When to start training children for distance running
Research shows that, pound for pound, normally active 6- to 8-year-olds have V\od\O2max values as high as, or sometimes even higher than, recreational adult runners who train 30 to 40 miles (about 48 to 64 km) a week.
Flexibility is the capacity to move the limbs through a range of motion for optimally performing a given activity. Mobility is the skill of making coordinated movements in various planes, such as forward, sideways, and diagonally.
Given the physical demands of distance running, a fine line separates peak performance and injury risk. Over a long career, despite following a sound training program, few runners will completely avoid getting hurt, so it’s important for coaches, parents, and runners to know the causes, symptoms, and approaches to treating and rehabilitating running injuries.
Essential for coaches and parents of teen runners involved in cross country, distance track events, and road racing, Training Young Distance Runners draws on the latest scientific research to present easily understood and applied training plans plus guidelines for designing customized programs.
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As the best-selling guide in the sport, Training Young Distance Runners has helped countless runners achieve their best times, avoid injuries, and improve their performance progressively from season to season. Updated, expanded, and enhanced, this new edition further solidifies its standing as a must-have for athletes and coaches in cross country, track and field, and road racing.
Running experts Larry Greene and Russ Pate combine the latest research with training, development, and conditioning plans from the most successful high school and college programs in the world. You’ll learn to optimize performance through tempo running, interval training, and technique work to improve form. You’ll gain a competitive advantage with expert advice and strategies for event-specific training, avoiding injuries, and overcoming setbacks.
With guidelines for designing customized daily, weekly, and seasonal programs—as well as coverage of hot topics including nutritional supplements, barefoot running and minimalist shoes, and gearing training to the specific needs of girls and boys—Training Young Distance Runners is the most complete and current training guide for the sport. Essential reading for coaches, parents, and young runners, this book has everything you need to get and stay ahead of the pack.
Part I Running Fundamentals
Chapter 1 Peak Development Chapter 2 Teen Physiology Chapter 3 Optimal Nutrition Chapter 4 Champion Psyche Chapter 5 Form Fundamentals
Part II Training and Racing Programs
Chapter 6 General Training Methods Chapter 7 Race-Specific Training Chapter 8 Program Building Chapter 9 Planning Training Chapter 10 Dealing with Setbacks
About the Authors
Coaches of distance runners ages 12 to 18 years. These runners may be cross country athletes, track athletes participating in longer events, or road racers. Secondary audiences: Serious distance runners in their teens. To a lesser extent, parents of young distance runners.
Larry Greene knows all about the challenges facing young distance runners. He won state championships in high school cross country and track, becoming a Florida state champion in cross country and the 2-mile run and finishing 10th in the national Junior Olympic Cross Country Meet as a senior. Greene’s high school accomplishments earned him a scholarship to Florida State University, where he set the school record for the indoor 3,000-meter run and qualified for the NCAA championship meet three times. After college, Greene excelled as a distance runner. In 1984, he ran the fastest half marathon in the world (1:01:27) and finished 4th in the 10,000-meter run at the U.S. Track and Field Championships. In 1987, he finished 3rd in the half marathon at the U.S. Olympic Festival.
Greene is a scientific and medical writer in South Florida. He received an MS in movement science from Florida State University and a PhD in exercise science from the University of South Carolina. He has coached distance runners at the youth, university, and professional levels. He has also served as the director of the Carolina Marathon Youth Cross Country Run. His leisure interests include running, cycling, and cross-country skiing.
Russ Pate has been an exercise science instructor and researcher since 1972. He serves as a professor in the department of exercise science at the University of South Carolina, where his research is focused on the relationship between physical activity and health in children and adolescents. Pate is a lifelong distance runner. He has a personal best time of 2:15:20 in the marathon and competed in three U.S. Olympic Trials Marathons.
Pate has served as president of the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity, and the National Physical Activity Plan Alliance. He has been recognized with awards by the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance; the American College of Sports Medicine; the National Fitness Leaders Association; and the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. He has also directed two U.S. Olympic Trials Women’s Marathons.
Pate received a PhD in exercise physiology from the University of Oregon in 1974. In his free time, he enjoys running, reading, theater, traveling, and spending time with his family.
“It's all here! Science you can understand, nutrition that makes sense, how to race, and how to train, all spelled out for coach, parent, or aspiring young runner.”
Tom Heinonen-- Coach of University of Oregon Running Club, 2004-2014, University of Oregon Women's Track Coach, 1977-2003
“Authors Larry Greene and Russell Pate, in their acclaimed book Training Young Distance Runners, provide coaches with the latest scientific information to maximize individual potential in teen distance runners.”
Mel Williams-- Participant in More Than 100 marathons, Author of Nutrition for Health, Fitness & Sport
“Training Young Distance Runners skillfully integrates sport science into the specific, age-appropriate design of youth endurance training programs. I resoundingly recommend this book as a ‘must read’ resource for all coaches of young runners.”
Dr. Jeffrey I. Messer-- Girls’ Cross-Country Coach and Track-&-Field Coach, Desert Vista High School