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At the age of 8, Philipp Pflieger told his parents that he would run at the Olympic Games one day after watching Haile Gebrselassie and Paul Tergat battle it out in the home straight of the 10,000m at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games. His parents laughed at him. In the following two decades Pflieger endured growth problems in his knees which sidelined him through most of his high school years, multiple stress fractures and surgeries in his early-mid 20’s and was told by several doctors that he wouldn’t run again. Cross training alone at the age of 25, Pflieger considered hanging up the racing shoes. Inspired by his best friend, Pflieger rolled the dice one more time and stepped up to the Marathon distance. Despite not finishing his first attempt at the Marathon, Pflieger managed to clock a 2:12:50 on his second attempt at the 2015 Berlin Marathon and qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in the process. 

We recorded this podcast episode live from Iten, Kenya. In the episode, Pflieger talks about:

– how and why he stayed true to his childhood dream.
– his book Laufen am Limit.
– some of his training.
– his short term and long term goals.
– not finishing his first Marathon experience.
– running 2:12:50 at Berlin Marathon 2015.
– his Rio 2016 Olympics experience.
– collapsing at 39km in the Berlin Marathon 2017.
– altitude training camps in Kenya (pro’s and con’s).
– pace/effort of easy runs.
– long runs (30km+) in the final month preparing for a key Marathon.
– his typical taper (last 2 weeks before a Marathon).
– injury prevention.
– mental training.

Philipp Pflieger is best followed on Instagram: @philipp.pflieger

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