The Two Best Ways to Build Endurance as Fast as Possible (without Destroying Your Body)

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Ben is off-the-grid hiking and exploring the island of Kauai in Hawaii (click here to stay tuned to Instagram to see some very entertaining photos of his adventures). So today, we bring you a special audio episode: the full chapter 3 of Ben's New York Times best-selling book “Beyond Training”.

In this chapter, you're going to discover that there is definitely more than one way to build endurance, and whether you're a Crossfitter, obstacle course racer, marathoner, triathlete, cyclist, swimmer or anyone else who simply wants to build stamina, grit, and endurance, and this audio is going to show you the very best way to do just that.

If you like this chapter, then please know that Beyond Training is available as an audiobook, Kindle, and physical book here, and also available in audio .mp3 form to anyone who is a Premium member of Ben Greenfield Fitness show. The book was just updated last month with over 6 new months of Ben's research and edits.

Special Announcements:

This podcast is brought to you by:

– – Get 4 FREE samples (choose from over 50 options!), that’s a $15 value, when you go, click on the mic and enter the code ‘BEN'.

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13 thoughts on “The Two Best Ways to Build Endurance as Fast as Possible (without Destroying Your Body)

  1. Mike SIcuranza says:


    Have you heard of Performa Mattresses and what is your opinion on them?

  2. Eric Pritchard says:

    Ben, thanks for the chapter. Any tips on how, or if, I can apply this to high school XC and T&F? Thanks!

    1. Sure… I have a training plan in the book that lays out some pretty good workouts and methods for applying this to endurance events like running… So that would be a pretty good place to start:

  3. Maro says:

    Hi Ben, I loved this! Thank you.

    I’m a almost 50 female recreational runner. I just did my first marathon (Seattle) and it was pretty slow (5:45) I want to improve my time but keep the principles in this chapter at the forefront.

    Would you say that 1x per week of the 20 second sprint with 30 sec rest (or longer if needed) is better than doing your elliptical HIIT protocol? I like the elliptical one b/c it lessens the chance I will pull a muscle like I might while sprinting.

    I’m a slow runner, so sprinting feels not that great. I have been able to get my HR up PAST my LT on the elliptical by doing 220rpm with 7 resistance and 7 elevation for 30 seconds, with a 90 second rest (I couldn’t do it with a shorter rest, couldn’t breathe lol) I do about 20 mins of elliptical HIIT following your guide. I’m just curious as to your take on whether sprinting or elliptical HIIT is BETTER for what my goal is.

    You have helped me improve my health and fitness in ways I could not imagine. Thank you so much.

    1. You can do BOTH. I do a huge variety of HIIT as outlined here:…

  4. Ben says:

    Hi Ben this is very interesting. Have you got links to the journals and studies please?

  5. Brandon says:

    The 80/20 approach and HIIT are presented as mutually exclusive. Is there something I’m missing? Why can’t one of the HIIT Sprint protocols be a major component of the 20% in the 80/20 approach?

    1. They can be. They're not mutually exclusive. You just don't want to include junk miles with that approach.

  6. Kelly says:

    How is a latex mattress organic?

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