept out that while Zatopek did loads of repeat work a lot of it fairly slow and that he was successful because he ran so many miles.
Ernst van Aaken knew Zatopek and made this point frquently. Van Aaken's son told me that the biggest influence on his father's thinking about training was Zatopek and it was simply that he was impressed with Zatopek's volume.
Van Aaken, and others, mentioned that SOME of Zatopek's 400s were fast but many were fairly slow.
Zatopek was a hero to many of Lydiard's runners and on one of their tours they met him and talked. Nobby once talked with Bill Bailiie about Baillie's chat with Zatopek and his training. Baillie thinks that Zatopek started off running his
400s at pretty close to 60 seconds and kept to that as long as he could. As the session wore on and he tired, the pace slowed and you'd get the 75s and 90s that van Aaken describes.
I'm inlcined to believe Baillie simply because that was the way we trained in the 50s and 60s. What was the physiology behind it? Almost nothing. Exercise physiology was almost non-existent. The thinking behind it was that races hurt
like stink and so training should hurt like double stink and then races will seem easy.
Both van Aaken and Lydiard seemed to recognize that Zatopek was doing way more running than his competitiors and that even though a lot of it was slower than race pace it served him well. I remember Nobby and I saying that maybe the
"secret" to Zatopek's success was simply that he did heaps of running and how that running was arranged was of far less importance.
Peter,
If you e-mail me at Engstock@aol.com I'll send you Barry's e-mail address.

#86 Rotokiwi

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 06:43 AM

:D Great minds think alike ! I was going to mentiom Bill here but Rich beat me to it. Yes! I can recall asking Bill and some of the"Arthur's Boys" crew who their hero's were.
The answer of course was Zatopek.
I can also recall Bill saying that Zatopek trained in a Forest (also mentioned in "How they Trained") and covered any miles in a workout no matter what the weather. The "how" I don't remember but do recall Bill saying what got him was the fact that Zatopek exuded this "Pure Joy of running" and he loved the company of other runners.
Great disussion !

#87 pjw

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 02:57 PM

thanks Rich and Roto, great stuff. I am liking Zatopek more and more (the pure joy of running!) but i think its only information to add onto Arthur's information. Still i would like to delve deeper into both.

Is it possible this autobiography you are talking about Rudolf has been translated into English?

Roto i will be flying into Hamilton and last time i did this i was taken to Rotorua and had corn boiled in the hot springs, Maori style. Even the sulfur was ok after a while :D Do you live there?

#88 Stalky

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 04:14 PM

Even Lydiard was influenced by other training methods such as fartlek made popular by Gosta Holmer Swedish decathlete and Coach in the late 30 and into the 40s.  Early myths about LSD [Long Slow Distance] are the worst thing to ever happen to distance running in America," he said. Rogers points out that Lydiard’s early 60’s runners of LSD-trained fame used Fartlek and interval training.

Lydiard copied Holmer’s ideas, creating Fartlek courses over both flat and varied trails with distance markers set at various sprint and middle-distance speed changes. "The Swedes used Fartlek on pine needle forest trails," said Rogers. "There was terrain training, and hilly Fartlek courses. But, primarily, it was on level paths." According to Rogers, Lydiard used both types. On the flats, athletes changed paces at markers. The hill courses had built-in stressors.

#89 Jimboy

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 04:53 PM

In his original text"Run to the Top" Lydiard mentions that he first started development of his ideas by following some of the training ideas of the British runner ,F.A.M. Webster expounded,I believe,in his book Athletics of Today,published in 1929.Of course Lydiard moved on from these ideas and built up his own system which has stood the test of time.

#90 RichEnglehart

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 01:03 PM

Lydiard did measure out stretches of road during his anaerobic phase because the tracks were too muddy to run on. During the base phase he just had his athletes run. The pace wasn't specific.

#91 pjw

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 01:10 PM

View PostStalky, on Mar 21 2008, 05:14 PM, said:

Even Lydiard was influenced by other training methods such as fartlek made popular by Gosta Holmer Swedish decathlete and Coach in the late 30 and into the 40s.  Early myths about LSD [Long Slow Distance] are the worst thing to ever happen to distance running in America," he said. Rogers points out that Lydiard’s early 60’s runners of LSD-trained fame used Fartlek and interval training.

Lydiard copied Holmer’s ideas, creating Fartlek courses over both flat and varied trails with distance markers set at various sprint and middle-distance speed changes. "The Swedes used Fartlek on pine needle forest trails," said Rogers. "There was terrain training, and hilly Fartlek courses. But, primarily, it was on level paths." According to Rogers, Lydiard used both types. On the flats, athletes changed paces at markers. The hill courses had built-in stressors.

I'm so glad you've said this as it shows a lot of fine tuning and adaption to the individuals process of development.

I've just been made aware from someone who loaned me a book by Keith Livingstone on the lydiard way and there is a chapter from Barry Magee in it. Stright from the horses mouth so to speak.

Last night i ran and at 120bpm my breathing first deepened. I kept it at that level for as long as i could. Excellent feeling at the end together with the fatigue. I am going to stay at this intensity until i can get some volume in (i'm aiming for an hours worth) and then i will limit the time to the hour and see if i can start to run faster at that intensity. I think that's Lydiard's process for the long slower stuff. I guess when the faster stage starts ot plateau i will have to start going longer than 60 mins.

Edited by peterwinter, 22 March 2008 - 02:40 PM.


#92 lebusqp

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Posted 23 March 2008 - 09:38 PM

PW, there was some wonderful posts from Keith Livingtone on here some time back. Hopefully they are still in existance. Well worth a search. His explanations were very straight forward. I remember him running with Wardlaw's crew at Ferny Creek on sundays and he had pretty useful results. Somebody who knew the theory and applied it with some success.

#93 Chelli

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Posted 23 March 2008 - 11:17 PM

View PostRichEnglehart, on Mar 19 2008, 02:52 PM, said:

1 intersting point comes from detailed study of some top runner over the history and this day Kennyans is :

there are no long runs, no long runs of 2 hours or longer, no long runs of 25+ kms or 30+ kms. Say the Kenyans hard training camps have 3 x day session, but the single longest run is 20km done in 62 minutes.

This theme of longest runs of the week being only 60-75 minutes is quite common and bit surprizing, but it even comes from Busters-Bideau as the long run is 90 minutes only.
seems that the run of 2 hours is just taking too much out of the runner.

As to Buster/Bideau, the two hour run is there. From Bideau:
training
  

More Info  
Elite coaching special - Nic Bideau, coach to Craig Mottram
Page 5: The fundamentals of successful training Previous Page | Next Page  

The fundamentals of successful training
Nic is open about what it takes to succeed at the top level.

The base is good aerobic conditioning. Nic said: “There’s a lot of aerobic running. There is regular speed work – for me that means something like 3 x 120m fast and relaxed with plenty of rest in between.

“Lots of good volume aerobic work means running 90min to 2hr once or even twice a week. Then lots of one hour runs.
“If you just did that you would get to a good level.”
I agree with this method as any single long run longer than 100 minutes causes the breakdown of muscle fibres or muscle atrophy or the death of muscle fibres through severe depletion of glycogen stores and breakdown of protein synthesis. This can cause a slower recovery process so it means that quality speedwork might suffer during the week due to a  slower recovery rate through muscle breakdown .

#94 pjw

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Posted 24 March 2008 - 01:06 AM

View PostChelli, on Mar 24 2008, 12:17 AM, said:

I agree with this method as any single long run longer than 100 minutes causes the breakdown of muscle fibres or muscle atrophy or the death of muscle fibres through severe depletion of glycogen stores and breakdown of protein synthesis. This can cause a slower recovery process so it means that quality speedwork might suffer during the week due to a  slower recovery rate through muscle breakdown .

If i were to go for a 100+ minute run there would definitely be cell breakdown and probably this cell death (what is that?) and possibly even systemic death. For someone who has built up to this progressively over time i can't imagine anything too drastic occurring. Aside from that, the actual training effect is the repairing of cells damaged from overuse. Overuse is essential albeit progressive and balanced with rest. I personally am scared at the thought of a 2 hour run. At 125bpm it does seem seasier to cope with mentally already though. (i realised about a week ago i will be doing one sooner or later)

Lebusqp i found the thread. Excellent, thanks. Post 16 appears to be the first of many.

http://www.coolrunni...x...t=0&start=0

I don't know about 70-75% yet. That would be up to 150. I tried that today at the end and it was a bit system overload for now. I think i will stick at the aerobic threshold until that gets stronger. Is this a wise approach?

Actually i am not putting any real limits on it other than my personal capacity. I guess i am following Rich's suggestion from Arthur to not be specific with the pace in the base building period. I can't help but be scientific and analyse about it all, however, gaining some feel of what i need is really important now as well.

A set plan won't be reading this ahead of time with a crystal ball, but if i am reading myself and being honest, i will know at the time.

cheers guys

Edited by peterwinter, 24 March 2008 - 01:21 AM.


#95 Still Building

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Posted 24 March 2008 - 10:41 PM

PW,
In  six months 2 hours won't seem so scary :D

#96 Rotokiwi

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Posted 25 March 2008 - 06:35 AM

:D Racing around at Easter enjoying the break. Firstly, Arthur got his initial info from a book by FAM Webter. But he also started running with as guy named Jack Dolan. If you get a copy of Arthur's first book "Run to the Top"  you will see is is dedicated to Jack. I was a member of Lynndale Athletic Club onand off for many years (travelling overseas and moving towns in between). I knew Jack and he was one of lifes gentlemen. He took a huge interest in Junior section of the club as he always said "They are our future" I was not one of the better Juniors thogh there was always a pat on the back and an encouraging word.
At the time I joined I was very inconsistent with my running and it was Jack who said "Run everyday".
Arthur mentions how tough Jack was (for the time).
Secondly, Keith Livingstne would be a far better expert on Arthur's training than myself and I hope to get a copy of his book soon.
I note hs cmment on the thread here that he has Kids running in the  50 sec region for 400m and 1:53-54 running on Steady work, a dose of threshold work, a dose of VO2 and a dose of strides. Plus the kids love their running. I approach Coaching  the same way and can also make the same claims regarding my kids times. balancing the work is the key.

Peter, do not be afaid of a 2 hour run, Chuck the HRM and head out and run as easily as you can. I am a great believer in what Arthur used to preach 'Once you have run 20miles you will always do it again, no matter how long afterwards".

Cheers

#97 pjw

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Posted 25 March 2008 - 01:15 PM

stillbuilding and roto

it IS scary as i have a lifetime longest of about 50 minutes. I think the 100 miles might be one of the things that turns people off. I'm hesistant to tell the guys i coach we are heading towards a lot of k's including a long one. Might just see where it builds to as we go. One thing i don't want to lose and i don't want them to lose is natural form and rhythm. I do notice a lot of people who run a lot of k's end up looking like they have been carrying around the weight of the world for too long. Crushed into the ground. So i guess the buildup must be progressive to avoid this.

I've been reading Keith and i know someone who is coached/advised by him so i am discovering his understanding right now. Clear and articulate.

Thanks for all of your help. I'm off to buy a HRM. It's just too difficult to take HR on the run otherwise.

Edited by pjw, 25 March 2008 - 01:18 PM.


#98 trailblazer777

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 12:05 AM

Im a big fan of many of Percy Cerutty's ideas, but I do also like reps, not sure how that gels with his ideas..I think stampfli was the original track machine coach, but many since then and some of their ideas are very worthwhile...but overall I think Cerutty has to be in the top 5 of all time if not the best for overall approach...imo...

I think Nic Bideau has the right idea about a lot of things and has done well

Lydiard maybe has some useful ideas...but I think is over rated and his overall approach i think is not as good as it could be...too focused on distance...not enough speedwork imo...ceruttys weakness to a lesser extent too imo

but then again what would I know, who am i to have an opinion with my mediocore performances...too bad I say...just cos u cant walk the talk doesnt necessarily mean your talk is wrong...

My racewalking coach stan jones was excellent! he ran against Zatopek I think in the olympics...

jack daniels pat carroll kenyans seem to have something right but i dont know enough about them to judge...

so I think Cerutty is the best. Lydiard was a very important pioneer, Stampfli brought some useful things to tha table maybe something noone else thought of at the time...and Bideau is one of the best people to get advice from if you want to succeed on the world stage....
cerutty wins by a long way...

Edited by trailblazer777, 26 March 2008 - 12:36 AM.


#99 Rudolf

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 11:18 AM

somebody said Bideau ?

Than I have to say Tamsyn's brother.
Tamsyn's brother got a gold medal at last indor worlds, Bideau only got 5th place.

#100 RichEnglehart

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Posted 26 March 2008 - 02:55 PM

Anyone know what Keith's book is called?