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80/20 Endurance Blog

Queen Esther

Face the Wind

By Matt Fitzgerald | November 1, 2021

Even before long covid scrambled my brain, I was absentminded. It sounds like such a benign foible, but absentmindedness can be deadly. For example, it nearly killed my dog in a Kansas hotel one time. It was a raw, gray Friday at the tail end of March, stubborn winter turfing out nominal spring. I’d just […]

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Why We Need More Nonwhite Endurance Coaches

By Matt Fitzgerald | October 21, 2021

In 2018, Bernadette Brady of Western Sydney University got together with a few colleagues and designed a study to determine to what degree, if any, implicit ethnic bias negatively impacted physiotherapy care among Australian ethnic minorities. Forty-eight patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain who identified as Mandaean, Assyrian, or Vietnamese participated in the trial. Half of […]

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Off-Season Training for 80/20 Athletes

By Matt Fitzgerald | October 18, 2021

Here in the northern hemisphere, the off-season is upon us, and athletes like you are figuring out how to train between now and the time you’re ready to start the next race-focused training cycle. For athletes who use 80/20 Endurance plans, this figuring-out process is a matter of deciding which specific plan or plans to […]

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How Intermittent Fasting Can Make You Leaner, Less Fit, and Slower

By Matt Fitzgerald | October 11, 2021

Have you ever tried intermittent fasting, or considered trying it, as a way to improve your endurance performance? Then you’ll be interested in a new study that just came out of UC Davis. Led by nutritionist Ashley Tovar, it aimed to determine the effects of a 16/8 “time-restrictive feeding” (i.e., intermittent fasting) program on body […]

Watching Others Run

What If There Is No Finish Line?

By Matt Fitzgerald | October 6, 2021

How helpful are athletic coping skills really in helping us deal with life adversity? One year ago today—on October 6, 2020—I had a bad run. It was the type of run I would have really enjoyed had I been on my game: 6 x 1,000 meters at one-mile race pace on a minute’s rest. I […]

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Relationship Counseling for Athletes and Their Devices

By Matt Fitzgerald | October 4, 2021

In any relationship, disagreements are bound to occur. These moments of friction are not limited to differences of opinion, such as whether dogs are better than cats or vice versa, but may also include discrepancies in how reality is perceived. Perhaps you and your spouse disagree on whether aliens walk among us in human disguise, […]

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Training as Learning

By Matt Fitzgerald | September 27, 2021

I’ve been learning about learning lately. My teacher is Jake Tuber, who, when he’s not organizing and hosting Endeavorun athlete camps, is studying toward a doctoral degree in adult learning and leadership at Columbia University. At the recent Endeavorun camp in Boulder, I was impressed by the way Jake incorporated his knowledge of adult learning […]

run injury

What Does It Mean to Be an Injury-Prone Runner?

By Matt Fitzgerald | September 20, 2021

I’ve always considered myself an injury-prone runner. I used to half-jokingly say that I had suffered more running-related injuries than any runner my age in the history of running, and it wouldn’t shock me if this turned out to be true. Between the ages of 28 and 48 I picked up no fewer than four […]

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A Fresh Look at Block Periodization

By Matt Fitzgerald | September 13, 2021

Many moons ago, I wrote a post for this blog that bore the title, “The Human Body Is Not a Smartphone.” In it I argued that endurance training methods cannot advance indefinitely in the way that technologies such as smartphones can. “Once the best ways to train and fuel the human body for distance racing […]

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What Chronic Illness Has Taught Me About Weight Management

By Matt Fitzgerald | September 6, 2021

I don’t look sick. To the contrary, I look like I could run a marathon, or so I’m told. In fact, though, the last time I tried to run I couldn’t get out of bed the next day. This isn’t a figure of speech—I could not get out of bed the next day. And it […]