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80/20 Endurance Blog

Tommy Rivers Puzey

The Most Interesting Runner in the World

By Matt Fitzgerald | July 20, 2020

Following is an unpublished chapter of my book Running the Dream: One Summer Living, Training, and Racing with a Team of World-Class Runners Half My Age. It features my friend Tommy Rivers Puzey, who a couple of weeks ago sent me a series of alarming voice messages from a hospital ICU in Flagstaff, where he […]

Caroline Rotich, Me, Ryan Bolton, Patrick Smyth

Creative Goal Setting

By Matt Fitzgerald | July 19, 2020

Recently I received a text message from Matt Chittim, host of the Rambling Runner podcast. In it, he informed me that he is several months away from turning 40 years old and he wants to mark the occasion by pursuing the goal of breaking 40 minutes for 10K. His purpose in texting me was to […]

Shelby Houlihan

Rediscovering a Process Focus

By Matt Fitzgerald | July 13, 2020

There’s a runner I coach, we’ll call him Jeremy, who’s concerned about his weight. It’s not that he’s overweight and worried about developing type 2 diabetes or heart disease. Rather, Jeremy is light and lean but just not quite as light and lean as the elite trail runners whose ranks he aspires to join—and it […]

Mat Fitzgerald Running in High School

Pressure Is a Double-Edge Sword

By Matt Fitzgerald | July 5, 2020

In 2015, economists Daniel Hickman and Neil Metz conducted an interesting study on the effect of pressure on performance in professional golfers. Data from the final hole of PGA tournaments taking place between 2004 and 2012 was analyzed to determine the effect of financial stakes—specifically how much money was riding on draining a putt—on performance. […]

Your Performance Management Chart Is Lying To You

By David Warden | June 29, 2020

…but you can make it tell the truth.  The Performance Management Chart in TrainingPeaks is an extraordinary tool. As early as 1975, physiologists have been attempting to quantify, and ultimately predict, the relationship between training and endurance performance. Coaches and athletes wanted to know if you contributed X units of training, could you predict Y […]

Track Workout

New Workout: Billat’s Analog Windup

By Matt Fitzgerald | June 29, 2020

Like many other endurance athletes, I’m adapting to the COVID-19 era by the seat of my pants, seeking ways to maintain my normal level of enthusiasm for training without races to look forward to and without a playbook. The pattern I seem to have fallen into—which has been working better than I would have imagined—is […]

Book Review: The Science of the Marathon

By Matt Fitzgerald | June 22, 2020

I first discovered the work of Veronique Billat in 2002, when I was working on my book The Cutting-Edge Runner. That’s a long time ago, but in retrospect I’m somewhat embarrassed that I hadn’t known about her even earlier, as she was then already well on her way toward titan status in the field of […]

The Endurance Diet

Avoiding Dietary Self-Sabotage

By Matt Fitzgerald | June 15, 2020

I don’t really consider myself an expert on anything, but I do know a thing or two about endurance nutrition and training. Nevertheless, I choose to coach on the training side only. If an athlete approaches me with a request for nutrition coaching, I refer them elsewhere. The reason is that I have found nutrition […]

What’s the Key to Avoiding Injuries? Keep the Ball Rolling.

By Matt Fitzgerald | June 6, 2020

Injuries are the bane of the runner’s life. More than any other impediment, they thwart the efforts of runners to build fitness and achieve competitive goals. For this reason, injury risk management is a critical component of the training process. If there is a way to reduce injury risk, you want to know about and, […]

If One Bad Workout Lowers Your Confidence Level, You Weren’t Confident in the First Place

By Matt Fitzgerald | June 1, 2020

Confidence, which dictionary.com defines as “belief in oneself and one’s powers and abilities,” is critical to athletic success. We all know this. Yet we seldom pause to reflect on the nature of confidence or to think about how best to manage it. This leads to some bad assumptions about confidence—such as the notion that more […]