George Atlas wrote:
Doing weekly sessions of 15-20 mile runs at 4:50 pace, and 3-4 times 5000 sessions at 4:30-40 pace with short recovery might be what it takes to run 2:03 but it takes many years of development for the very best to handle that. For some reason a lot of Kenyans can handle that after 3- 4 years of serious training.
These guys are near world records at 18-21 years old!
They have a genetic edge. And I agree they are more motivated because of the money incentive but you can't tell me other runners aren't as single minded and devoted as they are coming from better conditions.
No, it's not a genetic edge. They weren't coddled from an early age and chauffeured to school while they played on their iphones. They ran to school in the morning, home for lunch, back to school, and then back at the end of the day. Before they went to school, they carried buckets of water on their heads. After school they herded animals or played soccer. They underwent difficult initiations into manhood. Their physical and mental preparation is so beyond anything the average Westerner can even relate to. For the average teenage western boy, mental duress is figuring whether to go with Samsung or Apple for their latest smartphone or trying to figure out whose house to party at in order to minimize the risk of getting busted while they snort their friends Ritalin. Ritz and Rupp think they're working hard, and they are, for Westerners. Too bad they couldn't have had a stint overseas during their adolescence - actually working hard from an early age and living a less pampered lifestyle would have done wonders for their athletic development.