First When There’s Nothing; But a Slow Growing Dream…

Nov. 21, 2020 — I’m a closet “Flashdance” fan… ;o) Okay, kinda embarrassing; but, hey, that was “Rocky” female and a dance version!! But actually more than anything else, it was the “timing” to me. Late 1970s and early 1980s was the time I really got into the “Lydiardism”. In the summer of 1981, I received his “Athletic Training” from Arthur Lydiard himself in the mail; I was really trying to grasp what this Aerobic-Anaerobic type of training was all about. During the Thanksgiving weekend of 1981, I met Arthur in person for the first time and attended his clinic. I think I attended about 7 of his clinics over the several years — it was about the third or fourth one, he spotted me and said to me: “Nobby! You came again!? You know, I talk about the same thing…!!” ;o) I was going to a small community college in Moses Lake, WA, at the time. I remember in the summer of 1983, I attended his clinic, sponsored by Pheidippides (Jeff Galloway’s store in GA), in OR. I took a scenic route and drove along Columbia River and visited my friend along the way. “Flashdance” came out in 1983 and I remember listening to the soundtrack cassette tape while driving in the dusk (that was one of the most beautiful drives I’ve done I might add)…. Songs, and movies, have that power. They’ll warp you “back in the days”. I still remember; Harrison Ford’s “Raiders of the Lost Arc” was a big hit when I took a greyhound from Moses Lake to Seattle to meet Arthur Lydiard. Whenever I hear the soundtrack, or see that movie, I remember that time when I first got together with Arthur Lydiard.

When I was struggling to understand the Lydiardism, I tried to read as much as I could get my hands on to read about Lydiard training. Naturally, his old and new books; “Run to the Top” and “Running the Lydiard Way” without saying. But what really helped me was: Arthur was a technical adviser of Runner’s World at that time. They had a Q&A section with Arthur Lydiard. To me, that was a gold mine!! The books mentioned above are more or less a text book. The ideal situation. We all know; you are supposed to do 10-weeks of “Marathon Conditioning”, 4-weeks of “Hill Training”, 4-weeks of “Anaerobic Development”, 4-weeks of “Coordination”, and 2-weeks of “Taper”: total of 24-weeks. But everybody knows, in most situation, you can’t get that. It could be 21-weeks; in most high school’s case, 16-weeks…. So what do we do? You can find a similar situation in Q&A!! Over the past 20-years, whenever I came across an opportunity to get the old archive Runner’s World in the 1970s and 80s, I tried to get them. Checking out all these Q&A by Arthur himself is like looking into his own thought — like picking his brain!!

As you know, I’ve been posting a lot of archive literatures; written by Arthur Lydiard; or on the Lydiard method of training by someone else; or interview of Lydiard. What I’m trying to do with this website is to share all that I had learnt on Lydiardism with all of you. To me, reading all these articles — written by Lydiard himself as well as other “experts” — and, particularly interviews with Lydiard!! I always thought “articles” are the ideas of the author. Often the author has a point he/she would like to emphasize to begin with and sometimes it may or may not be exactly in sync with the “idea” itself. But interviews; and these Q&A’s; are often like reading between-the-lines. So a few weeks ago, I just thought about it and put myself to a challenge of reproducing these Q&A with Lydiard, from archive Runner’s World in the 1970s and 80s, on this website. I have already posted more than 30 Q&A’s and I intend to continue adding more as I go along. It ain’t easy. It is a bit challenging; but I am actually truly enjoying this. It is like revisiting the days when I was asking all these questions to Arthur Lydiard myself. — Nobby Hashizume