That's debatable. They already are doing LOTS of focused run traning. They are running those kind of times at the top of their game (these guys are not the "newbies" on the ITU circuit). And they are running them in races where the swim/bike portion is *somewhat* easier (i.e. they are sitting more in the draft and not blitzing the 40K). They are also, quite possibly, running them on slightly shortened courses. All those guys I mentioned can definitely go mid-to-low 29's on a track if they train specifically for a 10K. But they are all tremendously efficient at all three sports, so there is not as much upside potential as for an age-group athlete. They don't run much faster not-off-the-bike than they do off-the-bike.
Plus, Meb didn't win an Olympic medal in the 10K. And he has never won a 10K world championship. Simon Whitfield is a great runner, but he would not win a gold on the track. But he did in triathlon. That also counts for a lot.
And all those guys that I mentioned are also multiple world-cup winners. The money for a top-level triathlete who is consistently winning world cups is probably on par and maybe even better than for a mid-level road circuit runner.
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