On paper, some ultra training programmes can look like a hefty amount of miles, and not much variety. It depends what route you choose to go down, and what training is best for you. But I’ve been trying to prevent any monotony, in juggling speed work with endurance.
In the lead up to my first ultra, I was really thankful for the long, steady pace, and in teaching myself to train slowly, I learned so much in terms of patience. In running for so long you have to wait and work at it, or you won’t get where you need to be, let alone finish.
But, this time I have a number of races on the cards before Race To The Stones, and this means that I really need to manage myself, and my legs, properly. I’m running Richmond Marathon next weekend, and the Bupa 10K the following week, but being part of a bigger running picture, I’ve got to slot them in and around training runs. On the Monday after the marathon, I’ve got an 8 mile recovery run pencilled in, on top of a working day. This might not sound very appealing right now, and will probably feel much worse on the day, but there’s no point in complaining, because that’s what I signed up for!
Dividing the mileage up over the two days started as a hard feat psychologically, but I think once you get into the routine of it, you realise that it’s actually not as bad as you think, and my legs are always thankful for the slower recovery runs (as well as my belly for the extra grub, and my head for the time to think).
I’ve kept my long distance base steady after running London in April, making sure I fit in a long run in on the weekend, varying from 20 miles, to half marathon distance, and running at least 4-5 days a week. As the weeks countdown I’ll start to increase my mileage, get out twice a day if I can, and fit in some strength work, making sure my legs are ready to tackle every step of 100K with the ladies in July.