“Running Pretty Much Destroyed My Body” A Running Coach Responds To Tiger Woods

Justin Horneker
3 min readMay 4, 2020

“Running over 30 miles a week for probably my first five, six years on tour pretty much destroyed my body and my knees.” said Tiger Woods in a recent interview with Golf.com but this running coach would like to make the case that running wasn’t the sole cause of Tiger’s injury issues.

Keep in mind that running 30 miles per week is on top of everything else in Tiger’s fitness program as well as playing 18+ holes of Golf everyday and strength training. The takeaway is probably closer to “don’t overtrain”, take this quote about Tiger’s general fitness program according to Golf.com’s Nick Piastowski,

“For the first part of his career, Tiger Woods would start his day with a 4-mile run. Next, he’d lift at the gym, golf for 2–3 hours, and work on his short game. Woods would end his day with another 4-miler and possibly some basketball or tennis.”

Tiger isn’t wrong that running probably added unnecessary stress on his body but he is extremely misguided about the causation and correlation. Think about the total amount of stress in his training plan:

From https://twitter.com/twlegion/status/977007971900239872

Assuming this isn’t his everyday routine but if we say 5 days a week to account for rest and recovery days, then he would be training for 40–50+ hours a week!

It isn’t all high intensity but it is going to cumulatively wear down your body especially if you aren’t paying enough attention to your mobility and recovery, which he wasn’t doing near enough of by the sound of things.

I’m not going to pretend like I know how one of the greatest Golfers of all time should have been training, but he was definitely overtraining. You can look at athletes across all sports, athletes who work too hard in training without allowing adequate time for recovery often shine bright for a short period of time before completely burning out.

Overtraining and burnout can happen to any athlete, and especially athletes as driven as Tiger Woods. You can see it in his…

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Justin Horneker

Writing about Soccer and the current state of sports.