Why is it that most of the top long-course triathletes and marathoners today came from shorter race backgrounds? It is because the skills and speed learned racing shorter races provide the foundation for longer races.
In triathlon and the marathon, the top long-course athletes first learned how to maximize efficiency at high speeds, run sub 5 min pace off the bike, and master details like transitions to take every advantage possible. The top marathoners today first learned how to race on the track at blistering sub 4 min pace with perfect technique while honing their race tactics in these close battles.
These skills are vital to these athletes’ success today. If an athlete has developed the ability to hold form at these blistering paces, they are much more equipped to do the same at slightly slower paces over longer courses. Raise the top-end and you raise all zones below it.
Looking for the secret to going long? Start by going short.
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