Before going to New Dehli together with Ahmed Hassan Abdullah (Albert Chepkurui) and John Korir(that are in Torino for training, we leave next Wednesday, 29), where we meet also Robert Kipchumba and Rita Jeptoo training in Kenya, and the Ugandian team training in Kapcherwa, I read again some of these very interesting posts, that are going to overtake all the other discussions before. I am happy for this, because it means that, when there is a TECHNICAL and METHODOLOGICAL argument, many are really interested in understanding and in explaining their experiences.
I promised that, after WHMCh, I can post the full season of Shaheen (but also of some other athlete, for example Ahmed Hassan, if he wins a medal in his first HM, after winning Bruxelles with 26:59). Of sure, I need some time for writing everything, but I can explain his training and also the reasons of it.
At the beginning of November (5-6-7) I am, together Peter Thompson from GBR, the rapporteur of some methodological type of training for middle and long distances, during the yearly conference of European Association of the Coaches.
I have to prepare expecially a work regarding the differences between the training of a European runner, and an African (under the cultural, social, physiological, psychological and methodological point of view). I can send to someone that can post the work all what I prepare, that is also what European Coaches can have.
Awaiting that moment, I want to explain something about my normal phylosophy of training.
a) I think that the level of aerobic training must be connected with the specific training. The AEROBIC SUPPORT cannot be too much far from the specific speed that athletes have to use normally in their competition. So, we cannot speak about AEROBIC ENDURANCE only in one way.
In my opinion, EVERY SPEED SLOWER OF MORE THAN 80% OF THE SPEED OF THE RACE HAS NO MEAN OF TRAINING, BUT OF REGENERATION BETWEEN THE REAL WORKOUTS.
An example : if I run a Marathon in 2:10 (3:05 per km pace), 18.5 is 100% of the speed every 100m, so 80% of the speed is 3:05 + 37.0 = 3:42. From this speed TRAINING FOR BUILDING RESISTANCE BEGINS, not slower.
But, if I run 10000m in 28:20 (2:50 per km), my 80% is 2:50 + 34.0 = 3:24. If I run slower than this speed, I go for a regenerative work, not for a real training.
This is true in the field of the event DIRECTLY INFLUENCED BY THE THRESHOLD. But, when we speak about LACTIC EVENTS (like already 3000m SC, or 1500, or of course 800m) the aerobic level that we need must be more or less high, in order to support the LACTIC ENDURANCE and/or the LACTIC CAPACITY, that have a specific role in the specific event.
What is for me LACTIC ENDURANCE ? Is the quality connected with the ANAEROBIC THRESHOLD and with the LACTIC CAPACITY at the same time.
What is for me the LACTIC CAPACITY ? Is the quality connected with the LACTIC ENDURANCE and the LACTIC POWER at the same time.
May be that my terminology is different from your, so I try to explain me with an example.
I am able running, at 4 mmol, at a speed of 3:10 per km, and when I try to run 600m at my max speed, I can run 1:20.
With this attitude, my type of training can be :
a) What I want slower than 3:40 (till 2:30) : GENERAL RESISTANCE (not specific, also for Marathon)
b) From 1 hr to 1:30 at 3:30 : AEROBIC RESISTANCE (in part specific for Marathon, not specific but general for the other events)
c) From 40:00 to 1:10 at 3:10/3:15 : AEROBIC POWER "1st level" (speed for Marathon, specific for HM, special for 10000m, aerobic support for steeple and 5000m, general for 1500 and 800)
d) Intervals at 105/110 % of the AnT (2:52 > 3:00 per km) using distances between 1000 and 3000m : AEROBIC POWER "2nd level" (speed for Marathon and HM, specific for 10000m, special for 5000 and steeple, aerobic support for 1500 and 800m)
e) 10 / 15 times 600m in 1:36 / 1:38 with short recovery (1:30, for example) : LACTIC ENDURANCE (connected with AEROBIC POWER "2nd level" and LACTIC SPEED ENDURANCE)
f) 6 / 8 times 600m in 1:27 / 1:30 with medium recovery (2:30, for example) : LACTIC SPEED ENDURANCE (connection with LACTIC ENDURANCE and LACTIC CAPACITY)
g) 3 / 4 times 600m in 1:23 rec. 6 / 8 min : LACTIC CAPACITY (connected with LACTIC SPEED ENDURANCE and LACTIC POWER)
h) 1 time 600m in 1:20 (max speed) : LACTIC POWER.
The different speed are connected between, but for every speed you can find the direct support only from the speed immediately slower (for endurance), and from the speed immediately faster (for speed).
So, every speed is a different mean of training. The difference between the old and the modern system, is that in the old we considered only 3 big groups of speed : AEROBIC very slow, developing volume at low intensity, LONG RUN at AnT level, developing endurance at medium intensity, and SPEED ENDURANCE, running short intervals very fast.
Now, we can see that the connection among so far speeds are very little, and is difficult to improve : there is no connection between running 400m in 55.0 and the marathon, but there is also no connection between running 2 hours at 4:00 or 3:45 per km, and 1500m in 3:35.
So, we use now more speeds in training, very close, giving them a different mean. RUNNING AT 3:20 is VERY DIFFERENT from running at 3:10, BUT FOR THE MOST PART OF THE ATHLETES IS HE SAME (Long Fast run at personal sensation).
Running on the track 5 times 3000m in 8:20 for a runner able to do 26:30 in 10000m, is something UNDER RHYTM, but is a SPECIFIC SUPPORT different from long run. When you are able running it, you can run 10 x 1000 no more in 2:42, but in 2:36, for example. SO, THE DIRECT INFLUENCE OF THE SPECIFIC SUPPORT ON THE SPECIFIC TRAINING IS VERY BIG.
So, personally, I don't have care about mmol and the classic ideas of Thresholds, but I look at THE SPECIFIC SUPPORT for every distance.
But at the end of October I can explain better my phylosophy, when I have some more time.