Monday, May 4, 2015

50 Mile Training

Before the Race: Would I Really Finish?
I completed my first 50 mile race nine days ago!
Here's how I trained:
My 50 Mile Race Training
(My Long Runs/ Some Back-to-backs/ Weekly Totals) 
8 weeks out: 26.2 (The Woodlands Marathon) (45 miles this week total)
7 weeks out: 10 (15 miles this week total)
6 weeks out: 24/10 (Back-to-back run: 24 mile run followed by a 10 mile run the next day) (54 miles this week total)
5 weeks out: 28/7 (Back-to-back run) (55 miles this week total)
4 weeks out: 10 (19 miles this week total)
3 weeks out: 25/10 (Back-to-back run) (66 miles this week total)
2 weeks out: 15 (39 miles this week total)
1 week out: 10 (34 miles this week total)
Race Week: 50 Mile Trail Race (62 miles this week total)
# of Days Per Week: Mostly, I ran 4-5 days a week with a 3 day and 6 day week, too.
The closer I got to race day, the more I noticed little niggles (slight pain). The day before the race, my 95 pound dog stepped on my feet and ran into my knee! None of this bothered me on race day, though. What a relief! 
If I had more time, I'd do more back-to-back runs where I would do a long run followed by a 10 or 12 mile run the next day. This 50 mile training plan helped me to make up my own.
DOMS? One thing I wondered about was the pain after the race (DOMS: delayed onset muscle soreness) because I had never run longer than a 50K (31 miles) before. Good news: I recovered a day or two sooner than I have after my road marathons. Three days after my 50 mile race, my sore legs and back weren't stiff or sore!
What would you change about your training? Have you run back-to-backs?

24 comments:

  1. So many miles! I am so impressed by your training!

    I did a number of back to back training runs last fall, but I did the shorter of the runs on Saturday with the longer run on Sunday. The most I did was 8/20.

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    1. Thanks! I like to do a long run the day after a medium-distance run like you did, too.

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  2. I am impressed with your training and how well the race turned out for you. You really are amazing. How nice you had a quicker recovery time than for road marathons. It's great you just had some slight niggles that cleared up easily.

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    1. Another factor that led to a faster recovery for me must have been the fact that I wasn't climbing mountains like you do in many other ultras!

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  3. I am filing away all this great info in case I ever step up to an ultra!

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    1. I've probably bookmarked hundreds of ultra training ideas!

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  4. I have done back to backs, but of a shorter variety--maybe 13 and 9 around there. 3 years ago I did a 32 miler and I would follow up my runs with a 2-3 mile fast hike, and 3 days per week then go to a spin class--kind of "time on your feet" training.
    It is interesting the weekly mileage isn't as high as I would have thought, which is great, and probably why you were injury free!!

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    1. It's always a little hard to judge how much to increase or decrease for aches, but given more time, I would have run more. Hiking and spinning would be fun to add to training for more time on your feet.

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  5. Thanks for the recap of your training. I'm contemplating a 50 miler and it's really helpful to know what kind of mileage worked for you. I agree the back to backs are really helpful in ultra training.

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    1. Since I slowed down so much in the race, it might be more of a lesson on what not to do, but thanks for letting me know! If I ever do another 50, I'd like to fit in more longer distances, too.

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  6. Amazing training. You did wonderfully.

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    1. Thanks, Abby! It was fun training for the race - trying new running fuel and pushing myself to run more.

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  7. I am so impressed with your training and your 50 mile race. I like that you incorporated a few lower mileage weeks. I just ordered a jar of Trail Toes. Thanks for the recommendation.

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    1. Sure! I'm glad I found the Trail Toes in my race packet. I covered my feet with it before the race and didn't get any blisters even though my feet were wet from the rain during the first part of the race.

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  8. Thanks for posting this. I've been curious about what you did to train. Your peak week of 66 miles--wow! I can't imagine that, but your whole training is so impressive. Congrats again!

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    1. Thanks! I think that's my highest mileage in a week that I've ever done.

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  9. I would add in more rest days!

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    1. If I could, I would have added more sleep, too, but sometimes my body doesn't cooperate. Early riser here!

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  10. Nice! This is so awesome! Stacked runs are my favorite for ultra distances. They really give your body time to adjust to running while completely exhausted!

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    1. I wish I could have done more of those. Congrats on being the first female finisher at your recent 50K trail race!

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  11. That's awesome you weren't terribly sore after! I'm sure the trails are a lot gentler on your body than the pavement. That training makes my head spin. You're a rock star!

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    1. After seeing training plans where you run 4 hours one day and 5 the next, or something really long like that, mine seems pretty low-key to me. I'm glad I wasn't an achy mess afterwards - a nice surprise!

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  12. Congrats on your first 50 mile race, wow! :)

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  13. It always amazes me how much quicker I recover from a trail race than from a road race. Looks like back to back long runs are the key to ultramarathon success!

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