The Human Potential: Post Script

4 min readDec 20, 2020


Coaches Bob Dyer and Jennifer Henderson

Dec. 19, 2020 — The owners of Running Niche in St. Louis, MO, Bob and Jen, have been helping us develop Lydiard Training & Academy for several years now. Bob was a 2:21 marathon runner in his hey days, employing the Lydiard system. Jen, as with Bob, is a certified Lydiard coach (they both took the course from Nobby so it’s legit!!) and they have been doing a wonderful job helping tens of runners in St. Louis area. The runners they help include Omar, who ran a 2:19 debut marathon a year ago, as well as 3 young ladies who all have achieved sub-3 marathon at 2019 New York City Marathon. And, personally, I admire them most with their support, both training tips and detail coaching as well as emotional support and equipment as well (convenient to own a running store!!), for many beginning runners, utilizing our “First Steps” program (coming soon on our Noteworthy page so stay-tuned!!). They are both BIG believers or Lydiard Running Wizard and coach their runners on RWZ plans.

From left, Carolyn, Bree and Marie

They are very quick to post all the race reports of their runners and I saw a couple this weekend and that got me thinking. I had just posted a blog entry on Human Potential vs Calculated Number (read it HERE). You see, it is actually critical to calculate your training pace from your current fitness level calculated from the most recent race time. That’s exactly what we do with Lydiard Running Wizard. But Lydiard really didn’t care too much about all those calculation of number-oriented “estimtion”. “I have no interest in those calculations what-so-ever,” Lydiard used to say. “What time do you think I can run?” to that, he replied “You tell me (in the race)!!” You do the right training diligently; and the time will come to you naturally. Do the correct training plan, such as Lydiard training, and you may even surprise yourself!! With that, sometimes all those scientific-looking calculation actually may limit you.

Derek Bartlem, right, at the start of one-mile time trial

This weekend, a couple of Facebook entries by Team Running Niche caught my attention. Derek Bartlem, who lived and taught in Hokkaido, Japan, for number of years, was the first one. He went back to Hokkaido in the summer of 2019 and ran Hokkaido marathon in 3:28, his PR and the first sub-3:30. Prior to that, he had a business engagement in MN so we got together. “Why don’t you try a 5k plan after the marathon,” I suggested him. Improved speed over 5k would help him for the next marathon. He must have taken it to the heart; this time, he tried RWZ 1500m plan!! So this weekend, he did one mile time trial. The plan estimated 6:20 for his time. He ran 6:00 (91–89–90–90)!! “All the time trials prior to this indicated that he would exceed his estimated time,” Coach Bob said. There’s also another young lady, Heather Collins, who was on Lydird Running Wizard 10k plan. She was supposed to run 45:38, which would have been a minute PR. She ran 43:24, a 3-minute PR!! Years ago, this guy from NJ, Jon Lang, flew all the way to attend my Lydiard Certificate Course. He had a 5k PR of 21:20 or so. He wanted to break 21-minutes and tried RWZ plan. He skipped “20-minutes” completely and ended up running 19:45!! He completely turned to be a believer!! Correct training program and the right mind-set can certainly exceed “estimate”. As far as Lydiard is concerned, when you place “Human Potential” and “Calculated Number” on a scale, Potential always comes ahead!! — Nobby Hashizume

Team Running Niche
“Coach for everybody”