wannabe ultra runner?

share your ambitions/goals/training here on a 'newbie ultra' thread........

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20/10/2015 at 22:15

Welsh, once I decided to go ultra I both did long fasted runs like carterusm describes (always with some food in the backpack, in case), or a bowl of cereal maybe an hour before the run but then nothing during, and I practiced eating on long runs - malt loaf, fig rolls, Kendal mint cake (sugar plus peppermint oil). Never much cared for gels. I've not yet had any problems eating during 50K to 50 mile races.

SO looking forward to getting back to long runs!!!

21/10/2015 at 07:48

Debra - where are you with your injury ? Are you back running yet ?

Round rotherham 50 for me on Saturday. Things were going well and I was running strongly and well ahead of my target time. The ITB started giving me grief quite early on, about 15 miles, and from then on it just got worse until the inevitable DNF at mile 25. Not a nice feeling waiting at the checkpoint watching other runners come in and then carry on. Particularly disappointing as I felt really good and was on for a decent time. Oh well, these things happen. Need to get the knee sorted and move on to the next one....

21/10/2015 at 09:05

Hi cartereusm. Which injury???!!! I'd worked back up from the torn PTT to doing 26+ mile training runs and was about to do a local 30-mile race with a 50 planned for September and aiming for Comrades next year. Then I slipped on a grassy bank (not while running) and broke my ankle!

So, one operation, plate and seven screws, seven weeks sitting on a sofa then right back to the beginning. *sigh* Now four months post-op. My longest run so far was one hour/6.55 miles! Hoping to build up fast enough to do a spring marathon. Still wondering about entering for Comrades but I think that might be pushing it too far too soon. More info on https://runningape.wordpress.com/.

Sympathies for the ITB and related DNF. Good luck for getting that sorted.

21/10/2015 at 11:06

Oh no Debra, you really are not having any luck! Hope you manage to get going with your running again this time without any more dramas.

Bad luck at Round Rotherham carterusm. I had some problems with my ITB when I first started running ultras and found that glute strengthening was the way to get it sorted. Hope you get things resolved quickly. Did you enjoy RR for the bits you managed?

Regarding food, I do most of my shorter runs fasted (mainly as I go out before breakfast on weekdays), but I do have something to eat if I am going to be out for longer than a couple of hours. I personally feel that I can get away with not eating a massive amount to a certain point, but even on the shorter ultras I run much better if I can get food in. Plus, given that my target is to be able to complete 100 mile type ultras and that not eating on these could mean DNF, I feel it is better to work at it all the time in the hope of my stomach getting better at coping!

As I get more experience, I am gradually finding more things that I can get down, but I certainly find eating during ultras tricky. I think lots of personal experimentation is the only way to suss this one out, plus an understanding of what you are trying to achieve. For instance, your body cannot process more than 60g of carbohydrate an hour, so there is no point trying to force in more than this (I generally aim for about 30g, which seems to suit me about right being small and female).

21/10/2015 at 11:53

Debra - sounds like you've really suffered the last couple of years. Hopefully you are on the mend and can focus on running. Comrades would be amazing; have you entered yet and if so can you defer to the following year ?

LNandB - I've got myself booked in to an osteopath next week to get checked out. Maybe the ITB is caused by poor form and alignment so thought it would be worth a try.  If you know Rotherham you will know it's not the most scenic of places; as such as I was giving it a hard time before the race. That said, the route we took was on the outskirts and, to be fair, most of what I did run was not too bad at all, not what I was expecting. Regarding nutrition - I'm sort of half way be a low carb high fat diet and trying to become fat adapted and also eating loads of rubbish. I decided that it would be too risky running the race on low carbs so I had plenty before the start of the race. I was also able to eat a bit of cake and some biscuits at the 2 aid stations I managed to visit. Like you say, it's a case of gaining more experience and seeing what works for you, so that was a positive I took from Saturday. What's up next for you ?

21/10/2015 at 12:02

Have you heard of Tailwind LNandB? A few folk I have talked to who have dramas getting in food reckon it's brilliant. I have bought a few sachets to try although I do like do have real food along the way too. I also run quite a few long runs fasted.




21/10/2015 at 13:37

LNabdB, carterusm, thanks. I'm definitely trying to focus on the running - just hoping I don't have any more accidents getting in the way. As for Comrades, no, not entered yet; I'd entered for the 2014 race, just before I tore the PTT... I'd had all these plans for training for Comrades 2016, including running to/from work (six miles or so each way), and had just started that when I broke my ankle. Now I need to seriously consider whether I can re-train to decent mileage in time to tackle Comrades. Just over seven months to go from practically zero to running a hot and hilly 56-miler...

23/10/2015 at 13:52

I have been thinking of giving Tailwind a try Ridgierunner. I'm yet to find a sports drink that I actually like the taste of yet though, so I'm not overly optimistic! Clearly too fussy for ultra running!

carterusm - Next big target is the Lakeland 100 next July, so everything is now geared towards that. I'm planning a few prep races for it:

Winter Tanners 30m in January

Hardmoors 55 (probably) in March

Howgills 26 in May

Plus plenty of local trail marathons.

I'm now back into proper planned running, having spent September just doing what I felt like and letting a couple of niggles settle down. It feels really exciting to be back into some hard training and really looking forward to some hard work over the winter!

23/10/2015 at 16:43

LNandB: looking at your list i'm thinking about Hardmoors 55 and i've got the same goal race. Just seeing if i'm back on track with a marathon tomorrow to remind my legs what it's like to get a little bit of distance in them.

24/10/2015 at 21:01

I will be marshalling booktrunk, so I expect you to be on you’re a game!

24/10/2015 at 21:50

Haha Z Game, not gone further than 10 miles in last 3 months. but had a few 4-5 hour walks so tomorrow is getting around

25/10/2015 at 14:17


Edited: 25/10/2015 at 14:20
25/10/2015 at 18:07

Pooped! adoring nothing over 10 miles in training g is a really bad idea, but I got around, and wasn't a PW, around 5:27. Yeah I know crap, but I managed it which helped my self confidence a bit.

nice seeing Ben on Marshal duties at around 25m, so I'm sure I wasn't a good sight  


25/10/2015 at 20:50

You took care of business, and that’s the main thing.


Oh, and don’t worry, there were a lot of people in a far worse state.   

01/11/2015 at 12:30

Well done booktrunk - you finished, which is what counts.

I ran a fasted 11 miles this morning with my club - that's more than four miles further than my previous longest post-fracture run. A bit slow but otherwise fine, so I'm really pleased. I now have a place for London, through my club, and I'm seriously thinking about Comrades.

01/11/2015 at 17:18

Good luck Debra

02/11/2015 at 14:19

Glad to hear that you are getting back into things Debra - you must be very happy to be out there again.

Well done on your marathon booktrunk. I hope you are getting back into your training properly now and no niggles.

I've been up in the Lakes this weekend on one of the official Lakeland 100 recces. Great fun and very exciting to be out on the course. We did Coniston to Buttermere which is about 27 miles with 2000m ascent. Was very pleased with how I felt for this stage of the training.

02/11/2015 at 15:23

LNandB - I ran Coniston HM a couple of years ago. It's stunning around there, very jealous of your weekend running.

Debra - good to hear you're increasing the mileage. I didn't know London had a trail marathon !!

Booktrunk - well done on completing your marathon, things seem to be heading in the right direction now.

Another one here who has entered Hardmoors 55 in March. I've heard some great things about these series of races but this one can be a tough one if the weather isn't too kind. I've done one short run in the last couple of weeks and have been doing plenty of s&c on the ITB. Will try and get out again this week so hopefully things will be feeling better

02/11/2015 at 18:27

LNandB: how long did it take to plod around the 27 or so miles? I was thinking about them, but well, not sure I'd feel a complete idiot plodding along right at the back.

02/11/2015 at 18:50

carterusm: I wish it was trail! But I suppose road will be better training for Comrades, and I want to run London once (earned a GFA place from Manchester in 2012 and would have run it in 2014 but then tore the tendon and lost the place).

Just a four-mile recovery run today. Legs were fine but I tweaked my back a few days ago, hence the short distance (I could have done six or more quite easily, I think, if not fast).

LNandB. Glad you had a good time. And I'm -so- envious. I remember the training weekends for the Lakeland 50 in 2013 - really enjoyed them.

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