22 Mile Run: 3 Things to Try When Training for 26.2 or More


There are less than 4 weeks until my 50K! I ran 22 miles at Huntsville State Park in training for the Texas Trails Endurance 50K, which will be held at the park. Either because running on trails is easier on the body or because I've gradually worked up to this distance, I had hardly any post-run soreness. 

3 Things To Try When Training for a Marathon or an Ultra

1. Carbohydrate Loading

I carbohydrate-loaded. There are different ways to load, but the day before my run, I ate 7 grams of carbohydrates for every kilogram of body weight. That's two times the carbohydrates I normally eat! I didn't feel any different than usual and I don't know if it helped. Have you tried carbohydrate-loading?

2. Practice with the Race-provided Food and Drink

I filled a 70 ounce Camelbak hydration pack with food that they might have at the race. I ate two Hammer gels, 1/2 banana, a honey sandwich (even though peanut butter and jelly is more likely) and peanut M&M's. It was all good. What are your favorite aid station foods?

3. Run on the Race Course or Similar Terrain

It was good to get in some miles running on root-filled trails, on sand, on hills and on a gravel road. You can't always run on the race route, but I'm glad I did because now there's less chance of making a wrong turn like I did at the 50K I ran at this park and more chance of a good race like the half marathon I ran there at the park. Have you run a trail race before?

Seen on My Run
  • 4 runners: I met another runner who is running the 50K.
  • 2 deer: I had to wave my arms to get one to move off of the trail.
  • 0 alligators! They live there!

Comments

  1. Great run, almost time. Glad you didn't see any alligators!! Nice that you saw some runners and deer though.

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    1. It was a nice surprise! I also saw a lot of birds including a fight right above my head between 6 noisy ravens!

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  2. How exciting! A 50k is definitely on my bucket list. A few years ago I did a 50 miler relay and there were a bunch of yummy snacks at the aid stations. Some were only for the people running the 50 miler themselves.-L

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    1. It can be quite the smorgasbord at ultra aid stations!

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  3. I ran 21 miles this weekend training for my 50k and while I am sore, I also noticed that I am way less sore than I expected! When I ran my first 20 miler training for my first marathon, I remember feeling much worse after. I think it's a combination of getting stronger and trails being easier on the body. I have 6 weeks until my race so they are around the same time, looking forward to seeing how the rest of your training + your race goes! I have one more 20 miler and a 24 miler, I plan on doing at least one of them on the actual race course.

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    1. I think you're right about our bodies becoming stronger - that helps with the soreness problems. It's great that we've both got 50K races coming up soon!

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  4. Awesome that you were able to run on the course. How long do your long runs get up to for a 50K?

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    1. The longest training run I've done for a 50K is 24 miles. I might do that before this race.

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  5. Awesome, no post run soreness on a 22 mile run is impressive :) Your carbs must be working for you! Do you heavy protein the next day or eat your usual? It sounds like you are ready for your 50K :)

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    1. I went back to normal eating the next day. After loading up on carbs the day before the run and eating lots of carbs during the run, I was ready to get back to normal! After the run, I made sure to eat protein and, of course, some more carbs!

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  6. Great tips! I did them all for my recent ultra and so glad I did!

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    1. Good to hear! And that makes me think I should try carb-loading again!

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  7. I am wonderful about number 2, but am the worst about your 3rd suggestion. I seem to always run my same favorite routes.

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    1. Like you, running the race route is the one I don't usually get to do. If I do run on similar terrain, I probably don't do enough of that either - especially when it comes to hills.

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  8. Wow I can't even imagine fueling and training for runs that long!! You rock

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  9. I did a 32 miler and my fueling was awful (2 honey stingers, and just water/Gatorade at the stops). I paid dearly for it after! Not being sore after 22 miles is impressive!
    I still need work on fueling, I felt like I did better in my last race--but still needs a lot of work.

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    1. That's far! After running a 50K last May, I know that part of the fun is knowing that you can do it and you did!

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  10. I've never run a trail race, so I can't even imagine a 50K! Let's hope you never run into any gators :)

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    1. At the park, I'll stay on the boardwalks near the water and, hopefully, they'll stay underneath those boardwalks!

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  11. Hi Tina!! Great to hear from you. Really great to read your blog and all that you're up to. Sounds like you are well on track for this 50km! Looking forward to reading all about it! Re: the carb loading, I try to eat a little bit more carb-heavy foods leading up to a race, but I have never been too accurate with regards to amounts (maybe I should be hey). I also try to trial out the food and drink beforehand, but the only thing I'm lacking in my training is your point re: training on similar terrain - I have no mountain trails nearby and that is where my next (3-day) event will be held! Positive thinking and improvisation will be my substitute for this one. Go Tina!!

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    1. Can't imagine a 3 day event - looking forward to the recap! Thanks for sharing what you've done in your training!

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  12. I'll file these tips away for when I run my first ultra (which will probably be a 50K). It's in an undetermined amount of time in the future, but it will happen someday! Glad there were to gator sightings during your run.

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    1. How exciting that you plan to run a 50K someday!

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  13. That's fantastic that you aren't very sore after the long runs. That happened to me while training for my last marathon and it makes it so much easier!

    I never specifically keep track of the extra carbs but I do try to eat a few more each day starting several days out.

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    1. I think the way you add a few extra carbs without keeping track is probably the norm from what I can tell. Thanks for sharing!

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