Your Optimal Running Recipe: Why You Should Tailor Training to You, Not the Other Way Around – With Jenny Hadfield

Ultrarunner, coach, and best-selling author Jenny Hadfield began running to lose weight, but, as many people do, she quickly fell in love with it.

However, one thing about the running world Jenny didn’t love was the formulaic, one-size-fits-all training plans that didn’t accommodate for busy lives.

She began working with runners to create training that fit their unique makeup as well as their schedules outside running.

She works to make running more accessible, and she’s a large part of the reason the sport has seen such a boom over the last 20 years.

In this episode, Jenny shares her experiences and philosophies to show us that there is a more practical approach to training – not only with our busy schedules but also with our bodies.


Questions Jenny is asked:

3:30 How did you first get into running?

6:14 When you first started did you see yourself doing all these extreme distance races?

8:10 What have been some races that you feel were defining moments in your career?

10:02 What were some of the difficulties you encountered along the way and how did you overcome them?

12:30 How do you use your experiences to help the athletes that you currently coach?

15:14 How exactly did you get into coaching?

17:57 What is the F.L.O.W.-based training system?

27:48 How do you coach your female athletes to train in sync with their menstrual cycles?

31:59 Do you think there will be more research on post-menopausal athletic performance?

33:41 At what point would you advise a woman to consult a physician for irregularities?

39:36 What is your nutritional philosophy that you use with your athletes?

43:19 Which calorie trackers would you recommend?

46:09 Are athletes hurt more by the quality or quantity of their fueling choices?

47:24 What’s a good in-race Marathon refueling strategy?

49:43 What advice do you have for beginning runners?

51:24 Can you tell us more about the color-coding system for tracking training?

53:36 What’s next for your own running and for your company?

55:36 Are your running vacations open to just anyone?

Quotes by Jenny:

“Running was always delivered in a form of punishment in team sports, so my association with running was painful and I didn’t like it.”

“Every race that we train for and finish can be a pivotal moment; there’s always a learning lesson that’s involved.”

“I learned early on that a template program is not going to work for everyone.”

“I believe injuries are an opportunity for growth.”

“I really needed to use my education in terms of fitness and exercise science and apply all those principles to a runner’s life, and really it was a mortal’s life and they wanted to run.”

“But what I saw (when GPS watches came out) were runners going from tuning into their bodies, listening to your breath to looking at a number and defining whether it was a good run or a bad run or a fantastic race or a failure based on what they saw on that watch.”

“There’s such a negative stigma about menstrual cycles and it’s one of the most powerful tools we have as women and once we embrace it and understand it and work with it, you will feel better because you’re now giving your body what it’s asking for.”

Take a Listen on Your Next Run

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Mentioned in this podcast:

Jenny’s Coaching Website

Jenny’s Running Vacations

Jenny’s Podcast – The Coach Jenny Show

Book: Running For Mortals by Jenny Hadfield

Book: Marathoning For Mortals by Jenny Hadfield

RunnersConnect Extra Kick Podcast – Ep. 116 – Running After Menopause

My Fitness Pal

Training Peaks

Sufferfest Beer Company

Run To The Top Interview with Caitlin Landesberg of Sufferfest Beer Co.

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