The need for long steady distance training to reinforce mechanics seems much more pronounced in technical endurance disciplines like X country skiing, swimming and speed skating where efficiency utterly rules.
In cycling it is wildly variable depending on the discipline and goal. For track events, I have not seen long steady distances be at all effective at improving mechanics or "endurance" for track specifically.
Originally Posted by Motion MacIvor
IMHO the thing that makes lsd training so effective for long distance events is the eficiency it gives your movement. I forget where I saw it but there is a chart out there somewhere that shows power, cardio capacity, and eficiency. over several years power and cardio capacity will top out. Eficiency does not top out it continues to increase year after year (even if only by a single % or two). Yes intervals are important for building power and cardio capacity but once you top out the only way to become faster is to become more eficient so that you can put out higher power levels with less exertion. Cycling coaches have found that The training required for a road race (2-5 hrs) is also effective for events as short as 5 minutes. Racers who specialize in track and do not spend hours on the road doing LSD do not generaly have an advantage as soon as the event goes past five minutes.