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Learning From The Past
Learning from the Past
Training Through the Ages
This page attempts to look at the different succesful training programs that have been used and described throughout running history.  This information can be very useful as a lot of it was based on trial and error so you can learn from other runners success and mistakes.  Other websites have information or logs of past athletes training, but what I'm attempting to do is to post different athletes/coaches training methods from throughout history, and then look at them through a modern perspective to see what is similar to today's training. Hopefully this will create some discussion on why these athletes did what they did, instead of just looking at past athletes logs and marvelling at their work and not learning anything from it.

  1. How I go about Analyzing training from the past
  2. 1950-1960's
    1. John Landy
      1. Looking_at_Landys training from_a modern perspective
      2. Key_points_to_take_away_from_Landy's training
    2. Ernst_Van_Aaken
      1. Van_Aakens_views_on_Speed_and_Mileage
      2. Differences_between_Van_Aaken_and Lydiard
      3. Interval_Training_Vs._Pure_Endurance Training
      4. Van_Aakens_key_rules_for_running
      5. Diet_and_sleep
      6. Looking_at_Van_Aakens_training_from_a modern perspective
        1. Things_to_take_away_from_Van_Aakens
    3. Percy Cerutty
      1. Training for the mile
      2. 5k-10k_training
      3. Ceruttys_Natural_Diet
      4. Running_Natural_and_avoiding_the_track
      5. Running_by_Feel
      6. Interesting_Quotes_from_Percy_Cerutty
      7. Looking_at_Ceruttys_training_from_a modern perspective
        1. Key_points_to_take_away_from_Cerutty's training
    4. Arthur Lydiard
      1. NOTES_from_me_about_other_types_of Lydiard training (sprints, hills,etc.)
      2. Looking_at_Lydiard_from_a_modern perspective
      3. Lydiards_principles
        1. Marathon_Training
        2. Hill_Training
    5. Bertl_Sumser
      1. Looking_at_Sumser_from_a_modern perspective
  3. 1980's
    1. Steve Scott's 1981-1982 training analyzed
    2. Harry_Wilson-_Coach_of_Steve_Ovett
      1. Looking_at_Wilsons_training_from_a modern perspective
    3. Steve_Cram-_Coach_Jimmy_Hedley
      1. Looking_at_Crams_Training_from_my perspective
        1. Endurance_Phase
  4. 1990s-2000s
    1. Kenyan_Training
      1. Dr._Rosas_Kenyan_XC_training
      2. Brother_Colm_O'Connels_Winter_training
    2. My_High_School_Training
      1. Analysis_of_Senior_year-HS_Track
      2. What_to_learn_from_this
    3. An_analysis_of_my_college track_training
      1. What_I_see_and_to_learn_from_this:
  5. A_Brief_History_of_Interval_Training
    1. Early_1800s-1920s_Finns
    2. 1930s-The_Swedish_Fartlek_and_Gerschler
    3. 1940-50s_The_Zatopek_Era

How I go about analyzing training from the past
    When looking at training programs of the past, the most important thing is the source.  I prefer to read primary sources that came from the time when that coach or athlete was most succesful.  The reason for this is often when we look back at training we tend to leave certain aspects that we don't consider important out, or we under or overestimate the intensities/durations of certain workouts.  It's human nature to forget and change certain aspects up over time.  For instance, the first time your parents tell you that they used to walk to school 1mile each day.  Maybe 10 years later, now they recall it as being 5 miles every day, instead of 1.  That's why, primary sources from that period are the best.  The best source is a Log kept by the athlete.  This elimates the athletes or coaches biases and you get plain fact of what they did.  Unfortunately not many of these are available to the public, so it's a rare case where you get to study these.  The next best source is books or articles by that coach or athlete from the time period in which they were competing.  The only problem with these is that the coach interprets the athletes training in his own mind and writes it down.  The picture in his mind on the training will certainly be different than your own.  For example, Lydiard might write that he wants an athlete to run this at 1/2 effort.  Well in modern times when most of us think 1/2 effort we think of a slow jogging pace, or maybe 50% of VO2max.  Well in Lydiard's mind 1/2 effort was still fast.  For instance 1/2 effort on a mile for a 4:00 miler would be about 4:13.  This doesn't mirror what in my mind 1/2 effort is.  So when looking at these articles or books, you have to try and put yourself in the same mindset as the coach who wrote the book.  This is a difficult thing to do, because we all have our biases and different viewpoints.
    When analyzing training, it's best to have several sources.  This way you can see if each source confirms to the other.  The more sources you have that match up well with each other, the more accurate your information will be.  In writing the articles below, I have tried to get as many sources as possible for each.  Also, I have attempted to eliminate as much of my personal bias as I can when reading the articles, but some will be present no matter what.  I try and seperate the facts from my opinions.  In each section I will try and give you the training as told or done by the athlete or coach.  Then I will give you my response and how I see it through my own viewpoint in the looking at so and so's training from a modern perspective section.
    To show you how viewpoints influence how you look at these training articles I'll use the example of Zatopek.  A coach such as Bertl Sumser looks at Zatopek's training and see's it as a form of modern interval training.  He thinks that the repetitions were run fast enough to get the heart rate up and then the jogs were run slow enough to let the heart rate return to a lower level.  He uses this idea to back up his ideas on interval training.  Ernst Van Aaken looks at the same training done by Zatopek and claims that the repetitions were run at slow paces with the jogs being slow rest periods.  He uses Zatopek's training to back up his own idea that running slow mileage with rest stops is the way to train.  So as you can see, two coaches looked at the same training done by the same man and interpreted it two different ways, each trying to fit it into his own mind set and training program.

1950-1960's

John Landy
    Landy is most well known for his race versus Bannister in the Empire games when he took 2nd when Bannister sweeped past him in the home stretch as Landy turned and looked to his inside.  He's also known as the man who got beat to the sub 4 mile, being the second runner to break the barrier.  He ultimately set a mile world record, running 3:58, but that's often forgotten.  The difference between Landy and Bannister is truly amazing.  They both were trying to accomplish the same goal, yet when their training is put side by side, Landy's makes Bannister's look extremely easy.  Bannister could be called "amateur" training while Landy's resembled more of the Professional runner training.
    Landy was influenced by Percy Cerutty as he briefly trained with Cerutty at Portsea before he left because of dispute.  Some of the same characteristics of Cerutty's training are present in Landy's but there are vast differences.  To sum his training ideas up neatly, he said:
       "To my mind the problem of running the mile is simply to blend stamina and speed.  Endurance is             best obtained through long, slow running and the stopwatch is definately not necessary except as an         occasional check.  Speed, on the other hand, is obtained by running at speeds much faster than                 racing pace, and for distances shorter than 440 yard.  Such 'sprints' should be a little below full effort         and again a stopwatch is no help in this matter.  I feel that running a strict fast-slow quarter mile                 routine causes you to fall between the two joint aims, producing insufficient pace in each quarter to         develop speed and the training is not prolonged or gentle enough to give best results for endurance...I         am very much a 'train as you feel' man."

    Landy's training program evolved from year to year.  In 1952 to run a PR of 4:02.1 he ran at least 20 miles per week of slow running.  The normal long slow run was 7 miles in length.  To supplement this he did 8-12x 600 yard with 600 yard jogging recovery.  The pace was 65 per 400m pace, with 4 minute recoveries.  This repetition training was done 5 times per week. In 1953-1955, his training took more shape and variation.  After the season he took a period of time where he'd run mostly mileage.  He said that he ran 300 miles after the 53 season before he started anything specific.  In later years, he would run up to 50-60 miles per week during this base period, along with supplemental hiking and walking.  After this base period it seems as though he'd do relatively faster runs with some longer repetitions.  Some examples given are 7 miles in 39 minutes,  6x 1mile in 5 minutes, or 3 miles in 16:30.  After this period, from 7/21/53 to 10/1/53 he ran a total of 700x600 yards fast.  This averaged out to about 10x600 yard runs every night.  The pace was 66 through the 440, with a 600 yard slow jog after each.  After this period he increased his number of 600 yard runs to between 16-19 during october.  Instead of doing them every day, they would be run every 2-3 days with a 30 minute jog on in between days.  From November to December the 600 yard runs became 440's and the pace was quickened.  A normal day would be 20x440s in 62 with 440 slow jog recovery.  Just like with the 660's, these were done almost every other day, alternated with 30 minute jogs on the in between days.
    Starting in December, he began to race and do shorter more intense workouts.  A couple of the examples given were 10x440 in 57.5 with a 440 jog recovery, 6x440 in 62 with 440 jog recovery, 4x1mile in 4:35 with 440 jog recovery, 3x1200m in 3:03 avg with 20 minutes rest in between, 4x1mile in 4:20 with 15 minutes rest in between.  Also during this period 60 minute jogs were done with the occasional 90 minute jog and a couple of rest days were taken.  During this period, he was running mile races the 4:02ish range. This kind of racing and training continued throughout the track season which seemed to go from december until 6/21/54 when he set the mile record.  It should be noted that later on in his training, around May he began to do other things besides 440's.  He introduced workouts such as 13 laps of jogging the curves, accelerating/striding the straightaways.  Also he began to work on his sprint speed with workouts such as 10x100m sprints with 100 walk in between.  In 1955, he mentions doing 20x 50-220 yard  sprints, not all out, up a gradual uphill that had a slope of 1 in 10 with a jog down recovery.  In addition to his running he did calesthenics for 20 minutes, and high rep low weight training.

Looking at Landy's training from a Modern Perspective
    It seemed as though Landy was constantly tinkering with his training.  He took bits and pieces from all sorts of coaches and seemed to be a student of the sport.  It's almost as though he combined aspects of what he learned from Cerutty with some more regimented training ideas of Franz Stampfl.
    In looking at his training, you can see that he does in fact establish some sort of base before he begins training extremely hard.  He runs mostly runs of 7 miles in length at what he calls a slow pace.  This buildup establishes a base for the work he later puts in.  Once he finished up his base he makes a transition to the next type of training he emphasizes.  This transition can be seen throughout Landy's training, showing that he must have had distinct periodization to his training.  After the base period he did some work on his high end aerobic system, or near LT, with his 7 mile runs in 39 minutes.  He also probably works on his Lactate threshold and some aerobic capacity when he does the 6x1mile in 5 minutes.  After this period, he goes into working at speeds that were about 2mile pace doing 600 yard repeats.  This most likely worked a bit on his aerobic capacity, as there was too much rest and they were too slow for them to be anaerobic.  It's important to note, that although Landy may not have done what would now be considered a huge aerobic base, he still had a good emphasis on the aerobic side of running.  The small base he put in and then a transition to threshold type workouts and then to some slower repeats that were completely aerobic shows this.  He showed progression by increasing the number of 600 yard repeats he did.  These 600 yard repeats were still working on the aerobic capacity.  After this period was done he transitioned into shorter and faster runs such as the 20x440s in 62.  Plenty of rest was taken so these were on the edge between aerobic and anaerobic most likely.  After this, the number of repetitions and pace dropped significantly.  Workouts seemed more intense and anaerobic training was done with the emphasis being on race pace it seems like.  However, it should be noted that even with the increase in pace and intensity, there was still plenty of rest.  For example, 3 or so minutes were taken between the 440s with his jog.  This is significantly more than the traditional 10x400s with equal rest to run ratio.  In fact, Landy did very few repeats with little rest.  Most of his harder sessions seemed to be Anaerobic Capacity as the rest was a good deal.  For example, he takes 15 minutes in between some 1200's which would seem an insane amount of time to some.  One thing that is important is even though he does lots of shorter intervals, he still does some longer repeats such as miles at 4:35 pace which would be a good VO2max/aerobic capacity type workout. It's also interesting to see that his slow runs increased in duration from 30 minutes to 60-90 minutes.  This could be because Landy recognized the importance of aerobic development and these runs could sustain his aerobic system while doing so much anaerobic work.  Once it became time to really run fast, it seemed as if he recognized the value of "sharpening."  He does some short fast sprints and alternating sprints and jogs before his big races.  This might be from his influence from Cerutty who advocates doing just sharpening workouts such as these during the intense racing period.
    One of the more important things to take away is that Landy sort of operated by a hard/easy principle.  There would be stretches of numerous hard workouts in a row, but in general, especially early in the season, repetitions were seperated with days of 30 or 60 minute jogs.  This is important because it allowed Landy to recover for the next days work.
    Like most great runners, it seems as if Landy was on the cutting edge of training during his time.  He mixed and matched different systems of training.  He recognized the need to periodize his training and to change things up as he got closer to the more important races.  It's amazing to see that he sort of followed a periodization of going from aerobic development to threshold running to aerobic capacity work to anaerobic capacity work to sharpening for a race.  This type of training resembles many modern programs and he did it in the 1950's!  Perhaps, the most interesting thing is the amount of rest taken during workouts.  There are practicly no short rest intervals in his training.  These short rest periods have become popularly more recently and it leads one to question why they have.  With taking a lot of recovery, Landy was working on his anaerobic system, but then allowing for his body to clear some of the built up lactic in his body.  By doing this, he probably wouldn't get as high lactate levels as someone would if they went hard with short rest.  So maybe, this was Landy's way of keeping the workouts extremely intense, but not with as much waste products being built up, allowing him to do more repetitions at race pace, or doing more repetitions throughout the week.  For example, his body might only need a day to clear out all the waste products because although lactic was built up, it wasn't maximally built up.

Key points to take away from Landy's training:

Ernst Van Aaken
    Most people attribute "jogging" a  greater emphasis on longer distance running to Arthur Lydiard.  While he may have popularized the idea of building a big base of steady running, others around the world were coming up with the same idea at similar times.  In 1947 Doctor Ernst Van Aaken first published his ideas on the "pure endurance" method in an article entitled "Running Style and Performance."  He said that he had been working on this idea since watching Paavo Nurmi run in the 1920's.  This German doctor was another of a long list of coaches who was ahead of his time in his ideas and thinking.  His most known runner was probably Harold Norpoth, who was a silver medalist in the 5,000 at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics.  He had a 5,000m PR of 13:20 and held the world record at 2,000m.
    His method consisted of mostly slow running.  In fact Harold Norpoth's training consisted of 90% of his runs at between the heart rates of 120 and 150.  Even during his harder tempo runs at race pace the heart rate only elevated to about 180, still not near his max.  He believed that the key to running was to get oxygen into the body and increase the size of the heart.  To do this he recommended running long distances at slow paces, thus lower heart rates (about 130bpm) and to only rarely accumulate any oxygen debt.  This was revolutionary thinking at the time because he was directly contradicting the famous German interval method designed by Woldemar Gerschler that said you run repetition raising your heart rate to 180 and then recovering until it reaches 120.  His recommendation for training was long runs with a heart rate of 130 and a tempo run at race pace over a small portion of the desired racing distance.  An example of this might be 3x500m at mile pace with plenty of recovery, maybe 5 minutes, after an easy run.  If your training for the 5k, then an example would be 2-3x1000m at 5k pace with several minutes recovery.  One example given is for a 15 minute 5k runner to do 12x 400 in 72 seconds with a full recovery of 200 meters of walking or 400 meters of slow jogging.
    In addition to his "pure endurance" method, Van Aaken thought that several other things would change in the future in training to allow for superior performances.  One example he gives is of a runner who wants to run 3:20 for 1,500 and 12:45 for 5,000m.  He says that this athletes training might include up to 40 kilometers a day spread out over between 2-3 or up to 5 runs per day.  In addition to this, he thought that the limiting factor in distance running was getting enough oxygen to your cells, thus aerobic development was key.

Van Aakens views on Speed and Mileage:
    In Van Aaken's book he has a chapter entitled How much? How Fast? to answer these questions.  He gives a generic chart that tells based on the distance your training for how much mileage you should do every day.  These are just guidelines and can depending on where the athlete is and how developed they are, more or less can be done.  His chart for mileage per day based on event:

Race
Training done per day
400 meters
6 kilometers
800 meters
10 kilometers
1500 meters
15 kilometers
3000 meters
20 kilometers
5000 meters
25 kilometers
10,000 meters
30 kilometers
Marathon
40 kilometers
    In addition to the slow mileage and tempo runs, Van Aaken included some pure speed or sprint work.  He advised doing sprints of 50 meters such as the Lydiard group did. These sprints were to be done as sharpeners only occasionaly. The reason these were done is because they were so short, that no oxygen debt occured.  One of Van Aaken's key principles is to not run in oxygen debt during training as this is not what the body was designed to do.

Differences between Van Aaken and Lydiard's training:
Van Aaken says that his method is similar to that of Lydiard's except for a few things.  First off he doesn't require the athlete to run 100 mile weeks for the middle distance runners.  He feels that they can run less than this and that the reason Peter Snell ran these was to get his weight down.  So a skinny middle distance runner wouldn't need as much mileage.  The second difference is that their is more slow jogging with rest breaks taken in his method.  In addition to this, only one or two tempo runs is done per day  and he doesn't do specific hill training.

Interval Training Vs. Pure Endurance Training
    The following chart was taken from the Van Aaken Method on pages 50-52:
(Should be noted that tempo running is just running a portion of your race distance at race speeds.  Such as running 200's at mile pace, or 1600 at 5k pace)
Interval Training
Endurance Training
Acquisition of endurance by running short distances at relatively high speed, with many repetitions, short pauses and incomplete recoveries.
Acquisition of endurance by running long distances at slow speeds.  When applying the interval principle, long pauses are used to the point of relatively complete recovery.
Interval training consists predominately of tempo running, at race pace or often faster
Endurance training consists of long distance running and tempo training, but only in a ratio of 20:1 to 30:1, calculated by ttraining mileage
Interval training is hypothetically based on the specific effects of the running pauses
Endurance training is based on stress and pause as an integral whole- i.e., running at a moderate, reserve-conserving pace
Interval training hypothetically increases anaerobic ability by "training for oxygen debt."
Endurance training increases aerobic ability by training for maximal oxygen uptake.
Interval training provokes an insufficiency of the aerobic metabolism to meet the demands of high stresses, in order to use the pause as a "compensatory crutch."
Endurance training increases the aerobic metabolism by keeping stresses at the point of optimal respiratory efficiency.
Interval training aims at teaching the runner to endure high speeds by increasing muscle size and by practicing oxygen debt.
Endurance training attempts (by weight losses relative to increases in oxygen uptake at the endurance performance boundary) to favorably affect endurance and heart quotients, which make possible higher average running speeds.
Interval training with relatively high stresses causes increased tension in the muscles, with consequent poor circulation while running.
In endurance training at a slow pace, in a "steady state" at the endurance performance boundary, circulation remains nearly optimal.
Interval training increases the diameter of the muscle fibers, while the area of oxygen diffusion becomes proportionately less favorable.
Endurance training increases the aerobic capacity of muscle fibers and the number of capillaries.  Oxygen supply to the muscle fibers improves because of, among other things, a slowing of blood flow speed and high oxygen utilization
Interval training produces an increase in the heart's size in short time by high stress intensity.
Endurance training produces an increase in heart volume over a long period (2-6 years) and with low stress intensity
Interval training produces regulative heart expansion and hypertrophy (abnormal enlargement)
Endurance training tries to improve running performance by avoiding training for muscle strength and by increasing enzyme activity of the entire musculature.
Interval training runs the danger of overdoses and the application of stimuli that exceed what is optimal
Because it involves a spreading out of stresses over a longer time period, endurance training does not as easily involve overdoses, and it produces normal optimal stimuli.
Interval training, because of its many repetitions, applies stimuli which are not optimally related in quantity to the momentary performance capacity of the organism.
Endurance training applies a dosage of stimuli which is always ina  proper relationship to performance capacity.
Interval training provokes lactic and pyruvic acid formation.
Endurance training avoids as far as possible all formation of lactic and pyruvic acids, particularly during the base training period of long runs.
Interval training attempts to increase the activity of the enzymes glycolysis
Endurance training attempts to increase the activity of the enzymes of biiological oxidation.
Interval training works with heart rates of from 150-200.
Endurance training works with endurance pulse rates of 150 and less.
In interval training, the exhausted cell ejects potassium into the serum, completely exhausting the cell's potassium energy reserves.
In endurance training, the cell eliminates predominately sodium and water, and assimilates potassium, thus increasing energy potential.
In interval training, there is a hypothetical discharge of myoglobin during continous stresses.
Endurance training increases the amount of hemoglobin and myoglobin, especially in altitude training.
Interval training seeks the leg muscles desirable for sprinting, so as to make the runner faster at all distances.
Endurance training seeks a marathon runner's legs, which have five times the endurance of a sprinter's in order to produce speeds at all distances beyond 400 meters.
Interval training provokes exponential increases in energy consumption and poor efficiency during relatively anaerobic metabolism.
Endurance training reveals a linear increase in energy consumption with increasing time and distance, and thus economical efficiency.
Interval training continually practices running speeds not required for one's specialized racing distance.
Endurance training prefers for its tempo runs running speeds at one's specific racing speed.
Interval training, because of its too intense and too frequent stresses, causes anaerobic fatigue by-products to accumulate- which in the final analysis may interfere with the speed the runner is trying to develop.
Endurance training avoid fatigue by-products and endurance trained athletes are often able to finish faster than interval-trained runners because of their endurance reserve.

Van Aaken's key rules for running:
(As found on page 56 of The Van Aaken Method)
   Diet and sleep
    A central theme of Van Aakens is that the athlete should have very little fat on his body.  The lighter the athlete the better.  He took this to the extreme with his athletes stating that the runner should eat very little, about 2,000 calories per day.  Which is not very much at all considering the vast amounts of mileage his athletes did.  He wasn't strict on what the athlete ate exactly, as long as he did not eat too much.  It was recommended to eat a good amount of high quality protein and to limit your fat intake to less than 40 grams a day.  In addition to this he believed that a runner should fast for a day occasionally.  Van Aaken said that the fasting taught the runner how to run with little fuel supplies and to teach his body how to burn fat.
    In addition to his different views on diet, Van Aaken also had controversial views on sleep.  He believed that contrary to what most believe, that people sleep to much.  He would often limit his own sleep to only a few hours.

Looking at Van Aaken's training from a modern perspective:
    When looking at Van Aaken's training method the first thing that I noticed was the heavy emphasis on slow relaxed running.  It's amazing to see how some of his athletes ran so fast off of what most would call a fairly easy training schedule.  The volume is large but the intensity is very low.  You have to remember that when Van Aaken came up with this training the emphasis was on high quality training with very little volume.  Thus, Van Aaken's switching the emphasis from one extreme to the other fits in with a theme you can see throughout the history of training.  Very rarely was their any middle ground found between quantity and quality early on.  Yes, they were often combined, but their was always a heavy emphasis towards one side or the other, never a true melding of each until later on.  The success of Van Aaken's athletes using this low intensity high quantity approach should help show you that aerobic development is the key to success in distance events.  In fact, Van Aaken believed this all the way back in the 1940's, when he stated that the key in distance running is getting enough oxygen to the cells.  This idea on what the limits were to distance running made Van Aaken believe that there was no use in training in oxygen debt for so long, because you wanted the athlete to be able to run with plentiful amounts of oxygen for as long as he could, because it was more efficient. In addition to the slow running, he had his runners do tempo runs and other faster runs.  Even these tempo or faster runs do not seem that intense.  The faster runs would be something to the effect of a very short Lactate Threshold run now. An example would be running 2,000m at 1 minute over your fastest 2,000m.  So for Norpoth, this was done at around 6 minutes.  During a workout he would alternate running easy for a couple miles with a 2,000 run, then another couple of easy miles and then another 2,000 and on and on.  Now, Van Aaken recognized the need for some specific work done at race pace.  This is why his athletes did tempo runs, or short repetitions at race pace with plenty of recovery.  It's interesting to see that his athletes did almost no workouts with short or incomplete recovery.  Another interesting thing is that his best athlete, Norpoth, had an incredible kick.  He attributed this to his finely developed aerobic system.  This is similar to the belief as to why Peter Snell had a large kick too.  These examples lend evidence to the belief that the kick may in fact have to do with developing a huge aerobic system, and not to natural speed as many believe.
    Another thing to notice is that Van Aaken's method never stresses the body too much.  It seems as he gradually stresses the body and allows it to recover.  This may be why an athlete like Norpth had such a long and distinguished career compared to the short careers of other runners of his day.  His emphasis on aerobic development allowed him to keep improving year after year and to stick around for a much longer time when other athletes tended to show up for a couple of years then call it quits.  This could be due to the fact that others were on a more interval based program, while the low intensity allowed Norpoth to last for much longer.

Things to take away from Van Aaken's training methods:

    Percy Cerutty:
    This Australian coach is one of the most often overlooked coaches in a historical context.  He trained many of the greatest distance runners of his time.  His  most prominent athletes was Herb Elliott who captured both the 1960 olympic gold medal and a world record in the 1,500 and mile.  Cerutty also trained numerous other succesful runners such as Albert Thomas who once held the world record in the 2 and 3 mile distances and Dave Stephens who held the 6 miler world record.  But why are his training methods not widely taught or recognized throughout the world such as his New Zealand contemporary, Arthur Lydiard who was leading his athletes at a similar time.  Is it because Lydiard wrote his schedules and suggestions in book form? Not likely, as Cerutty himself wrote six books on athletics and training and let Larry Myers write another summarising his training method after Myers spent a year with him at his Portsea training center.  The main reason why his methods aren't widely praised or known is because Cerutty was seen as eccentric or crazy to the public.  Many of his ideas on running or training were considered extremely unorthodoxed and eccentric.  This probably led many to believe he was a crazy old coach.  With all the success his athletes had, surely it would be beneficial to analyze his entire training program and identify the reasons for his athletic success.
    The first thing that you notice about Cerutty's system is that when training for a race your whole life is part of the training.  You have to fully develop your body, not just run.  He also emphasized doing everything the natural way or primitive and uninhibited.  This covered every thing from running schedules, to eating, to running form.  Running form was perhaps one of the biggest items that Cerutty focused on.  From early on he studied the movements of animals and would later try and use these in human movements.  Based on his observations of animals running and later studying of young children's movements he came to the conclusion that most runner's perform Zombie like running.  He said that runners ran too tense and weren't uninhibbited as nature intended them to be.  The tenseness and zombie like running form led to a vastly reduced ability to inhale oxygen into the lungs, about 1/2 of their true capacity.  Cerutty claimed that with his method an athlete could fully fill the lungs with oxygen, thus leading to great running performance.   This led Percy to come to the conclusion that an athlete should work on what he termed the Five basic movements.
    The main point of Cerutty's movements theory was to allow for what he called Full-Lung Aeration and to increase the stride length.  Cerutty claims that to maximize the amount of oxygen intake into the lungs, the runner must not suck oxygen into the lungs but "take pressure off the upper lobes of the lungs or they will never fill... When the shoulders come up to shorten the muscles in the neck, this motion alone takes pressure off the upper lobes so that oxygen can rush in naturally (Myers 30)."  The key to doing this is to vary the movements of the arm to force more oxygen in.  In addition to this he advocated slow and deep breathing. 
    The five basic movements are very hard to explain and even with seeing pictures I don't fully understand them yet, but for discussion I will list them and their characteristics. I will quote them in the following table as decribed in Myers book Training with cerutty on pages 32-33.

The Five Basic Movements:
The Stretch-up and walk
"This sets the other movements in motion.  As the runner begins to move, he naturally stretches upward, his arms reachin in the air above his head.  This motion takes all tension off the muscles in the neck and back, and lets the runner feel loose all over.  After stretching-up a couple of times, the runner should begin to walk, with his eyes looking down about 10 feet in front of him.  His feet should be turned slightly inward."
The Amble
"The forearms should be thrown forward at shoulder length, almost parallel to the running surface, as the person frees his musculature while he starts to fill his lungs.  The amble starts the runner moving with a natural lift in his pelvis as he moves lightly over the ground with an effortless shuffle.  His elbows should not be locked in position; they should be free and loose.  The amble is something children will naturally break into as they walk down the street.  It is not quite a run but is gradually leading to one."
The canter
"Like a horse, the runner should bound over the ground with an easy, relaxed shuffle.  Cerutty often advocated this to break up the monotony of running many miles...The whole body should shift slightly to a dominant foreleg and hindleg style that is typical of all four-legged animals.  Emil Zatopek had a natural gait in his running technique that was very similar to the free-form canter.  The marathon runner will use a modified canter..."
The trot
"In the trot, the runner's arms come down from his shoulders and chest after the amble is done a couple of times.  Then, the legs are pulled up and down to correspond with the breathing.  The stride should be shorter than for both the canter and gallop."
The Gallop
"This is the final and most crucial movement.  Race horses gallop with a stride that is 20-30 feet long.  The average human could easily gallop with a nine-foot stride.  The runner should change his arm movements abruptly as he brings his forearms up high into his chest, shortening the muscles in his neck.  This takes the pressure off of the upper lobes of the lungs so that the athlete can fill his lungs with oxygen.  Once the lungs are fully filled, the athlete should throow down his arms at his side to expel the carbon dioxide.  When the runner gallops, his stride length will vary with this inhaling and exhaling of oxygen and carbon dioxide.  The outgoing stride, in which the athlete throws his forearm to his hind leg, should be 3-6 inches longer than the other stride, in which he fills his lungs."

    In addition to these running movements, Percy was an advocate of weight training.  This was pretty revoultionary in his day because many felt that such an intense strength training session as Percy suggested would lead to too much unnecessary bulk on a runner.  Contrary to many popular ideas on weight training for distance runners, Cerutty said the extensive, high repetition with lower weight, would cause the athlete to bulk up, while intensive training, low repetitions of maximum weights, would lead to an increase in tensile strength with no added bulk.  So all of Cerutty's weight training was what he called intensive, as he suggested that the athlete never exceed 5 repetitions.  He suggested that weight lifting take place three times a week during the conditioning phase, and then slowly taper off to one session per week, then none during racing.  There were five basic lifts to his program.  They were one-arm swings, cheat curls, bench press, dead lifts, and sit ups.  These are pretty self explanatory as many are used today, so I won't go into great detail.  In the arm swing you swing one arm in an arc along the side fo your body, making sure to keep the arm straight.  1/3-1/2 of your body weight should be used in this lift.  During this he stressed that breathing was crucial and should be done where you fill your lungs as the weight is being lifted, and exhale when it's being lowered.  The curl is simply a curl of a weight that's as much as 3/4 of your body weight.  The bench press should be done with the athletes full body weight.  The dead lift should consist of using your legs to lift twice your body weight.  The athlete should be in a sort of squatting/sitting position with his knees bent with his back bent at a 45 degree angle and his head looking straight ahead.  Then you simply lift with your legs and stand up.  It should be noted that the weight suggested by him is the ideal weight.  The athlete should work up to these levels, not start at them if they're not capable of it.  Sit ups are ust what they sound like.  However Percy suggests that the traditional way, knees bent hands clasped behind head, is inefficient.  He suggests doing them on an incline board while holding a weight behind the head.  He suggests 3 sets of 20 as a good number.  After weight training or hard running percy suggested to cool down an athlete should hang limply from a bar for three minutes.  He believed this relaxed the muscles and kept them from shortening.
    In addition to this strength training Percy also suggests using gymnastic exercises and hills for strength.  One of the key features of his program was running up extremely steep sand hills or sand dunes.  Like in weight training he suggested that hill running be done intensively, meaning full effort.  The hills that he used were extremely steep and had a 1-2 raise, meaning 1 foot rice for every 2 feet.  They were short in length too, as the main hill used in his training camp at Portsea were only 80 feet in length.  His recoveries consisted of easy controlled jogging.  Gymnastics exercises were used to develop an athletes strength and coordination.  He suggested using exercises such as chin-ups, rope climb, parallel bars, vaulting horse, roman rings, and trampoline jumping.  These exercises were meant to develop the strength while breaking up the monotony of running.  In addition to this he suggested other exercises such as swimming to break the monotony.  These exercises should be done during his conditioning period when you are building an aerobic base and then they should slowly decrease as racing season approaches.
    It seems as if Percy believed in teaching his athletes how they should run and what different types of elements to include in their training, but he let the athlete ultimately control his own running schedule.  This allowed the athlete to run how he felt and to be more in touch with nature.  A good quote by his star pupil, Herb Elliott describes this well "
He would just inspire you and then leave you pretty much to your own devices. He'd check on the sort of intelligence of your training, to make sure that it made sense, but he just seemed to know that you were committed or you weren't committed. And if you were committed, he walked away from it at that point."  Also Percy said in Training with Cerutty on page 12 that "I always encourage the athletes who come to Portsea to be independent in their training.  This can only be accomplished when the person makes his own schedule each day in terms of what he wants to accomplish his life.  When any coach gives a schedule to an athlete, it seems to take all the fun out of athletics.  I only counsel the athlete who seeks my help on running technique, or asks me to evaluate his training diary."
    Cerutty was also big on progression.  This can be seen by his "Inclined Saw-Tooth Theory."  The basic idea behind this is to work the athlete progressively harder throughout a cycle. During this cycle, the athlete is worked hard, and then given a lighter training session to recover.  He said that "To subject the organism to a continous and unremitting strain is to invite ultimate breakdown (Training with cerutty 9)."

    Cerutty Training for distance events
    Cerutty's most succesful athlete was  without a doubt Herb Elliott, whose primary event was the 1500/mile.  He developed Herb from a 4:20.4 miler as a high school runner to eventually a 3:54 miler.  In training for distance races Cerutty was a huge advocate of varying the paces throughout almost every run.  He believed that this was the way man was meant to run, as energy comes and goes during running and races, so the pace should adjust accordingly.  He despised the "zombie-like" metronome running that most runners do, thus a majority of his training was done at varied paces.  The training for the distance events included breaking the training into three periods.  The first period was the Conditioning Period which lasted 6 months.  This was to be followed by the Race-Practice period which lasted 3 months.  Then finally the Competition period which lasted 3 months.
    For training for the mile Percy suggested a high mileage build up of 60 to100 miles per week.  The focus on this period is to build a huge aerobic base.  In addition to just running, supplementary exercises to work on strength should be used such as hills, gymnastics, and weigh lifting.  It should be noted that Cerutty's idea of aerobic running didn't mean slogging through miles.  Based on a couple of sources it seems as much of his athletes running even during the conditioning period was of high quality, meaning it was high end aerobic and faster most likely.  During this period it seems as though his athletes would run 3-10 miles in the morning.  Then in the afternoon they'd do another run and supplementary exercises.  Uphill sprinting for 30-45 minutes, and fartleks ranging from 3-8 miles were included.  Also there was a long run of up to 20 miles on saturdays at varied paces.  So as you can see there was a great deal of quality throughout his conditioning period.  After this period came the race practice period.  During this period even more quality was introduced.  He believed that timed intervals should be run 1-2 times per week.  In addition to this all runs should be at varied paces "to prevent staleness."  One example of a workout given in the book Training with Cerutty was 10 minutes of hard running, then slow running until they recover, then 10 minutes of hard running.  It says that some of the runners kept this pattern going for an hour and a half.  To emphasize the importance of quality, he said that about 80% of the training should be fast, at race pace with an emphasis on running intervals faster throughout the year.  I believe this means that 80% should be run at current race pace, and as your race pace improves, so should the interval speeds.  Elliott has said that 4 out of 6 training sessions per week were very demanding and of high quality.  A sample week of training from the race practice period for Herb Elliott was:

Monday: morning - seven miles, varied pace.
afternoon - circuit running (long cross-country intervals)
evening - easy five miles.

Tuesday: morning - five miles, varied pace.
afternoon - repeat hill training
evening - weight training

Wednesday: morning - seven miles.
afternoon - six miles, varied running and sprinting

Thursday: morning - seven miles, varied pace.
afternoon - fifteen miles.

Friday: rest.

Saturday: morning - five miles, varied pace.
afternoon - weight training
evening - five miles, varied running and sprinting.

Sunday: morning - six miles;
afternoon - intervals, golf course.
(source: Training with Cerutty by Larry Myers, page 94)

Another sample week presumably from the race-practice period taken from Herb Elliott's book, "The Golden mile":
A Week in 1956, when he was 18:

M-6-10x400 or 800
T-8k at "peak speed"
W-with sprinters
T-30 min of sprint 30 sec, jog 190 sec
F-Rest
S-4-10k on track at "peak speed"
S-16k hard

    After the race practice period, the athlete would enter the Competition period.  During this period Cerutty says that you have already built your endurance so the work should be almost all quality.  In addition to this, weight training and supplementary training should be stopped.  He believed that while racing all that is needed is a low volume amount of work with sharpening work, so that the athlete would perform his best in races, not in practice.  The amount of work done during this period was limited.  The athlete may only work out 4-5 times per week max, with most being sharpeners.  He said that the training should be cut by 50% of what the athlete was doing during the Race-practice period.  This shows that Cerruty understood the need to "peak" for races.  He understood that by this time of they year, the work was done and all that was needed was some sharpening and resting to get the athlete ready for peak performance.

5k-10k training
    Although the periods were the same as for the mile, there was some slight variations in Cerutty's training for the longer distance events.  He said that as the distance gets longer, the longer distance runners should run more faster paced varied runs and longer repeats.  During the conditioning period the runner should run as much as 100 miles per week.  Like Cerutty always mentions, you shouldn't be jogging but "at a fast varied pace." As with milers, he reccommended that the runner run double 5 times per week, with a single longer run on saturday and a rest day on sunday.  The long run should be built up to 20 miles at a varied pace.  
In addition to the schedule found below, Cerutty would sometimes suggest doing a "60-mile weekend."  This would include 15 miles twice a day on Saturday and Sunday.  Weight lifting, gymnastics and hill sprinting should be supplemented during this time.  A basic schedule is as follows:

Mornings: 3-10miles
Afternoons:
Monday: 30-60 minutes of intensive weight lifting
    Hang limp on the horizontal bar for 2 minutes
    Fartlek, 7 miles
    Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Tuesday: 1 hour of gymnastics
    30-45 minutes of uphill sprinting
    Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Wednesday:
30-60 minutes of intensive weight lifting
    Hang limp on the horizontal bar for 2 minutes
    Fartlek, 8 miles
    Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Thursday: 15 miles of varied pace running
Friday:
30-60 minutes of intensive weight lifting
    Hang limp on the horizontal bar for 2 minutes
    Fartlek, 3 miles
    Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Saturday: 18 miles of varied pace running
Sunday: Rest

(Source: Training with Cerutty by Larry Myers, pg. 108)
 

    During the race-practice period, intervals and much more quality are introduced.  Just like in training for the mile, the point of the intervals was to run portions of the race at or faster than race pace.  During the surge training that is listed below where runners surge for distances ranging from 110 yards to 880 yards Cerutty said that this training "should be tiring but never exhausting (Myers 110)."  A sample week of the race-practice week for a 5k and 10k runner is as follows:

Mornings:5k: 3-6 miles at varied paces and 30-45 minutes of intensive weight training 2-3 times per week
    10k: 4-8 miles at varied pace plus above mentioned weight lifting
Afternoons:

Monday: 5x1 mile intervals at faster than race pace (5k runners) or 4x 2miles at faster than race pace (10k runners) with easy running in between the repetitions.
    10-15 minutes of running in place after
Tuesday: 1 hour of uphill sprints
    2 miles at a varied pace for 5k runners or 5m miles at a varied pace for 10k runners
    Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Wednesday:
8 miles at a varied pace with 110, 220, 330, 440, and 660 yard surges for 5k runner
    12 miles at a varied pace with 220, 330, 660, and 800 yard surges for the 10k runner
     Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Thursday: 1 and a half hours of varied pace running including six 660 surges for 5k runner Or same time with six 880 yard surges for 10k runner
Friday:
6x 2mile intervals with easy running in betwen for 5k runner
    5x3miles with easy running in between for 10k runner
    Run in place for 10-15 minutes
Saturday: 20 miles of varied pace running
Sunday: Rest

(Source: Training with Cerutty by Larry Myers, pg. 109)

    The last period is the competition period.  Just like in mile training, the emphasis here is on sharpening.  Cerutty suggested also practicing surging techniques during this period.  To accomplish this, one suggestion was to run up and down hills that weren't as steep as the normal 2 to 1 ratio hill he suggested for uphill sprinting.  As mentioned before, the emphasis during this period is sharpening and resting up for races. As Cerutty said "Any unnecessary stress put on the runner in this part of the season will only detract from his competitive performance (myers 111)."

    Cerutty's Natural Diet
    Looking at the training done by Cerutty's athletes only gives you half of the picture.  To fully understand why these athletes succeeded you need to go beyond their training and look at their unique lifestyle.  Diet was one of the more important things.  The diet wasn't so outrageous as some make it out to be, but it seemed to include almost all natural food and none of the foods high in preservatives or highly processed which is commonly found in most modern diets.  He believed that without the proper nutrition intake the athlete would not recieve optimal training benefits.  Cerutty advocated a natural diet and was against such foods that were high in animal fats, white flour, white sugar, salt, pepper, and any refined or processed foods. Almost all of the foods were to be consumed raw with little to no cooking done.The meals at the Portsea camp looked something like this:

Breakfast: bowl of raw, rolled oats, raisins, sultanas, nuts, and fresh fruit
Lunch: small meal with some fruits, cheese, coup or a vegetable, rice, and celery salad.  OR fish and               vegetables
Dinner: either Liver, chicken, fish, and occasionally mutton or beef.

    In addition to this, he believed that no fluids should be drunk with meals.  He believedthat the consumption of fluid would impair digestion and contribute to ulcers or acid in the stomach.  He said that they should be drunk 30 minutes before the meal or an hour and a half after.  The only exception was that a glass of wine could be drunk 15 minutes before the meal.  For suggested fluid intake, he thought that natural fruit juices were the best and that milk should not be drunk because it had dangerous chemicals. 

Running Natural and avoiding the track
    Cerutty was very big on avoiding the track and other unnatural places for working out.  His reasoning was simple as he said that it was not natural, restricted our movement, and killed the spirit.  Cerutty believed that too much running on artificial surfaces made the athlete unhappy and not as willing to work hard.  Running on the track also restricted the athlete and made running feel more like a job, instead of an escape.  Also he said that this led to the athlete thinking of training as a tiresome grind, instead of accepting the hard work and enjoying it.  Besides the mental reasons for not running on tracks, Cerutty also provided physical reasons.  He said that when watching horses as a youth he saw that horses did not enjoy running on hard surfaces at all.  The horses instinctively disliked it and tried to get off the hard surfaces.  When they were forced to run on these surfaces, the horses responded by shortening their strides.  Also, after running on the hard surfaces, they took a longer time to recover before they would run them again. Because of these observations, Cerutty decided that running on such hard surfaces was bad for the athlete.  It limited his stride and made it short, choppy, and unnatural, instead of free and flowing. Herb Elliott did not train on a hard track ever in addition to not wearing shoes for many of his runs. 

Running by Feel
    Although Cerutty has given samples of his training weeks for all to see, he did not like fixed training schedules.  In fact he said that "nothing must be dictated, fixed, or regimented.
When an athlete goes out to train, his body should dictate his needs and he runs according to its capacities and demands."  This shows that he very much advocated running by feel.  The athlete should decide how and what he is going to run that day and it should be flexible. Cerutty believed that the athletes energy levels flucuated and isn't consistant.  You never know what day you will feel great and what day you feel tired.  Thus, he said that the training program should not be regimented and that your runs should coincide with how you feel and the rise and fall of your energy levels. The athletes running should not be regimented, because running is a natural and free activity.  To restrict this is to kill many of the benefits of running. This belief put much of the burden on the athlete to decide what to do and how to train.  It's doubtful that this method would work unless the athlete was highly motivated, which it appears as Cerutty's athletes were.  But if an athlete is able to do this type of running by feel, then the benefits were no doubt great.  By letting the athlete decide what he wanted to do, you will most likely get a higher effort out of that run, then if some coach decides for you.  Your more inclined to run harder if you enjoy the run or workout you are doing.  This is the genious of the Cerutty system.  He taught his athletes what was needed for success and then left it up to them to ultimately decide what to do.  This meant that every athlete was involved in planning his own training, probably leading to more enjoyment.  I think that this might be one thing that is missing in many of today's training systems.  The athlete doesn't have enough input and is trained to almost blindly follow whatever their coach prescribes.
    Cerutty put it best when he said, "When we have had enough we stop.  When we want to we have three hard sessions a day.  We train as we feel, but rarely feel lazy."

Interesting Quotes from Percy Cerutty:

Looking at Cerutty's training from a modern perspective:
    Although he was certainly an eccentric man, his methods did tend to work and much can be learned from Cerutty.  It's a shame as most of his training ideas and advice have been lost or ignored since the time of his athletes.  I really don't know anyone who still uses a system that is close to pure Cerutty, which is strange considering that some coaches throughout the world still use systems that are the same as other coaches of that era, such as Lydiard or Igloi.  The reason is most likely because of his public image.  He's still thought of as a crazy man by most.  Looking past his eccentric methods, much can be learned however.
    The first thing I noticed about his system is his belief in developing the full body.  Not many other coaches of his time believed in distance runners doing such strength training such as weights or gymnastics to aid the distance runner.  In almost any modern training program you see such things as plyometrics, weight training, and core training.  Cerutty's system could be thought of as a pioneer for this.  He was certainly one of the first distance coaches to notice the importance of a strong core for his athletes and recognized that strength in the upper body and core was correlated with the movements of the legs and lower body.  Thus, strength training is one aspect that Cerutty contributed to modern training.  Howevr it can be debated as to whether his intensive lifting or extensive lifting is more beneficial to the athlete.  This can still be argued today as many coaches use the high reps, low weight method, while others still use the high weight, low reps method described by Cerutty.
    Another important part of Cerutty's training was the uphill sprinting.  The hills seemed to be short and very steep and were in sand to add resistance.  This hill training was used as part of his strength workouts.  It gave the athlete added strength and surely worked on developing and recruiting their fast twitch muscle fibers as these were done at maximum effort.  In addition, running in the sand worked and developed different muscles in the lower leg that flat and hard ground running don't.  These short but steep uphill sprints are different than most done around the world at the time.  For example, Lydiards hills seems to be longer and have less of an incline.
    Besides training, Cerutty brought about the importance of a good diet.  His emphasis on natural diet is something that you see in the mainstream now.  You see a big emphasis on eating whole wheat breads (staying away from white flour such as Cerutty suggested) and staying away from highly processed foods.  Also, the limiting of the intake of saturated fats can be seen now.  These are ideas that Cerutty professed over 40 years ago.  Although there are definately wholes in his dietary reccommendations, the main concept of eating more natural is a good one.  Cerutty knew that a healthy diet would impact the effects that training had and would allow you to train optimally.  These ideas can be seen throughout the world now with elite athletes paying more and more attention to diet.
    It almost seems as if the actual training done in Cerutty's program takes a back seet to the lifestyle.  Not a whole lot of attention has been given to his training ideas.  This may be due to the fact that he seemed to teach his athletes what was needed, and then let them decide what to do.  I like this approach as it involves the athlete in the training process and allows him freedom to decide to do what he likes best and not be a slave to a training schedule.  In the actual training of his athletes it's important to note a couple of things.  The first is the big emphasis on aerobic development.  He believed in relatively high mileage (up to 100) with 6 months (the conditioning period) spent developing this.  During this period, it wasn't just jogging around.  I'm assuming that a lot of it was high end aerobic running at pretty fast but varying paces.  Fartleks and uphill sprinting were also included during this time.  So some higher quality running was done throughout the year.  The uphill sprinting would work on the recruitment of both types of Fast Twitch muscle fibers most likely and probably worked on the anaerobic energy system depending on how hard they did them.  The fartleks were probably fairly intense as Cerutty seemed to believe in intensive training.  This means they probably hit on developing the aerobic capacity.  Long runs were also included of up to 20 miles.  One interesting thing is that most of the runs seem to be at varied paces instead of steady paces.  I'm just giving my own opinion, but this might be a reason why his athletes were able to surge better than others and not fall apart in the middle of races, such as Elliott's 1960 Olympic 1500m victory.  Also, looking at the varied paces, this seems to be done by modern day Kenyans a good deal.  This is just speculation off of second hand knowledge, but from talking to and reading article by runners who've gone to Kenya a good deal of their running seems to be at varying paces, even during easy days.  This can be seen in Renato Canova's training too, as sometimes his athletes do run "with short variations."  If you look at how Kenyans run championship type races, many of the 5k's or 10ks have varying paces.  The athletes tend to vary the pace by large amounts from lap to lap, such as the 2005 Helskini 10k that included laps varying from 61 to 69 during the last 6k of the race.  During this race the pace seemed to vary by 3-4 seconds every 400, so that they would run a 63 then a 67, then a 64, or something to that effect.  This might tire americans or europeans not as accustomed to varying paces more than it tires a Kenyan of the same ability who practice this pace variation.  Thus Cerutty might have been on to something when he suggested varying the paces even on easy runs.  This might have good benefits if slowly implemented into a modern training program, so that at first maybe once a week an easy run is done at varying paces throughout.
    The next period was the 3 month long race practice period.  During this extremely intense training took place.  The transition to this phase can be seen in many modern training programs.  Athletes tend to transition from a base phase to a more intense phase consisting of larger amounts of intervals and harder runs.  This is what Cerutty seems to do too.  During this period the emphasis seems to be on quality.  Intervals, fartleks and harder runs are done throughout.  The intervals are done at race pace for the most part and their is a good variation of short and long intervals or surges.  The longer intervals for a 5k or 10k runner can be seen as aerobic capacity, or VO2max, training in modern terms.  The shorter intervals of 220 to 880 yards can be seen as a type of anaerobic work.  There are also harder runs of 10k in length that probably work a bit on threshold and above.  In addition there is some Alactic or sprint training done by the milers, as can be seen in Herb Elliott's log.  Uphill sprints are still included to.  So as can be seen his program includes a lot of quality during this period, but it hits on all major systems.  There is a good deal of longer intervals for aerobic capacity, shorter intervals for the anaerobic system, sprint training for the Alactic system, and harder long runs for the development of the aerobic system and thresholds.  Also uphill sprinting for strength and FT fiber recruitment is done too.  So it can be seen that this period of training is very intense, but it seems to hit on all of the systems in a nice blend with nothing seemingly being neglected.  During the competition period it seems as if the emphasis becomes on racing with a drasticly reduced amount of mileage and some sharpener workouts.  He believed that being well rested was important and that you should not do workouts that take too much away from the race.

    Key points to take away from Cerutty's training:


Arthur Lydiard:
    His training information is widely available and should definately be read, but often times people misunderstand Lydiard's teachings and make the mistake of equating aerobic to Long Slow Distance, which is wrong.  Lydiard often emphasized high-end aerobic work.  I know his training has changed throughout time but I thought it would be beneficial to present "original" lydiard information.  This comes from a book printed in 1964 and another one published in 1970, so right during the start of the Lydiard years.  Look at the paces and this is NOT what most people think of when they think Lydiard.

From the book Run, Run, Run by Fred Wilt.
The article is by Arthur Lydiard
Notes: Lydiard did not include any runs that were done slowly or weren't part of the main training session in this book.  It has been noted since then by many that his athletes supplemented these training sessions with morning runs and other runs.  I've edited the contents to include the most important things since it took a while to type up:

" The following plan calls for no less than one hundred miles per week during the initial four-month training period.  Fractions following distances in the schedules indicate degree or intensity of effort, which are explained at the end of the article."

Marathon Training (Base training) (four months for both middle and long distance runners)

Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
10 miles over hills and along roads or cross country at 1/2 effort
15 miles at 1/4 effort over hills and roads
12 miles fartlek (speed-play)
18 miles, 1/4 effort
10 miles, 3/4 effort on road
20 miles 1/4 effort
15 miles 1/4 effort
He also suggests that during these early months the runner may employ gymnastic exercises for the loosening and stretching of muscles over the entire body.  He rejects outright, however, the use of weights. He stresses this position metaphorically by arguing that his runners "need the muscles of a stag, not a lion."
    A period of transitional training now follows for one month. At this time the runners continous a fairly intensive type of cross-country training, as well as running on the track for additional preparation.  Off the track the runner is required to negotiate a one mile hill course, of which one-half mile is gradual incline.  At the base of the hill and at the top there is a 440 yards even stretch.  The athlete covers the course four times per day.  The level portions are run at an easy jog.  The hill itself is run at a much livlier speed.  Running on the incline should be done with a springy stride, which will tend to strengthen the legs and also stree good knee action.  Lydiard recommends short sprints enroute during the longer runs...

Transitional Training (one month):
 (note: I'll be providing sample weeks, and gradually as I have more time, type up the entire program
the fractions refer to pace and lydiards pace chart. For paces for 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and 7/8 refer to pace chart,)
Week
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
1
440, 1/4 effort ; 700 with 30 sprint on command; 400, 1/4
3x 220, 1/2 ; 4x50, 1/2; 440, 1/4
2x220m 1/2; 2x100, 1/2; 1x100 3/4; 2x50 1/2
mile with 50 sprint every 220
rest
4x220, 1/2; 1x100, 3/4
Long distance jogging
2
440, 1/4; 700 with 30 sprint; 440 1/4
440, 1/4; 2x200, 1/2; 440 1/4
2x100, 1/2; 700 with 30 sprint; 220, 1/4
2x200, 1/4; 3x100, 1/2
rest
3x100, 1/2; 700 with 30 sprint; 220 3/4
Long distance jogging

The next three months are devoted to the careful preparation of the athlete for his "run of the year." Individual differences are special problems which require the coach to tailor the plan to his runner's needs.  But there must be a plan to begin with.  During the last six weeks the coach must work closely with his runner and alter or augment the plan wherever it is deemed necessary.
  
Training for mile: (three months):
time
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
1st month, week 1
2 miles, 1/4
4x880, 1/4
12x300; 1x800, 1/2
6 miles, 1/4
6x220, 1/4
1 mile, 1/4;
mile, 1/2
Long distance jogging
2nd month, week 1
1320, 1/2; 880, 3/4; 440 all out
4x440, 1/2
6x880, 1/2
5 miles, 3/4
6x220, 1/2
20x220, 1/2
Long distance jogging
3rd month, week 1
3 miles with 48x 50 yard sprints enroute
1320 time trial
6x440, 3/4
3 miles, 3/4
3x220 all out
880 yards run
Long distance jogging
3rd month, week 4 (Peaking Race
6 miles jog
3x220 all out
1x440, 7/8
3 mile jog
3 mile jog
"The Run of the year"
Long distance jogging

Lydiard's Pace Charts:

220 yard table:
Best 220
3/4 speed
1/2 speed
1/4 speed
22
24
27
31
24
26
29
33
26
28
31
35
28
30
33
37

440 yard Table
Best 440
3/4 speed 1/2 speed 1/4 speed
52
55
58
61
54
57
60
63
56
59
62
65
58
61
64
67

880 yard Table
Best 880
3/4 speed 1/2 speed 1/4 speed
1:46
1:52
1:57
2:02
1:49
1:55
2:00
2:05
1:52
1:58
2:03
2:08
1:58
2:04
2:09
2:14

1 mile table
Best mile
3/4 speed 1/2 speed 1/4 speed
4:00
4:06
4:13
4:20
4:10
4:16
4:23
4:32
4:20
4:26
4:33
4:44
4:30
4:36
4:43
4:56

3-Mile Table
Best 3-mile
3/4 speed 1/2 speed 1/4 speed
13:00
13:30
14:00
14:30
13:40
14:10
14:40
15:10
14:20
14:50
15:20
15:50
15:00
15:30
16:00
16:30
16:00
16:30
17:00
17:30

6-Mile Table
Best 6-mile
3/4 speed 1/2 speed 1/4 speed
28:00
28:40
19:20
30:00
29:00
29:40
30:20
31:00
30:00
30:40
31:20
32:00
31:00
31:40
32:20
33:00
33:00
33:40
34:20
35:00
    NOTES from me about other types of Lydiard training:
    In addition to the above mentioned workouts, in several other articles from the same time, other aspects of Lydiard's training were mentioned more thoroughly.  For example, many mention bounding up the hill loop that he suggested in the transition phase.  It's unclear exactly whether his athletes continually bounded up the 800m hill or not.  Some claim they did, other said, it was sort of like running with an exagerated knee lift, but it was still running.  Some articles I've found have said that you either ran with a springy stride or bounded up the hill, then when you reached the top, jogged for 3 minutes on the flat part, then strided down the entire hill to increase your turnover.  I'm unsure how fast this striding downhill was, but it seems as you just let yourself go and let your legs naturally increase in turnover.  Once you get to the bottom, jog for 3 minutes, then do a serious of short accelerations or sprints at the bottom, these sprints should occur at most once every 15 minutes, because he says that you need this amount of time to recover between sprint sessions.  Then you repeat this hill session until you've done it 3 or so times for the expert runners.  The unclear thing about this hill session is whether it's truly bounding or if it's running up with a springy stride or what.  Another thing mentioned in an article by Bertl Sumser, which is summarised below, is that he saw Lydiard's athletes do a different type of sprint training.  He specificly recalls seeing Murry Halberg and Peter Snell run 15x 40m sprints with a 60 meter float recovery.  The 40m was run at what lydiard called 7/8 speed, so that's pretty near maximum intensity.  He said he observed them do this type of training when they stayed in Leverkusen.  So it is a first hand account of this type of training.  Sumser referred to this as high stimulation, fast speed, and short recovery sprint runs training.  He said that the purpose was to maintain high speeds for longer distances (i.e. speed endurance).  In addition to this he said Halberg and marathon runners performed up to 3 miles of this type of sprint, float work.  It's not mentioned how fast the float was, but considering he uses the word "jog" interchangably, it's assumed that the jog could not have been that fast, and was most likely at it's fastest threshold pace (just my guess based on his words used.)

Lydiard's principles:
    After looking at the above article by Lydiard, it's helpful to look at some of his other works to tie the whole picture together.  Lydiard divides his year into different periods, with different emphasis being put on different things during these periods.  His basic idea was that to fully develop the potential of an athlete stamina most be developed first, followed by speed.  Then you use co-ordination to tie thses two aspects together and peak at the desired time. The first and often thought of as most important period is the Marathon training.

Marathon Training
    This training is what Lydiard is most remembered for by the masses.  It consisted of roughly 100 miles per week, sometimes more, sometimes less, of aerobic running to condition the runner.  During this period of training, he suggests running large amounts of mileage at varying speeds, effort, and courses.  Lydiard uses 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and 7/8 to distinguish the effort one should run.  During this marathon training the efforts should vary with most of the runs being at 1/4 effort, two at 1/2 effort, and one at 3/4 effort.  In addition to varying the efforts, some of the runs should be on flat ground, others on undualating ground, and others on hilly courses.  Much of this running is done steadily.  The key to this marathon training was to build up the cardiovascular system, increase capillarization, and to get you prepared for the work that lied ahead.  He often said that the development of the muscular system depended on the development of the cardiovascular system.  Thus, the cardiovascular system had to be built up to it's maximum if you wanted to develop the muscular system to its maximum.    In addition to running steady mileage, Lydiard believed that during this period of training, the runs should be continous because this allowed for a steady pressure to be applied to the heart.  This marathon like training laid the foundation that is so paramount for success and allowed the training of all other systems to take place.  Without this base, the other systems could not be developed as well.

Hill Training
    After this base phase, a hill phase is done.  It has been described above, but I will go over it as a refresher and to maybe add to the details.  The hills used by "Arthur's boys" consisted of a 1/2 mile long hill with a flat 1/4 mile long stretch and the bottom and top of the hill.  In running up the hill, some have described themselves as bounding while other's have described it as striding.  In the book Lydiard's Running Schedules published in 1970, he describes it as the runners "spring up hills on their toes, concentrating on relaxing and springing rather than running."  After they do this, they jog 400 out, then jog 400 back on the flat section and then they stride downhill fast.  Peter Snell was reported to run 1:50 downhill during one of his hill runs.  The key to the downhill running is to be fast but entirely relaxed.  Also, the hill shouldn't be so steep that you have to brake going downhill by leaning backwards.  The runner should have a slight forward lean going down the hill at all times.  When they reach the bottom they jog some and then do short accelerations or wind sprints.  The wind sprints are not full out and should be a gradual introduction to faster speed training.  The distances vary from 8x50m to 1x400m almost always with a total of 400m of striding out done.  It should be noted that the athletes were only doing these windsprints about once every 15 minutes.  Therefore if a different lengthed hill circuit is used, then you have to adjust when to do these wind sprints so that you don't do too many of them.  This hill circuit was repeated 4 times with his athletes.  The hill training was originally done by Lydiard's athletes in the 60-70's 6 times per week.  He later modified this to be done 2-3 times per week, saying you could get the same benefits with this reduced amount. This period of hill training usually lasted 4 weeks total and was designed as a transition period to bridge the gap between the aerobic marathon training and the hard track training.
    In looking at the hill circuit, it can be seen that this type of work was done for the benefits of strength and flexibility.  The bounding or sprining up the hill was simply resistance work or plyometric work.  The downhill striding automatically caused increased turnover, and the wind sprints at the bottom worked on your speed and getting you prepared for faster track training.
    The uphill running/bounding is often the hardest to explain and creates the most confusion among athletes attempting to learn Lydiard's training.



Looking at Lydiard from a modern perspective, what to learn from this article:
    This article dispels a lot of the myths about Lydiard's system.  Obviously Lydiard most likely changed and adapted his training schedule slightly over the years, but the importance of reading a document that came right near when his best athletes (Snell, Halberg, etc.) were competing is that we get a better sence of what he did and what worked with them.  The first thing you should notice is the importance of bulding a massive base.  Lydiard said that middle and long distance runners should run AT LEAST 100 miles per week.  This is one of Lydiard's major contributions to the sport.  He brought out the importance of building a big base for all runners.  But one should notice that even in his early training, this wasn't what most people confuse as lydiard, LSD (Long Slow Distance).  I hope you get a sence of the pace from the pace charts (I'm still looking for what lydiard devised as his 1/4, 1/2, and 3/4 pace during his base period).  A lot of the running done is very high end aerobic, most likely near Lactate Threshold for many runs.  In addition to varying the efforts during base, he also employed a fartlek during the base training (and in his later books added strides to the schedule).  So his athletes weren't just running slowly as is a common misconception.  His athletes varied between normal runs to fartleks to probably what we'd describe modernly as lactate threshold runs.  In fact in his later book he states that the Long Aerobic running done during this period is "A strong aerobic effort, between jogging and racing- in theory, 70%-99% of your aerobic capacity to finish in a pleasently tired state."  Also, it should be noted that he emphasized running over hills and various terrains.  During the next phase, we can see that hill running and springing was highly emphasized and some sprints were added too.  As were some repetitions that resemble modern day pace work.   He was getting the body ready for anaerobic work that would come later.  This transition is important!  After the transition came you can see what we'd probably call aerobic capacity or VO2max training now in his repetitions of 4x880 at 1/4 speed.  In addition shorter tempo type workouts are done with runs such as 2mi or 3mi at 1/4 effort.  Pace work is continued.  As you progress through the last period, the repetitions become faster and thus more anaerobic.  For peaking, he does very intense efforts with little volume during the hard session such as 1x440 at 7/8 effort or 3x220 all out.
    By looking at this training, it can be seen that it is very similar to most modern day training even though it is 45+ years old!  It's amazing how much Lydiard got right without science and based on just trial and error on himself testing training methods.  This proves that although science helps, it is not required, and that trial and error is a very effective method of figuring out training.  I hope after reading this you can see that Lydiard is not just slow jogging.  He hit on a lot of the similar concepts of training that almost all distance coaches use today, even those used by Peter Coe who most say is opposite of lydiard!

Bertl Sumser
    West- German Training methods from 1962: (Source of information: article: How I train Middle Distance Runners by Bertl Sumserin the book Run Run Run by Fred Wilt)
    In reading the article by Bertl Sumser it can be seen that he was influenced by the physiology known at their time.  He talks about oxygen debt and the increase of lactic acid as the limits to performance and that the basis of his training was to increase the oxygen supply, and to neutralize the effects of the lactic acid.
    He outlined six different ypes of training runs or exercises that should be mixed throughout:

1. Endurance Running
    This was defined as your typical easy run to be done over a variety of courses.  These runs could be up to an hour or more in time.  It is interesting that he notes on page 120 that during the base training phase that this is an excellent means of training that "unfortunately is used by us all too infrequently during this time of year.  (Perhaps because it is too simple?)."

2. "Speed Play" (Fartlek)
    This is a form of continous running where the paces vary over the course of the run for either specified or unspecified distances intersperced throughout the run.  He suggested that the distances should be long and the paces be fairly easy at first.  For example during November to December he recommends "2000-3000-3000-2000 meters with recovery jogs, time for 1000 meters about 4 minutes."  Then throughout the year the distances decrease to 1000's, 1600's, and 2000's, with the pace dropping to 3minutes per 1k.  He stressed that fartlek's should never be an exhaustive run and the sprints could be added towards the end with adequate recovery.  The purpose of fartlek's was "adaptation of heart and circulation, regulation of the breathing process, improvement of the capillary transfer process (120)."

3. Interval Endruance Run
    This type of training is done to improve adaptations to the heart and circulation according to Sumser.  It consists of a large volume of short repetitions that are no more than 300 meters in length.  The intensity is not very high and there is a decent amount of recovery between each repetition.  Some examples given during the base training for a runner aiming at 3:45 for 1,500 are 30x 100 meters in 17.5-16.0 seconds with a 50-60 second jog recovery.  Progression is key in these workouts as they gradually move to race pace or faster (14.5-15.0 seconds for the 100's).

4. Repetition Runs (Speed Runs)
    Sumser divides this group further into two groups.  The first group is workouts that are intense with an incomplete recovery.  Some examples he gives of these are 8x200 in 27.0 with a 2minute recovery, gradually progressing to 8x200 in 26.0 with 60 seconds recovery at the end of the year.  He states that there is a big need for progression throughout the year so that the recoveries get shorter with a high load.  In fact he says that he often starts out with longer repeats of 500-600m in length at slower speeds and works down to the shorter faster repeats.
    The second group is repeats of very high intensity with near complete recoveries.  Some examples of these include for a 3:45 1,500 runner, 500 in 68-69 with 6-8 minute recovery, 600 in 84-85 with 10-12 minutes of recovery, then 800 in 1:55-1:56.  The purpose of these repetition runs is "adaptation of muscle metabolism, entrance of a high oxygen debt, increase the alkali reserve and of energy, adaptation to the products of a high hyperacidity (121)."

5. Sprint Runs
    Again he divides this category into two different groups.  The first group is for the development of pure speed.  To do this he suggests performing sprints at max speeds with full recovery.  The example given is 10x100 meters with a flying start in 10.8-11.0 seconds with a 3-4 minute recovery walk.  The other type of sprint training is done for speed endurance, or the ability to maintain high speeds over a longer distance.  This is accomplished by doing repeats at high speeds with shorter recoveries.  An example given of this training is 10x50 meters at 7/8 speed with 50-60 meter jogs in between.

6. Special Conditioning
    This isn't well defined but he says that it used for training of the entire muscular system.  He later says that it consists of various exercises done  such as light weights, medicine ball, and gymnastic exercises.

    Bertl gives detailed training examples for each period of the season.  I'll sum them up for his 800 training and then give you the adjustments he says should be made to make it a 1,500m training program.  In November, it's suggested that you train 4 days per week with alternating days of  endurance runs and interval endurance runs.  On two of these days the work load should be cut in 1/2 and 1/2 a conditioning workout should be done.  The interval endurance runs are 100 or 200m repeats at relatively slow paces.  In December, you start to train 3 days per week with an endurance run four days per week, one fartlek, and  two sessions of interval endurance work, along with conditioning work.  Times are still slow at about 36 sec for 200s and 11 minutes for the 3000m portion of the fartlek.  These two months serve as the base work in Sumser's program.
    In January and February there is 5 days of training per week with one fartlek containing slightly shorter distances than the december one, two endurance intervals runs, and two speed runs.  The pace on the interval endurance runs drops to 34secs, and the fartlek pace drops to 3:10 to 3:20 pace per 1,000m.  Speed runs consist longer repeats of 400, 500, and 600m. (For a 1,500m runner, speed runs are longer, up to 1,000m in length)  In March, 6 days of training per week now take place, with one endurance run for recovery, 3 speed runs, 1 interval endurance run, and 1 sprint work.  The speed run distances vary each day, between short, long, and mixed distances.  The paces gradually increase by 1-2 seconds per 400m from what they were being done at in earlier periods.  April is similar to march except that the paces get faster.  In May, he says the first races are run.  During this time 5 days a week is spent training with sprints one day, interval endurance runs one day, one recovery endurance run, and speed runs twice.  After this period, he says a schedule cannot be demonstrated because of the different racing requierments.  However, the paces get faster in the speed runs and the number of repetitions decrease.  For example you go from running 10x400 in 66 in january to 8-10 in 60 in april to 5 in 56 in july.
    The difference between the 800 training and the 1,500 training is that the endurance running and fartleks are longer (up to 1:30).  There is more emphasis on the interval enduranc runs.  Between january and April for every speed run that you do per week, one endurance interval run should be done.  Then starting in May, speed runs take precedence over these interval endurance runs.

    Examples of progression of Speed Runs throughout year for 3:45 1,500m runner (taken from Run, Run, Run by Fred Wilt, 1964)
distance run
January
February
March
April
May
June
July
200


15x at 28
15x at 27.5
12x at 27
12x at 26.5

300
12-15x at 47
12-15x at 45
12x at 43
12x at 42
10x at 41
10x at 40
10x at 40
400
10x at 66
10x at 64
10x at 62
8-10x at 60
6x at 58
6x at 57
5x at 56
800
5-6x at 2:25
5x at 2:20
5x at 2:15
5x at 2:10
4x at 2:05
4x at 2:02
4x at 2:00

Looking at Sumser from a modern perspective, what to learn from this article:
    The first thing that should be noticed is the six different types of training he defines.  Put in modern context, some are very similar to types of training we do today.  Sumser's Endurance Running is our normal aerobic training ranging from recovery runs to steady runs ro long runs.  It's interesting to note that he says that it's used infrequently, meaning that during his period of time people put a heavy emphasis on different types of interval training.  With the arrival of Lydiard's training on the scene, that certainly changed, but if he Sumser saw the training of the day he'd probably say that many people now use intervals too infrequently.  This shows our tendency to put too much emphasis on one type of training.  Anyways, his fartlek training serves several purposes in today's view of training.  The early fartleks play the role of high-end aerobic running, then gradually work down to what some people call cruise intervals, which would be a variation of Lactate Threshold training and they might even progres to aerobic capacity (or VO2 max training), but I'm not sure how fast they ended up.  It's safe to say though based on some of the times given that they were done at a high end aerobic pace, and sometimes at LT pace most likely.  His next training category was Interval Endurance runs.  These were used as some people use pace or rhythm work, but serve the purpose of building aerobic capacity really.  They were a high number of repetitions with a decent amount of recovery at moderate speeds.  We don't really use this type of training now a days, but it was commonly seen during this period with the likes of Gerschler and Igloi.  As I have said, this has been replaced with VO2max or aerobic capacity training really.  His 4th type of training was Speed Runs.  It's interesting to note the progression throughout the year on these runs.  The ones done early in the year are VO2max or aerobic capacity workouts, while the ones done in the middle of the year look like lactate tolerance work, and then the ending ones anaerobic capacity workouts.  He terms them all the same, but sence he uses progression throughout the year the real benefits and purpose of the workouts change.  These are remarkably similar to modern progression in training from aerobic capacity to lactate tolerance to anaerobic capacity workouts.  His next training group was Sprint runs.  This is your typical sprint workout, maximum speeds, with full recovery or near it.  These workouts are working on your creatine phosphate energy system and pure speed, recruiting your fast twitch muscle fibers.  Sumser's last training group was Special Conditioning.  Not much is written about this but it appears to be gym work, which would be similar to todays strength circuits or weight work or plyometrics.
    As you can see the program contains a lot of similarities to modern training of today.  The main differences being there is a heavier emphasis on normal endurance runs and Lactate Threshold runs then there was in Sumser's system.  This could explain the lack of superior aerobic conditioning in his athletes.  But the key to take ideas to take away from this article is that progression is key.  He used progression throughout the entire training cycle and in doing this hit on every specific system one after another (aerobic development to aerobic capacity to lactate tolerance to anaerobic capacity).  Also, the changing of interval distances from short to medium to longer repeats is important to look at.  In addition to this, it can be seen that he mixes the type of workouts done each day.  He never does back to back of two of his training categories.  Every day he is working a different system.  This is important as it shows the importance of hitting different systems throughout training and to never get stuck on doing the same one over and over, thus lacking a stimulus for the body. 
    Looking back on the system it seems pretty solid for the time.  The changes now a days would be to add much more normal and recovery runs.  This can be done easily by increasing the amount of time running from 5 days a week to 7.  With the increase in quantity the quality would be dropped somewhat, but this could be done easily by replacing the interval endurance runs with normal runs, and maybe do far fewer repetitions for a pace workout some times instead of these interval runs.  These are just a couple things that can be done to "modernize" this training system, but it's important to look at the different elements of the training done by Sumser and his athletes back then and see what results were produced and what the purpose of the workouts were using modern knowledge.  A lot can be learned from this article and be applied to modern training.

1980's

Steve Scott's 1981-1982 training Analyzed
    (The entire years training log can be found here-thanks to Bob Hodge)

week

LT/AT

Anaerobic

Fartlek

VO2

Hills

Sprints

Pace

Race

Mileage

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9/14

1

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

90

9/21

 

1

 

 

 

 

1

3:53-rd mile

85

9/28

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13:50-rd5k

97

10/5

 

 

 

1-10k

 

 

 

29:26-rd10k

86

10/12

 

 

1

 

1

 

 

 

85

10/19

1

 

 

1-10k

1

 

 

 

95

10/26

1

 

 

1-10k

1

 

 

 

90

11/2

 

 

1

1-10k

 

 

 

28:47-rd10k

85

11/9

1

 

 

 

1

 

 

10k-1st

95

11/16

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

70

11/23

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

XC

80

11/30

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

10k-rd28:28

80

12/7

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

90

12/14

 

 

 

1-10k

1

 

 

28:50-rd10k

85

12/21

 

 

1

 

 

 

 

 

50

12/28

 

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

80

1/4

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

76

1/11

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

8:36-2mi, 3:55-1mi

80

1/18

2

1-1Mi/1200 pace

1

 

 

 

 

3:58-1mi, 3:37-1500

80

week

LT/AT

Anaerobic

Fartlek

VO2

Hills

Sprints

Pace

Race

Mileage

1/25

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2:20-1k,         3:54 -1mi

75

2/1

1

1-light

 

 

 

1

 

3:58

75

2/8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3:55-indoors, 4:00-1mi tact

35

2/15

 

1-SR

 

 

 

 

 

3:55-5th,   4:00 -2nd

60

2/22

1

1-1mi, LR

 

 

 

 

 

4:03-5th

85

3/1

3

 

 

 

1

 

 

29:26-1st-10k

80

3/8

2

 

1

 

1

 

 

 

95

3/15

1

 

1

 

1

 

 

 

95

3/22

1

 

1

 

1-200m

 

 

 

93

3/29

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

3:31-rdmile

85

4/5

1

 

 

1-3k -pace

1-110m

 

 

2miTT-8:53

95

4/12

 

1-2k-1kpace

1

 

 

 

 

4:01-1st

85

4/19

1

1/2

 

1

1-110m

 

 

13:52-5k-1st

90

4/26

2

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

91

5/3

 

2-1mi (SR+LR)

 

 

 

 

 

 

85

5/10

 

1-1mi

 

 

 

 

 

3:52-1mi

80

5/17

1

1-1mi-SR(LR)

1

 

 

 

 

 

85

5/24

1

1-800m

 

 

1-100-200m

 

 

 

85

5/31

 

1-800m

 

 

 

 

1

1:46.64-800m

70

week

LT/AT

Anaerobic

Fartlek

VO2

Hills

Sprints

Pace

Race

Mileage

6/7

1

1-800m

 

 

 

 

 

3:54-1mi 1st

77

6/14

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

3:39 and 3:34 wins-1500

58

6/21

1

 

 

 

 

1-hard strides

1-800

3:48-1mi

70

6/28

 

 

 

 

 

1-hard strides

1-800

3:35-1500-1st, "1:45.06-800

61

7/5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3:47-1mi-1st, 1:45.28

58

7/12

 

 

 

 

 

 

1-800

3:32-1500-1st, 7:40-3k-5th

45

7/19

1

 

 

 

1

 

 

 

95

7/26

 

 

 

 

1-100m

 

 

 

95

8/2

 

2-(1-LR)-1mi

 

 

 

 

 

 

85

8/9

1

1-1mi

 

 

 

 

1

4:58-2k

38

8/16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3:34-1500-3rd, 1k-2:20, 800-1:46.7-4th

42

8/23

 

 

 

1-rabbited 5k

 

 

 

3:49.7-1mi-1st, 1k-2:17

45

8/30

1

 

1

 

 

 

 

2k-4:54-2nd, 3:51-1mi-2nd

54



    In analyzing Steve Scott’s training it’s important to know that we are only seeing one year of his training.  His lifetime mileage and fitness can not be seen with this limited data.  In addition to this there are no paces for normal runs, no explanation of fartleks, sometimes no lengths of hills, and occasionally no rest interval given during workouts.  This means that it is hard to completely analyze his training, but I’ll do the best I can with the given information.  I tried to clear some of the confusion up by e-mailing Steve Scott and asking him to clear up some things. He was extremely helpful and my assumptions turned out to be mostly correct. First off when he says a hard run, I assumed it was at LT pace, and Mr. Scott confirms this as he said his hard runs were done at Anaerobic Threshold pace, normally about 5 minute pace.  For Fartleks, I assumed that they were aerobic capacity or LT fartleks.  Again, my assumption turned out to be mostly correct as he said that the fartlek paces vaired with some being at LT pace and some being faster.  For hill workouts, he ran up the hills at mile effort (not pace as he pointed out, there is a big difference) with a jog down recovery.  His normal runs he considered pretty high end aerobic as they were done at 6min pace and below.  When workouts do not include paces or when hills don’t include distances I will look at similar workouts or hills given and make assumptions based on that.  Any information regarding if these assumptions are correct or wrong is encouraged.  Feel free to e-mail me.  Besides the assumptions, I think it is very helpful to look at past runners running logs.  The danger is looking at too little of a period and making assumptions based on the little information.  A year, however, is a good amount of time to look at as you will get to see the runners’ progression through several phases of training and not just see the last couple of weeks before the main competition, which is what is often given for example training logs.

            The first thing you notice when looking at Scott’s log is the consistency in the distances he runs for normal runs.  Throughout the log, it looks like he runs either 5mi or 10mi on a normal basis, with an occasional 15 miler.  There are occasional times when he runs a mileage number between these, but it is remarkable how many runs are either 5mi or 10mi.  What does this mean?  Well consistency is key, and running the same distances may not, as some coaches think, lead to staleness or a lack of stimulation.  Another thing that can be seen is that Scott stays remarkably consistent with his mileage numbers throughout most of the year.  He seems to keep it in the 80-90s for most of the year, with only the occasional short drop.  Even when he is racing it seems to stay within the 70’s and doesn’t drop significantly until he is racing on the European track circuit with sometimes two races per week.  One more thing that sticks out is the amount of races Scott ran.  It seems as if Scott is always in top, or relatively top shape for the distances he’s running at the time.  The early races during the winter are road or XC races that are longer.  Then he gets more race specific over the course of the year.  One reason Scott may have been able to race so much is that he allows for recovery between races.  He never seems to work out hard more than twice per week with the rest being aerobic runs.  Now we’ll look at a breakdown throughout the year of workouts.

            For the first couple of weeks, it seems as if it is almost entirely mileage with a little bit of intensity added as he progresses.  Fartleks or “hard” runs, which are LT runs, just unscheduled.  It’s interesting to see that in the 3rd week he runs a mile road race and to prepare for this he does some faster anaerobic work, such as the 800 in 1:50.  But it should be noted that this was done to probably prepare for this one race, and it was only a 200 then an 800 at 5 seconds off his PR.  Thus it was probably intense during the 800 but there was a low volume of work.  The other anomaly workout done was done between mile and 3k pace in short intervals so it again wasn’t a high intensity anaerobic workout.  Besides that one anomaly week, the rest of the winter season looks like a progression.  He does numerous aerobic capacity workouts, done mostly in 1,000m repeats.  Thus he’s working on his aerobic capacity, and these 1,000m repeats are what some would call VO2max intervals.  It should be noted that he changes the Aerobic capacity workouts up slightly each time he does them, but they all accomplish the same thing.  His changing of the workouts could be seen as a progression with more intensity added as he progresses.  In addition to this he does a good deal of hill work.  Some of the hill lengths aren’t specified while some are.  The large number of 120 hills can be seen as a Creatine Phosphate workout, with the benefit of strength from the hills.  These hills are very important in his training sessions as this is where Scott most likely worked his Fast twitch muscle fibers.  The hills were run at mile effort and the rest was a jog down recovery.  In addition to this fartleks were prevalent in his training.  These are most are lactate threshold and aerobic capacity work depending on the fartlek.  Also, “hard” runs are seen throughout (threshold runs).  Either way, it can be seen that early in the year Scott has a heavy emphasis on aerobic development with supplemental hills to work on his speed, strength, and fast twitch fibers.  His races tend to be longer too during this period, showing that he’s trying to develop his strength.

            As the year progresses Scott starts to add in some shorter repeats at in between mile and 3k pace.  Some examples of this are 10x300 at 45 w/ 300 jog or 8x200s in 30s.  These workouts are most likely transitions to get ready for harder anaerobic work at mile pace.  He tends to use races early on to get in shape too during the early months of the year.  Early weeks consist of mostly mileage with maybe one workout and one race.  Scott sticks with shorter repeats of 200 to 400m in length, but the interesting thing to note is that he does a limited number of them, before splitting them in sets and they are not extremely fast yet.  For example, instead of the traditional 10x400 Scott seems to do most of his runs at slightly over mile pace during this period and broken down, such as 4x400 then 2x400-2x200.  The thing to note about this is that because he’s breaking them into sets he gets a little bit of anaerobic work, but not enough to be one of those grab your knees and fall on the ground anaerobic workouts most of us think of.  This means that Scott is allowing time to let the lactic in his legs clear between sets, meaning he doesn’t get a huge lactic acid buildup.  In addition to this he does some speed endurance work with 150’s, 200’s, etc.  After what seems to be his “indoor” type season he takes a couple of weeks with a longer race, some more LT “hard” runs and some Aerobic capacity fartleks.  In addition hills are done too.  He also does some aerobic capcity workouts with longer repeats of 600 to 1,000m.  His paces for his shorter intervals still aren’t at mile for the most part.  Starting in mid April he starts to incorporate some Anaerobic Capacity work that comes at the end of his workouts. An example he does 8x300 at 3k pace then a fast 400 in 54, then 16x200 at 3k pace, then 400 in 51.  Scott seems to combine the anaerobic workouts so that they include both lactate tolerance and anaerobic capacity type runs in them.  At this time the repeats ranging from 200 to 800 are run at mile goal pace.  One important thing to note is that the anaerobic work is kept to a minimum with only about one anaerobic workout per week, with a maximum of two.  In addition he still does a fartlek and some type of lactate threshold “hard” runs every couple of weeks, such as his 3.5mi hard, 3 easy, 3.5mi hard).  Also some short hill work is done.

            As Scott hits the European track circuit racing scene, racing becomes the main focus.  If he races twice in a week it seems as though those are his only hard efforts, with maybe some 200s at pace or some faster than pace workouts being done that are extremely low volume (such as 5x200s at 800 pace with 200 jog).  Thus for these couple of weeks, racing is the important thing.  He’s put in the work then the races keep his anaerobic capacity up, and he uses easy mileage for recovery and to keep his aerobic system up.  One of the most important things to take away from Scott’s training is that he has an excellent balance of hard and recovery work.  He very rarely does more than 2 hard workouts per week.  In addition he shows good progression working on the longer stuff first with longer races, more LT runs and aerobic capacity work.  He starts his training with longer repeats at slower paces then slowly increases the pace and decreases the distance of the repeats.  He stays away from anaerobic work for a while before slowly integrating it.  It should be noted that he doesn’t ever do a large number of highly intense intervals such as 10x400s at mile pace, but tends to break them into sets or vary the distance from 200 to 400 to 800.  As he gets closer to peaking he adds some anaerobic capacity work where he’ll finish his workouts with a very fast 400 or something to that effect. In addition he adds some faster shorter runs that work on pure speed and the creatine phosphate system.  Scott has an excellent mix of all the systems throughout the year.  Even when he starts the season he still mixes in elements of all of the systems and does fartleks, threshold, and short hill repeats throughout.
    Steve Scott ran what would still be a highly competitive and medal contending mile time.  In looking at this years training it can be seen that it’s nothing revolutionary.  It’s just a great blend of using all systems and not overtraining by limiting the amount of hard workouts per week.

Note: After I wrote this, I e-mailed Steve Scott to clear some things up in his training.  I have adjusted the article to represent what he said, but in case you read it before I made the adjustments and don't want to reread the whole thing, here's a summation:

(Sources: Bob Hodge's website that gives Scott's 1981-1982 training log AND Se-mail correspondence with Steve Scott to clear up some things)
thanks to Bob Hodge and Steve Scott for the log and information

Harry Wilson- Coach of Steve Ovett

            Harry Wilson was most known as the coach of world record holder and gold medalist, but he also coached other notable British runners.  Before we get into the core of his training beliefs, looking at some of the extra stuff he had his athletes do is needed.  Wilson seems to have placed some emphasis on running technique, or form, and making it as efficient as possible.  In his book, Running My Way, he shows pictures of what he considers good form, and also suggests doing different exercises to help alleviate inefficiencies in the runners form.  These include doing hill runs to improve leg strength.  The hills ranged from steep grass or sand hills of 60-100m, or long 300-500m hills.  For the short hills he recommends 8-10 reps with a slow walk down rest period.  For the longer reps, he suggests 6-8 reps with a quick jog down.  In addition to hills used for strengthening legs, Wilson also suggested strong stomach and back muscles, stretching and some arm exercises.  These include push ups, sit ups, squat thrusts, and various light weight arm exercises.  Other form drills suggested are sprint drills such as bounding, high knee lifts and quick stepping.  Now on to the training of his runners.

            Wilson’s training ideas included a very long, 24 week, base period where aerobic development was stressed.  During this period aerobic runs were done that were either easy (recovery), medium, or fast “steady-state” runs.  By looking at other sources, it can be seen that easy steady-state runs were done at 7minute pace, medium paced aerobic runs were probably done at 5:45-6min pace, and hard aerobic efforts done at around 5:20-5:30 pace.  These paces are based on 5mi and 10mi runs recorded by one of Ovett’s training partner (35min for 5mi, 58/60min for 10mi, 52-55min for 10mi).  Wilson divides the 24 week period into 4 or 5 week periods.  Wilson divides the training for aerobic running into categories of easy, medium, and high aerobic levels. The first 4 weeks, 100% of the training is low level, the next 4 weeks 95% is low level and 5% med/high level, the next 5 weeks is 80% low level and 20% med/high level.  After this the next 4 weeks is 75% low level and 25% med/high level.  Then a reduced load week is included and then another increase occurs in intensity the last 6 weeks with 70% being low/medium level and 30% high level aerobic.  In addition to steady state runs, aerobic repeats with short recovery are used.  These include repeats of 6x1000m w/ 30-60sec rest, or 4x2000m w/ 1-2min recovery jogs.  No times are given for these repeats, but it is suggested that the pulse rate be kept at around 150-160bpm during the interval at the start of the base period.  As the period progresses, the pulse is allowed to raise 15 beats above this level for higher end aerobic running.  In addition to this aerobic training during the base period, a small amount of anaerobic training and pure speed is done.  This is done to “keep the fast-twitch muscle fitness ticking” and to “remind your body of the other energy process.”  The mileage during this period for a runner such as Steve Ovett was reported to run an average of 100mpw with a high of 120.  In addition to this, Wilson recommends one recuperation day per week which consists of an easy relaxed run. 

To give you an idea of this training during the “Endurance” or Base Phase, a typical early week for a 1,500m runner running twice per day, would consist of two medium-steady-state runs, two fast steady-state runs, and the rest easy steady state runs.  A middle week would consist of two longer aerobic repeats, one fast steady run, two medium steady runs, and the rest easy runs with 30min of sprint drills and 15min of mobility exercises included.  A later week towards the end of this phase would consist of two days of long repeats, one medium steady run, one progressive run (8km steady, 1mi easy, 1mi fast), one day of 8x400m with 300m jog at a pace 4 or so seconds slower than mile pace, and sprint and mobility drills.  In addition to this cross country races are sometimes raced during this phase.

The next phase of Wilson’s training is the pre-competition phase.  This period lasts 13 weeks and is broken into cycles of 3 weeks, 3 weeks, 1 recuperation week, 3 weeks, and 3 more weeks.  Broken down in percentage of what to focus on for a 1,500m runner it looks like this:

Type of training

3 weeks

3 weeks

1 week

3 weeks

3 weels

Endurance

70%

65%

Recuperation week

60%

54%

Intervals and Fartlek

20%

25%

 

15%

12%

Speedwork

5%

5%

 

5%

5%

Strength & mobility

5%

5%

 

5%

5%

Repetition

0

0

 

15%

12%

Race Practice

0

0

 

0

12%

 

	Now to define what Wilson means by these terms.  The basis of many of these training stimuli was to 
improve oxygen debt tolerance according to Wilson. Interval training was a variation on Reindell and
Gerschlers original interval training in that the heart rate was stressed to 180 bpm and then during the
recovery returned to 120bpm, then the stress repeated. Wilson is big on progressing these workouts
as your fitness improved. This could be done by decreasing rest, increasing pace, increasing the number
run, or increasing the distance run. Some examples given of this type of training for a 3:42 1,500m runner
 is 8x400m in 62 with 200m jog, , 6x500m hill with jog down, or 12x200m with 200m jog. In addition to
 these workouts sometimes ladder workouts such as 3x800, 4x400, 5x200 and set workouts such as
3x 5x400m with 200 jog and 400m jog between sets. Besides regular intervals, Wilson used what he
considered high intensity intervals too. These were described as “sets of small numbers of very fast
repetitions with only a short recovery between the fast runs, but a significantly longer recovery between
sets.” An example of this might be a couple sets of 4x400 in 58/60 with 30sec rest between intervals
and 4/5 minutes between set. Another variation of intervals is relaxed intervals. This is when you
run a set of intervals but try and run them as smooth as you can without pressing. An example of
this might be 8x300 in 42 when you could press and run these all in 40-41. This is often used in
between races to get benefits of interval training while working on running a fast pace as relaxed as
possible without tension.
Repetition training is another form of training used by Wilson. It is defined as running repetitions
over a given distance at a high quality and with more rest than interval running. The pace should be at
or faster than race pace. An example of this type of training would be 3-4x800m in 2 minutes with a 4
minute recovery, or 2x2000m at 5k pace with 5 minute recovery. Wilson uses this during the late
pre-competition period and during the early competition period. Race Practice sessions is a type
of interval training where you practice what could occur in a race, such as surges or going out fast.
Wilson further classifies them into different interval types where the pace is either slowed or sped or
varied throughout. These include Split intervals (3x400m w/ first 200m slower than pace, 2nd 200m
faster), tired surges (400m faster than race-pace, 100m jog, 100m sprint), pace injectors (600m broken up
into 200m at race pace, 200m at 2/3sec faster than race pace, and 200m at race pace), and pace increases
(600’s increasing pace by 2sec every 200m). Strength and mobility has already been talked about in the
beginning and include drills, push ups, sit ups, etc. Speed work includes short sprints such as 3x60m
accelerations and variations on these, including 60m split up into acceleration and striding among the
three 20m sections (ex: 20m fast, 20m stride, 20m fast). In addition to this short hills can be
included into this.
The next period of training was called the Track competition phase. The main work has already been
doing leading up to this period and the main purpose was to race and maintain fitness between these races.
As Wilson put it “your training should be sufficiently comprehensive to maintain all the various aspects of
fitness, yet not so severe that it takes away the freshness that is needed to produce good race
results.” Also, he suggests that there is no need to continue trying to set workout PR’s during this time.
Wilson gives samples of two week cycles between main distance races. These cycles include two relaxed
intervals, one race practice session, and a repetition session in the 14 day period. In addition to these
main workouts, easy and steady runs are done, as are strides and some sprint and mobility drills.

Looking at Wilson's training from a Modern Perspective
    The first thing I noticed was the heavy emphasis on aerobic development. His athletes spent 24 weeks with the emphasis being on developing the aerobic system.  In cases like Ovett's, the mileage was also at a pretty high level.  Besides just pure mileage, there were variations on the distance run and the speed run for normal runs.  The intensity ranged from easy aerobic runs to high end aerobic runs.  The fast steady-state runs were no doubt walking on aerobic threshold and lactate threshold depending on the length of it.  In addition to this, the aerobic intervals, such as 6x1000m with 30sec rest, is a classic example of Lactate Threshold intervals.  So as you can see, the training does an excelent job of working on the entire spectrum of the aerobic system, from low quality aerobic runs to working on the lactate threshold with higher quality threshold runs or threshold intervals.  Besides aerobic development, mobility and sprint drills were used too.  Spring drills included either short hill sprints, 60m accelerations, or bounding and high knee drills.  Doing this type of work during the endurance, or base, phase shows that you can not neglect a certain system for an extended period of time.  Even while the aerobic system was emphasized, these short sprints worked on the neuromuscular system, including the creatine-phosphate energy system.  Later in the period a small amount of faster repeats are called for on the track, to keep the anaerobic system in check.  This doesn't seem like the gut renching anaerobic stuff that will later come, but more of an introduction to and transition to anaerobic training.  Again, this emphasizes Wilson's belief that you can never get to far away from one energy system.  All of them need to be worked throughout, but you emphasize different ones at different times of the year.  One interesting thing to note, is that there is a lack of the traditional long run in Wilson's training.
    After a lengthy endurance phase, Wilson's training progresses into a 12 week cycle where harder workouts take center stage.  Endurance work is still done throughout, but it doesn't take the main emphasis.  It looks as though endurance workouts become more low and medium steady-state runs, so that the medium runs serve the purpose of maintening the aerobic system, and the low intensity runs serve the purpose of recovering between harder workouts.  It also should be said that the aerobic intervals, that work on the lactate threshold, are still done throughout this period.  This continuing to work on the Lactate threshold ensures that the anaerobic work does not lower, or take away from, the lactate threshold which occurs if too much anaerobic work is done with not enough support from LT work.  There's not a lot of what we'd call aerobic capacity workouts in Wilson's training for a 1,500m runner.  In looking at his 5k/10k training more of that is present because it is race specific.  In later stages, the aerobic intervals could be considered a form of aerobic capacity, or VO2 training, as he says that you can raise the pulse from the 150/160 range to the 175 range at times.  This would seem to work the aerobic capacity, but it's not clear.  Also, fartlek's migh have been a form of aerobic capacity training for the 1,500m runner.  The main part of his training during this period was the regular intervals.  These appear to be your classic anaerobic intervals of 200+ meters in length.  I would term these as lactate tolerance workouts as they are run at about mile pace with relatively short rest.  In addition to this type of anaerobic training, repetitions are done.  These are longer efforts at race pace, or faster than race pace efforts that are more intense then regular intervals, thus requiering more rest.  These are just like what I called in the training section Anaerobic Capacity workouts.  It's interesting to see that Wilson also includes pace changing workouts that may help in the athletes ability to kick, start out fast, or surge during races.  In addition to these types of anaerobic training, speed work, or sprint work, was included throughout.  Further showing the importance of continually working on the neuromuscluar system.  It also should be noted that long hills were included periodically in the training for strength.
    After this period, Wilson's athlete would go into the track competition phase.  During this phase racing was the emphasis and the goal was to maintain or slightly increase fitness.  In his book, he said that some of his athletes would like to be 90% fit coming into this phase and the final 10% was come from racing it self.  Anyways, during this time, the key is to maintain what you have spent the past 36 weeks building up.  For this reason, relaxed intervals are used as a kind of anaerobic maintenance workout.  They are run fast and hard, but not to your maximum.  This does the job of keeping you in touch with your anaerobic system without taxing it to the extreme.  Also, once every two weeks a repetition workout is done.  This serves a similar purpose as a "blowout" workout that I described in the training section.  It's an intense anaerobic workout, but there is plenty of recovery so the emphasis is on running the repeat, not the rest interval.  Besides this, one race practice workout may be done to get a sence of race pace, surging, and different race strategies.  Also, sprint work is still done, only at a reduced load.  The thing to take away from this period of training is that racing is number one, and everything else is done to maintain what you've built up.  Wilson's training does this well as there are some hard but not maximum effort workouts to maintain anaerobic abilities, easy and medium steady state runs to work the aerobic system, and sprint work to work the neuromuscular system.
    Perhaps the most important thing to take away from Wilson's training is that no system is ever neglected.  Throughout the year almost every system, whether it's aerobic, anaerobic, or neuromuscular, is worked on.  The difference is that a certain one is emphasized more during the different phases of training.  During each phase he works on developing the system to its max and then maintaining it through to the racing period.

Sources: Training My Way by Harry Wilson  and an article in the British Milers Club magazine on training with Steve Ovett

Steve Cram- Coach Jimmy Hedley
        Steve Cram was another one of the great line of milers that the British had in the 80's.  He had great range that extended from a 1:42.88 800m to a 13:28.58 5k.  He is perhaps best known for his then world record in the mile set at 3:46.32.  Because of his long career at a elite level, spanning from the end of the 70's to the early 90's, it is important to look at how he trained.  Cram had the same coach from the age of 10 years old on to the finish of his career.  That coach was Jimmy Hedley.  Unfortunately there are not many publications that contain any detail on Steve Cram's training, but the few that are around provide ample detail to give enough insight into how he trained that we can get the big picture.  The training was broken up into four basic periods (endurance, altitude, pre-competition, and competition).

A good summation of Cram's training can be found here
Looking at Cram's Training from my perspective:

Endurance Phase
       The most important thing to realize is the amount of time Cram spent on building an endurance base.  He spent approximately 22 weeks during this phase.  The mileage itself was pretty high for someone who was limited due to injury problems.  70-80 miles per week is a solid number, but more importantly is how he ran these miles.  The morning runs of monday through thursday were done at approximately 5:30 to 6:00 pace.  This would be a normal easy run for him and would be easy and refreshing considering they were only 4-5 miles.  These served the purpose of a short quick easy morning run to loosen up the legs, promote recovery, and get some aerobic benefits most likely.  The monday through thursday afternoon runs were where the important work was done.  These runs of 5-8 miles were much like what the Kenyans do.  They started out relatively easy and then progressed as the run went on.  The last two miles of these runs could be around 9 minutes!  Overall the average was was around 5 minutes per mile and these runs could be seen as an AT/LT session.  That means he was doing at least 4 LT runs per week during the base phase.  It's important to note that these runs were done by feel.  In an interview from coolrunning.com.au Cram was quoted as saying "
I never set out to run a set pace in my training...
But occasionally, there are going to be days when you're feeling tired and you just go out and jog. So don't get the impression that every run is done at five-minute mile pace."  In addition to the large amount of LT running, numerous longer races (2-10mi in length) were run during this period and a long run of 10-14 miles at roughly 6 minutes per mile was done.  The races would serve as a VO2 stimulus.  In addition to this, all of the afternoon runs were run over courses that had hills ranging from 150-500m.  When once of these hills was come upon, a fast surge up it would take place.
       Breaking it down, the endurance phase consisted of about 4 AT/LT sessions per week, a long run, on most occasions a race, and a bit of hill work.  The fact that this was done for 22 weeks shows how much emphasis was put on developing the aerobic system and the lactate threshold.
       After the endurance period was a 3 week stay at altitude.  This was done as much for the altitude effect as it was for psychological effects.  During these three weeks the training was much the same as it was for the endurance phase.

Pre-Competition Phase
   
      

1990's-2000's

Kenyan Training:
    The information for this section will be continually updated as I learn more about their training.  The sources are articles written by runners who have gone over there and experienced the kenyan training methods and books by others with first hand knowledge.  Sources used so far include:

mariusbakken.com   , the article: Running through Kenya by Scott Douglas, the book: Paul Tergat: Running to the Limit, an article: Life in the slow lane: by Scott Douglas

    The first thing that I noticed when looking into the Kenyan way of training is the importance of Progression runs.  These are runs that start out at a very slow pace, then gradually increase over time until they get to a pace at about Lactate Threshold pace.  This phenomenon has been mentioned in almost every article you read.  It's most likely used in an unstructured way in the young kenyans, and then is added to the schedule as they get in more defined training groups.  The progression run can be seen in elite coaches who coach kenyans such as Renato Canova and Gabriel Rosa. In fact Rosa is quoted as saying on page 145 of Paul Tergat's book that "My top athletes start maybe at 4'20'' per kilometer and end the session at 3'20'' to 3'10''.  I am a strong supporter of so-called progressive running."  The big emphasis on such progression runs shows that LT training is a central key to kenyan running.
    Let's start off with the typical training day.  It seems as though during their Cross-Country or winter training most kenyans adhere to either a 3 times a day training regime or a 2 times a day training regime. For the athletes running 3 times a day, it seems to be cut to 2 times as the year progresses and they get closer to competition. I'll start off looking at the 3 times a day running.
    The day is split into 3 sessions per day with the first one starting at 6 am.  This session is usually the lightest of the day with it being easy running.  Sometimes this session can be extremely slow, almost walking pace.  They refer to it as "opening up the lungs."  The training run is in general about 30-40 minutes long.  The next training session is at 10 am.  This is considered the main training session of the day and is the most intense.  This is where interval training, fartlek, or threshold running occurs.  The last session occurs between 4 and 5 pm.  It is normally an easy to medium run and occasionally hard depending on the earlier days sessions.  Now how do kenyans deal with training three times a day?  Easy, they take lots and lots of rest.  Between sessions they do  very little but rest.  Paul Tergat sums up the time spent after each session as his routine of shower, tea, rest.  In addition to the massive amounts of rest during the day , they are in  bed for sleep at between 9-9:30 pm every night.  The normal meal tiimes during this type of training are 7:30 am for breakfast, 1pm for lunch, and  7:30 pm for dinner.  If they are only training twice per day, then according to Paul Tergat, he runs at before 9am and 5pm.  The days spent training vary based on the group.  Some groups spend 7 days training, while others spend 6.  The ones who spend 6 take sunday as a day of rest.  The ones who spend 7, use sunday as an easy to medium day where they only run once.  This is most likely because Sunday is seen as the day to go to church so the training is done early before church, and the rest of the day is spent going to church and resting.  Now what kind of training do they do during these sessions?
    The training sessions generally consist of one of the following sessions based on what training group and coach you are under:

Just to add a little bit to the above.  During winter training it seems as if they don't do a lot of on the track stuff.  They get their LT and VO2max work early in the year through fartleks and high pace running.  Their speed and strength and working on the Creatine Phosphate system seem to be done through striding and hill training.  As they enter track season more quality is added and the traditional track workouts start.  Some examples of these sessions done by Paul Tergat include 10x1,000m in 2:33 with 1:30 recovery.  This looks like a typical VO2max workout at 3k or slightly slower.  Another workout is 1x3,000m in 8:10 with 2min recovery, then 2x2,000m in 5:15 with 2min recovery.  This workout is longer in duration, thus done at about 10k pace.  In addition to this shorter repeats of 400m are done at mile pace or faster.  One example is 10x200, 10x300.  Tergat's schedule shows him doing 25x 1minute fast, 1 minute slow runs for short training before his marathon world record.
    Not as much information is present about kenyan training during the track season.  It is clear that they add shorter more intense intervals.  Dr. Rossa was quoted as saying that during their training stay in St. Moritz to prepare for the second half of the season Tergat's training before his 10km World record consisted of "about 210km a week and on a daily basis he underwent a more or less demanding workout- Rosa calls it a "technical training session." In specific, three of these technical training were done on the track and three on the grass.  On the track, we talk about intervals; on the grass, mostly diagonals (Running to the Limit pg 88).  Rosa goes on to say on the same page that "I came with the mentality and the knowledge of somebody who used to coach Europeans.  Only after some time I realized that they (kenyans) are able to cope with a much tougher training regime."  The kenyans ability to handle more stress could be due to the fact that they have spent such a long time establishing a bigger lifetime base then their european or american counterparts.  It should be noted that many have observed that while training on the track, the kenyans push themselves obviously, but never seem to go over the edge like many american HSers do.  They don't drop dead tired after the end of hard track sessions.  Their abilty to hit exact efforts is amazing and must contribute to their success.  This is similar to Lydiard's suggestion that when doing anaerobic training you should stop right before you hit the edge.  He said that you should stop when you feel you could do maybe one more interval.
    Now how do they put all the different training sessions together to form a program?  Well this is the difficult part, because we only have knowledge of people staying with kenyans for a relatively short time (from weeks to a month or so, not years), and incomplete training logs that only last a couple weeks at maximum.  I have more data on XC or winter training then track training so I will present that first.
    Winter training schedule
    The typical kenyan winter training schedule that I've seen consists of 3 runs per day.  As I said above the athletes run only once on Sunday, and on one to two other days run only twice.  Early morning runs normally range between 40-60 minutes of easy to medium running.  The long run is dependent on the individual it seems, but shorter distance runners and younger ones seem to run between 70 and 90 minutes with older or longer distance runners running up to 30km (such as Tergat in preparation for World XC).   Now I'll seperate it between the info for Tergat and others.
    Dr. Rosa's Kenyan XC training sample weeks
(Source: Paul Tergat: Running to the Limit)
     Tergat's XC training for the 4 weeks preceding World XC's consisted of the above attributes, except that he took Sundays off and ran long on mondays.  In addition to the easy supplemental runs, he seemed to do two two to three key intense workouts per week.  On one week he did a 8km high speed run and a 10km fartlek, supplemented with two runs at medium pace of 15-18km,with the rest being easy supplemental runs, coordination, circuit training, and flexibility work.  On the next week he did 25x 200, 25x200m up a steep hill at 75-80% effort, and a easy fartlek of 3,2,1,30sec for 15km.  Again this was supplemented with two medium runs and easy runs in between the tuesday, thursday, saturday workouts.  The next week he his main workouts were 12km of high speed and 25x100m hill at 75-80% effort.  The week of the race there was nothing but easy running.
    Looking at this type of XC training it can be seen that even in the weeks leading up to the race he did some hill workouts for strength, some high speed running that we'd consider LT or high end running, and a fartlek that we'd consider VO2max or aerobic capacity training.  Along with some 200's at an unspecified pace and plenty of medium to high end aerobic training.

    The training I'm about to mention is from a two week period for young athletes preparing for an XC season.  The training is similar to Tergat's in many aspects.  During the two week period the main workouts seem to be hill training of 200-300m, diagonals and striding of 200-300m, speed training of 10x200, 10x300, 40min to 12km of high pace running, and a fartlek.  The rest is easy to medium running between 30-60minutes with a long run of only about 70 minutes.  In addition to this they do exercises which we have to assume is similar to Tergat's circuit training.  Rosa says that during this time the objective is aerobic training and speed endurance.
    Brother Colm O'Connel's Winter training
    The training by St. Patricks for the winter is either two or three times a day depending on I'm guessing the athletes ages, since the younger ones are probably in school, they do twice a day, while the older ones are out, so they do three times a day.  When in training camps they seem to train three times a day too.
    The training is remarkably similar to that of Dr. Rosa's athletes.  Most mornings are 30-45min of easy running.  They do other runs at easy or medium pace to supplement the main training.  You also see the hills in this system, such as 12x200 up steep hills.  In addition to this they also have one to two high pace running sessions, and one fartlek session per week.  Striding/diagonals and gym exercises are also present.    In looking at this training you can see that all the ingredients are there for a succesful base and XC season.  They do hills, LT training (high pace), VO2max training (fartleks), speed maintenance (strides/diagonals), and recovery runs.  The important thing to take away from this is that this is the training they do for XC and base.  How many americans do you see doing this kind of stuff pre competition?  Most just log miles upon miles without change, or go heavy into anerobic training.  Notice that they aren't doing really intense anaerobic training really year round like some people suggest. 
    What you should take away from this is that there needs to be some quality running year round (except for during a break or mileage build up).  That's why if you read my training section I suggest doing LT running, hills, and some long (pace work) striders throughout the so called "base" period.

My High School Training
    My training log is available to download on the main page.  When downloaded, look at the 2002-2003 year for my High School XC and track seasons.
    When developing a training program for yourself, it's important to look back and see what worked and what didn't work.  Therefore in this section, I will look back at the training I did in High School under my coach, Gerald Stewart.  I'll try and be objective as I can, by breaking down each workout into a category (Lactate Threshold, VO2, anaerobic, neuromuscular, or rhythm work) based on what it does to the body physiologically.  First off, let's start with track.

Analysis of Senior year-HS Track
    The winter before track season was spent getting up to a high amount of mileage, and then staying consistant there.  Once I got up to the desired mileage, some hill repeats were added that consisted of running hard up a 200m sand hill then walking or jogging down.  In addition to this some threshold work was done in the form of threshold fartleks, and some higher end aerobic runs such as 10mile AT runs.  After this base phase I moved into a period of about 6 weeks where VO2 was emphasized, and then 6 weeks where anaerobic work was emphasized.  At the end of these 12 weeks came my peak race.  Following the peak race, I went into 6 weeks of maintening my peak until the Prefontaine classic, which would be my last main race.  During this maintenance time anaerobic work was continued, but lactate threshold work was reemphasized to keep the anaerobic work from hurting my lactate threshold and aerobic system which I had spent developed.  Throughout the whole training cycle neuromuscular workouts were done sporadically throughout, as were pace or rhythm workouts in the form of 200's which also seemed to work as maintenance VO2 workouts in some cases.  Here's the breakdown in chart form of the 12 weeks leading up to the peak race, and the 6 weeks of maintening the peak:

(key: LT=lactate threshold           AT=aerobic threshold            Aerobic Capacity=VO2 workouts          
   SR=short recovery meaning 1:1 ratio or less               LR=1:4 run:rest ratio or more)
*Number under category represents how many of those workouts were done during that week.  If 1/2 is seen, then that means some form of work on that system was included in a combination workout.  Races not included as workouts.

Week #

LT or AT

Anaerobic

Aerobic Capacity
(VO2)

Neuromuscular

Pace workout

Mileage

12/2

 

 

 

1

 

90

12/9

 

 

 

1

 

93

12/16

 

 

 

1

 

94

12/23

1

 

 

1

 

100

12/30

1 and 1/2

 

 

1

 

107

1/6

2

 

 

2

 

94

1/13

2

 

1/2

 

1

92

1/20 -12 wks out

1

 

1

1

 

90

1/27

1

 

1

1

 

91

2/3

 

 

2

 

 

91

2/10 (9:06)

 

 

2

 

 

81

2/17 (1:53 and 4:16)

 

 

1

 

1

83

2/24

2

 

 

1

 

91

3/3 (4:08)-6 wks out

 

1-LR

1

 

 

81

3/10 (1:53)

1

1-SR

 

 

1

82

3/17 (4:03 and 1:52)

 

 

2

 

 

81

3/24 (2:56)

 

1-LR

1

 

1

82

3/31

 

2(1-LR,1-SR)

1

 

 

80

4/7 (4:01)- PEAK

1

1-SR

 

 

 

70

4/14

1

1-SR

 

1

 

81

4/21 (4:07 Tactical)

1

 

 

 

1

68

4/28

1

1-SR

1

 

 

82

5/5 (4:03)

1

1-SR

 

 

 

62

5/12

 

2-LR

 

1

 

71

5/19 (4:01mile)

 

 

 

 

1

57

5/26

 

1-SR

 

 

 

78

6/2

 

2

 

 

 

79

6/9 (4:07 mile)

 

 

 

 

1

50

    What to learn from this:
    First off, It should be said that the above training was put together by my High School Coach, Gerald Stewert.  I was into training back then and we frequently discussed training, but he was the architect of the training program.  Looking back on it now, it can be seen that what he designed for me my senior year in HS, is very similar to the way I have come to train now.  There are differences, but the basic principles remain.  Before the 12 weeks to peak running we did a base period where the emphasis was on mileage with some LT runs or fartleks and an occasional 10 mile AT run.  Once you enter the 12 weeks until the peak race, the emphasis immediately switches to VO2 workouts.  During this period, a couple AT/LT workouts are done to maintain what had been developed and improve on it slightly.  With six weeks to go, anaerobic workouts are brought into the picture.  While developing the anaerobic system is the key during this, you can see that some VO2 work is still done in order to maintain that system.  Once the peaking period was reached, Coach wisely added one LT/AT workout per week in order to maintain that system, because all of the anaerobic training could harm the LT if there was no maintenance or support for it.  In addition to the periodization, pace workouts (up to 16-20x200s) and sprint workouts were done sporadically throughout to keep me from getting too far from running fast.
It can be seen that I only needed about 6 weeks of hard anaerobic workouts to reach peak form, and only after 2 anaerobic sessions I responded by running near peak form (4:03), showing that I’m a quick responder to anaerobic workouts.  After this, I could maintain that form for another 6 weeks with some anaerobic workout supported by high end aerobic running.  After doing twelve weeks of anaerobic workouts, my racing form deteriorates slightly.

    The key thing to learn is that although the emphasis may be on one aspect, you still have to maintain the others.  This can be seen throughout my HS training, as although one aspect is emphasized, my coach made sure to touch on the other systems that had already been developed to prevent me from losing them.

An analysis of my college training:
2005
season-Last year in College

Week of

LT or AT

Anaerobic            


VO2 max

Neuromuscular
 or speed

Pace workout

Mileage

11/29

 

 

 

 

 

93

12/6

1

 

 

2

 

109

12/13

 

 

1

1

 

111

12/20

1/2

 

 

 

 

108

12/27

 

 

1

 

 

106

1/3

 

1-SR

 

 

 

109

1/10

 

1-SR

1

1

 

101

1/17 (1:55, short recovery, 3:05)

 

1

1

 

 

91

1/24

 

 

1

1

 

97

1/31 (1:53, 1:55)

 

1-LR

1

 

 

81

2/7 (4:04, 4:06)

 

 

1

 

 

77

2/15

1

2-LR

 

 

 

85

2/21 4:10(2:12,1:58), 8:33 both Tactical

 

1/2

1/2

 

1

81

2/28 (4:03) INDOOR ENDS

 

1

 

 

 

61

3/7

1

 

1

 

1

94

3/14

 

1-SR

 

1

 

96

3/21

 

1-SR

1

1

 

98

3/28 (paced 5k)

 

1/2

1/2

 

 

78

4/4

1

1-SR+LR

 

1

 

95

4/11 (3:53, 4:10)

 

 

1

 

 

80

4/19 (3:51)

 

1-LR+SR

1

 

 

76

4/25 (3:51)

 

1-SR+LR

 

 

1

67

5/2 (horrible 1500)

 

1/2

1

 

 

65

5/9 (14:32)

 

 

1

 

 

59

What I see and to learn from this:

The base built up came from CC, but there was very little high end aerobic running (LT or AT) done.  This meant that my aerobic system was not developed sufficiently.  VO2max and anaerobic was tried to be developed at the same time.  This might have resulted in more fatigue than necessary since both kinds of workouts are very intense.  This could also show why I ran relatively decent early, but had a huge drop off quickly.  Another thing that could explain my lack of being able to sustain form, was no high end aerobic running.  The amount of anaerobic workouts done was not supported by this high end aerobic running, thus my aerobic system deteriorated quickly, and that might explain why I would always “die” after 2 laps or so in races towards the end.

            Anyways, After only 4 anaerobic workouts and 6 VO2 workouts, I showed pretty good shape running 4:04, then coming back the next day and running 4:06.  This fits in with the idea that I respond relatively quickly to this kind of workout.  After 6-7 anaerobic workouts, I reach peak shape for the season running 4:03 indoors.  After 11 or so anaerobic workouts, and no high end aerobic support through LT or AT running, my performance dropped off drastically for the rest of the season, and no amount of VO2 or anaerobic training brought me out of it.  I think I was “fried” because of too much of those two kinds of workouts and not enough aerobic support through LT training.  After this, no matter how hard I trained with hard anaerobic or VO2 training, my racing got worse because that wasn't the problem.  The problem was that my high end aerobic system had been neglected for so long and had gone down the drain.  There was plenty of mileage to stimulate the aerobic development of the Slow twitch fibers, but no high end aerobic running to stimulate the aerobic development in the Fast Tiwtch fibers.  My Lactate threshold was probably pretty bad, meaning a rapid accumulation of lactate at lower intensities. Thus leading to bad racing.
    The main thing that should be taken away from this is that you cannot neglect certain systems for a long period of time. There wasn't enough balance between the working of all of the different systems.  This lead to certain fitness aspects to be too great, while others were too low to race succesfully.

*Note: This analysis is done in no way to put down my old college coach.  It's simply to learn from the training that was done and figure out why it didn't work during certain times of the year.



A Brief History of Interval Training:
Early (1800's-1920's Finn's)
  
The simple reason to run intervals is that it allows the runner to hit specific paces or training zones (such as LT, VO2max, Lactate tolerance, etc.) for a longer amount of time then would be spent in that zone if you just ran for a continous run.  Now way back in the day athletes didn't have the physiological knowledge to know what these "zones" were as science wasn't advanced enough yet, but through trial and error athletes decided that interval training was better than running flar out for a distance.  The reason for interval training back then was that it allowed you to run at a certain pace for a longer period of time, then if you just went out and ran at that distance.  Also it wasn't as taxing to run let's say 400 meters, rest, then more 400's at mile pace as it was a whole mile at mile pace.  Thus more work could be carried out.
    Throughout the history of training it's interesting to note the complete changes brought about in training ideas.  The training seems to switch from complete idea to complete idea with only a select few meeting in the middle.  One example of this is that of continous running and interval training.  In the early years continous running was all that was done, then as interval training was introduced, athletes would run intervals every day.  It wasn't until later when melding the two systems together became popular.  However, even with the melding of the two systems, it could still be seen that there is a likelihood to favor one system over the other, and this constantly changes throughout history.
    In early days, such as the days of Walter George, interval training wasn't used in it's modern sence.  For example, Captain Barclay's 1813 training program consisted of long walks done with an occasional run of 1/2 mile at top speed before breakfast and 1/2 mile at top speed after dinner.  Another athlete in the late 1800's WIlliam Cummings described his training as running a mile a day being mostly at a slow pace except for one or two times per week he'd run it faster.  This walking/running mix continued into the early 1900's.
    The first evidence of an athlete using interval training came by Joe Binks, a 4:16 mile runner in 1902.  He trained only one time per week with 30 minutes of exercise.  During this 30 minutes, he would run five to six 110-yard intervals at top speed, and then finish with a fast 200-300 yards.  Although no specifications beside this can be found, it can be seen that he ran several "sprints" at top speed with rest in between.  This is the first sign of interval training.  However any type of interval training would not catch on for another couple of years.  It's unclear exactly when interval training caught on but the Finnish runners can be attributed to the real rise of interval training.
    At around 1910 the Finns deviced a more systematic approach to interval training.  The credit for this method could be attributed to the Finnish coach Lauri Pikhala.  This training can be seen in the two greatest distance runners of their time, Paavo Nurmi and
Hannes Kolehmainen.  Kohlmemainen  was the 1912 Olympic Gold medalist in the 5k, 10k, and 8k Cross-Country race.  Unfortunately, he didn't leave a lot of details about his own training, but it can be seen in letters written to Paavo Nurmi in 1918, that he should include more training that included alternating fast and slow runs, or interval training.  One example of the interval training done by Nurmi is that of "4 to 7km with fast speed over the last 1 to 2km, finished off by four to five sprints (Noakes 273)."  Most of the training consisted of a set of short sprints of about 150m at 100% and then a run over a considerable distance (600-3,000m) at between 75-90%.

1930's-The Swedish Fartlek and Gerschler
    In the mid 1930's a Swedish coach named Gosta Holmer invented a different kind of interval training.  This would be "fartlek" training.  This fartlek training was a very informal type of training where you vary the speed based on the athletes feel.  This means you vary the speed throughout the run often times alternating fast/slow, or fast/medium, or medium/slow.  It was used by the Swedes successfully and made it way around the world and is still used throughout the world.  It's amazing the longevity of the fartlek training.  Two notable athletes who used this system were Gundar Hagg and Arne Anderson who were extremely close to breaking 4 in the pre WWII era.  During this same period the famous German coach Woldemar Gerschler came up with an interval training method based on heart rates to monitor effort.  In many ways, Gerschler's training would change how the world trained and be the basis of various training systems throughout the world.  This is where you will first notice the switch from primarily straight distance runs to a heavy emphasis on interval training.  Along with Dr. Herbert Reindel, Gerschler came about his method by the use of what was then modern science.  He measured heart rate and it's reaction to a training stimulus in over 3,000 people and decided that what they found represented the average person.  The idea of his training was that you stress the heart until 180 beats per minute, after this you allow it 1 minute and 30 seconds to get back down to 120-125 beats per minue.  If you take longer than this to recover, that means you went to fast or too long on your repeat.  If it takes shorter than 1:30 to recover, then the athlete should begin again once his heart rate hits that point.  Gerschler's training was done of mostly short repetitions of 100, 150, or 200m in length.  You conclude the workout once the heart rate is not able to return to the 120 level after 1:30 rest. Although known mainly for his vast amounts of shorter repeats, Gerschler employed the use of longer repetitions too.  It can be seen in some of Rudolf Harbig's training that he did repetitions that ranged from 100m to 2,000m in length, but this was built up over a long period of time, as he said you need to adapt to the shorter intervals before increasing to the longer intervals.  Gerschler believed that the heart was trained and adapted during the rest interval, not during the stressing of the heart part.  Therefore he thought the recovery was the main emphasis.  The beuty of the Gerschler rule to stop once the heart rate can't recover enough is that it controls the athlete.  IT prevents him from working too hard and overtraining.  He also advised a progression as you adapt more.  Instead of increasing the pace a great deal, he adviced increasing the amount and decreasing the rest.  The rest should decrease naturally as your heart rate should recover faster, the more fit you are.  Thus also enabling you to run more repetitions.  In later years it can be seent hat Gerschler introduced faster, almost anaerobic capacity work occasionally.  This can be seen in the training of Gordon Pirie who was a Gerschler disciple.  In addition to the interval training, he said that when racing season was upon him that he would do what he called "hyper-fast running."  This consisted of extremely fast runs from 400 to 2,000m in length at close to race pace for that distance.  Then as much as 20minutes rest was taken and you repeat this 4-8 times. After WWII came the emergence of Emil Zatopek who took interval training to the next level.
   The Zatopek Method
    The combination of Gerschler's interval training work and then the emergence of Emil Zatopek really propelled interval training to the forefront as the main method to prepare a distance runner.  Zatopek helped bring back the concept of interval training after a brief lull during the WWII era.  Zatopek's training was a rather simple concept, break the runs into shorter bursts so that he could run at an average faster speed.  His explanation can be seen when he said:
        "When I was young, I was too slow. I thought I must learn to run fast by practicing to run fast, so I         ran 100 meters fast 20 times. Then I came back, slow,slow,slow. People said, 'Emil, you are crazy.         You are training like a sprinter" and "Why should I practice running slow? I already know how to             run slow. I want to learn to run fast. Everyone said, 'Emil, you are a fool!' But when I first won the         European Championship, they said: 'Emil, you are a genius!'
         "If I run one hundred meters twenty times, that is two kilometers and that is no longer a sprint."                 Emil Zatopek

    Zatopek was one of the best runners ever and more importantly was extremely innovative in his training methods.  He won gold medals in the 1948 10k, and the 10k,5k, and marathon in 1952.  His training methods consisted of running an enormous amount of repetitions on various terrain and conditions.  He would often times run in heavy army boots to build up strength and resistance.  He also wore these boots because they were cheap and when training in the woods he didn't have to worry about rocks or twisting his ankle.  He would go to extreme ends to accomplish various training.  For example when he heard other athletes were lifting weights for strength, he experimented with running while carrying his wife on his back.  Another often told story is that of his wife telling him to do the laundry so he ran in place in the tub with the laundry soaking in it for an hour to get the laundry done.  His normal training however was a set of 400m intervals with about a 200m jog sandwiched in between five 150-200m repeats with same jog.  The paces are unknown for his intervals but they were said to vary widly.  In a couple of books by Fred Wilt (Run, Run, Run and How they Train) it speculates that the 400's were between 67 and 77 seconds with the 150-200m repeats a little faster, but no ones exactly sure.  The key is that zatopek ran by feel and varied the effort based on what he thought was right.  A typical Zatopek workout was 5x200, 20x400, 5x200 with 200m jogs in between.  Over the years zatopek increased his training load to include more and more repetitions getting up to 20x200, 40x400, 20x200 with 200 jogs for a workout.  The basis of his program was to develop what he called speed and stamina. 
    Besides the massive amount of intervals, Zatopek understood peaking to a degree.  He said in the book Running with the legends that "two weeks very intensive training, and one week easier, easier, easier, until I try for the record (pg 12)."  This shows that he understand you have to put in the hard training then let your body recover and adapt to the work you just performed.  The impact of Zatopek's training is that it took interval training to the next level.  Zatopek combined fast running with an enormous amount of intervals, thus covering a large amount of mileage per day.  He made the world realize how hard and far you could push your limits.  Fred Wilt summed it up best in the book How They Train when he said "Before Zatopek nobody realized it was humanly possible to train this hard.  Emil is truly the originator of modern intensive training."
    What may have been missed by others during Zatopek's own time is the fact that the main session of endless repetitions were not "speed work," but rather 5k to around marathon paced efforts.  This means he was working on predominately his aerobic system.  The repetitions run at the slower end of the 67-77 second range would function as high end aerobic running (AT or LT type training), while the reps done at the faster end of the range would work on his Aerobic power (VO2max type training). 
    It is also prudent to realise that his 400 repeats were not an entire workout where he was doing 50x400 hard. Part of the 400s were warmup and part cool down. "The first runs are always taken somewhat easier, then gradually speeded up, and then again tapered off towards the end of the training session." (Zatopek Zatopek Zatopek).
    While most of his training was done in repetition style, Zatopek aslo included other types of training into his regime.  In a sample of 26 days of his training that came from an article by J. Armour Milne in "Athletics Weekly", it can be seen that the majority of his intense training was done with 400 meter repetitions.  Occasionally a set of 5x200's done at either "normal" or "intensive" speed were done.  It can be assumed that "intensive" speed meant that Zatopek worked at speeds faster than the normal 67-77 second estimated range.  This assumption can be further justified by the fact that Zatopek had said that when he lacked stamina he would do more 400's and when he lacked speed he would do more 200s.  Because of this information, the 200's were probably used as what many would regard as speed work of mile effort or faster.  Besides these repetitions, he would also occasional do long jogging runs of 2 hours plus exercising.  It's not clear what "exercising" means exactly.  On a somewhat more rare occasion, short sprints were also listed as being done.  These facts should not be neglected.  The majority of Zatopek's training may have centered on the 400 repeats, but there were many other aspects to his training that showed Zatopek knew to work at a variety of paces and efforts.
    One more aspect of Zatopek's training to consider is the amount of miles he ran.  Fortunately his 1954 mileage totals were recorded and they are as follows in kilometers (Milne "Athletics Weekly")

January-600km
February-910km
March-935km
April-832km
May-780km
June-865km
July-712km
August-654km
September-600km
October- 600km
November-140km
December 260km
Total for year- 7,888km

Just for an example that 935km in March is averaging 145 MILES per week. Even more astonishing in January of 1955, he ran 1,057 km which is about 143ish Miles per week! For a period in February, for 5 days in a row he ran 40x400 in the morning w/ 200 jog and 40x400 in the afternoon with 200 jog. One of those days he did 50x400 in the morning and then 40 in the afternoon.  His mileage was definately high, even for modern standards.
    In one of her papers, phsyiologist Veronique Billatt suggests that the average effort of Zatopek's 400s was that of Critical Velocity.  Critical Velocity is a pace a tad faster than Lactate Threshold, but slower than 10k pace. So if we assume LT is a pace one could run for 1 hour and 10k pace is pace of about a 30min all out run, Critical Velocity would be about the pace for an all out 45minute run. So by seeing this, Zatopek's intervals were mostly aerobic in nature with a slight accumulation of lactate build up towards the middle or end most likely. Doesn't really matter because the intervals at CV pace would be similar to the benefits of an LT run or a "tempo" run, just with rest periods that allowed him to do so much volume of them.
 sources used:
"Visit with Dr. Woldemar Gerschler" by P. Sprecher
"Interval Training" by Professor Claude Smit
"Examination of Interval Training" by Toni Nett
Run, Run, Run by Fred Wilt
Running Through the Ages by Ed Sears
Run with the Champions by Marc Bloom
Lore of Running by Time Noakes
Running with the Legnends by Michael Sandrock
"
Important moments and concepts in the history and development of Intermittent training
" by Antonio Cabral