i was saying that whenever you make a bump in training volume, don't be suprised to get a sinus infection or something along those lines.
when you bump your averge from 45 to 60, 60 to 75 or 75 to 90mpw, it will take you a few weeks to adapt. Don't be suprised to get the sniffles.
I think that roadrunner was just commenting towards the original poster.
Anyways, my take:
To become the best, you need a great combination of everything. In my opinion, people will be more talented than others. We see this in just about everything. Sports, business, decorating. You name it.
However, having talent will obviously not make you good in and of itself. You need the dedication and motivation to make running your first priority. You need the strength to put in all the miles. And you need the mental edge to get yourself through the rigors of training.
Of course, this, is what makes up the 99.999999% percentile.
Am I saying that you cannot become great without much "talent"? Of course not. We all know plenty of people who worked their asses off and became amazing runners.
Where am I going with this? Who knows. But it sounds like the original poster has a chip on his shoulder for not being able to run high mileage.
On a side note- I can't wait to put some higher mileage weeks in during this winter break and next summer. Gotta love it.
|Long time listener|
"The more I ran, the more talented I became."
Alright, Malmo, I am going to say you aren't adressing the point. I think I understand, after all these years, that you are addressing people who haven't given a shot at the higher mileage/harder work before they make pronouncements on where their talent limits are. But what about people who have. I have to ask you if your pithy dictum "The more I ran, the more talented I became." would serve you well if you decided you wanted to be Mr. Olympia. If all you are saying is harder work will make you better, well duh. But I think what frustrates people is that the pithy way you state it makes it sound like you believe that everyone who isn't great just isn't working hard enough. I know guys that work just as hard as you did who never got to your level. I hope you aren't judging these guys? And I also know guy who have to run far more to achieve the same as guys running half what they do. I hope you aren't judging them either. I mean, I have been training harder for years than you did in high school and I haven't quite run your HS 2 mile PR. I have been running for almost 20 years and have averaged close to 100 a week for several of those (probably averaged 80 a week in the last 10 years) and haven't achieved what you did in your 3rd year of running. Are you going to attribute that to just not trying hard enough? I mean, I am not bothered by it, but I just wish you'd occasionally recognize that not everyone who is frustrated with their limits hasn't failed to look for them. I understand that your point is that people shouldn't write off their potential when they haven't tried to find it, but you need to understand that some people have looked and it isn't there yet they enjoy runnign enough and enjoy the quest for slight improvements enough, to stick with it.
Christ, I have friends who have experimented with triples and 150 a week who have only barely qualified for the Trials, guys who run 120 a week in a typical base week and run long and difficult workouts.
I am working a high school kid who has made the commitment to running much higher mileage and more consistently in the past year than most kids in the state, but he is dumbfounded when he goes to big meets and tries to learn the training of the few guys that beat him and he finds out they only run 25 miles a week. The problem, you see, is your "The more I ran, the more talented I became." provides cold comfort to people getting beated by those who DON'T have to run more to find out how talented they are and others have to run hard as hell only to get beat by half-asses. I try to encourage people in this situation to just do what it takes to be the best they can be and forget about other people and if that is your point, fine, but you dismiss as whining anyone who actually has to deal with this frustration even if they are trying.
In fact more often than not those running high mileage are dealing with some sort of problem or another while running high mileage. However, they refuse to give in so quickly. I think some people are more willing to accept the aches and pains and injuries that come with the high mileage. Others start up the high mileage path and turn back at the first sign of injury. Knee, ankle, hip, IT band problems etc... are part of the price high mileage runners pay.
Some are just not willing or do not have the patience to take 3-4 years to get to the point that the can run 120 miles a week. Are their some out there that will never be able to run high mileage? Yes, but I would argue that is the exception not the rule. [quote]
I respectfully disagree. In the case I mentioned above it was not about guts or unwillingness to run through nagging injuries. It was the inability to maintain any kind of normal stride because the pain was so great. After years of coming back after healing and running into serious injuries around 50 miles a week, preventing him from achieving what he could, and without any solution in sight that would end that cycle, he did the logical thing. Never had the chance to build up to even 70 miles. (He was tough as nails when he was healthy. Raced and trained aggressively. There was no deficiency there.)
I think the point here is that it's great fun to wax nostalgic about how tough we were in those days and dispense slogans on message boards and says things like "Son, you're just not tough enough", or "Son, you need to run more." But to ignore that genes play a role in the process is just plain silly. Gumption can take you a long way, but without some sort of natural talent or aptitude there's no way of touching the top.
Just as a sidenote, I personally think distance running in America is on the rise. Watching Meb and Culpepper, and Ritz and Tegenkamp (among others) over the next few years will be fun. More kids seem to be keeping it going after college than in years past. The kids in high school on the top end have gotten faster. Everyone seems to be running more miles. It's only a matter of time before one of those guys breaks out, ensuring that another will follow.
And yes, natural talent and genes will play a role in that whole process.
There are an awful lot of people who could be really good runners out there who just don't put in the work or never tried racing. I don't discount talent in becoming a top runner, but I think it needs to be put into perspective. I saw a lot of runners come through when I was in college, and I was in a program that got good talent. The dividing line was work. After 2 years of college running, almost everyone willing to work hard had eclipsed the times of the naturally talented individuals who were just going through the motions, no matter where they were on the talent spectrum. Another aspect of getting the potential out of talent is coaching. Do you really think that the guy who coached both Joe Falcon and Matt Tegenkamp in high school just happened to run across a couple of gems? So I don't throw talent out, but you seem to make it out to be THE overriding factor.
I read the crap on these boards from folks who say things like "I ran 15:32 last week, which I know is really slow, because I have no talent..", it just makes me want cry. You have NO IDEA how much talent you have and how lucky you are to run that fast. Yes, it is fast!
Here's my sorry saga. I've been running for 8 years now (I'm 32). I've worked my way up to 80 mpw at times, typically average around 60mpw, and here are my pr's:
Yeah, pretty slow. Do you think I can get under 18:00 if I build up to 100mpw? Is it really worth it? Sorry for the defeatist attitude, boys, but some people have it, and some people don't. I don't. But I keep plugging away, and I keep reading about those with "no talent" who can run 15:32....get a grip. You've got plenty of talent. There seems to be a mentality around here of "I'm not very talented, so if I can do it, so can you." You've no idea how far off you are, guys...some folks just have NO leg speed.
I'm sorry but this is crap. When I played soccer at age 8, we did the laps at the end of practice. I used to be dead last every time. When I was 11 (without having ever had the thought of training or doing anything other than all the usual playground crap that all my other soccer teammates were doing) I was killing everyone on the laps. The guys who were winning the laps at 8 were not too good at 11. At 11, I was still mediocre if you stuck me in a race including everyone (not just soccer kids). Then, at 14 (once again without any kind of training), I was almost (but not quite) the best in my school. At 16, after some weak (20mpw) training, I was killing everyone in sight. At 20, I was getting killed in college to the point where it was embarrassing. A few years later, I was a decent post college road-racer.
A few of the guys I played soccer with as a kid did XC and track in my HS (all of whom whipped me on the laps at age 8). None of them was ever even varsity...
At various points in time, I could have been considered 1.) The least naturally-talented guy out there, 2.) The most naturally-talented guy out there, 3.) A non-talented runner making it on hard work, 4.) A talented runner who blew it by not working hard enough, 5.) The mediocre guy who stayed around long enough to get really good.
Steve Prefontaine was considered an unremarkable runner in his first year. Thank god for him that his high school coach wasn't as narrow-minded as the person who posted the above...
Agree with this post.
I ran in HS, not very fast (had a cross PR around 18 minutes), and kept up a little running in college (not competively, just ran a few days a week). No one ever told me I had talent. My top end was never fast, probably could max out a 400 in 58 seconds. I also never ran very fluidly.
I am 25 now. After college I started to train hard, very hard by my standards. I went to 40 miles/week, and ran some very fast times for me. Beat my HS PRs by a few seconds, and was happy.
I met a guy who won a local 10k road race in 33 minutes, and found out he was 50. Started training with him and learned what it really was to train. Ran my first marathon in just over 3 hours a few months later.
I kept increasing the mileage and improving, and am shooting to run 2:35 this spring. Not a great time by any means, but pretty darn respectable for a kid who never broke 18 for 5k in HS (and only once went under 5 for the mile).
Low and behold, all this running has also changed my body. Lost a lot of weight, but I also run a lot more gracefully now.
How much better can I get? Who knows. I am only running about 90 miles/week now (work doesn't permit much more), but have already seen a 25 minute improvement in my marathon PR. I hope to just keep steadily increasing training and bust out a few years of really solid mileage. Can I get under 2:30, can I run 2:22. Maybe, maybe not, but I sure as hell am going to try.
This simple point is, even those of us with little talent can run some respectable times. Sure, there is a genetic aspect that will limit us relative to elites and not everyone can run 2:07. However, there is no reason to believe there aren't thousands in this country that could do what I did.
I looked at the results for NYC this past week and realized I could have had a shot at being in the top 20 for Americans. It just saddened me. American distance running has become so thin that a guy who struggled to be the #5 guy on his high school cross team - as a senior - could have been that high in one of the major American marathons.
All my improvement because I met this guy who taught me to just shut up and train. So yes, I have no doubt malmo and others on this board are right. I think if others truly listend to them this country could send 1000 guys to the marathon trials.
gotta get that quarter down. you must know that you can run faster than 73 -- you've run it for 800m.
Aerobically you're great. Your 10k/5k is 2.09 which is right about where it should be. Bring that 400m down and everything else will drop as well.
|Another 80's training guy...|
One of the guy's I trained with had a standard response regarding high mileage with speed and the correlation with injury: "I'd rather be injured than slow". He was very rarely injured and definately was not slow.
When i was 18, training with a non college runner in my first year of college where we had no track team i decided to go after it proverbially. Upped my mileage from around 65-70 to 90-100 for the entire spring. My pr's dropped and I began to feel a lot...tougher, when it started to hurt in a race i could hold on a hell of a lot harder. Put together the most consistent string of races ever that spring without lowering my mileage at all. My times were still paltry compared to 75% of people posting on this board. Ran 113 my last week of class, managed to get injured and have not raced as fast in the 2 years since. I was a 55,2:06,4:51 guy who simply sucked it up in track and found that i could run a lot more competitively at the longer road races 10k-10mi... it all depends on what exactly someone is training for, how they are training for it, and what their body is capable of handeling. You are looking at this situation like its single, or double variable when in fact there are many variables concerning a persons ability to handle mileage, run fast off mileage, and run fast. Does all of this mean that I wont continue to bust my ass, no. Ran the first hundred mile week in 2 years last week, and proceeded to get sick and feel like trash...but thats how it goes.
I should add one thing that I forgot...
When I ran XC in HS, I had 2 other good teammates. One was the "long and strong type", the other was considered a "big kicker". This is AFTER several years of training which should have distinguished our strengths and weaknesses.
The "long and strong" guy went on to run very inconsistent but occasional great times. He did 8:13 for 3k with a big kick. Then promptly disappeared.
The guy who was supposed to be a "kicker" has run 2:14 for the marathon. He gets outkicked in any close finish at any distance.
Moral of the story: You cannot watch a guy run at any age and predict whether or not he will be good, nor in what way he will be good...
Something that might motivate the "untalented" guys who post their "slow" PRs:
My former HS teammate who has run 2:14 for marathon has (over the course of many years) picked up "slow" guys like yourselves as training partners. By encouraging them to do more training, many of them have become good runners. I think at least one of them made the trials for marathon or was close. I can't think of one who hasn't broke 32:00 for 10k...not too bad considering some of them couldn't do a 7:00 mile when they started with him...
Dude some funny stuff, keep it up!
I was not offering wisdom to Hodgie. I don't know why you took it that way and why you had to go for a personal insult on me. In fact I respect Hodgie and all of the advice he has given on these boards. Contrary to what you read from this I actually thought I was supporting what Hodgie was saying and offering advice to the original poster.
I also have respected most of your advice on these boards but I understand now why some are turned off by your approach. The personal attack was not necessary. I may not ever run with as many elite runners in my life as Hodgie or yourself but it is more about the constant learning from others that I am interested in.
Thanks for being so friendly.
I don't actually think there's that much disagreement in this thread. People are mostly talking at cross-purposes.
Malmo's perennial point is that people should run more to get faster. Pretty broad agreement on that, I'd think, including from the original poster.
The original poster simply felt moved to point out that not everyone has that option. Some people have bodies that will fall apart before allowing them to run 90mpw. Again, I can't imagine anyone not agreeing with this. I mean, if a guy has only one leg (Terry Fox aside), clearly he's never going to run sub-2:05 for the marathon. Similarly, some people have such messed up biomechanics that no amount of orthotics or corrective exercises will allow them to run high mileage. Some of these unfortunates will be blessed with incredible lungs, determination, and speed, but they still won't be able to max out their training.
This whole other conversation about talent versus work is a different question, nothing to do with the original post. For what it's worth, talent comes in many forms, and cannot succeed without lots of hard work. But if you think talent isn't a prerequisite for success, you're deluding yourself. I guarantee that MINIMUM 75% of the population of the world could devote their entire lives to training as much as they wanted, and could take whatever drugs they wanted to, but would never run a four-minute mile -- something that some people can do off 40 miles a week.
Talent (or lack thereof) puts a ceiling on how fast you can ultimately go. This isn't a practical problem, since no one ever reaches that ceiling in real life.