I always publicly said that, if I have a question about the Lydiard Training, I would go to Barry Magee! To me, he is someone who followed the Lydiard instruction near-perfectly. And the results show! He had a rather humble beginning; nothing extra-ordinary…just a promising young runner. Lydiard used to say that, “What you do this year is for next year; it’s not what you do this year or next year that counts, but 5 to 7 years time…” Magee followed that as well! It took him 5 years to reach to the top and 7 years after he joined the Lydiard school, he won the bronze medal in the Olympic marathon. Considering he was only a few minutes behind indomitable legendary Abebe Bikila’s then world best time, it’s not a shabby accomplishment at all!!
When we talk about someone who brought track “speed” to marathoning, people often think of Frank Shorter. Until Shorter, marathon runners were marathon runners. Shorter was a very fast track runner who did lots of distance work and moved onto the road as a natural progression. “Shorter ran a marathon like a track event,” says Akio Usami who won Munich Pre-Olympic marathon and was one of the favorites in 1972 Olympic marathon. Not too many people realize, however, Magee was ranked number one in 10000m and number two in 5000m in the world in 1962 as a “marathon runner”. He was also a member of world-record setting 4 X mile relay with young Philpot (a young inexperienced first-time international competitor), Halberg (more or less a 5000m specialist) and Snell (never ran a mile seriously prior to). Magee was also the first man to go under 2:20 for the marathon on Japanese soil.
Barry Magee will be speaking at PUMA International, One Congress Street in Boston on April 18th. Admission is free. Please RSVP by e-mailing:
Jennifer Walker at: firstname.lastname@example.org Or call: 617-543-8252