Oliver Pust always hated running. Now a 55-year-old director of sales for an optics company in Steimel, Germany, Oliver and classmates were required to run occasional 5K time trials in high school, and they were pure torture for him. Same thing during his years of military service. But in 2014, getting older and gaining weight, Oliver decided for the first time to make himself run—and he still hated it.
But that changed finally last year when, on the advice of his cardiologist, Oliver went searching for a kinder way of training than the one he’d learned from a book with one-size-fits-all training plans based on race time goals. As it does for so many, this search led Oliver to 80/20. He chose our power-based Level 1 Marathon Plan, which culminated on April 17th in a 4:03:50 virtual marathon performance, a 55-minute improvement on his previous time.
His advice for other former runner-haters considering 80/20? “When starting running, don’t let yourself be carried away by the early improvements,” Oliver says. “Stick to the plan, train smart with mostly low intensity. If you live in hilly terrain and/or have a volatile heart rate like me, consider investing in a Stryd pod. It made it much easier for me to stay in the correct zones.”
Good advice, which Oliver plans to keep practicing as he takes aim at a sub-four-hour marathon later this year.