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MAF Training and Nutrition with Andy Hooks

By August 29, 2019May 20th, 2023No Comments
Andy hooks running a marathon race on Extramilest podcast

“It became a lot less about trying to qualify for the Boston Marathon, and it became more about a love for running again. That part is what allowed me to become a better runner. I was able to go every day” — Andy Hooks on MAF training.

Hello running friends around the world! A lot happening in today’s update:

  • a new episode of The Extramilest Show with my friend Andy Hooks. He is on his way from a 4:22 marathon, to 2:53 to Sub 2:40 with MAF low HR training (Great follow on Strava).
  • dates for upcoming group runs at the Chicago Marathon, New York Marathon and CIM Sacramento Marathon
  • a new Enter to Win contest to win great prizes
  • and more much!

I wanted to give a short update from my world, because it has been a while since my last podcast. 

  • I’m very exciting to train for my next race, I’ll be running the CIM Marathon in Sacramento in December. Gradually my training volume is increasing, currently I’m running around 6 hours a week. Over the coming weeks and months I’ll increase this volume and will start adding some speedwork soon. See my daily running updates on Strava here.
  • Several people have reached out to me lately why I haven’t posted new videos. This summer there has been a lot of exciting things happening with our running apparel company PATH projects. Besides that, I have spent a lot of time and effort on finishing the Marathon PR Program. There are no ads on this newsletter & podcast, but I do want to mention some info about this heart rate based training program.
  • I have been asked many times to coach athletes. Instead of 1 on 1 coaching, I have developed a training program based on the fundamentals of:
    • low heart rate training
    • limiting stress
    • the right nutrition
    • mindsets
    • race strategies
  • There are more than 30 new videos + 10 editable training schedules for different race goals.
  • Athletes from 25 countries have joined since the launch earlier this month and the feedback has been very positive. For example:
    • “A big pat-on-the-back too for the Marathon PR Program. I’ve already started changing my training around based on your content. It’s all really motivating.” 

Moving on to our latest podcast with MAF runner Andy Hooks! 

Today I have my friend Andy Hooks on the podcast and we discuss our favorite topics around heart rate training, nutrition and improving your running. He used a MAF training approach to improve from a 4:22 marathon, to 2:53 and is aiming for a sub 2:40 or 2:45 marathon at the Berlin marathon in a few weeks.

Andy is a full time emergency room nurse in San Antonio, TX and he has a great understanding of nutrition, hydration and a holistic approach to training and racing. He is a very solid athlete and we had a long and honest conversation. He failed many times to reach his running goals, but accepted these setbacks to not only meet but also exceed his goals.

He shared many great insights in my longest podcast recording to date. I learned a lot from this conversation. For example, he mentions the importance of your sodium and potassium intake. This reminder and change in nutrition has already made a big impact on my energy levels in training this week in warm weather conditions.

Big THANK YOU to Andy Hooks for taking the time to share his insights!

🚨What was your favorite quote or takeaway from this episode? I would love to hear from you in the comments on YouTube. 1 random winner gets a 12 pack of Spring Energy (Andy’s favorite real food, low sugar, natural energy) + the Hi Lyte salt tabs that Andy takes. A $55 prize package! Comment to enter here. 🚨

Watch this full interview on YouTube.

Listen to the conversation on Apple PodcastsSpotifyOvercastStitcher or your other favorite podcast platform.

Extramilest show on Apple Podcasts

Show notes:

  • Background in running and his first experience with marathon running [6:40]
  • What changed when Andy discovered low heart rate training and building an aerobic base [10:20]
  • Some of the injuries and experiments that didn’t go according to plan [13:40]
  • Improvements Andy started seeing using MAF training [15:40]
  • Andy’s experiment with a 48 hour fast, followed by trying to qualify for the Boston marathon fasted 😀 [18:40] 
  • Andy’s nutrition and race strategy for his current 2:53 personal best [24:40]
  • Importance of hydration and getting in enough sodium and potassium [30:10]
  • Andy drinks bone broth before and after some of his long runs in hot weather [33:10]
  • Energy gel discussion with Myspring, GU, Vespa, Ucan, etc [34:10]
  • What Andy’s training looks like for the Berlin Marathon, Houston Marathon and Big Foot 200 [37:30]
  • How Andy integrates the MAF 180 formula in his training [39:10]
  • Andy values his training consistency over intensity, since it’s less stressful on the body [31:00]
  • Integrating speedwork into your MAF training [42:25] 
  • Andy’s thoughts on different types of nutrition [47:10] 
  • Impact of weather on your training and racing [54:02] 
  • Andy uses water aqua plyometrics a few times a week [55:40]
  • How Andy’s job as emergency nurse has opened his eyes about the nutrition [59:40]
  • HR specific training at higher intensity [1:05:10]
  • Recovery tools and workouts that Andy uses with hot epsom salt baths, hot sauna, light stretches and the right micronutrients [1:10:10]
  • Andy sleeps 7 hours a night and gets into REM sleep quickly, this feels enough [1:12:10]
  • Recommendations for runners training mostly at low heart rate [1:14:21] 
  • Floris talks about getting back into his training cycle and gaining fitness again [1:17:55]
  • Recommendations for runners looking to improve in their training and racing [1:22:20]
  • Importance of proper running form and how to improve it [1:25:20]
  • For athletes in their 50’s, 60’s and older who train at low hr, proper running form at low HR can be challenging, some thoughts on this [1:27:50]
  • How to think bigger with running? Our imagination is our limitation [1:33:34]

Items and people mentioned:

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You can find me, Floris Gierman here: 




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