i love lydiards style…..however i am not sure i understand how to take his style with a very short high school season, and then transition that to our summer cross country program and into that season. does anyone have an idea how i would break this up? how can someone break the lydiard system into 400–800-1600–3200. thanks for the help!!
Okay, I’m about 2 years behind… I just came across this site and just couldn’t resist chipping in a bit.
We (Lydiard Foundation) are putting 100+ pages of PPT for Lydiard Certificate Program and the Part II deals a lot with application to different situations such as high school. Basically, we look at principles of Lydiard method and pretty much ignore the numbers. Numbers like 100 miles a week, 10 weeks of marathon conditioning or 4 weeks of hill training, total of 6 months to prepare… That’s the ideal situation. Not too many people can afford to have that. So, for high school, you may only have 3 months… Would you cut the whole progam in half? Well, we wouldn’t necessarily recommend that particularly because young kids would need more aerobic base building phase and, if anything, less race specific training like anaerobic interval type workouts.
Depending on the background of the athlete and the distance he/she is training for and environment and situation, you may use first 6 weeks for conditioning to do lots of long easy running; perhaps 2 weeks of concentration of hill training; then on the final month, hopefully this would coincide with racing season, use eary races to sharpen (particularly if you race twice a week) with more emphasis on sprinting workout, not volume of repetitions. You may also want to over-lap phases by, say, start doing some hill exercses or run hilly courses in the final 2~3 weeks of conditioning and start doing some repetitions half way into the hill phase… Things like that.
It’s just a matter of finding out what needs to be developed, what’s already been developed, how best to develop those elements. Ideally, by the time they come to the first practice, they had been doing some running that they are fit enough. There’s no way some kids who continued to run throughout the summer/winter break and those who never took a step should be put in a same program or workouts on the first day of the practice. It’s the coach’s ability to figure out what development the kid needs to work on and put him/her in a balanced schedule accordingly. If you give them all interval type workouts, they will improve…for a while. It’s a crap-shooting approach and, unfortunately, works for a while. But the kid will pay for it later.