I GET It Now and Figuring Out A Training Plan!

When I was in high school there was a summer that I went over to my neighbor’s house a few mornings a week from 6-7:30 to be with her kids because her husband left early to work and she went out to run or work out at that time.  The kids usually slept the entire time I was there so it was the easiest job ever but I remember wondering how in the world my neighbor got up every morning to go RUNNING (waking up early to go sit on her couch and watch Saved by the Bell to get paid was hard enough…).  I was running at that point in my life once a week or something and I thought it was great and all but I didn’t get it.  Until now:)  I totally understand now how those miles (or doing whatever it is that you need to fuel up) help us out so much in every relationship we have for the rest of the day so you fit it in whenever you can.  I’m glad I could help her that summer to get those endorphins while also earning money to put gas into my gold Crown Victoria.

8 miles @ 7:27 average during Skye’s nap (Andrew was home).

PS Megan sent this to me… can you believe Mark Wahlberg works out at 4 am every morning?!

PPS I don’t recommend wearing your running tights backwards on a run.  It was a crazy morning between getting the kids up and to school after the Thanksgiving break, Skye screaming for a good chunk of time (teething:) and just normal life stuff so I wasn’t paying attention as I was getting dressed.  I didn’t realize until I was already going and didn’t have time to go home to switch them around ha so they were just very uncomfortable for the run.  Wear your running tights the proper way;)

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Leftover soup for lunch.  It had been way too long since my last chocolate covered cinnamon bear.  These things are too good.

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I got in some organizing during the day.  In just 7 weeks of living here you couldn’t see the ground in our mudroom anymore so I attempted to organize it.  Luckily, our mudroom has a door so you can close it when it gets really crazy in there.  I also organized the fridge which was very needed after Thanksgiving.

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Skye was pretty cuddly for a lot of the day…

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We got in some reading of the classics…

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Constantly trying to figure each other out.

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Skye added a new word to her vocabulary… she says, “GO” whenever the kids stop pushing her around the house ha.

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Andrew was gone and I really outdid myself with making a fancy dinner for the girls and me;)

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The other night we watched Christmas With a View on Netflix… it was so incredibly cheesy.  Andrew is a saint for watching it with me.

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Let’s talk about coaching plans for a second.

Mary was one of the major reasons I finally got that sub 3.  She is a beyond fabulous coach and the perfect fit for me!  We decided on Friday though that I’ll be taking a few months off from being coached and then after the 50 miler (and a proper recovery) we will be working together again.  I kind of live on both sides of the spectrum with my running… I go from needing all of the structure (down to the minute of each run) and speed work to needing to just run what my body wants to that day (which I need to switch out of for this ultra training).  It’s weird how I go back and forth.   I also am just not feeling the speed (even though a few weeks ago I had asked her to still give me some speed:).  I had a mini speed workout on my plan last week and I just couldn’t bring myself to do it (ummmm a few months ago you couldn’t have paid me to veer off my training plan).  My body and head just aren’t wanting to do speed yet for some reason.  Andrew is heading into a crazy amount of shifts and his capstone and so my running schedule is a bit unpredictable now and changing week to week based on his work and when we can get a babysitter to hit the trails together (teach me how to love the treadmill again please because I am going to be on there more often).  Long story long, I’m just going to use a training plan (and probably mix the days around a bit so it will be a bit more flexible than I’m used to) for the ultra.  I will 10000% be back to Mary for when I get back to road racing because she is amazing and can get me to my potential.

Andrew and I have been flipping through a lot of plans and books to figure out how to go about this and I wanted to ask any of you that have run an ultra if you have a plan you recommend!!  We have about 16.5 weeks until race day

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I get hungry just looking over some of the different plans… look at these back to back long runs!  This will be very new to me because I’m used to a complete rest day after a long run.  (sorry for the blurry photo)

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Any great plans that you recommend for the ultra?

Where do you usually get a training plan for any of your races?  Do you tend to lean towards more structured running or whatever you feel like running or does it change back and forth?

Most organized spot in your house… least organized spot?

Anyone else love the cheesy Christmas movies?  Send me your recommendations please!

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78 comments

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Love the Mark Wahlberg thing! I also love Kevin Hart–he can be punchy, but I love his enthusiasm for life, running, and just BEING ACTIVE!

I haven’t taken a break from a coach, but I totally get what you’re saying about the need to just do your own thing sometimes, and you are SO SMART to listen to your body, your head, and your HEART. It says a lot about Mary that you were able to communicate with her and to work out a plan for you to return to her when you’re ready! I have my first speed since my marathon 2 weeks ago today—just 10 one minute segments at threshold. I’m not dreading that, but all of the sudden it is COLD and WINDY here in PA. Winters seem to go from October til May here, and I’m a summer girl. It’s just hard to feel that same motivation when it’s so cold and windy out!!!! I’m training for the Key West half though, so those sunny thoughts will have to power me through :)

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Oh I love Kevin Hart too! YES… Oh she was the absolute best to talk about this. She saw it in me at the same time I saw it in me! It’s cold and windy… boooo! I think that is a huge part of my problem. The cold makes me just want to run long and slow… not fast. Maybe I need to get on the treadmill too! The Key West half was MADE FOR YOU:) I want to join you one year! Have a beautiful day today Jen!

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Our house has the most awkward storage systems everywhere. So as much as I’d love it to be, our house isn’t super organized. The best room is probably our pantry. One of the things on our dream house list is some kind of mud room so we can control the coats and backpacks haha.

I used to just make up my own training plans but then I started using aaptiv and have really liked the ones on there.

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YES… I hope you get that mudroom for your kiddos, it helps a lot especially in the winter! Oh I’ll have to look at aaptiv. Thank you, Jenny! I hope you have a wonderful day!

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I used this for my first 50. https://www.ultraladies.com/free-training-plans.html. It is FREE!! Plan for alllllll the food! You will be ridiculously hungry!! Like ALL the time! I am 38 days out from my first 100K!! Happy training!

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Free is exactly what I’m looking for…. I like that plan a lot. That one seems more doable for us! Thank you for sharing that with me. THIRTY EIGHT DAYS… I am thrilled for you Rebecca and will you please let me know how it goes. I’m cheering for you. Also, question… when training for both your 50 and 100k, how often are you actually on the trails? I’m finding it harder than I thought to get to them each week!

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I only have time to run trails on the weekends, I try to get my long run done all on trails (I have access to a 20 mile trail system about 20 minutes from my home). If it is a good weekend, I can hit them on Saturday and Sunday :). All my weekday runs are done on roads at 4:30am! I live in a pretty flat location, Kansas, so training for races with BIG climbs is tough… I have hill workout I added as a second run one day a week. Just run allllll the miles! :) Oh, and take care of your feet!

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This is all so so helpful for me. Thank you Rebecca and when I’m complaining to myself about getting up for an early run I’ll think about how you get out there at 4:30 am. AMAZING. So excited for your 100k and it’s time for me to learn about foot health:)

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https://www.trailsisters.net/2018/11/27/tips-from-a-50-mile-first-timer/?fbclid=IwAR0-MUGsnRW4uypAxRvE1qegieQgfgp9XD8XIMNcptebiw22JQ2Yv9WuFiY

I love this blog. This article popped up today!

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SO SO SO GOOD. Just what I needed. Thank you!!!

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For what it’s worth: My brother-in-law ran his first 50 miler in September. His longest training run was 20 miles (that he did once) and he ran several 13 mile runs on the weekends leading up to the race. During the week he basically ran 4-6 miles 3 or 4 days a week. I kept sending him training plans and was sure he was incredibly under trained for his adventure. I ran with him during miles 25-29 and 45-50. He was amazing and finished in 10 hours and 25 minutes. He met a guy early in the race that suggested two strategies: 1. walk up ALL the hills 2. Keep your heart rate around 135 (he’s 50 years old so 180 minus his age give or take.) I truly believe those things were the keys to his success.

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First, SO cool that you were able to help pace your brother-in-law and second, THANK YOU for sharing his training. I think we might be a little on the ‘undertrained looking side of things’ for this due to kids/life but he KILLED it with 20 being his highest training run. We will have to pay attention to our heart rate like he did and walk up all of the hills. THANK YOU Christy for taking the time to tell me this! Have a beautiful day:)

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Haha, cheesy Netflix movies are so great! My sister and I watched The Princess Switch together last week (it’s set around Christmastime), and there was really no big conflict or anything, but it was one of those feel-good movies that ends exactly how you want it/expect it to end.

When I was in the best shape of my life and getting PRs almost every single time I raced, I stuck to my training plan like gorilla glue. I haven’t done that in quite some time now since my health with my kidneys has been out of whack for a while, but I’m hoping to be able to race again soon. I miss it!! And I even miss the incredibly tough training!

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Oh I LOVED that movie so much:) I hope you are able to get back to racing again soon and that your kidneys cooperate. You are so strong Natalie and you have been through so much!

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Woah better stock up on pasta now!

Haha and cookies

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You’ll be doing this soon too;) HAHAHA!! Our food bill is going to increase big time! Have a wonderful day Victoria!

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That training plan clip you posted could be from my favorite ultra training book, but if it’s not and you don’t have it I recommend “Relentless Forward Progress.”

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YES… that is the book! I’m loving it so far!!

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This has nothing to do with your post but how old was Skye when she started sleeping through the night? Do you have any tips? I have an 8 week old who currently fights naps during the day and only goes 4-5 hours between feedings at night. I also have to hold her up for a while after eating so my nighttime sleep is more like 2.5-3.5 hour chunks…send help! Haha.

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Hailey, congrats on your new little one! I feel like Skye didn’t really start sleeping through the night until she was eating a good amount of solids each day (and we got stricter about just letting her cry it out). I would say 8/9 months is when we really started sleeping again. Being sleep deprived is SO SO hard. I hope you can get a nap once in a while. Is this your first? Will your baby take a bottle? That helped me so so much in those first months when I would pump a bottle and have Andrew take over one of the feedings. Keep me updated!!

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I used a plan I found on runners world that basically gave two short runs during the week—6-8 miles—and then back to back long runs on the weekends. Looks similar to your screen shot. I did two 20 milers total in the whole schedule, but they were both followed by long (13-15) runs the next day haha. I actually got really bad PF during training and skipped a few weeks, with just three hour spin sessions. It still worked well! I think it’s good to have periods where you’re not coached. You learn more about your personal running style, and then the coaching feels fresh when you start again!
Princess switch was basically the best movie ever. Holiday calendar is next on my list. 😂

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Thank you for the next movie to watch… I’ll do that tonight, I can’t wait! Oh boo to the plantar but I’m so glad that spinning helped you to get there healthy! This back to back long run stuff is sure going to be strange. Thanks Mollie, I hope you are having a great day!

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Great book called “Running Your First Ultra” By Krissy Moehl – beyond worth the money for the paperback. Easy to understand plans that still include workouts for ultrarunners (which I feel a lot of plans really drop off in favor of “time on feet”). Plans for 50k – 100 mile distances and tons of little blurbs about advice and her experiences. She was the youngest woman to complete the Grand Slam of 100 milers (Western States, Vermont, Leadville and Wasatch 100 milers in one summer).
https://www.amazon.com/Running-Your-First-Ultra-Customizable/dp/1624141420

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Yes! Excellent book for a new ultra runner! I am using her 50 mile plan for my first 100k. I am following the plan on the low end of mileage, but it has been going well.

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SHE DID THAT ALL IN ONE SUMMER… WOW!! That is incredible. Just ordered her book and it will be here on Thursday… THANK YOU!

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I’ve only done one ultra, a 50K, and I did have a coach, but my coach wrote a book which has training plans for every distance of ultra you can think of! It’s Krissy Moehl, and her book is Running Your First Ultra. We pretty much went through the 50K plan for me, and I know from chatting with others in the ultra community that her plans are great and will get you to the finish line in one piece ;) I would highly recommend using one of the plans from her book!

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She was your coach?! That is AWESOME!! I just ordered her book and can’t wait to read it all. Thanks Julie, have a wonderful day!

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Yeah I am lucky enough to live in the same town as Krissy! She’s seriously the sweetest! And just so incredible. So glad you ordered the book! It’s so helpful! Have such a wonderful time training! :)

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Hi I really want to start running and think that 5k sounds like a lot. Still yell at the voice on the app that tells me I’m half way. I don’t even like to drive 100k in a car so running it sounds crazy!

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I look at Hal Higdon plans, then just use that + my own goals and the confines of my own schedule to design my own training plan.
And I am ADDICTED to cheesy hallmark christmas movies. They’re great fluff to watch on a treadmill:) I watched “Christmas with a View”, too…and it was possibly the cheesiest nonsense I’ve watched all season. And I’ve already watched like 10 cheesy christmas movies already…

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Bahaha it really was so beyond ridiculous but they win me over. The scenes of the cooking show… Andrew couldn’t handle it haha! Let me know of any good ones that you find:) Have a wonderful day, Kerri!

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I once wore yoga pants backward for half the morning before I realized. They weren’t all that uncomfortable, but definitely felt better after fixing my mistake! I spied those amazing Christmas sweater Brooks :)

I LOVE the cubbies in your mudroom! It makes me want a mudroom even more than I already did.

That Rudolph book/story is one of my favorites. In the TV version, my favorite part is when Clarice tells Rudolph he’s cute & he starts yelling, “I’m cuuuuute!” Also, Brooke knows the yummiest poptart :)

Poor Skye–hope she gets some teething relief soon! Your video of her on Insta was so cute: “Go!”

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Hahah glad to know I’m not alone with that mistake!! Thanks Corey and I hope you are having a great day!

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I was wondering what plan you were following and I was going to ask you! Was there a book you read that kinda got you interested in ultras? I just listened to 45 min of your interview on the ultra podcast last night during my RUN. Can’t wait to finish it. Speaking of my run last night….update on my running accomplishment from a couple weeks ago….I did something AMAZING on the treadmill last night! I set it for 4.4 mph, and just ran…..made it to 1.5 miles and had to walk for .15, but then I kept GOING AND GOING until 3.5!!!!!! Without any more walk breaks! That’s HUGE for me! I literally felt like my legs could keep going! I literally only stopped because of timing and I had things to do at home. They always say the first 1-2 miles are the hardest, and I never knew what they meant, but after 2.5 miles my leg literally felt comfortable and like they could just keep going and going! When I told noah (my husband) about it he said “well why did you stop?” and I said because of timing. But I really think this is an opening for me into longer distances! I’m SO proud of myself!

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Hey Stacey!! Huge huge huge congrats. UNTIL 3.5… you are rocking it! Please keep me updated on how it is all going.
I think the thing that got me interested in ultras were my friends that have done them + wanting a new challenge. Oh I am glad you listened! Have a wonderful day:)

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Really love your intuition based approach to training right now, Janae! While coaching and plans are helpful, and very often necessary, when approaching our specific goals, I think listening to our bodies and adapting for our lives is so essential too. Smart planning, girl! 😉

And Mark Wahlberg…his routine is INSANE. I remember seeing that and at first thinking it was crazy. But then I realized, “Oh yeah, looking the way he does and needing that level of fitness is part of his JOB.” Totally tilted my perspective then.

Have an awesome Tuesday, Janae! And like Skye says, when you start feeling a bit slow… “GO!” Haha!

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Thank you so much Michelle! That is so true about Mark Wahlberg… I didn’t think of it that way. That must be one of the big things that helps him to wake up that early:) I’ll definitely think about Skye saying ‘GO’ once I feel like it again:) Have a wonderful day.

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Janae! Have you ever dealt with runner’s knee? I only get it if I run 4.5 + miles and it kills when I walk up stairs after a run. I usually can only run every other day because of it but have no idea how to combat the issue!

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Hey Allie! I am so so sorry you are dealing with this! I have not experienced it… CAN ANYONE HELP ALLIE OUT?! Have you seen anybody for this problem? I hope you have a great day and that this goes away asap!

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Hi Allie! I’m sorry you are dealing with the dreaded runner’s knee. It’s the worst especially when all we want to do is run pain-free! From what I’ve discovered, runner’s knee is an injury that occurs either from overuse or from muscle imbalances/weaknesses. I have suffered from runner’s knee before but since starting to incorporate these exercises plus two days of increasingly intense strength training during my weekly exercise routine, I don’t get the pains anymore. Here is the link to the exercises: https://www.braceability.com/blogs/articles/6-exercises-for-patellofemoral-pain-syndrome
I hope these help! Oh, and I also purchased a foam roller and make sure to roll out my IT bands especially after running. :)

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Linda, oh my gosh, thank you so much for all of this! This was incredibly helpful and I’m going to start incorporating these exercises into my routine today. Your intense strength training… are you mostly doing total body workouts or focusing on strengthening your lower body?

Janae — thanks for asking others for their input. :)

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You’re very welcome Allie! I know how discouraging running injuries can be so I’m glad to help. :) For my strength training, my husband created a couple workouts for me that focus mainly on the core and posterior chain muscles (back of the body muscles). I had injured my hamstring earlier this year, probably because all I was doing was running and very little cross-training or strength. What?! I love to run! Haha. :) Anyway, my husband informed me that hamstring injuries tend to occur because of muscle imbalances and/or weaknesses just like runner’s knee. So, my workouts target the muscles that I needed to strengthen the most i.e. hamstrings, glutes, calves, etc. One of my workouts looks like this:

– kettle bell swings, 15 reps using 25 lb kettle bell
-speed skaters, 20 alternating
– squats, 15 reps holding 45 lb bumper plate
– single leg plank row with 15 lb weights, 16 reps alternating
– bridge on bench with pullover using one 15 lb weight, 15 reps
– reverse pull-ups using suspension straps, 12 reps
– Nordic hamstring curls, 10 reps
I do this routine twice and then I’m spent. :) I have been doing this routine along with another for a few months now and haven’t had any issues with my hamstrings, and I continue to do the exercises for my knee as well and feel great. I actually just completed my first half-marathon last month!
I hope this helps! Let me know if want me to share my other routine. Also, if you just Google “strength training exercises for runners” you’ll find tons online. Good luck!

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My husband and I used “Running your first ultra” by Krissy Moehl when we started training and loved it. The 50 mile plan requires a bit more time than you have (we trained for about 5.5 months), but you may already have a good enough base from your last marathon. She has you do 50K race during the training which was SO important for us because we were able to practice everything we were planning to do (fuel wise, clothing, gear etc) on race day. It also was so helpful to do an ultra before the bigger ultra because it totally built our confidence in race strategy, pacing, aid station timing, and making the cut-offs. Especially since we picked a super hard one that had 7000 feet of gain all between 10,000 and almost 14,000 feet.

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Oh great… this sounds awesome! I just ordered the book… I can’t wait. I love the idea of doing a 50k as part of training (the perfect dress rehearsal). Ummm yeah, that one sounds crazy hard. I love that you did this with your husband. Have a wonderful day Lish!

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I think Krissy Moehl’s book, Running Your First Ultra, is outstanding. It has plans for 50k to 100 milers. https://www.amazon.com/Running-Your-First-Ultra-Customizable-ebook/dp/B00VE731IG

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JUST ORDERED IT!! Thank you for the recommendation!!

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I saw this and had to share it with you!
https://www.trailsisters.net/2018/11/27/tips-from-a-50-mile-first-timer/

I’m excited about following along on your journey!
My hubby runs hundreds…I cannot even imagine!

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This article was perfect for me, thank you so much Chelsea… I had never even heard of the 4 C’s! So much good information in there for me. Yeah, I am with you! I definitely can’t imagine running a 100 miler. Wow. Have a wonderful day!

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Most organized my pantry and refrigerator and master bath. Least is the mudroom closet.

I love a period of running how your body feels like it. I always see it as letting my body have a say in the great running adventure instead of having to be submissive to the bossy mind.

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Oh I love that last sentence… that is exactly how I feel. It’s quite nice and it makes those structured times feel great too. Have a wonderful day!

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I’m not an ultra runner and never will be and am okay with that lol But my neighbor is one and I asked her how long her longest run was before she ran her 50 and she only got up to 30 but a bunch of double digit training runs for her were key.

I listened to your podcast yesterday that you posted and wow sounds like it will be so mental but great tips on the training of carrying your pack with you etc. I carry a handheld and that gets heavy when racing lol
Mark Whalberg love how he makes time to pray! Wow that’s so early!!

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Thanks for listening! I loved that about his schedule too… so so cool. Wow, 30 miles during training sounds intimidating but training will get me up to that, right?! Have a wonderful day Christin!

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I need all of the advice on training plans! I just signed up for my second half marathon (eep!!!), and I really want to get faster and follow a good plan! Last time I just focused on adding mileage each week but I really want to improve my time and overall fitness now. Kind of starting from the beginning post-injury . . . excited and nervous!

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I am so happy that you signed up for your second half marathon and you are injury free now! Have you thought about getting a coach? That’s my favorite way to get faster! Have a wonderful day!

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Thank you so much! I’ve definitely thought about it, but I don’t think it’s something I can afford this time around–hopefully in the future!

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I just watched the Christmas Chronicles on Netflix with my daughter this weekend , I thought it was really cute!

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THANK YOU… I can’t wait to watch it and it looks like one that Brooke would watch with me too! Have a great day, Melanie!

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My husband is actually a running coach who specializes in Ultra’s- the more time on your feet the best! If you have any questions feel free to reach out to him :) he doesn’t mind one bit and is always happy to answer random weird questions with no obligations!
I’ll link his website :)

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https://upperleftdt.com/ <– totally forgot to actually link the website (Today is my Monday and I'm FEELING IT)

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SERIOUSLY!?! Okay, this is awesome.. I will definitely be asking him questions. Thank you and I love his website… ps at least your pants aren’t on backwards ha;) Thanks again, I really appreciate this!

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Yikes, that 18-miler right after the 22-miler is going to be fun… there was a time two years ago when I did 110 miles in a week and I was basically hungry all the time. My legs get sore just thinking about that now.

My shin is feeling better today I think? It’s hard to tell because the pain was never very acute but now it pretty much doesn’t hurt at all (even walking) but it still feels like something isn’t quite right. I might try a little running on it tomorrow but I’m kind of scared to. I’m terrified of it turning out to be like a stress fracture honestly (even though the pain isn’t sharp or localized and I can hop on it painlessly).

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IT’S FEELING BETTER… ahhh! Let me know if you try tomorrow and how it goes. For my stress fractures hopping was painful but maybe mine were just really bad? Not knowing what injury you have is the worst. 110 miles in a week… I can’t even imagine!

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I’ll definitely take it very easy if I do! It’s so annoying because sometimes it feels like shin splints and sometimes it feels like something else! I figure I still have about a week before I need to start rethinking the marathon though… good thing I didn’t buy my bib yet.

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UltraLadies also has a training schedule generator. You just enter your race date, distance, etc. and it will build one for you.
http://www.scrunners.org/ultramarathon-training-schedule-generator.html

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Okay, that was incredibly easy. THANK YOU!!! I had no idea this was available. Have a wonderful day!

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Love your mud room and envious of those big cubbies for each person! It’s ok if it’s messy it’s a mud room and like you said it has a door. Our shoes coats and bags are just everywhere. Did your old house have one or what did you use?

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We didn’t have one in our last house… basically there were always a few shoes and coats by the front door and that worked great too! Have a great Tuesday!

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Well, since you asked! I LOVED Krissy Moehl’s Training for Your First Ultra (50k-100mile!) Not only was is chock full of good tips and encouragement, but the training plan was so solid. I felt very prepared for my ultra and then used it for my marathon 6 weeks later. What I really enjoyed were the three week blocks followed by a recovery week. I really was nervous about that recovery week but you know what-it was amazing and I thrived on it. I also loved how she had some swaps (hills or speed on Tuesday and the opposite for Thursday) and some weeks you could pack in mileage M-F if you had a busy weekend. My other favorite thing was the back to back long runs. That was so helpful. Anyway, I highly highly recommend this book and the easy to read plans-complete with strength training! I also downloaded a training plan from a womens website but overall I liked Krissy’s better and the explanations were more thorough. Get this book!

After spring ultra training for summer ultra and fall marathon I’m slowly trying to find my groove but also kind of enjoying free range running. In other words, very little structure with mileage and pace. I’m not a pace chaser, though. It’s winter!

Enjoy the training! I LOVED it! Granted, I only trained for a 50k, not a 50 MILER!

Oh, another thing…..don’t ever worry about procrastinating your run until a different than usual time. It’s so good to practice running at different times of the day since you’ll cover morning, afternoon, and evening in your event!

Happy Tuesday!

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Okay, your comment made me so so excited for Chrissy’s book… I just ordered it today! Thank you so much, I’m excited (and nervous) for these back to back long runs! Keep enjoying the unstructured time, you have had an incredible year. Oh I didn’t even think about that.. I’ll be running later a lot now because of Andrew’s schedule and it will be great practice for race day. Have a great day!

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Honestly, the back to back long runs were probably the most helpful (and all the hill workouts). The more hours on your feet the better. Soon you’ll stop worrying so much about paces and think more in volume and elevation ;) And just think, soon 10miles will be your short days. It’s so fun to feel and learn how your body reacts to all these different training days. The hardest were the back to backs that were kind of close in distance so one didn’t necessarily feel all that shorter. BUT, wow! Then, you’ll notice how horrible you feel for a 5 mile run because it takes 7 miles to get warmed up and fluid ;)
#distancequeen is what my brother calls me and my boyfriend has dubbed me “kilometer kelly.”

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My daughter and I watched that same Christmas movie together on Sunday afternoon! Along with 2 others…it was a productive day. It had been a very social and active few days and couch time with super cheesy holiday movies was exactly what we needed!

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I used this plan https://running.competitor.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/50-Mile-Training-Plan.pdf for my first 50 and plan to use it again this spring when I do a 50 as a training run for VT100 in July (yikes!). I really liked this plan and had some awesome friends who would bike with me on the long runs to keep me company.

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Oh, I love cheesy Christmas movies. The other day my partner put on the Princess Switch and watched it with me, purely out of love for me. I know this because watching those movies just about kills him hahaha. I have been watching a lot of the Hallmark Christmas movies and they are beyond cheesy but it is my guilty pleasure this season.

Ultra marathon plans – a lot of the time I did make it up, but for my 50/50 this past summer, I actually bought a plan from the guy who designed the course and is a coach. His coaching is a bit too pricey for me, so the plan was more in my budget. The buildup was long – 33 weeks so if I missed a couple weeks due to life I didn’t stress. Also, while I hit all the big workouts (ie. long runs, double long runs) there were weeks that the called for speed or hill workouts simply didn’t happen either again due to life or the fact that I was shattered and I couldn’t hit every workout the plan called for. I know Hal Higdon does plans.

One of the things I found super helpful in general is googling the race you will be running, reading the race reports of people who have previously done the race – whether they DNF or finished, it is super helpful. I found that because each ultra takes place on such different terrain, that a one size fits all plan doesn’t usually work. So for example because my last race had significant elevation 11K of climbing and descending over 50 miles (and I knew I would be hiking large portions), I made sure to include a local climb on a regular basis, just to get used to climbing and climbing.

Also, if you google ultra on the internet, you will get tons of info on ultras – I like irunfar as a source of info. I used the book Relentless Forward progress and talked to more experienced ultra friends. It really is a trial and error process and it is a lot of fun!

Have a fantastic day Janae!

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I think there is a time for structured running and for intuitive running that gets you right around where you need to be, training-wise, to accomplish your goal. It’s similar to when people do things like a Whole 30 diet or whatever–all of that structure ALL of the time works against the ways that life is fluid and needs to be fluid. SO MUCH regimented ANYTHING goes against a natural human instinct ot be adaptive and responsive and to sometimes experience how things feel in the body. Structure challenges what you think your body can do to achieve a goal of what else your body can do, and there is a kind of discovery in that…and having a looser and more approximate goal, to even SEE if you can do something and to see what it would take for you to finish THE THING, requires a different kind of discovery. Maybe I’m talking myself in circles here and being extra-inarticulate. But the gist is: I think it’s pretty badass that you’re taking a step back from coached training and a super regimented plan. There’s a lot to experience and enjoy, and an ultra itself is already so new. You’ve run SO MUCH that you know how to increase your mileage to be safe and to not be totally overwhelmed. Now you get to discover how that translates into how many skittles and peanut butter filled pretzels you can eat along the way!!!!

On SUNDAY Tom and I are running a Jingle Bell Jog and it will be my December 5K. And my own little goal–rediscovery of what it is to run, and with a loose plan (run enough to handle the 5Ks each month and not so much that I get stressed in a time that’s already stressful…learn to run with an arthritic knee…)–but without any other goals (which has been a big lesson in patience for my inner Overly Type A self…) has been amazing. I’m getting to know myself all over again as a runner–with this body, with these circumstances, and to find the love that I have for it right now, for what it reveals to me about myself and what it gives me in the moment–and WITHOUT comparing myself to who I used to be as a runner and the way I used to love running and what it used to offer me when life felt so different.

I am proud of myself.

What should I treat myself to as a celebration? I am so open to ideas!!!

SOMEHOW, I *love* the cheesy Christmas movies. I can’t explain it–all of my discretion over what constitutes a “good movie” and over the idea of movies as a form of art go out the window, and my little mushy heart just explodes. I spent a lot of Thanksgiving week, when I was sitting down grading papers and nursing aching feet from holiday shoppers, with every Netflix movie in the background. I kind of liked Christmas Switch. I didn’t like the Santa Claus one that was available on Thanksgiving day. I think that over finals paper grading time–when I am sitting down a lot in floppy clothes and grading papers–I will be putting on EVERY SINGLE one of those movies. Even the dopey ones that are obviously old enough to have fuzzy cinematography on our TV!!! ;)

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There are so many resources online and training plans for ultras. I’m not an ultra racer per say but have run a couple 50’s including R2R2R and zions traverse, so a lot of climbing! My two suggestions….speed walk the hills and don’t get behind on your nutrition/fuel. I had an ultra guru tell me once that he could always tell who the road runners were on the trail because they were trying to run all the hills🤣. Don’t waste your energy on the ups, just take advantage of the flats and downs. I haven’t been going for time for quite a while so the trails for me have become more of an outlet, an enjoyment rather than training. And then as far as fuel, just make sure you’re keeping up on calories! Don’t get behind. When you’re going that far you need a lot and you don’t want to try and play catch-up, otherwise you risk getting sick and that’s no fun. Anyway, that’s my advice from a novice racing road runner turned non racing trail runner turned just signed up for another road marathon🤷🏻‍♀️🙈🙅🏻‍♀️😬🥳

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I found the same to be true post marathon for me… it was my first one, I trained really well, was pretty strict with everything, and now? I run whatever the heck I want. I thought for sure I’d want to stick with a “plan” but honestly I couldn’t be happier running what I feel like running. For wherever you are in life… Run how you’re happy:)

I’ll Be Home For Christmas… yes, the one with JTT and Jessica Biel will ALWAYS be my favorite cheesy Christmas movie.

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I signed up for a 50 miler a few years ago, and found a similar training plan to the one you show above with back to back weekend long runs. I had been in marathon shape, but a few weeks of that training plan, and I ended up with crazy tendinitis in my calves. It could’ve been a number of things that resulted in the injury, but I woukd advise to start slowly on back to back long runs just to be sure! Needless to say I didnt make it to the 50 miler. I dropped down to the 25K, and even then was too injured to run. A 50 or 100 miler are still on my bucket list! I’m excited to follow your ultra journey!!

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You need to read all things by Scott Jurek (Eat and Run was fabulous!) and the movie Unbreakable is SOOO GOOD! I watched it so many times while training for an ultra a few years ago! It got me through many 4-5 hour treadmill runs :) I’m so excited for you guys the you’re doing this!! Haha I remember you running an ultra one day on a training run years ago?? Might as well make it official!

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