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Talking about Olympic Games (the 1992 blog the other week), Seoul 1988 will be forever remembered for Ben Johnson’s demolition of the field on the final of the men’s 100m.

And subsequent stripping of the medal and World Record for testing positive for steroids.

In the run up to the games, much was made of Johnson’s style.

The massive rotation of his hips as he exploded out of the blocks.

A generation of young sprinters attempted to replicate that movement in their own starts.

Eight years later in Atlanta, Michael Johnson (no relation) eclipsed the field in the 400m.

Running with a very straight back and upright posture.

Like a young Forest Gump.

And for the next few months me and all my mates ran like that in PE.

Until we realised that it didn’t help.

It slowed us down, if anything.

Because, in both cases, it wasn’t that, as such, that caused their speed.

Speed, in running, is ultimately governed by a combination of stride length and step frequency.

How far each step reaches and how fast you move your legs.

They are the fundamental principals of running speed.

And everything else is a method which may, or may not, increase one or both of those.

And that may vary person to person for various reasons.

The hip twist and straight back, for whatever reason, were methods that helped the Johnson boys to increase one or both of these principals.

Doesn’t mean other things aren’t worth considering.

But if they don’t improve (or, at least, maintain) stride length or step frequency, it’s kinda irrelevant.

Much like the calorie deficit.

It’s not the only thing that’s worth considering.

But it is the principal that needs to be occurring to lose weight.

Everything else being a method that may, or may not, enable that to happen.

For various reasons.

Logistical, preferential, maybe hormonal.

But without that average deficit occurring nothing else really matters.

From a weight loss perspective at least.

So, it’s fine for us to experiment with the equivalent of different training methods and running styles………

As long as we don’t forget our feet need to move faster or further.

Much love,

Jon’son’ Hall

Jon Hall
Jon Hall

When not helping people to transform their lives and bodies, Jon can usually be found either playing with his kids or taxi-ing them around. If you'd like to find out more about what we do at RISE then enter your details in the box to the right or bottom of this page or at myrise.co.uk - this is the same way every single one of the hundreds who've described this as "one of the best decisions I've ever made" took their first step.