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80/20 Endurance Blog

Matt Laughing Running

Laughing All the Way to the Finish Line

By Matt Fitzgerald | February 15, 2021

Dear Dr. Young, The good news is I have heart disease . . . These are the actual first words of an email message I sent to my primary care physician a couple of weeks ago. I had just undergone an angiogram to determine the source of an abnormality seen in my EKG reading during […]

Ironman Triathlon

A Lot of Triathletes Train Too Much During Ironman Prep

By Matt Fitzgerald | February 8, 2021

There is a consistent pattern in my coaching of endurance athletes that I wasn’t conscious of until quite recently. When I coach amateur runners for marathons, more often than not I increase their training volume relative to their past habits. But when I coach amateur triathletes for Ironman events, quite often I have them train […]

FeelBreathe

Will Respiratory Muscle Training Finally Catch On?

By Matt Fitzgerald | January 30, 2021

In last week’s post I discussed the idea that innovation in endurance training methods obeys the Law of Good Enough, as I call it. This simply means that elite coaches and athletes identify and adopt better training methods at a pace that is no faster than is necessary to succeed again existing performance standards. An […]

Sandor Iharos

Why It’s Impossible for Your Training to Be Better Than “Good Enough”

By Matt Fitzgerald | January 23, 2021

I’m not a total science geek, but I do take an interest in certain scientific fields, including evolutionary biology. My brother Josh, who is a total science geek, being aware of my more casual interest, suggested recently that I check out a book called Good Enough: The Tolerance for Mediocrity in Nature and Society. Written […]

David Krakauer

May the Smartest Runner Win

By Matt Fitzgerald | January 16, 2021

A few years ago, New York Times writer Gretchen Reynolds penned an interesting article titled “Running as the Thinking Person’s Sport.” It focused on a then-recent study by neuroscientists at the University of Arizona in which it was shown that high-level distance runners had significantly higher levels of connectivity in certain parts of the brain […]

Maria Kang

What’s My Excuse?

By Matt Fitzgerald | January 10, 2021

In 2013, Maria Kang became an overnight sensation when a photograph that showed her posing underneath the caption “What’s your excuse?” clad in shorts and a sports bra, her chiseled abs bared and her three young children surrounding her, went viral. The reaction was mostly negative, critics accusing Maria, an attractive 32-year-old with a well-toned […]

Callum Hawkins

Is Mental Fitness Innate?

By Matt Fitzgerald | January 4, 2021

Callum Hawkins came into the 2018 Commonwealth Games Marathon in Australia with high expectations. Having set a national record of 1:00:00 for the half marathon and finished fourth in the World Championship Marathon the prior year, the 25-year-old Scotsman was supremely confident in his ability to claim a gold medal for his small, proud country. […]

Atlanta Marathon

2020 Was a Good Year

By Matt Fitzgerald | December 31, 2020

It’s hard to believe it was this year—January 21st, 2020, to be exact—that my mom came to stay with my wife, Nataki, and me. She has Alzheimer’s disease (my mom, not my wife) and had deteriorated to the point where my dad was no longer able to care for her on his own. I couldn’t […]

All-New 2021 Edition Run Plans Now Available

By David Warden | December 28, 2020

Including new Ultra Marathon 50 Kilometer Plans We are supremely excited to announce that a full slate of all-new 80/20 Running 2021 Edition training plans are now available. And when we say “all-new” we mean all-new. These run plans aren’t merely tweaked versions of our existing plans. We rebuilt them from the ground up with the […]

I Was Wrong

New Study Strikes Fatal Blow to 80/20 Training Philosophy

By Matt Fitzgerald | December 26, 2020

I am often asked if the 80/20 rule of intensity balance applies to athletes who train at very low volumes. It’s a fair question. We know that low-intensity exercise doesn’t do a lot of good in small amounts, whereas high-intensity exercise does. It is plausible therefore that, below a certain volume threshold, doing less than […]