True! Bill B. adjusted the workouts according to each runner's needs. The basics of his program included intervals, fartlek, hills, or longer runs at moderate to somewhat hard paces. The quantity varied according to a runner's ability to adapt. Two four minute milers on the same team would probably run no more than one workout per month the same.
Dyrol Burleson, who never lost a collegiate mile race, two-time NCAA mile champion, might run numerous 330-220-110 workouts and an occassional 10 x 440. He ran a 10-14 mile run once per week. Another runner, like Bill Dellinger, might run 440-660-440-200 x 3 sets. Another day Dellinger might run 3 x 1320 and 3 x 1 mile or 6 x 880 for endurance and aerobic capacity, though it wasn't called such names.
The off-season was not overly interval laiden as many people think. Bill B. knew that fartlek running was not only effective but a great way to decrease the number of injuries that runners, especiallty middle distance runners, often experience under a frequent interval program. In the autumn and early winter months weekly fartlke sessions on a golf course or up at Hendrick's Park were done. Hendricks, by the way, is super hilly.
People do not understand the Date-Pace, Goal-Pace approach of Bill Bowerman. The Date-Pace idea is grand, but often people think that it means you run a time trial at 100% effort. Not so! In fact, you run at 3/4th effort for about 3 laps or a little over and then run fast/sprint to the finish. A 4:00 miler in the off-season may be capable of running 4:16 all-out, but in his date-pace time trial he might run 4:32, for instance because the first three laps were run at a pace more similar to an all-out 2-mile run before he sprinted to the finish. So, date-pace intervals were run at 68 second pace in the early season or off-season. Over the months the date-pace time would drop (about a second per lap per month).
Goal pace workouts in the off season or early season were not tough. In fact, most of them were brief and the intervals wer not long. An example might be 4 x 220 at mile goal pace before the rest of the intervals in the workouts were done at date-pace. One might follow the 4 x 220s at goal pace with 2 or 3 sets of 44-660-440-220. Make sense?
During the spring, after doing such workouts for several months, the length and volume of the goal pace intervals would be higher and constitute a larger portion of the total quality running done per week. Still, many of the intervals were not hammered but run at date pace; now a faster date pace do to improved functional capacity of each runner (they were in better shape in the spring than in the autumn). Tinman