Barry Murray

New Service for Ultrarunners

A new service just launched to combine nutrition/fat adaptation coaching with run coaching.

This came about after several requests from clients asking for running plans to tie in with their nutrition plan.
I’ve worked with numerous coaches before from cycling, triathlon and running. Usually when I am working long term with an athlete, they send me their training plan and I do up a nutrition plan that parallels it.

Having done this for years, I have learned a lot about how to design training plans but in particular for running. I’ve studied enough distance running training plans for my own use and have applied them to my ultra running career over the past several years.

There are various methods I’ve used over the years that combine a lot of the running practices of Arthur Lydiard to other coaches like Phil Maffetone to even newer approaches like that of the CrossFit Endurance model. Ultrarunning is still relatively new and doesn’t yet have its own defined set of rules for training. In fact, it’s so vast in terms of the demands it places, that in my opinion, the best approach to ultrarunning training is to tap into every type of training strategy. Coupled with that of course is how to build your nutrition around this type of training to optimise both your running performance but also general health. Often the latter is not prioritized due to an over focus on performance. What’s tied to this is how to eat of course, and what nutrition approach you take to support all your training and just daily health. It shouldn’t come as any surprise to people who have read any of my material before to say that I have found Fat Adaptation to be the best nutrition strategy to use for any distance runner. This not only improves things like your endurance capacity but also has a host of other benefits such as lowering inflammation, reducing GI distress and improving body composition. Fat Adaptation is something I have been researching and practicing myself since 2010. It is still not fully understood and unfortunately it is being misinterpreted and misused by many today.

Any form of training you take should be a journey. You adapt and change as you go along. Likewise, nutrition is the same. So while the coaching of running for most needs to be continuous, so does you’re coaching of nutrition. Not only that, but both the training and nutrition are just two branches to the tree. To really get the best out of yourself you need to look at all the branches and more importantly, get them to connect. This is the last piece of the puzzle which again today is often overlooked.

When you train in a way that improves your running but doesn’t destroy you, and tie this to becoming properly and correctly fat adapted, with your other dots connected, it changes the game. It’s not a magic overnight success story and there is no set 3 week plan to follow. It is a long term project and one that needs to be very individualised.

I have used this myself for several years. It has enabled me to win several big ultramarathons. I have won these races using all of the nutrition/training/lifestyle facets that I have studied and preached about. I now race shorter distance mountain races with the same approach, 10-20km, and have won races as short as 8km. More importantly, by connecting the dots and becoming vey fat adapted, I have not been injured or sick nor withered away or run down. In fact, my general health is what I prioritize now even though I am still winning races. I’ve been working with pro and elite cyclists, runners and triathletes that have had similar success. So I’ve been in it both on and off the field.

I don’t think you need to be a superman or superwoman to get the best out of your training, nutrition and general lifestyle. As long as you enjoy running and want to be healthy, then anyone can do it. The main obstacles for people today are that the focus is often just put on the training and the focus is on numbers. Then the nutrition is either conventional recommendations or extreme non necessary forms of fat and keto adaptation. Finally, the essence of what makes the body tick is overlooked and our evolutionary design is left to rust.

I just want to show people the right path to take and how to take it. What I’ve learnt is from several years of studying all the complex science of each aspect to simply applying it in the field in my day to day life as a person and practitioner.

I can only offer this to a small number of runners that want to improve their performance but also their quality of life, so please contact me directly for further enquiries:

Email: barry@optimumnutrition4sport.com

Note: please see the services page for costs and bookings.