Ultra Runners

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My first Ultra... advice (Read 459 times)

    ok... My first ultra is scheduled for Thanksgiving. It is a 50k... I am currently training for a 1/2 on Nov 2nd... but I am in pretty good marathon shape... actually I am in better shape now than I was for my marathon (clev 2008)... It (the 50k) will be on a hilly 5k loop around a lake on an all purpose trail. The loop has three 150-200 ft hills... one is steeper ,. one of medium grade ... one is long and shallow... downhills are the same.... The race is a personal thing... it is not an organized race. It will be supported only by my brother who will station himself near the start/finish line... Advice is what I am looking for... if you were to give someone advice on their first ultra what would it be? Fuel... food... water... etc... walking? resting? mental... clothing? What about coffee at the half way point? If it is cold I was thinking of having a small cup of coffee at the half way point? *********Additional info ************* It is a personal thing that has been festering in my mind as something I have to do. I knew I was going to run 50k at some point in training for my first marathon and well I just didn't know when. I am fairly certain I will run a 50 miler as well someday but as for 100 that I do not know. For the marathon I knew when I completed my second 1/2 marathon that someday I would run a full marathon but I didn't know when... but one day I ran 7 miles and my running friends were off to coffee and I felt like running more... and after 11 more miles... and my first 18 miler I knew it was time to start marathon training... Well on a run just about 2 weeks ago... while pondering Lance Armstrong's return to cycling, the NOW moment happened. I knew then I was going to run 50k on thanksgiving and I would do it to support LAF. I am doing a whole fund raising thing along with it too... and the local paper is doing a story about me... and hopefully a few people will make a donation... I'm not here to plug that... but it tells some of the story of what and why I am doing this... *************************************
      I've only run 1 50K ever, and it was very slow, so not too much on the advice front.. But I had to chime in because I'm training for the Inland Trail half on 11-2, is that the one you're doing? Are you by chance running the Hinckley all purpose loop around the lake for the ultra? I'm from the general area, used to run at Hinckley a lot. Your hill description sounds kind of like what I remember there! At least food/drink will be easy to leave in your car and stop by whenever you want it. Anyway, what I did to prep for my 50K (winter Buckeye Trail 50K last year) was the same kind of mileage you're doing, but I would do back-to-back longish runs on the weekend. My biggest week, I did 10 miles one evening, and then 20 miles the following morning. The 20 miles took me 5 hours, I walked parts, and was on tons of hills (pretty much did parts of the 50K course). I never went over 20, but I did do back-to-backs a lot, and trained a lot on the same terrain as the race. Hard for me to say whether you need to walk hills or not. A 50K isn't that much longer than a marathon, and it seems like you train on hills a lot. Do you train on the same surface as the race a lot also? I did mine pretty conservatively, I didn't run hills until I had 5 miles left and felt really good still. Good luck with the training and the fundraising!
        Wow... yes I am running the inland trail 1/2.... and yes it is hinckley Lake that I will be running my 50k at... I run at the lake at least once a week... and now that it is getting dark earlier I will be there more often as it is the closest place for me to run off the roads... I do 90% of my training on asphalt...
          Think of it this way: it's only 8k, or 5 miles, longer than a marathon. Train as if for a marathon, but extend your long run by a few miles and/or do some back to backs. (That said, I've never done one either... so take it with a pinch of salt!)
            I'm trying to get sense of the training you've put in for a trail run, which is quite different from a road race. My personal opinion is that they require a lot more stamina than a road race, mostly for the fact that 26 miles on trails is generally going to take longer to run that 26 miles on the road. Plus, the terrain takes more out of you - climbing hills, technical footing, etc. With a 50/31.06 miles, again depending on your training, that extra 5 miles can seem like a hell of a lot more than "only 5 more miles." Depending on how much climbing you will be doing, I highly recommend you incorporate hill work into your training at least once a week. Also depending on the climbing and technicality of the trail, you need to think about what kind of fuel you're going to intake. Solid foods? Just gels? Whatever you decide to use, you need to use it on your practice runs. My two biggest problems with the two 50ks I've done is fueling/fluids. The first 50k, I took in too much fluid. The second, I didn't eat enough. You should consider taking in about 280 calories an hour. Your general Clif bar is about 240-250 calories. That, combined with the fluids you take in, might be enough. And by fluids I mean Gatorade or some other sports drink concoction. I use a combination of GU2O and maltrodextrin. The malto helps cut the sweetness of the GU, which helps my stomach issues. Another issue, are you using trail running shoes or road shoes? Trail running shoes have much more stability than road. Not to negate the knowledge you will find here, but over at Kickrunners there's a ton of experience from which you can draw information. I highly recommend you check them out. Also, Kelly/Ultrachick, who posts in this forum and in the Trail Running forum, is a good source of information. She just completed her first 100-mile trail run and came 3rd overall. She is an awesome trail runner. Good luck.

            Leslie
            Living and Running Behind the Redwood Curtain
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            2015 Wish List:

            April 4 - Peterson Ridge Rumble (40m); June - A 50k somewhere; July 25 & 26 - Lake of Death 24 Hour; October 10 - Dick Collins Firetrails 50; January 2016 - Ordnance 100k (dream a little dream . . .)


            "The farther you go outside, the farther you go inside." (Unknown)
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            Trail Runner Nation

            Fatozzi

              Wow... yes I am running the inland trail 1/2.... and yes it is hinckley Lake that I will be running my 50k at... I run at the lake at least once a week... and now that it is getting dark earlier I will be there more often as it is the closest place for me to run off the roads... I do 90% of my training on asphalt...
              IMO you are doing good with training then! The thought of running those downhills on asphalt was making my knees twinge. But if 90% of your training is on asphalt, and a lot is on the specific course you are training on, you should be better with it. So is the all purpose loop exactly 5K? I run 90% on trails or soft surfaces, so I am a bit concerned about the Inland trail, but I did put in 13 on a paved path over the weekend with no pain...
                So is the all purpose loop exactly 5K?
                depends who you ask... some folks say 3.2 miles... some of the metropark literature said 3.1... my garmin says 3.08 I figure if I swoop in and out of the main parking lot each loop I'll grab the extra bit to make it 5k... plus then I can grab supplies as needed.
                  I'm trying to get sense of the training you've put in for a trail run, which is quite different from a road race. ... Another issue, are you using trail running shoes or road shoes? Trail running shoes have much more stability than road.
                  1. the name trail.. is deceiving... both races I am running upcoming are on all purpose paths.... which are asphalt. 2. I am running in road shoes but when I hit the trails I run in trail shoes...
                    1. the name trail.. is deceiving... both races I am running upcoming are on all purpose paths.... which are asphalt. 2. I am running in road shoes but when I hit the trails I run in trail shoes...
                    Aaaah! Smile

                    Leslie
                    Living and Running Behind the Redwood Curtain
                    -------------

                    2015 Wish List:

                    April 4 - Peterson Ridge Rumble (40m); June - A 50k somewhere; July 25 & 26 - Lake of Death 24 Hour; October 10 - Dick Collins Firetrails 50; January 2016 - Ordnance 100k (dream a little dream . . .)


                    "The farther you go outside, the farther you go inside." (Unknown)
                    Ultrarunnerpodcast

                    Trail Runner Nation

                    Fatozzi


                    Blaine Moore (MM#2867)

                      ok... My first ultra is scheduled for Thanksgiving. It is a 50k... I am currently training for a 1/2 on Nov 2nd... but I am in pretty good marathon shape... actually I am in better shape now than I was for my marathon (clev 2008)... It (the 50k) will be on a hilly 5k loop around a lake on an all purpose trail. The loop has three 150-200 ft hills... one is steeper ,. one of medium grade ... one is long and shallow... downhills are the same....
                      Think about how you'd train on that course for a marathon, train that way, and you'll be fine. A 50k is basically a long marathon, which is what I was told before I ran my first one. When you bump up to 50 miles is when you need different fueling strategies, etc.

                      Run to Win
                      24 Marathons, 17 Ultras, 16 States (Full List)




                      who knows...

                        I would second Blaine's advice.
                        "There is no I in εγω." --Unknown author, source of possible, but in no way certain, Greek origin


                        Ultrachick

                          I agree with everyone else's advice. Looks like you're getting the miles on the surface you'll be running on etc. I think you'll be fine and since you're doing the 50k on your own you can bail if you need to. Good luck going around that loop 10 times-I'd go nuts! Kelly
                          If you never go fast, you'll never go fast.
                            tomorrow is the day... My training this month has been spotty but coming off that 1/2 I did expect it. And with the tweaked hammy I almost had to bag this idea entirely. I ran 18 on the loop saturday and well my quads were pretty tore up... but by tues they felt fine again... and my hamstring felt fine too! I know I will hurt a tomorrow. I know the last 4 laps are going to be rough... I know my legs will be very sore for days afterwards... I know it will take guts to not quit. Most people probably think this is crazy but I don't care... I look forward to it because when I do it... when I do something I just didn't think was possible for me... it is well hard to describe.
                              I did it... I thought my legs were going to fall off but I made it. 5:08:04 I'll do a race report and post some picks soon...
                                Way to go, fantastic time, you have beaten me by 1 week as I am doing mine of 7/12/08. It will be great to see you in action

                                Jerry
                                A runners blog-updated daily

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