I have been back in forth in my head for a few months now about whether or not to take on a running challenge this year. On the against side is my busy schedule and trying to fit in adequate training, and on the for side is the pull to do something to give myself the ultimate satisfaction that I just ‘can’. I received the not at all surprising “No” from the London Marathon entry system back in October. Ultimately I couldn’t get myself excited about any other marathons within range – tie in with holidays, not already closed and so on. It was at this point that I began to consider an ultra. These events often tend to be a lot less commercial and although the distance is longer, I felt I may put myself under a little less pressure with no sub 4 hour marathon to target. It was with this in mind that in the Christmas holidays I signed up for the John Muir Ultra on March 31st. This is in the “short ultra” ballpark at 50km (31 miles) . My heart sank when I discovered I was on the waiting list without a place. I kind of thought that maybe this year it wasn’t meant to be and left it at that till…I got an email to say I now had a place!
I have now completed Week 1 of my training plan and have to keep the hope that I can do this. My plan is based on time rather than distance which I hope will encourage me to calm the jets and not push too hard on my training runs. There is no point in rushing to get finished quickly when you are on a fixed time! I also struggle with not running every day. My body is tuned for short runs nearly every day, but I know that with the heavy mileage days I need to allow my body to recover on rest days.
This week’s log:
Monday – 45 minutes 5.29 miles 8.18 ave pace
Tuesday – 45 minutes 5.36 miles 8.16 ave pace
Wednesday – REST
Thursday – REST (played netball!)
Friday – 1.5 hours 10.62 miles 8.28 ave pace
Saturday – REST
Sunday – 2 hours 13.65 miles 8.48 ave pace
Today’s 2 hours was harder going than I would’ve wanted and allowed the first round of doubts to creep in. I might have to accept that running the full distance may be more than I can manage.I definitely need to commit to regular foam rolling and will try not to think too far ahead. I need to read up on nutrition and get it right this time.
Today’s nutrition consisted of my camel pak and this:
Two hours hurt a lot (camera smudged in rain):
I may also need to conserve energy when I’m with this pair!
Bring on week 2!