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Speed rather than Endurance Training

I've been reading Joe Friels blog and interestingly he talks about starting off with speed training for the novice triathlete rather than endurance. Has anyone tried this approach? Interesting set of articles he has written.



  • for a newbie, what use is being quick if you can't complete the distance?
    i'm no coach, but it does'nt make alot of sense,
    bolt may be quick over 200mts, put him in a 10k, well you can see where we're going....
  • risris Posts: 1,002
    i read that a bit differently, he says that he uses subsets of speed drills to get technique right in short bursts and slowly building the length of the intensity while maintaining a good technique.

    i would say that for the described method to work you need intense coaching at the start. if it is all about getting the right technique in short bursts then you need the guidance or it won't be as benficial.
  • HarryDHarryD Posts: 425
    Joe Friel does make a very valid point.

    For a novice it is surely better to get the technique right from the start. This should result in better efficiency & reduced risk of injury. Programme the body with correct technique and it will remain correct as distances are build up and endurance work introduced. We certainly accept that principle in swimming.

    There is a widely held belief with athletes and too many coaches that running technique is God given & unchangeable. This is nonsense. To race faster you have to work on technique as well as endurance, speed, LT & VO2. Unfortunately too many runners enjoy the endurance element (the easy part of endurance running at that) of training and neglect the others. Something I've also seen in triathletes.

    Speed work for an endurance athlete does not mean sprinting. It means running as fast as possible while maintaining the correct technique. Once technique breaks down you slow or stop. The main set of a typical speed session would be 5 to 10 x 100m with 3 minutes recovery. The coach would be looking for technical correctness (and feeding back to the athlete) rather than measuring time or HR. Working in group is difficult as athletes tend to race off each other rather than focussing on what they should be doing.

    As with all training: Train smarter not longer
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