Ultra Runners


BQ + 50 miler? (Read 406 times)

    Hello everyone!  I'm a runner with 3 half marathons under my belt.  I'm signed up for a marathon in 05/02/10 (Flying Pig), and I also want to run the White River 50 Mile 07/31/10.  I believe I have the discipline and desire to be able to complete these races (I do realize the toughness of the WR50), but I also really want to attempt a BQ in the marathon.  I know this all sounds very ambitious but I'm willing to ramp up the training- but I wonder if it's so out there that everyone who is reading this is having a good laugh.


    Please let me know what you think, I'd really appreciate the feedback! 

      All I can say is I've been running for 3 years, I have 5 (6?) 50ks and 2 marathons (which sucked) under my belt, and I'm trying for my first 50-miler this April.  I have someone who helps me with my training program, so I don't know if trying to BQ a marathon then running a 50-miler two months later is too much.  You might consider NOT trying to BQ and using that marathon as a long training running.


      Have you ever done any trail running?  It's a whole 'nother animal, and I would recommend getting a couple of 50k trail runs under your belt prior to trying a 50-mile trail run.


      Whatever you end up doing, though, the best of luck to you!

      Living and Running Behind the Redwood Curtain


      Trail Runner Nation


      2018: Mendocino Coast 50k - April 21

        I've completed many trail ultras but have never BQ'd.  Completing a trail 50 miler is largely a matter of having done a few, well-spaced, long trail runs (i.e. 6+ hours) in the months leading up.  BQ'ing requires a lot more focused training, such as maintaining a high mileage base on mostly roads, and incorporating weekly tempo runs, speedwork, and long runs near marathon pace.  I have the additional challenge of being adipose-disadvantaged,so I have to pay very close attention to nutrition as well.  I've always had something happen to derail my BQ plans (ACL reconstruction being the most recent).  I just turned 40, though, so at least I have another 5 minutes of slop added to the cutoff!


        Having said all that, if you make your goal a BQ at Flying Pig, then there is not so much additional training needed to have confidence for finishing WR50.  One approach that could help quite a bit towards the WR50 goal is to do one or more of the easy runs each week on single-track trail, if you don't have a lot of confidence there.  Then, try to squeeze in a couple of easy trail 50K races, maybe mid-February and mid-June.  After you finish the marathon and start training again, do all of the long training runs on trails, at a pace where you feel like you could move all day.  12 weeks is plenty of time between the marathon and the WR50 for recovery and ultra-specific training.


        Scott in Santa Fe

          I will definitely try to get to at least one trail 50K before the WR50.  I have done limited trail runs but they have been short ones with moderate technicality at most.  It's difficult to access trail terrain as a urbanite relying on public transportation!


          Thank you for the great advice!

            First, I've never run an ultra, but I hope to run the ice age 50 in May assuming I can recover from some achilles/sural nerve damage very soon, so take what I say for what it is, a 10+ marathoner's advice with no ultra races yet.


            Not sure if you've run flying pig before, but last time I ran it in 2006, it was very hilly.  Not my first choice for a first time BQ marathon.  I'd say to plan for 7-10 minutes slower than your predicted time on a flat course.  That said, I personally get faster recovery from hilly marathons, so it may be to your advantage if you have an ultra 3 months later. 


            I know DB has ran some pretty damn fast marathons and run an ultra a few weeks later, but he runs insane miles.  Not sure what kind of miles you plan on running, but I find the more miles I run during training, the stronger I feel during the whole marathon, and the faster my recovery time.

            The King of Beasts

              First you will want to run a lot more, mostly easy. 


              If you have the base fittness to run your BQ and you have a little trail skill or at least feel comfortable on the trail you can "finish" the 50 miler. 


              There should be enough time to recover from the marathon and get your legs back under you for the trail run (almost 3 months).


              Second you will want to run a lot more miles.




              "As a dreamer of dreams and a travelin' man I have chalked up many a mile. Read dozens of books about heroes and crooks, And I've learned much from both of their styles." ~ Jimmy Buffett


              "I don't see much sense in that," said Rabbit. "No," said Pooh humbly, "there isn't. But there was going to be when I began it. It's just that something happened to it along the way."”

              Gotta Flee Em All

                Pig is not a great BQ course (although it is a great course), but I don't know that it is 10 minutes slower than a flat course.


                  You should be able to complete both races-I think they are far enough apart.  However, I took a peak at your log and agree you need to run more miles.  Not knowing what your highest weekly max mileage has ever been it's hard to recommend what to build to.  Depending on your self-coaching confidence level you may want to consider hiring a coach.  Leslie and Scott both had good advice-adding some trail runs to your marathon training, throwing in a 50k training race and working on your nutrition.


                  Another thought is if you don't BQ at Flying Pig, then it's a training run towards White River and then aim for another marathon in the fall to BQ.  I ran a fall marathon after a 50m and BQ'd that way.  I'm in northern VT and like to ski so I tend to do better at fall races-I like having all spring and summer to build and get fast.


                  I've completed more ultras than marathons and I coach-here's my blatent plug for myself!   Let me know if you want more info and not that I coach Leslie but she'll vouch for me!  Off to the trail running thread-see ya!



                  If you never go fast, you'll never go fast.

                    Wow thank you for all the great tips!


                    I will certainly run more miles and run more trails (spent all weekend figuring out how to get to the trails via mass transit Wink  I've signed up for a 10 mile trail race in January and will look out for longer ones in the following months.  It sounds like I should concentrate on one thing at a time, so most likely I'll run Flying Pig as a training run, or as much as I'm able to come race day! 


                      good luck with your races. WR offers and early start if that appeals to you.

                      "Famous last words"  ~Bhearn

                        Thanks Gumbee!  I fully plan on taking advantage of that early start.  If you have any other WR50-specific insider tips I'd love to hear them!

                          Let me know if you want more info and not that I coach Leslie but she'll vouch for me! 


                          Yep.  I'll vouch for Kelly.  She's the ticket.

                          Living and Running Behind the Redwood Curtain


                          Trail Runner Nation


                          2018: Mendocino Coast 50k - April 21