home |
Trail & Ultra Running Forums Index » General Discussion » First 55 miler...What should be my longest training run?

First 55 miler...What should be my longest training run?

Joined: 23 May 2011
Posts: 1
South Carolina, United States
Posted: Mon 23 May 2011 06:37 pm GMT   topTop
I am doing a 55 miler this upcoming weekend and I did an over 25 mile training run, and several other over 20 mile training runs. Are these long enough runs for this kind of event or should I have done more?
Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 194
Utah, United States
Posted: Thu 26 May 2011 06:39 pm GMT   topTop
At this point, your best bet is to go into it with a great attitude and a strategy to pace yourself for the long haul, both in pace and nutrition. No use worrying about what's already happened.

Of course some of your strategy depends on how well you prepared -- which is probably your question.

You're not far off from most training plans I've seen. Long runs depend on which training plan you follow, but many plans have you do one ~30 mile run three to five weeks before race day, along with a handful (4-6) 20 - 25 milers spread out in the weeks before that. Or, two back-to-back ~25 milers as the peak. In my opinion, the 30+ miler is mainly to better test your race strategy (nutrition, energy, gear, psychology, etc) over a much longer period where you'll get more fatigued than usual; it's not necessarily for overall fitness ... that extra 5 won't make or break you since you'll be doing almost double your longest training on race day anyway!

But other considerations, just as important:

1) What was your total weekly training volume (miles)? Moderate to beginner plans have you doing around 50 miles per week for at least several intermittent weeks near the peak (tapering 3 weeks before race day). More advanced plans have you doing around 70 mile weeks instead of 50.

2) Were you training on similar terrain? Very important; hopefully at least a couple of those longer runs were done on similar terrain. A trail ultra with a lot of elevation gain means you should train on hills as much as possible.

Anyway - as I said, at this point, just go in to have fun and pace yourself, because you're done training. From the beginning, eat quick-energy foods consistently, hydrate consistently, and take in plenty of electrolytes consistently, to help prepare your body for the harder 2nd half. I've heard it said that if you're breathing hard in an ultra you're moving too fast. Seems good advice because if you never get breathing really hard, you're likely moving at a pace you can keep up for a long, long time ... which is exactly what you need to do (regardless of what your training pace was, at a distance half as long!).

[edited: Thu 26 May 2011 07:34 pm]
Joined: 23 May 2011
Posts: 2
Missouri, United States
Posted: Fri 03 Jun 2011 07:15 pm GMT   topTop
You can't take race strategy too seriously. I did a 340 mile kayak race and I was 100% derailed by gear, equipment, nutrition. . . Having done it once, I now have a tick list of things I should have had. I assume it is the same with the 50. Get a "bring along" list from multiple people. The last thing you want on your mind is a DNF because of gear (trust me on that one!)
Joined: 13 Jul 2011
Posts: 2
United Kingdom
Posted: Wed 13 Jul 2011 08:06 pm GMT   topTop
How did it go?