I must say that this is one of the better threads that I have read here, lots of info with little bashing of others. AMAZING. Personally, I am more of a Lydiard fan, but I also believe that they are numerous ways to skin a cat. As long as what you are doing is based on a solid system and YOU believe in it and follow it consistently, you WILL improve. Reaching your mazimum potential is something else, as I think it basiacally is impossible for those of us with other responsibilities.
Thanks for the compliment about the thread. What do you think about this... a friend of mine spoke to Dr. Vigil about a month ago and asked him what he thought about Dr. Daniels and Vigil said that he understand what Daniels is trying to do, BUT because daniels does not stress high mileage, you can never reach your full potential through his program, what do you think?
This just keeps getting better.
Lydiard's famous 100 miles/week was 100 miles of steady state (tempo), not easy miles. His top athletes also did approx 60 miles/week of what he called junk mileage. He did not count these 60 miles in the total for the week. He only counted tempo type efforts and the long run. So his folks were getting in upwards of 150 miles/week.
This is far different from the standard 100 miles a week of easy mileage that the press later transformed Lydiard's system to mean. If you are able to work up to 100 miles a week of tempo type of work you would be a elite athlete. Exactly what he was trying to accomplish.
One more note. Almost all of his athlete's mileage was done on dirt roads.
Love this stuff !!!.
I agree that there are numerous ways to skin a cat and Arthur believed in that too. Unfortunately when you get hold of his books, too many of us treat them like a Bible and think that "the printed word" is sacrosanct.
Arthur always said (and I have qouted here before) that the schedules were "guidelines" only. Not the be all and end all.
To backstretch, your interpration of the 2 miles of 50/50s is correct, except that Arthur would not have had a High School kid run 2 miles of those. Maybe 4 or 5 laps at most as has been stated here already.
The best "performance" of those 50/50's I know of is John Walker. He covered the 2 miles in 8:40.
In the early/mid 80's I remember running one of those workouts with Bill Baillie. He was over 50 then and we ran just 4 laps.
Once again, Arthur's work is to be adjusted according to the athlete.
I have NEVER run 100 miles a week (Arthur knew that). However, I always ran a MINIMUM of one long run a week. I have always believed that the key to Arthur's work is still the "Long runs".
Cheers everyone : Keep this thread going. We need some input from Nobby, HRE and Glen. They are awesome on this subject.
Actually, Most of the original crew of Arthur's ran more on the Roads than anywhere. West Auckland in winter means MUD.
Sure surfaces varied but the majority of workouts were done on the road.
Waiatarua is Road and concrete footpaths, (Sidewalks to you Americans !) always has been.
Excuse my spelling on the last post. I am not a Touch typist and it is early morning here in NZ>
From what I've read the 100 miles wasn't all "tempo", at least not the modern version of the "tempo". It's not dragging ass, but it's not hammering everyday. A quote in Ron Daws book has him stating his athletes ran from 3.25-3.75, which would be 3:15-45 per kilo, or 5:13-6:00 or so per mile. Not jogging, but seemingly everday occurances nowadays (look at Hansons log, look at Henry Dennis's log).
So the question is how does one go about getting down to running that fast everyday? How much of your run is that fast? From my own personal experience I think instead of mildly hammering everyday at 6 minute pace you should break up your run into halves. First half run steady, but still easy, not slugging it, then pick it up and finish the last half at "marathon effort" or faster. A personal example would be a 18 mile run running the first 9 starting at 7s coming down to 6:30, then the last 9 starting at 6s and coming down to 5:30s. Another example is a 90 minute run with the first half at 6:30s and the second half at 5:45-30. At first you might only be able to do this every other day, then you'll eventually get to where you can go back to back days. So say you run Mon/Tue, Thu/Fri like this and then Saturday steady long run, Wednesday steady long run, Sunday steady easy day. People sometimes forget that Lydiard called for 2 days a week at 2 hours or more. Steady long runs was the key to Lydiard's base conditioning.
Kim Stevenson wrote:
To backstretch, your interpration of the 2 miles of 50/50s is correct, except that Arthur would not have had a High School kid run 2 miles of those. Maybe 4 or 5 laps at most as has been stated here already.
Just want to get this cleared up. The 50/50 sprint/floats. The sprint component is obviously all-out, right, but still focusing on form, I imagine. Good information from all of the others on this thread, but what is YOUR interpretation of how to run the 'float' parts. Is it a steady striding-out, for example. Not a jog, but still keeping an honest, steady pace? Just curious because I want my athletes and I to do them right.
Ok, I haven't ever posted much on here and little in the last year, but here goes...
I just attended the first session at the Center for High Altitude Training Center "Distance Coaches Classic" clinic, featuring Daniels and Vigil. Daniels spoke today.
I have never read anything of Daniels (have heard Vigil speak 3x and own his book, "Run to the Top") but all through high school thought of myself as a Lydiard disciple. Average milage back then was 80-90 per/wk and recorded miles in excess of 100 (during training camps). I did BTW achieve some success in h.s. as a result.
Now I am a h.s. coach and still believe in Lydiard. Thought little of Daniels out of ignorance and the fact that "what could a D-III guy know?" Now I realize that was a very stupid way to think!
I don't have much time to go into detail on commenting on the differences (or similarites of the two), but I really liked what Jack had to say. Quickly, I came away with the emphasis that base is key (similar), long "easy" runs are key (similar), listen to your body (ibid), have the athlete listen to his/her body and go from there (etc.), so forth and so on. Yea, Jack seems a little too much like Dr. Science, but he admits that coaching too is an art (I dare you to argue!).
I see lots and lots of similarities, not just with Lydiard, but with Lanana, Bowerman and Wetmore (ok, maybe there are some differences). Many of these guys are on the same page. Daniels' Running Formula, is not necessarily a "formula" but a tried a true method that works -- depending on the athlete. I say that, because I hate the idea that as coaches, maybe we have that magic formula to turn runners into kenyans.
It really has been enlightening reading all the replies. Maybe there are a few serious track nuts left.
Take care, all.
O, definitely Leigh Daniels! Have you seen her lately!! Dang, she's hot.
While this is slightly off topic, I am looking for a little feedback and ideas to implement this upcoming season into my philosophy for high school XC as well as my own training.
Today I had my kids do 2x2mile tempos on the track. Normally during XC, we would do tempo at a park or something, but I want to really emphasixe tempo this fall so I wanted them to "feel" their pace first and then be able to carry that feeling over to a hilly loop. The guys started at around 90 secs maintained or got slightly faster. If you fell off, you would wait for your group to come around and then hop back in, thus hopefully preventing straining and anaerobic running. The girls did the same thing but at about 7:00 pace. I had told them to start at 7:10 pace, but i was pleasantly surprised when my top group easily handled 4 sub 7 miles. Anyway, what are some thoughts and ideas?
Having the person drop off and jog until the group gets them might not be the best idea. I understand what you are trying to do, but you might just want to tell them that everyones threshold/tempo pace is not the same and if they drop off, thats ok, but keeping running at a tempo pace that works for them. You are watching and know their ability as a coach, so you might be able to know better.
Another Daniels v. Lydiard question...who would you want to coach you at the end of the year??? I would have to go without a doubt with Lydiard. Daniels has his guys doing alot of threshold stuff still at the end of the year, Lydiard guys are running harder. I would rather be jogging and running race pace or faster work than threshold stuff at the end of the year, but thats just me, WHAT DO YOU ALL THINK?
I have thought the same thing. I like a lot of easy running and then low volume pace work towards the peaking period of the season. I really like Daniels philosophy but I just don't like the thresholds at the end of the season either. Thresholds are "race specific" for 8k or 10k XC, but I just don't think they leave you with the extra "pop" in your legs after a long season. It's probably individual preference. I was a MD guy and I would've liked some faster, track-like work at the end of the year along with easy miles. I think the real LD guys thrive of thresholds at the end of the season though. As Daniels said, coaching is an art.
Arthur's actual words in 1962 were "The runner marks out the 440 track in four 50 and four 60 yard alternating sections. He sprints flat out over the 50 then floats the 60 to the next 50 yd sprint start. He does not stop between the sprits. He merely stops driving and allows his momentun to carry him from one sprint section to the next."
My understanding of the "Float" section is you must "run" not jog.
For beginners I would never run further than 4 or 5 laps of this work. It is very tiring and loss of "Form" as fatigue sets in and the tendency to jog the "float" section then makes the exercise pointless.
If you check Arthur' early 880yd schedules you will see that he has a session in the first week of the first month.
It reads :
Half mile of 50yd dashes. Then stride out for 300 yards 6 times then run 220 at 7/8 effort.
Hope this is helpful
The sprint/float workout is very tough. I knew I was in good shape when I could do three miles at under 75 sec per quarter (which is harder than it sounds). Your heart rate would skyrocket with this workout (as high as I could possibly get it to go, no other workout would max it like this one).
The idea was to be always relaxed. You would sprint 50m and then simply "take your foot of the gas" - not slow down much really, just coast/float for 50m. Then go again, float, etc.
I always considered it a peaking workout (as did Viren, from what I've read).
This is an interesting topic. I think Lydiard's methods are often misinterpreted by the masses. I suggest that all of you take a look at the link below to steve magness' website. He's got a section on it entitled Learning from the Past and has a section on Lydiard. He's summarised an article by Lydiard that he wrote in the 1960's so it's data that comes from the time when Lydiard's athletes were having success. It mentions some of the things that we are talking about on here such as the 50/50 sprint floats. It's a good read. Of course it has magness interpretations in it too, which is interesting to read.
Go to the website, then click Learning from the past, then click Lydiard to see tha article.
I'm new to Lydiard. I adopted his training before my spring marathon this year and had a 12 minute PR in 2:35. I based my training off of what was layed out in "Running with Lydiard." This talk of 50/50s has got me wondering if I interpreted the workout of "100 windsprint every 200" What I did in this was 200 steady and then 100 sprint. Should I have been doing 100 on/100 off or was the 300 meter cycle correct. There was also a "45 windsprint every 100." Lydiard was not always clear in his writing so I'm a little curious if I did this correctly. Thanks for the help.
I don¡¦t know enough about the Daniels formula to comment on it; it seems he calls for more faster/harder runs (particularly repeats) and not as much emphasis on hills (though someone mentioned he actually does). I have tremendous admiration for Dr. Daniels and his contribution to the sport. He is, without doubt, a lot more current and ¡§up to date¡¨ than Lydiard. He has been labeled as ¡§the world¡¦s greatest coach¡¨ though I still don¡¦t quite understand what it is based on.
I know a bit about the Lydiard system on the other hand. I have been criticized for ¡§being the number one fan of the Lydiard program¡¨ and that I¡¦m being prejudiced toward this particular training pattern. However, the actual fact is that I am the number one fan of the Lydiard program simply BECAUSE I completely believe in the program; not the other way around. The more I learn about it and the more I know about the program (thanks to many practical experiences shared here by people like Kim Stevenson or HRE), the more I¡¦m convinced that the Lydiard program is the most complete training method¡Xa lot more than a piece of paper his schedules are written on; the view so happened also to be shared recently by coach Dick Brown and coach Yasushi Sakaguchi, who has 5 sub-2:10 marathon runners on his team.
The biggest problem, as far as I¡¦m concerned, is that Lydiard has provided actual day-to-day training schedules in his publications. Too many people follow the schedule for what it¡¦s worth without fully understanding the purpose behind it; as Lydiard ALWAYS stressed, ¡§whys¡¨ of each exercise. They rush to conclusions and complain that the system didn¡¦t work when they didn¡¦t ¡§do it right.¡¨
Some one said, and this might have been in some other thread, that Lydiard ¡§slackened¡¨ in his later years and didn¡¦t prescribe marathon conditioning schedule ¡§hard enough.¡¨ Actual fact is; he simply moved away from prescribing specific pace. Whether Snell and the gang ran their 10-miler in 55 minutes or 57 minutes is completely irreverent. In Atlanta last year, Lydiard corrected what I put together in the presentation that ¡§all the runs during the conditioning should be ¡¥easy¡¦.¡¨ I had an argument with him on that. It is not that Lydiard ¡§slackened¡¨ but simply ¡§moved a clock a bit¡¨ and explained how it should all start in the beginning (of ones training history). I¡¦m sure we¡¦ve all experienced that, for the first time you go out for a jog, you¡¦re pretty pathetically slow (seems like yesterday to me¡K), you wonder if you¡¦re doing yourself any good at all. You barely survived a 40-minute ¡§crawl¡¨ and staggered back in the house. But a few weeks later, you feel much better and now you don¡¦t feel bad about even timing yourself. Or you get on a trail and run out for 30 minutes and turn around and go back home. A couple of years later you get on the same trail and run for 30 minutes. You look around to check some familiar landmarks and realize that your initial ¡§turn-around point¡¨ was a half a mile back. It is because you have become that much fitter. You feel just as easy, in fact, because you are more smooth you actually feel even easier but you are running faster. Now ¡§effort¡¨ has a completely different meaning. And ¡§minute-per-mile¡¨ doesn¡¦t mean much at all. Sure, Arthur¡¦s Boys didn¡¦t just jog about. But they weren¡¦t a triple Olympic champion when they joined either. It took Snell 3.5 hours to complete his first Waiatarua which he was cruising in around 2:10 later on.
A problem with setting up specific speed is, more often than not, people set out faster time than his body can actually handle. If it¡¦s too fast, you are shortening your training time and therefore not getting the optimal training gain. Remember, it is always better to start too slowly than too fast. People look at the weekly schedule and effort chart but tend to skip vital messages like this one. Also, remember another line; ¡§it¡¦s not the distance that stops you, but speed¡¨? Particularly in the beginning you need to go far, not fast. Of course, many people just stayed there and that was a problem. Once your fitness level improves, you need to push your upper aerobic limit. That¡¦s when Lydiard included time trials in his conditioning phase. People again took it too rigidly. You just need to run a bit faster than jogging; but you don¡¦t need to check your vDot speed and go on a track with a stopwatch and run to the exact pace.
Arthur¡¦s original runners ran fast but I would not call them ¡§tempo¡¨ runs either. They ran hard, but they were still all ¡§within themselves.¡¨ I would not try to analyze and figure out their training speed based on their mile time or 5k time; I believe Snell ran about 10 seconds faster in the mile than Barry Magee, a marathon man, yet they train Waitak together. Was one running too fast or too slow than the other? I think they were both just fine.
Another problem with writing down a schedule is all those numbers. I can get on a track today and do 3-mile of 50/50 IF I consider my ¡§sprinting¡¨ to be 20-second 100m ¡§dash¡¨. People have done that before too; 100„e100m? Why 100 times? If performed 100 times, do you think it would be an all-out sprint? 50/50, or 100/100, of sprint/float is designed to sprint full out and ¡§merely stop accelerating¡¨ to ¡§float¡¨ until the next sprint. It¡¦s a tough workout. As someone mentioned, could be one of the toughest workouts. I used to do them 5 laps; 2k and it was pretty much my max. If done in a sub-par effort, the effect of this workout will be completely different. Again, you shouldn¡¦t, nor you want to, write down specific numbers beforehand. You should be sprinting flat-out and shouldn¡¦t take too much recovery either; and when you get ¡§stuffed¡¨, you are done. If you write down in your schedule, say, 3-mile of 50/50, your fear will take over and start doing those sprints slower than should be. That¡¦s not what it¡¦s supposed to be. It could be four and a half laps¡Xthen when you hit the wall, you stop. When you achieve desired physiological reaction from this workout, you¡¦re done. In this case, desired physiological reaction is; you can¡¦t move your legs much at all! Somebody asked what the prerequisite(s) for this workout. I¡¦d say, follow the rest of the Lydiard program before the last 5 weeks; 10 weeks of 100 miles a week; 4 weeks of hill springing, 4 weeks of 2~3 times anaerobic workouts. Now you¡¦re ready to attack this type of training. Now I¡¦m a bit exaggerating; but seriously, you don¡¦t want to start jogging 20 miles a week at 12-minute-mile pace and one day decide to do this workout¡Xthat ain¡¦t gonna work. There is a specific place for this type of workout in the Lydiard program and there is a reason for it. Just because all the schedules are written down and out there, you cannot, and shouldn¡¦t, shuffle them around and place all the elements in a different order (unless there¡¦s a damn good reason that makes sense). I¡¦ve tried that and didn¡¦t work.
So back to the original question; Daniels or Lydiard, which one I¡¦d want to coach me. At this point, neither (even if Lydiard was alive). What do you think is the most important element in coaching an athlete? There is a scene in one of my favorite movies, ¡§the Right Stuff¡¨, that Gordon Cooper, played by Dennis Quaide (spelling?) was asked who¡¦s the best pilot he¡¦s ever seen. He usually gives ¡§you¡¦re looking at him¡¨ as an answer but in this occasion he paused a bit and said quietly, ¡§some of them are just pictures on a wall¡K¡¨ There are a lot of coaches out there, many high school coaches or some local guys, who just love the sport. They drive kids around all over the place or hand out some of the old out-of-print priceless literatures so young kids can learn a thing or two from ¡§real stuff¡¨ (and end up losing them!). When I was a coach for a corporate team, I cared for my athletes. Their boyfriend/girlfriend problem was my problem; their work problem was my problem; when they sneeze, I brought herbal medicine to them. They were beyond my paycheck (as a professional coach); they were beyond a tool for a coach to be famous. 10 years later we still be in contact. There are many enthusiastic coaches out there who care for their athletes like that. They may not know some scientific terms or have a shoe contract; never been mentioned in a running magazine or won an award. But I want someone like that, who loves the sport and who cares for his/her athletes, to coach me. I know Lydiard at least once was like that (and much more than that too, I must add). I remember receiving a hand-written letter from him from this hotel in Chicago in the 80s. Here¡¦s the famous man on his lecture tour around the world; and he had time to spare to write me a note from a hotel room. I was deeply touched by that. But in his later years, sadly and quite understandably, his position had become more or less a standard schedule provider; which actually created false idea of a kind of a person he really was. I¡¦m not at all saying that Dr. Daniels is not like that but I simply don¡¦t know the man. I can name three or four individuals in Minnesota alone that I respect a lot more as a coach affirmatively simply because I know them.
Kim: I talked to Dick Quax about a week ago. He said hi.
Sorry my writing got a bit funky... I don't know what happened.
This is not really a reply to Nobby as such, but something I wrote to Tinman last year when he was asking about some of the long runs done by Arthur's guys and "ordinary mortals" like myself.
It opened with what Peter Snell did in his build up to Tokyo in 1964:
Peter ran 1012 miles in the 10 week "Build up" for Tokyo.
Which brings me to what I wanted to say. Even though Arthur prescribed a "High Aerobic" pace, he was also the first person to say : "Just get out and run, Build up the time you spend on your feet, do not worry how far you have
been. As time goes on you find you will run those courses faster and faster but within your limits ".
Peter said for his Tokyo build up he felt he never ran faster than 6 minute miles. If he did so one day he ran 7 minute miles the next. I have confirmed that with Bill Baillie with whom I ran many miles and I remember running many 20 milers where we would have averaged 7 minute miles.
My best "faster" long run with Bill (and a crew of far better runners than myself) was from his holiday home North of Auckland where we set out to run 22 miles one hot summers morning (Jan 1973 !!!).
After one hour some of the guys got a little "toey" ( Kiwi-ism for wanting to run faster). They (and Bill) literally took off. I just kept running along the best I could comfortably. Over the next 1/2 to 3/4 of an hour I
would come across exhausted runners on the side of the road.
As I got to the 21 mile mark Bill's wife Val pulled up in a car (Bill in passenger seat) and said "Do you want a ride". I said "No, not until I do 22 miles" At which point I joined them in the car. I did not have watch on that
day but Bill said if had kept that pace up I would have run a 2:40 marathon.
It also turned out that only 3 of us ran the full 22 miles. Bill only went 20 !
My point I guess, is that it took me basically 4 years of relatively consistent wrunning to get to that sort of level of Aerobic fitness to do that sort of run. As I said most of our long runs were done at around the 7 minute mile mark.
The fast times for the famous 22 mile Waiatarua Run that were talked about in Arthurs Book's came about because of some "skullduggery" by Bill and some of the other athletes.
Most of the time that course was run in 2hrs 25 - 30. Barry Magee and Jeff Julian had times around 2 hrs 15 on a consistent basis.
One day Bill said some of them ran around 2:20, but told Jeff Julian they did 2:15. So he went out and did 2:12.
They repeated the process the next week and told him they did 2:12. He went out and did 2:08.
That openned a can of worms as athletes started to go faster and faster around that course.
As Peter Snell said he cut his time from 2:25 to 2:15 with the odd one in 2:12. Bill confirmed that most of the runs were around 2:20 - 25.
That course, even though it had a really tough hill in it was predominately downhill. After the first hour of which 20 minutes was up hill, the rest was not necessarily easy but was a lot more pleasant running. The worst hill was near the finish at Arthurs house !!!.
Hope this adds some spice to the subject.