Originally Posted by cxw
Dathan Ritzenhein ran a 2:10:00 marathon under Hudson. Since changing to Alberto Salazar, Ritzenhein has improved by 5 seconds (in 3 years). So either:
- A 2:10:00 marathon sucks OR
- Salazar also sucks as a coach OR
- You're being overly harsh on Hudson
In terms of giving runners a book to base their training on, most of them are not going to be in a position to measure lactate levels (I presume this is what you meant by lactait), so that sort of stuff's pretty academic. All that matters is the question as to whether the training advice makes people quicker.
Originally Posted by lylemcd
Fourth option: he was at his genetic limits and wasn't going to get much better no matter what he did. I suppose that falls into the third option sort of.
The type of training that gets people "faster" when they can already run 26.2 under 2:30 is different than the type of training that gets people "faster" when you're talking about breaking 3:30. IMO the latter has more practical implications from where I'm sitting (not an elite and not likely to be training elites).
When you're training someone in the top 0.1% of speed/strength/endurance/whatever, it's a lot harder to evaluate training methods. Progress is much slower and genetic potential has more impact on the results.
The discussion of measuring coaches of the elites has its own problems. Often the results of their athletes are more a product of their marketing and recruiting than a product of their training methods. Lots of Div I S&C coaches have really dumb lifting programs, but because they get to recruit the best of the drug-enhanced high schoolers and genetic freaks (or those that are both) by virtue of their prestigious institutions, their "results" look good from the outside.