5-Time Olympian Abdi Abdirahman on Longevity, Having Fun, and His Ultra Aspirations

Longevity in any sport isn’t a given. Especially at the high performance levels of a professional athlete. Today we learn from an Olympian who has evolved over decades of competing, while keeping up with the fastest runners in the world.

Abdi Abdirahman

Consider any setback that you’ve experience in your running career. Were they caused by an injury, a life change, loss of enthusiasm, or something else?

If you had your sights set on running a decade from now, what would you focus on? What are the important things to do today to ensure that you’re in this sport for years to come? We’ve learned a lot from how masters runners improve to  how we can avoid burnout. Those are great places to start if you’re looking at the long game.

In today’s conversation, we weave together the importance of mindset, recovery, training, and adaptation over time. Perhaps you can pick one for this season and notice the changes you see in your running.

Abdi Abdirahman is Having Fun While Getting Faster

Abdi Abdirahman is a 5-time Olympian and the oldest American runner to qualify for the Olympics. He is the oldest male to podium at the NYC Marathon, and USATF’s master’s record holder in the marathon. Abdi is also a 4-time USATF champ in the 10k and a 5-time road racing champion at distances from 10 miles to the marathon.

In other words, he’s one of the best runners ever to represent the United States.

He’s also found the time to become a new author. I’m thrilled he’s written his first book to get an even deeper inside look into his mind.

Check it out here: Abdi’s World: The Black Cactus on Life, Running, and Fun

Today’s conversation gives a glimpse of his laid back, lighthearted personality that contributes to Abdi’s amazing longevity in the sport.

We explore topics of:

  • Balance between training and life outside of running
  • Changes that Abdi has seen over the years
  • When to be serious and when to relax
  • How running “strength” evolves over time

He also makes an important distinction between physical and mental recovery. This is a great point for anyone who want to get the best out of their rest days:

Check out the full episode below and enjoy Abdi’s infectious enthusiasm about running.

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Thank You InsideTracker!


Our show is supported by our longtime sponsor InsideTracker. Today, more than ever, it’s essential that we’re making the right decisions to keep our bodies healthy. To help us be resilient, prevent over-training, and optimize our running to get the most from it.

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Thank You PATH Projects!

PATH Projects continues to be a great supporter of this podcast! I’m grateful for their partnership and want to share more about their products that I’ve been loving because they so durable and comfortable.

PATH Projects is an online-only retailer of high-quality running gear and apparel. That means there is no retail markup, making their products quite affordable.

In particular, I’ve just started wearing their 3” Sykes shorts and they’re a little different from the 5” Sykes shorts (you can see those in action here). The material is thinner and lighter, which is perfect in a performance short, and they’re obviously shorter. I’m not sure if my wife thinks they’re too scandalous or loves them, but I’m wearing them constantly.

PATH uses new technical fabrics, like the Japanese fiber called Toray Primeflex, to create award-winning apparel for endurance athletes. In fact, their Brim shorts and Tahoe base liner won Runner’s World’s 2018 Gear of the Year award. And the Pyrinees hoodie was named one of the best six sweatshirts for running in the cold by Gear Patrol.

You know you’ll be wearing the best when you select PATH Projects!

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