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Antonio Cabral
RE: Mr. Renato Canova: Could You Please Answer a Question About Effective Ways to Improve the Lactate Threshold?
eurorun, dc449 and nippon marathon

I was waiting for a bunch of Marius fans and supporters to argue against my own opinion. I was right since it don´t take too long to come to my e-mail lots of messages in Marius defence.

First think that I want to say is that i´ve nothing against Marius – but the contrary – I wish him the best in all aspects. I see the talent and the capacity that he may aim to be European champ or at least an european medal in 2 years now. And a good classification in next year World Champs. Why not ? He may assume that.

As far as I understand coaching or training we learn more from the defeats than in the victories. Now, it´s up to the coach (or self coach runner) to analyse what went wrong and why went wrong, and eventually made change our direction in the training, the periodisation, the race schedule and the mental attitude.

In my training philosophy a winner needs to be humble enough to consider realistic the failures and the success. He also need to be a permanent “unsatisfied”. That´s in frustration that we build a winner temperament not in happiness. We need to be ambitious, to have determination. A winner mentality. But we don´t want to let the runner live in the fantasy.


But regarding Marius performance in the last Olympics for me the question is clear and simple what was done was done. Is Marius happy with their performances ? Marius he considers that he did his targets in the Olympics? Is he satisfied ? If so, forget what i said – my opinion that´s just an individual opinion.

For me it would be a great defeat as a coach if a runner of mine went to the Olympics with 13:06 and comes back with a 13:36 a 12th place in the heats, and that would be a great defeat for me also indeed, and I would try to learn the lesson as deeply and quickly as possible.

I remember the example of my runner Alberto Chaiça. When he went to 2003 WChamps he was the 98th in the marathon rankings among all participants – he finish 4th place in the marathon. This Athens olympics he was the 29th PB among all participants. He did the 8th in the final. He did win over Tergat and Gahrib – how many can claim any time to win over Tergat ? But do you think that i´m happy at all ? I don´t!

A coach – as far as I understand – may have “divine madness” and while knowing in the runner talent and potential he may build realistic targets for his runner.

One more example about Alberto Chaiça. This weekend his team, Portuguese Conforlimpa did win European Road Team title. Individually he did second place winning over lots of good runners – that includes the italien Mauricio Leone. But he lose for Spain Ivan Galan by 2 seconds in an half marathon Do you think that i´m happy or head coach are we happy ? Not at all. Alberto Chaiça that´s a guy that have no great talent relate to Marius i guess. But his strenght that´s starts in in critics and ends in self motivation.

So as you see i don´t analyse different those i coach than Marius.

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