A run and a plan

Today I headed out to see how much pavement my legs can take (not much) and how long exactly 4 miles are! In case you missed it I am considering to run a baby ultra next year. I say baby to convince myself that this is like a 5k in ultra terms and baby in front of anything makes things seem small. I also bet on the fact that 40 miles soon will feel like nothing … at least in my head. I mean 40 miles is just 4 miles times 10 … I can count to 10, most of the times … but I digress.

So what’s the status? I think I have made a plan! I will see until the end of the year if I can increase the duration/length of my runs to a decent enough volume to consider running for such a long time, as well as figure out a way to run on pavement for that long. Both interesting challenges in their own right! Then if it all works out, I’ll commit to run the race.

Now what’s the plan you ask? It’s simply an extension of my existing plan:

plan

In the first row (minutes per week) you can see what I am doing right now. If I manage to increase by 10% each month, I’d be running for 3 hours as my long run. I’m not sure when I will increase though, as I need to continue listening to my body when it’s ready for it … the 2 hour runs are getting easier though.

Progress so far

Today’s run consisted of 1 loop of my new “test route” – 4 miles on pavement/park and then the rest on the beach as a treat and to get used to continuing after crossing my usual “go home spot”. It’s kind of fun to try and convince myself that I just started the run and try and feel as fresh!

Today I ran at 8:25 min/km at an average heart rate of 139 … yes you read it right – I am enjoying massive improvements at the moment ๐Ÿ˜€

Here is a list of all my recent “easy runs” and you can see the pace creeping upwards ever so slightly!

pace-improvement

I’m also extremely thankful and excited to receive all of your tips and tricks! It’s like crowd coaching! I know I’ll rely heavily on Randall’s tips (check out his race report of the event I am considering) or Saulbee’s mental hacks, like looping a lot during long runs and a list of hacks he promised! (no pressure Saul :D)

Oh and as Gareth has now taken over my job as cave explorer I am desperately looking for new adventures to distract everyone from my insane plan!

11 Replies to “A run and a plan”

  1. Good plan. Sounds like you have lots of good advice coming your way. Only one thought to add, and that’s not to punish your legs with pavement if you don’t have to. Sure, good to get a bit in if the main event is on a similar surface, but at the end of the day, the joints don’t know that, and don’t care. They just know the cumulative effect of too much pounding away on concrete. So treat them kindly and they will repay that with many happy miles ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. Maybe it’s enough then to try some pavement from time to time? Like mixing it in to get from grass to beach? I don’t want to punish my legs, but also survive an event like that or decide to only run trails… maybe one medium run per week with possibly a bit more cushioned shoes might work? (Right now I’m running in inov8s …)

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      1. That’s one of the reasons why I pitched the Donadea race. It’s 50k in loops in a wooded trail, so soft under foot. No pavements. Might even work as an interim run in a build up to something longer. We can all put our legs (and lungs and heart) under pressure from time to time with trail runs, hill work, repeats, intervals, etc. and these are all good as part of an overall plan that probably includes lots of slow running. But I would try and cut back on the hard stuff in terms of where you run, as much as possible. Don’t know enough about inov8s to comment on them as a runner, but I’m sure they are doing the job. If you start getting tweaks and twinges, it might pay to go to a reputable running shop and get a gait analysis. Though of course, we can be too quick to blame the runners sometimes, and think that a new pair will fix all our ills.

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      2. I was indeed thinking about going to a real runners store to get some advice. They know Irish roads… and I need new road shoes. The Donadea event sounds great! Did I miss this somehow?

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  2. Looks like you’ve got a great plan there! I love how all runners are number geeks… it’s so much fun!! (Me included in case there was any doubt, lol) I only have pavement to run on, so I don’t actually know the difference, which may trip me up a bit when I do the Hamster run in August, but we’ll see. Point being… You go girl! I have no doubt you’re going to train well and nail your 50K!! And you’ll have to figure out a way we can all live-track you because you’re going to have a whole lotta cheerleaders!! ;D

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    1. Thank you so much ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll know at the end of the year if I commit to it, but will plan in live reporting ๐Ÿ˜€ it’s 40 miles, so it will take ages! No idea if will want to run for that long, but training will show – with loads of numbers ๐Ÿ˜€

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      1. Oh my, that’s quite a distance, and super exciting! Okay, now I have some advice… keep focusing on your plan and one run at a time, then it will all come together for you just as it has (example being from your January post to now, hehe). ๐Ÿ˜€

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