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Ah! Now we are really getting into, what I’d consider, a core topic here—and I love it! Thanks, bug, for pointing it out and laying out the quotes from both Lydiard and Daniels. My apology to you, I must have missed that last line “nothing anaerobic”. Lydiard was never scientific—he talked about aerobic and anaerobic and threshold and all that; but I doubt if he quite understood true terminology of all those words. Even when he said “anaerobic”, I’m skeptical how much he understood if his athletes were truly getting into “anaerobic” and, absolutely right, Dr. Daniels would have much better understanding of that. I had a privilege of speaking with Dr. Dick Telford of Australia—a sort of like Dr. Daniels of Lands Down Under—who advised Rob de Castella, Lisa Martin, Lorraine Moller, Steve Moneghetti among others. We discussed the Lydiard program and, when the topic turned to “anaerobic training phase”, he said, in his opinion, Lydiard runners did ZERO anaerobic training. He also told me that it is almost impossible to understand what’s going on in the human body when it’s running at full speed and all we can do is to give “educated guess”. But then again, it was more than 10 years ago and we may have the means to measure those things now; I wouldn’t know. When Lydiard said “during conditioning, there should be no anaerobic training,” I doubt his runners never got into anaerobic state, running up that gigantic hill at 6-minute-mile pace! But then again, they might too. To Lydiard, aerobic vs. anaerobic pretty much mean “not too fast vs. very fast”. It didn’t hurt him much in his coaching athletes though.

Hotlanta and Ohiomiler:

In Lydiard’s original book, Run to the Top, he spelled out the weekly mileage as follows: 100 miles a week for 10 weeks for conditioning; 360 miles in 6 weeks for hill training; 800 miles in 12 weeks for track training; 800 miles in 16 weeks for harrier training; 560 miles in 8 weeks for road racing. I don’t know how much you can trust this information—first off, his runners covering about 12 miles a day (2 miles warm-up, 4 times around 2-mile hill circuit, 2 miles cool-down), 6 days a week, plus 22 miles on Sunday; that’s 94 miles a week! Even if you don’t count warm-up and cool-down, it’s 70 miles a week. I don’t know if he counted all the other “jogging” or just the running on the written schedule for track training (approximately 67 a week). But again, I guess the exact mileage is irrelevant. The important thing is the patter: mileage goes down as you move along, and intensity goes up.

I beat you to it, Kim!

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