Dathan Ritzenhein is one of the best distance runners in US history. And he’s here today to help you run faster.
Ritz has more career highlights than there are spectators at the Boston Marathon (ok maybe not but still!):
- 3x Olympian at the 10,000m and marathon distances
- Former US Record holder in the 5,000m (12:56.27)
- 3rd fastest American marathon time in history (2:07:47)
- Three-time USA Cross Country Champion
- Two-time Foot Locker National high-school Cross Country Champion
- Half-marathon PR of 60:00 (2nd best HM time in US history)
A Generation UCAN-sponsored athlete, he is now preparing to run the River Bank Run 25k this May.
When I started running back in high school, Ritz was emerging as a cult figure on the high school running circuit. As a senior, he smashed the US high school 5,000m record with a staggering 13:44 performance.
This came on the back of his two repeat national championship victories in cross country.
As you can imagine, he was a celebrity among die-hard HS running fans.
After seeing his dominant XC performances, his 5k record, and also his mind-bending 8:41 3200m performance (also a national record), Dathan became one of my favorite runners to follow.
And he’s on the podcast today to talk about his training, marathon fueling, strength work, and the lessons he’s learned from coaching himself.
Dathan Ritzenhein: Strength, Fueling, and More
I kicked off the episode with an embarrassing story – one I debated sharing but I thought it was funny. Enjoy!
On more serious topics, we chat about:
- His injury prevention approach that’s helped him rebound after so injuries (stress fractures, hernias, Achilles problems, and more)
- His favorite confidence-building workout
- His go-to meal after a marathon
- Eating pop-tarts the night before racing a marathon
- How his training has changed since turning pro
Resources, Links, and Books mentioned on the show:
- Dave McHenry’s stability routine (from the Nike Oregon Project)
- Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike by Phil Knight
- Dathan’s sponsor Generation UCAN
- Dathan’s next race, the 25km River Bank Run in Grand Rapids, MI
- Dathan’s favorite event, the Great North Run half marathon
- The importance of focusing on prevention
- Dathan’s best injury prevention advice (free book)
- The value of community in running
This episode of the Strength Running podcast is sponsored by Generation UCAN, a very different type of fueling product that stabilizes blood sugar and delivers steady energy with no GI distress.
They have a patented preparation process for corn starch, which creates a fueling product that works very differently than anything else on the market:
- Their “SuperStarch” results in no GI distress because it’s not sugar-based
- With no sugar and longer-lasting energy from more complex carbohydrate, there’s no crash or cravings post-run
- It allows you to use less fuel overall because there’s no crash
I’m proud to partner with a brand that I use myself, that’s trusted by elites like Dathan Ritzenhein, and works so well.