Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Science (MS)

Department or School/College

Department of Health and Human Performance

Committee Chair

Arthur W. Miller

Commitee Members

Charles Palmer, Douglas MacDonald


10k, championship, cross country, NCAA, performance, run, running, training


University of Montana


The focus of previous running research has been on physiological determinates of performance utilizing small sample sizes and short time frames with little regard to previous training methods. PURPOSE: The goal of this research was to describe, compare, and evaluate the relationships between anthropometric, run training, and ancillary training variables during the 2008 season and performance of male finishers at the NCAA Division I cross country championship 10k race. METHODOLOGY: An online survey was created based on previous research and all coaches who had male runners finish the 2008 NCAA championship race were asked to include their athletes in the online survey. 42 out of 252 runners (17%) completed the survey. RESULTS: Runners with better pre-college 1600 meter (r = 0.37) and 3200 meter (r = 0.32) track times ran faster at the championship race. A composite of these pre-college times was the best significant (p < 0.05) predictor of performance (adj. r2 = 0.12). Stepwise multiple regression analysis showed an increased number of core training sessions during the peak period and form/drill sessions during the transition period also were significant (p < 0.05) predictors of slower 10k finish time. Threshold training during the peak period was a significant (p <0.05) predictor of 10k finish time (adj r2 = 0.07) when compared only to run-training variables. Evidence of the training principles of progressive overload, periodization, specialization, and tapering were evident in the data. CONCLUSION: Recruiting faster runners is important for college coaches to have successful teams. Due to a low number of significant (p < 0.05) findings, there is no single best training method when training for the 10k race although excessive ancillary training can hinder rest and hurt run-training and race performance while threshold training during the peak period can lead to overtraining and slower performance times at the NCAA championship 10k race. Optimal performance in the NCAA cross country championship 10k race is dependent on coaches who can recruit faster runners and best integrate all training methods into each period and the entire season specific for his/her athletes.



© Copyright 2009 Philip A. Keller