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80/20 Running cover art

80/20 Running

Written by: Matt Fitzgerald,Robert Johnson
Narrated by: Rob Grgach
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Publisher's Summary

This revolutionary training method has been embraced by elite runners - with extraordinary results - and now you can do it, too. Respected running and fitness expert Matt Fitzgerald explains how the 80/20 running program - in which you do 80 percent of runs at a lower intensity and just 20 percent at a higher intensity - is the best change runners of all abilities can make to improve their performance. With a thorough examination of the science and research behind this training method, 80/20 Running is a hands-on guide for runners of all levels with training programs for 5K, 10K, half marathon, and marathon distances. In 80/20 Running, you'll discover how to transform your workouts to avoid burnout.

  • Runs will become more pleasant and less draining
  • You'll carry less fatigue from one run to the next
  • Your performance will improve in the few high-intensity runs
  • Your fitness levels will reach new heights

©2014 Matt Fitzgerald; foreword copyright 2014 by Robert Johnson (P)2017 Tantor

What listeners say about 80/20 Running

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So many nuggets…

Took away so many nuggets! Although, as an ultra runner, I instinctively believed in the 80/20 rule, this book backed it with the studies I was too lazy to look up. Although the first half (the science part) took some endurance to get through, the rewards were high. Brand new to me was the advice for older athletes and diving deep into cross-training (deeper than I have reached before). So yeah, Thank You, Matt Fitzgerald, for this sound, specific, backed-by-science (rather than trends) advice!! 🙏🏻

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Enlightening!

Very good information, an enjoyable listen. I am a visual learner, so while it was a time saver to listen, the included pdfs with written detail are greatly appreciated!

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loved it

answered alot of my " how do I do this " questions....geared towards athletes but very helpful for an exsmoking lard ball that has taken up running

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Excellent Running Book

I train by Maffetone Low Hr Training. What I like about Fitzgerald book is his talk on Aerobic capacity and how to grow it.

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it's good!

I really enjoyed this! it's a lot of information, some dull I will admit. but I will take this and apply it to my running. I've 100% experienced fatigue and burnout from high mileage weeks so I'm interested to see how the 80/20 will work.

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  • Kim
  • 2021-10-12

A lot of repetition.

Good info but could have been shrunk down. I think it’s better suited as a physical book.

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Simple but important

Very good book for anyone interested in running it really just exercise in general. Easy tips to improve your running performance whether you are a casual, competitive or elite runner.

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First Half of the book best

Loved the first 60% of the book, but didn’t care for the weight loss arguments or hyper technical or sort of condescending tone of discussion of “recreational runners”

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great read for a great program!

This book is easy storyline, well written, comprehensive and extensive. Would recommend for anyone who is getting into the sport of running and as a refresher for those well entrenched.

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  • Reptar
  • 2018-09-27

If clickbait was one long audiobook...

I'm 4 hours into this audiobook and I'm pretty mad at myself about that, since all the information that the book actually covers is literally in the headline: "Run Stronger and Race Faster by Training Slower". I kept waiting and hoping that at some point, Matt Fitzgerald would explain why "80/20 running is superior to all other methods of training" (a line he repeats at least every 5-10 minutes, as if he's really trying to sell it to you. Pro tip: You don't have to sell it if it's really that great, bud.) And it is that great, don't get me wrong. I've heard of heart rate-based training before, it's pretty common among professional athletes, but Fitzgerald is hellbent on convincing us that 80/20 running is somehow different than HRT (it's not). He tries several times to get the listener to download the Pear app, which I already had, and then subscribe for in-ear coaching from him specifically for "80/20 running". I think it's a fine app, it's a decent product, but I'm confused as to who his target audience is here.

You see, the PDF that comes with the audiobook includes a number of charts and tables and equations for the listener or reader to utilize to create their own "zones" (heart rate based zones), and a lot of it is pretty heady if you're not someone who is very scientifically or mathematically inclined. Thankfully, I'm only good at running and math, so when I tried to give Pear a try, I was more annoyed than anything. Like, I know my charts, I know my zones, I know my target workout, I have a HR monitor, and I get free in-ear coaching through other apps. Anyone moderately competent with this subject matter wouldn't need this subscription, and anyone who would need it probably wouldn't understand this book or the content in its PDFs.

So back to my point -- The entire audiobook feels like one long clickbait, but it really could have (and should have) been so much more informative and instructional and valuable. The idea behind 80/20 and heart rate training is priceless to runners and even cyclists who have hit their peak and seen their performance decline for unknown reasons-- this training plan will almost certainly help you improve if done correctly. The issue is the execution of the book; it should feel more educational and less like an infomercial. Sorry, Matt.

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67 people found this helpful

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  • L.Smith
  • 2017-05-23

Very Little Substance

The audio book is a recital of scientific studies with very little additional substance added. I'm all for backing up your beliefs with studies, but at least add some additional information. This audio book felt a lot like someone reading a few blog posts.

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  • Brian
  • 2018-03-20

Too much to chew at once.

I'm an avid runner and had hoped to learn and enjoy this book. much to my dismay it was just to much. I think a hard copy would be more enjoyable in order to soak up all the facts, figures and funding of such a book. I really wanted to like this but couldn't do it.

Very interesting but not for me in audio format.

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  • Edward Grey
  • 2019-08-29

audio format not recommended

got a good basic understanding from the audio book, but you need the paper copy. lots of technical details.

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  • jbru13
  • 2018-06-27

Fantastic resource

I learned tons of helpful things to improve my running through this book. Learned that I am constantly overtraining on my easy days which makes it impossible to have enough energy in the hard days. Helped me figure out why I’ve plateaued lately. Highly recommend to any runner.

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  • Frop
  • 2021-05-15

STOP BEATING THE HORSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Holy crap if you say run at 80 20 again....

Look he spouts it off but gives no benefit. I made it to chapter three but have to return this. He said someone running improved their mile time. great... well.. isn't that expected even if it wasn't optimal training? tell me a group of people who did your method and a group who didn't and then tell me how much better that group performed by percentage.

Also what the heck does slow mean?!!!! tell me heart rates.. should I be in zone 2??

worthless book. my garmin wants a ton of training in high and low aerobic. does that count for the 80% or is the high aerobic too high? should I trash my garmin? evidence people.

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  • May Boggess
  • 2020-11-13

uninformative

there wasn't a lot of information that wasn't in the title.

A much better book is Endure, by Alex Hutchenson; it has a LOT more info in it and is much better written.

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  • ChargingDC
  • 2021-06-26

Well Done

My favorite running books are anything by George Sheehan. My next favorite running books are anything by Matt Fitzgerald. I always enjoy this author’s work and this one did not disappoint. Matt is a gifted storyteller who manages to take a “deep dive” into the science behind the 80/20 running principle and still somehow keep it interesting. For me, I’ve already had personal success with the 80/20 type of training and therefore didn’t need to know the science behind it to know that it works. But for anyone who does, this is the book for you.

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  • Kyle G
  • 2020-10-23

Not finished yet...

But I could not wait to write a review. I’m on Audible chapter 6 (chapter 3? In the regular text) and this is just mind blowing info that I LOVE. I am constantly rewinding 30 seconds here 1.5 minutes there just to try and gather it all. Don’t wait! Buy and listen now!!!!!

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  • BrendaLearns
  • 2019-04-27

Sold me on the value of slow running

I'm currently upping my fitness game, including running my first 5K and training for an inline marathon. I fall into many of the traps described in this book. In short, recreational runners train too hard. My husband is an advocate of slow running, and now I get why. By not trying to run fast, but just find a pace where I could run for a longer period of time, I improved my abilities immensely.

The first part of this book offers great buy-in for the idea of 80/20 training. Parts of the book felt repetitive. Overall, though, it was well worth the read and completely overhauled how I train for events.

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