dunes runner wrote:Master Po wrote:Lovesey's book has an appendix with details from George's training diary from 1882, and George's text explaining the 100-up exercise. George notes that the 100-up might seem easy at the beginning, but to do it properly -- he emphasizes correct form -- is a challenge. At the end of that text he attributes his record-setting performances to the 100-up alone.
(As has been noted, the Lovesey book is great. I have it in a 1981 USA reprint titled Five Kings of Distance.)
Would anyone happen to have Walter George's explanation of this exercise.
Below are some excerpts. I am quoting from Lovesey's book, Appendix III, which Lovesey notes is George's account, from his The 100-Up Exercise (Ewart Seymour, London, 1908).
George explains by way of introduction that in 1874, at age 16, he became apprenticed in a trade that made it impossible for him to get outdoors to exercise. Between 7am-9pm daily, he had just one hour for recreation. Thus he developed the "100-up".
He introduces the exercise in part as follows:
"...let me impress upon the student the necessity of maintaining perfect form in every practice, be it in the preliminary or the exercise proper. Directly the correct form is lost the exercise should stop. Beginners should start the exercise slowly and on no account strain or over-exert themselves. Hurried or injudicious training, or fast work while the system is unprepared for it, induces breakdown and failure. On the other hand, slow, well considered, steady practice is never injurious, while breakdowns are practically unknown among those who start their training slowly and who gradually increase distance, time or pace as the heart, lungs and the muscular system throughout grow accustomed to the extra strain and revel in it."
Good advice from a century ago. As implied in the text above, George outlined two levels of the exercise, which he called "Minor" and "Major". Here is the key text of the "minor" exercise:
"Draw two parallel lines along the ground, 18 inches long and 8 inches apart.
Place one foot on the middle of each line. Stand flat-footed, the feet lying perfectly straight on the lines. The arms should be held naturally, loosely, and except for a slight forward inclination, nearly straight.
Now raise one knee to the height of the hip, and bring the foot back and down again to its original position, touch the line lightly with the ball of the foot and repeat with the other leg. Continue raising and lowering the legs alternately. The main thing to remember is correct action. See that the knees are brought up at each stride to the level of the hip if possible, or as near as possible to the point as can be managed ... and that the body maintains its correct perpendicular.
The exercise at first sight looks so easy of accomplishment that one might well think it possible to go a thousand up. This is the result of not raising the knees to the prescribed height -- the main point of the exercise -- or of 'galloping' through a short-timed movement in incorrect form. Get a friend to watch at your practice and to correct any shortcomings in your leg action or poise of the body and you will find the difference. Correct form once attained, the exercise may be increased in severity by gradually working from 10 to 20, 30 to 40 and so on to the '100-up' at each session, and by speeding up the pace."
Once we have discussed and mastered the "minor" excercise, I'll add George's text of the major exercise.