Saturday, July 14, 2007

Words from the Coach...All in One Place

Don't you sometimes wish you could skip all the drivel about my daily runs and the photos of my children and just read the good stuff posted by Mystery Coach? Well now you can with this long overdue (and hopefully frequently updated) index of his posts on this blog.

The Feedback Loop, posted 6/4/07: The coach uses some data from Mark's post about a session of track repeats following the guidelines found in this post on H.A.D.D. training.

Mike's Schedule Explained (The Conditioning Phase), posted 5/24/07: This one is a must-read if you're interested in how the coach is structuring my 10 week conditioning build for the Twin Cities marathon in October in the mold of Arthur Lydiard's training methodology.

Bio-Med in the Year 1979, posted 5/18/07: "Training properly is more than picking a number (whether it is miles, a certain pace, a percent heart rate,etc) it is studying your reaction to that number . So for heart rate monitors noting when some heart rate is not expected is is a good use but as a device to set goals for your training they are of limited value."

The coach describes the purpose of one of my heart rate evaluation runs and cautions against some of the pitfalls that go along with only looking at the numbers instead of the greater whole.

The Cheap Shot, posted 4/7/07: Here the coach takes David Costill's quote that "Lydiard ruined more athletes than he helped" from Jason Carp's article, Miles to go Before I Sleep to task. The Cool-Running gang gets into a good discussion on the same article here. Nobby Hashizume and others who knew Arthur chime in with some good comments.

Activating and Conditioning, posted 2/3/07: A detailed explanation of the coach's "Fiber Theory" regarding the optimal integration of duration and intensity for balanced training. I go back to this one often.

Groundhog Day, posted 2/2/07: "Back in 1993 Bill Murray stared in a movie titled "Groundhog Day" where patterns happen over and over again until he realizes he cannot escape Groundhog Day. Many runners live "Groundhog Day" and repeat the same training over and over again because they do not evaluate their training and create a method of progression."

A good quote by Renato Canova can be found in this post, as well as a yearly schedule for Arthur's boys that shows they weren't just running slow and long all year 'round, as some suggest.

Axiom Number One, posted 1/24/07: The coach says it best-"Proper training is not about numbers, it is about analyzing how the workout felt then responding to what the workout is telling you. Every workout (even the easy or morning runs) is an evaluation of where you are and where you want to go. Arthur understood this very well and in almost every speech he gave, talked about reading your body and not the numbers in a schedule."

I love this post, and not just because he's talking about Eric for part of it.

Arthur's Speed Work, posted 1/12/07: "Arthur probably caused the most turmoil in the minds of runners when he talked about speed work (the anaerobic capacity type not the leg speed type). How many? "Until you're tired" How far? "From here to that tree" How fast? "What ever feels hard" Not exactly the clean mathematical precision of a physiologist's 5 X 1000 Meters at VO2 max velocity with 500 meter jogs. Yet, while working with runners over the last thirty years Arthur's method produced superior results."

What's Next for Mike, posted 1/6/07: "A good training schedule should be based on feedback and discipline. One of the strengths of Arthur's system was evaluation of exercise and the discipline to complete the steps before moving on. Jumping ahead to another level before completing the previous one only undermines your condition. It is important to understand where you are and what you should be doing next. When you read the next section on what Mike's plans are take them in the context of what he has done and his next set of goals."

Planning a Stamina Build-Up with the Lydiard Method, posted 12/27/06: The title of this one pretty much says it all. If you've been running for awhile and you're thinking about trying Arthur Lydiard's training, this is a good starting post along with the next post down.

A Model for the Lydiard Method, posted 12/25/06: "The model that is going to be presented here is just that; a model that will help you with your training and understanding of Arthur Lydiard's training methods. It is not a new theory, you'll see by some of the quotes that many of the great coaches think in this model's framework even though their methods differ from Arthur's. Arthur has often been accused of talking in ambiguous and confusing statements. This model will help explain those ambiguities and help you, as Arthur said, "balance" your training."

LIsten Up-Words From the Coach, posted 11/10/06: Three fourths of the year has speed training or racing. If you look at the cycle going on year after year that speed is always before and after the relatively short conditioning phase. Everyone is always looking for what piece is the secret. "The real secret was Arthur's ability to evaluate and balance the training with the correct amounts at the right time. He never was very far away from speed development and his runners were training to be racers not trainers."

This post addresses Greg McMillan's article about the "new" (isn't everything old new again eventually?) marathon training regimen, which inserts some speed work earlier than usual in the traditional training pyramid. As Lydiard's yearly schedule shows, there might be something new under the sun but this ain't it.


Mark said...

This is a very helpful post that deserves a high number of page loads.

You always do your homework Mike. That's what I like. Thanks.

Stephen Lacey said...

Yes, I'd also like to give a vote of appreciation for this valuable post.

I'd also like to ask, Mike, for a clarification of the back-to-back workouts. Is this what is meant by the harder run at about steady state pace on the day before the long run? Or have I got it slightly wrong. At the moment that's what I think it is but just want to make sure. I'll check back here for the answer.

Robert Song said...

Your blog has been brought to my attention and I must say this post in particuliar makes great reading.

I shall follow your progress with interest in the future.