I assume you mean my own training program -- the one I use for my personal training? Sorry, couldn't resist that response. My philosophy is that it is my job to provide an environment in which each runner's ability can come out to its fullest. Not my job to push it out or pull it out but to make the runner want to bring it out him/herself. If what I have my runner(s) do increases their intrinsic motivation to work consistently and dilligently, then I have succeeded. I try to analyze each case and call upon all the knowledge I have gained from study and being around great runners and coaches, to accomplish my mission. I'm sure you want more specifics, but I would have to ask for your background, available time for training, goals, etc.
Again, it comes down to knowing your athletes; physiologic and perofrmance characeteristics, personal traits, habits, preferences, mental and emotional makeup, etc. Applying principles in the training of each person is what good coaching is all about. People email to me all the time and want me to write training schedules for them, which is fine, but I first need to know about their life. I ask them this: "What have you done for training up to this point? What has worked and what hasn't? When have you prospered? When have you failed? How busy is your daily life? Do you have a manual labor job? Do you have some stressors that I need to know about? What races are you shooting for? Which ones are a not important? Which ones are very important? Do you eat well? Right? How much quality sleep do you get daily?" The list is long. Hence, training is varried and few people have the exact same training schedule when I am through with designing it. I believe all coaches do the same basic things: get to know you as a person. The templates for certain training phases have basic, constant elements but the variables influence greatly the specifics.
Sorry, I didn't mean to come out like I was seaking your coaching me. As I tried to list some points on the Lydiard program per skuj's request, I was wondering if you could list some of your main "points" but I guess coach Lananna sort of covered it in his presentation which was posted somewhere.
I was exchanging some comments with skuj at his message board (which he posted a couple of pages ago). I came up with this analogy while running through Wood Rill nature preserve near by today which I liked a lot so I'd like to share it with you:
"Let me ask you a question. I have one daughter. I think you're too young to have a kid but ask your parents if you may. There are some books about how to raise a child. My wife read it, but I never did (told her I did!). I think I'm a pretty darn good dad. There are many many parents out there. How many actually read those books? Or better yet, how many actually follow "a formula"? If they don't, why do you think that is? And, if they don't, how do you think they figure out how to raise their child(ren)?
I'd like to jump the gun and give the answer (or at least what I'd think as an answer). Not everybody follow the textbook manual for raising child because we know that all the kids are unique and individual. We don't necessarily need to "study" all the possible numbers (start walking by 10 months or talking by, depending on what you consider "talking", but, what, 8 months or start to reason by year 2 or whatever); but we pretty much know, as a parent, what's going on with our kids because we observe them and "study" not from text but from their reactions and behaviors. And that's what "coaching" is all about, isn't it? But for some reason, when it comes to the Lydiard program, they all go, gees, he said 4 weeks of hill training; he said to do three days of hills and other days sprint training and I got injured...this is no good! What's up with that?
In fact, it's a LOT like raising kids. There are general principles, yes, but you loosely follow it and adjust it to the individual's needs. And here's another interesting thought; as we saw in "Supersize Me", human body can tolerate so much. You give lots of sugary stuff, they'll not only live with it, but also "grow"! Is it really good for them? NO! Will there be some serious side-effect? I'd say yes. Would they grow and do pretty well even in sports and all? Yes, some actually do! To me, that's intervals and repetition heavy training program."
I think skuj liked it do, didn't ya?
Why? He's a good coach, but more importantly, he's an extremely nice guy. Lydiard seemed like a sexist, arrogant a******. Funny too observe from afar, but as a coach I think I'd have issues. Being close and friendly is very important, I think.
You cannot be serious. I met him once, three weeks before he died, and there was absolutely nothing phony or arrogant about him. You can't fake that when you're near death.
By the way, if the bit by Doherty were included as a foreward in any of Arthur's books it would make the package complete. Kind of like the way a narrator wold come out before a Shakespeare play and explain the plot so the audience could get a deeper experience.
Nobby: I like the comparison with raising our children. Wouldn't it be great if we all did the best thing for each of them? All we can do is what we think is best based on what we have seen and read and how they react to the great variety of experiences they are faced with every day. No way would I ever want to subject my wife or my girls to anything that would be harmful to them or prevent them from being the very best they can be. Some day I hope I can put it all down on paper, but right now I'm off for a run, then back to fix some breakfast for a couple people I really admire.
I can only think that you didn't know Arthur personally. I did and can't think that anything could be further from the truth than your observation, and if you've read most of this thread you know that the others on here who knew him would say the same thing.
The comment about arrogance has come up in other places. Arthur was very, very, sure of his ideas as aplied to training and racing, so he wasn't one to spend a lot of time considering other opinions, especially if he'd considered that opinion himself decades before and concluded there wasn't much to it. He had a direct style of speaking which wasn't always diplomatice, i.e. he got right to the point and told you he didn't think much of an idea if he really didn't. But he really was an extremely modest, humble person in all other ways. I could tell you several stories to that point if there was enough time.
I knew Arthur too well so I didn't want to make any comment but couldn't help...
I think Einstein is a complete idiot because his picture with his toungue sticking out is all over the place...I don't think this would be a correct observation, is it?
Thank you. And likewise, I like your last line...or at least if I'm correct about what you meant by "a couple of people I really admire." I did so myself this morning...at least for one of them!
Well, that was the Amsterdam Marathon then.
I was wondering about something: The DEFINITIVE Lydiard book. We all know Run To The Top and perhaps some others is badly written, and widely misunderstood. What Lydiard book is THE ONE?
I'd say "Run to the Top", "Runner's Bible" and Ron Daws' "Self-made Olympian".
I think sometimes self assurance and the knowledge you are commited to a cause as Arthur was could be taken the wrong way. His directness could take one aback and his demand of loyalty very strong.
As far as friendliness goes Arthur would be right up there with the best of them.
You needed to get to know the man.
Evaluation: Weakness in Lydiard System
Source Kenneth Doherty Track & Field movies on paper 2nd ed. 1967
Apologies for any typos in advance and don't mean to take this thread in another direction.
I must confess that though I tried- and - tried hard I can suggest no important weaknesses in the Lydiard system as used in NZ. Of course it will be improved in its details, and Lydiard will uncdoubtedly be the first to do so. But basically it seems to have everything.
But unfortunately it does present difficulties, if not weaknesses, in its application to the American school-college program. Coaches are under pressure to win team victories, and such an emphasis is often opposed to individual development School boys tend to judge their coach and system- as well as their personal success-on the basis of immmediate results this year, this month, and even this week, rather than on gradual development toward some greater but doubtful goal far over the horizonand some ten years away.
Lydiard's system uses about six months of training with only minor competition prior to the track season: we now use only a few weeks. His sytem requires 52 weeks of some kind of running each year: our American school program, only about 40. His system calls for at least six different kinds of terrain and methods of running: ours only two or three_ and in most cities, only one! The relative disinterest of the NZ public allows Lydiard to evaluate the win -loss record of his team as his judgement may decide: ours tends to encourage individual development of course, but only as long as the team wins.
Despite these and other differences, Lydiard's system can be of great help in our efforts to improve American running.Adopting its basic tenets will not require us to begin over again. We shall not need to abandon either fartlek or interval training. Actually, Lydiard uses his own versions of both, though he seldom uses the terms as such, Both havet their special values. But the clarity with which Lydiard has presented the major goals for training and the step by step methods by which those goals can be achieved provides us with a fresh and better way than we have ever had before.
"Running through rolling hills"?
has to be 'Running over rolling hills" as the other statement does not translate into Maori.
Translation at last.
E ana ana i ngapuke e piki, e heke ana
What? You mean you can't run "through" hills even though you can run "through" the wall? Oh, you Kiwis are not tought as I thought...
Nobby, we run over hills and through Brick walls !
Any way I can get a copy of this article? As I have mentioned in this thread earlier, Lorraine Moller and I have been working to establish the Lydiard Foundation. Would love to get our hands on any old archived articles, films, pictures, etc. Pros AND cons. Love to welcome criticism (negative opinions). How else can we improve the program?
This is easily the best thread on this message board and am very thankful for it. I am really curious on the subject of shoes (or the lack there of) which was addressed several pages ago, and would appreciate anyone taking their time to ellaborate on it a bit. What does anyone on here think about the Nike Free? I know it is recommended to be used very sparingly and for short runs only, but I personally used them several months ago for all my running and liked them. The did wear out faster than other shoes as expected. It seems that many people like the idea of having a shoe which allows your foot to do what it naturally does, and so I wonder does that make the Nike Free the best at that? Also how necessary is cushioning? jtupper, didn't you say that you ran mostly (or was it always) barefoot? What do the coaches on this thread tend to recommend for their athletes?
thanks for any replies
One of the reasons Arthur was NOT supported by big running company shoe dollars was that he consistently blasted American running shoe companies for "over building" shoes. Arthur designed shoes for a German company (EB Sports) in the mid 70's that were excellent. A couple of years later he did the same for Converse when they tried to make a go in the running shoe market. I loved those shoes.
I have a pair of Nike Frees. I've gone up to 12 miles in them. I think they are great. I know that I have a neutral gait and have, with the benefit of "hill springing" become a forefoot striker.
I actually had the opportunity to "test" a future prototype Free. I ran about 250 miles in them over 8 weeks. I will be buying more of the frees and use them in my usual rotation of 4 pairs of shoes, all different. I do not buy shoes that are over 11 ounces. They just feel like klunky boxes to me.