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Basically, she was planning to go to school in San Fran, the coaches all left to Oregon so she went to Oregon without visiting. Then they changed the training she had been doing overseas and she got worse. She told them the training wasn't right for her and they said too bad(despite her saying during a visit to usf that it would stay about the same). She keep getting worse and eventually relapsed to an ED.
The lack of communication is strange to me. Or it's a huge ego thing that the coaches had about their own training. She wanted to run more and they wanted her to run less(but more intensity i presume). She said they basically called her a slacker because she got worse. It's a bit weird that a coach wouldn't let a struggling runner train differently, but not all programs want personalized training. However you'd think a program with resources like UofO would have been able to make this work for her lol. Idk it feels weird. Sounds like it wasn't too abusive of an environment just a classic case of a runner not panning out.
I can only feel so bad for someone that got a full ride though.
This is why people suck. Someone's suffering and bad experience shouldn't be qualified by the fact they received something else. Being overtrained and uncared for by a coaching staff is horrible regardless of what they received. The scholarship was for her athletic ability that was essentially ruined by poor coaching. Not only that but it led to an eating disorder. I feel pretty darn bad for her no matter how much money she saved or how much gear she got.
Horrible coaching saying she lost because she didn’t have heart. Everyone at this level has heart. NCAA coaches are the worst at receiving the glory when things go well and casting blame when runner does bad.
It sounds like the regime change at Oregon was justified. Robert Johnson got raked over the coals for his weight and body image obsessions, but it sounds like Helen Lehman-Winters may also have deserved her fate. I do think that the worst part of this, in my interpretation, was the Ducks coaching staff forcing a strength and volume based 10K runner to conform to the middle-distance regimen (easier for the coach to administer? Lazy coaching?) and then blaming the athlete for not improving their 10K performances.
It's worth pointing out that her teammates were INCREDIBLY SUCCESSFUL in that 2019 year (Bowden's senior year). Jessica Hull won a national championship in the 1500 and Ejore got 4th in the 800. Baez placed 2nd in the 10k (then won the 10k after COVID). So the training was WORKING.
If this girl went to LRC's beloved Brosnan or Mike Smith and said "hey coach, I know my teammates are breaking records and winning championships, but I want to do different training than them" BOTH BROSNAN AND SMITH WOULD NOT CHANGE THE TRAINING. That's just facts.
It sounds to me like they didn't want the girl with an eating disorder to run 100 mile weeks and get more sick and severely injured. So they put her on a strength (muscle) and speed regimen. Sounds 100% appropriate.
I haven't watch the video. I will only comment on your last two sentences.
Since the most important factor in coaching, on any level, is that everyone is different. IF the two coaches you mentioned are inflexible (as you say they are), then they aren't very good at coaching.
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She paid a huge opportunity cost. Glad she was able to finish the academic portion. Good educational video for kids looking to run in college.
Exactly. I’m think that has been one of the biggest recent shifts in coaching philosophy lately that has led to improvements in performance. Everyone is different. Responses to super shoes, responses to styles of training, etc. My way or the highway approaches are a dying breed, and for good reason.
I was surprised with how good she was coming to Oregon (as a Junior class?) 32:33 ranked 4th UK senior level which is still her PB (she has since marginally improved her other track PBs, and is 73/2:34 on the roads). Sounds like they recruited a top 10K runner for a middle-distance oriented program. Mismatch for sure.
Its not facts- I know Smith specifically changes training for specific athletes based off mid D vs long distance 10k types. Trust me he would listen
This is as far as I gotten reading so apologies if I'm behind in the discussion
they weren't an MD team though. They had one of the best 10k runners on the team in Baez. Hull won the 3k, DMR, and 1500 at NCAAs that year, as well as placing 3rd individually in cross country. The Oregon women got 3rd in the nation that XC season!
It sounds like she was overtrained and burned out as a junior athlete - a story we've seen thousands of times before - Mary Cain, Efraimson, Sarah Baxter, Claudia Lane, Caitlyn Collier and more. Her junior coach is more to blame than her college coaches, to be honest.
Im not clicking that link. Who are we talking about? Why doesnt OP say who they are. Either name names or STFU!
Dude calm down- Philly Bowden, says it right on the image
I’ve now watched the video. It’s worth watching. There are a lot of bad things she references, but here’s the worst part:
(1) runner discloses prior history of eating disorder before joining team
(2) coach acknowledges
(3) runner struggles
(4) runner makes a comment that after a bad workout that her legs feel heavy
(5) coach responds by asking “are you heavy?” and then tells her to work with the nutritionist
(6) runner relapses “badly” into eating disorder
I’m honestly shocked by this. She doesn’t explicitly say it was Helen but she basically says as much without saying it. I’ve given her a pass on these issues thinking it was just Johnson but I’m suspecting I was mistaken in that regard.
Yeah, never heard of this lady and I know of the UK women who are decent at the top level like Wright, McColgan, Purdue, Muir, Weightman, etc. I'm not sitting through 30+ minutes of them talking about themselves to the camera, either. A legit interview with a journo? Sure, possibly. Not this, though.
Looking at her personal website and socials, she's a self-promoting influencer. They all have stories to sell, the more scandal and victimization the better for their view numbers. It's too bad she wound up in a situation that was triggering for her, certainly. Maybe it's not her fault, but it is her responsibility and she was certainly an adult at age 23 when she arrived in Eugene. I have no bias regarding Robert Johnson or Helen Lehman-Winters, so I don't see any heroes in this.
Totally agree. She was a very good runner and due to many factors at the school things didn't work out. I hope she is doing well now.
2023 College Track & Field Open Coaching Positions Discussion