Archives for Cross Country

The Healthy Runner Project

Over the last 50 years the training of distance runners has evolved from a process of trial and error testing, to specific event-centered progressions that are deeply based in the scientific method.  Exercise physiologists, cardiologists, and endocrinologists, working with training theorists, have provided a wealth of empirical evidence for coaches to use as a resource…

Workout Themes

One of the most important chores that a cross country coach does is to set the workout themes for the many daily sessions during the season.  The workouts must be compatible with the other workouts that are sequenced around each other, and themes must be appropriate for the time in the macrocycle in which they…

Shifting the Training Paradigm

Cross country running does not require a great deal of skill, a fact that makes physical conditioning of vital importance.  With little need to work on skill development, more and harder training is often seen as the only path to success.  Unfortunately, this path usually leads to injury, immune system problems, psychological burn-out, and a…

How to Train Sprinters Who Run Cross Country

 “SHOULD SPRINTERS RUN CROSS COUNTRY?” The question is often asked, “Should sprinters run cross country?”  You will hear some power/speed gurus quickly say unequivocally “NO!” because it will have a negative effect on an athletes speed qualities.  I think the question requires some deeper investigation. ANTI EARLY SPECIALIZATION I am happy to see that the…

Your Favorite Workout

Most cross country coaches have been running since high school and college, or newly enjoy running now.  There are some workouts that seem to always go very well for you, but others that result in an endless struggle.  From these workouts emerge favorites, but they may not be the best type of work for your…

The Secretions of a Winner

It has been jokingly said that 83% of statistics are made up on the spot in conversation.  Coaches do this all the time, as they say such things as: “give me 110% effort today” (huh?), “slow the second lap down to 95%” (again, huh?), or the classic line; “sports is 90% psychological and 10% physical”. …

Managing Your Phases and Periods

By now almost every cross country coach in America has had some contact with the basics of training theory.  This is quite a contrast from the 1980’s when only the most diehard coaches were familiar with the works of Tudor Bompa and others from the Eastern Bloc that had first organized sport training into chunks…

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