False Positives and Inaccurate Negatives – Science of Running

Interview with Tony Holler – Science of Running

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In this episode of the Magness and Marcus Podcast we discuss False Positive and Inaccurate Negatives. What are they? A false positive is when we have a great race or great series of workouts that doesn’t translate over to sustained performance. On the flip side, an inaccurate negative is when an athlete goes through a rough patch, but when it comes to race day, they put the pieces together and have a strong performance.

As humans, we have a deep need for closure. We want simple explanations for every good or bad thing that happens. So when a race goes well, or poorly, we strive to figure it out. Coaches go into a deep dive to assess every detail that could have led to such an outcome, while athletes go over the race in their mind to see what went right/wrong. The problem is that occasionally, things go right or wrong for no known (or easily explainable) reason. In situations like this, we often come up with false reasons or get led astray by a single data point.

We have a tendency to look at training from a mathematical/scientific viewpoint. If the athlete can do X in a workout then that should translate to Y performance in a race. It’s the reason why so many milers across the globe perform the tried and true 8-10×400 with 1 minute rest. They are trying to ascertain what kind of shape they are in. In the sports world, we call this concept transfer. How well do workouts transfer into performance.

Throughout this podcast we discuss the idea of transfer, how it occurs, what to do when ‘transfer’ doesn’t seem to occur. We discuss what to do after a breakthrough performance and what to do after a disaster of a race. In this episode you’ll learn how to make assessments on whether to dig deeper or to call it a “fluke” performance and move on to the next one.

We hope you enjoy this podcast, if you are a regular listener, venture over to iTunes and rate it for us. It helps us to be able to keep delivering this content to you guys regularly!

 

Steve and Jon

@stevemagness
@jmarpdx

 



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