wannabe ultra runner?

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

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30/11/2016 at 01:26

OK - forget the mud.  We're looking at ice now....

30/11/2016 at 06:57
I am watching the weather with interest.... so far, getting colder, but sunnier.
01/12/2016 at 02:26

I think you're going to really enjoy yourself out there.  Choice of shoes is going to be a big factor.  You'll have to leave it to the last minute to decide. (I assume like most trail runners you've got multiple pairs looking for that elusive 'right shoe'!)

Unlike their Flete ultra I don't think you've got any river crossings.  That one had 600m of estuary to cross - fortunately I arrived just about at low tide so got away with it quite lightly.  Would be a bit chilly this weather ...

01/12/2016 at 07:36
Have to say that the Cascadia is really comfortable on longer runs.
I've never put it through its paces in the mud though as it's been so dry this autumn
The Salomon is a great shoe for the mud, and I've Changed sizes to try and get it comfortable. But, gonna stick with the Brooks for now!
01/12/2016 at 11:03

Good luck for the EL Ultra - I imagine your quads may complain the following week!


Re MAF, I can attest it's good for injury avoidance and recovery. I'm apparently porcelain, but on MAF I've been able to run more regularly and even back to back days, which for me is unheard of. I can't say I've seen a big hike in pace for the nominated HR, but my long run is getting longer for the same HR and I can tell easily when I'm getting to my endurance limit as it becomes increasingly difficult to keep the HR below the MAF limit without grinding to a halt - a useful indicator. I've only done 20 MAF runs and I do include the odd parkrun or hilly run to keep my interest up, but I'd say 80% of the time on my feet is at MAF limit or below. I'll stick with it until the end of January for certain, then look at adding some speed.

I've supplemented my running with a gym session each week too, as the MAF runs work like recovery runs post-gym, which I think is also helping the injury-prevention.

03/12/2016 at 23:07

Come in, mascott.  You OK?

09/12/2016 at 08:05


Strange, I replied earlier in the week,but its not here

Anyway, a week on...

That was tough

I never really felt comfortable, and its the first time I really felt I might not finish a race

At 9 miles I remember feeling quite fatigued and that created a big doubt in me.

At 14 miles after some huge hills I had to have a little lie down and a banana, it was about here that people started coming past me. Up to this point I was probably in the middle pack I reckon, based on timing.

I managed to get up and start off up to the next hill. I got mild cramping on and off, but it was manaeable, The miles past slowly. 

I set myself a new target, get round the marathon route, then have a coffee, and then  see if you can manage the 10 km route. 

By about 18 miles, I was not interested in anything other than getting round in one piece

Eventually I was heading along the beach, back towards the start/finish of the marathon. By pure chance, there was my wife and son, who were pottering about Lulworth. 

They got me a coffee, and then my son ran 100 yards with me to begin the 10km route.

Then, after I started up the first huge hill of the 190km, I felt good. I knew I was going to finish. I was now in the groove, even is it was a slow one!

I walked with another chap, who works at the same hospital as me, and we ran the down hills. Feeling more positive.

I finished strongly, feeling elated!

I went back to the Youth Hostel and ate a small dinner and slept.

Incredibly, I felt fine this week, and have continued my 3 miles a day with no real issues (ok, a bit slow!)

I feel I have to come back, and see if I can pace it better. I need to work on my strength too. My legs ran out of power on hills that sapped everything I had.

So, in conclusion, during the event I said, never again, now, I am pretty sure I will be booking another event soon.

Oh, I finished 92nd in just over 8 hours.


09/12/2016 at 23:31

You finished in one piece.  Brilliant!  Those events are tough.  My time for the Exmoor ultra was 7:52 and only about half a mile further.

I notice there was also an ultra plus!  That looked very serious.  Must give one of those a go sometime.

10/12/2016 at 11:54

Yeah, the ultra plus is lunacy!

18/01/2017 at 22:10

I'm not sure this is classed as a true Ultra, but i'd rather start smaller and work my way up.

I have entered the Viper 9.0 in March as a solo entry.  Its a 9 hour race in Delamere forest, Cheshire and the idea is to do as many laps of the 5km course in the 9 hours as you can.  So I suppose its as hard as you are willing to push yourself!  There are 3 courses and they change every 3 hours, which I thought was a nice touch.

I don't really have a target, but hopefully go way beyond marathon distance over the 9 hours.

Anyone done a similar event?  Any advice?

19/01/2017 at 17:15

Peers- I'm sure a 9 hour race is an ultra!- you would need to move quite slowly not to go beyond the marathon distance. I've never done a timed lap race, but have my name down on the waiting list for one later in the year. I think they let you leave a large box/ small table of goodies on the start/ finish straight, so that you can re fuel every lap, rather than carrying it all with you- is yours similar? Do they provide food for you, or do you bring your own? 

I looked at the website- you have to do a minimum of 25k in the first 3 hours, 30k, the next 3, the n35k the last 3?- speeding up will be seriously difficult, and for me the faster laps at the end would be a real difficulty- interesting! I think you will need to nail the pacing for that!

19/01/2017 at 17:22


19/01/2017 at 22:22
Team entries have to meet those lap goals, but it says there is no such requirements for solo entries. You can leave the course for food/rest at designated point at start/finish

No food is provided, but I will take supplies. Water is provided but you have to have your own bottle to put it in. You can pitch a tent so me and a friend may well do that to keep supplies in. Also in the event of poor weather we could have pairs of dry socks and extra trainers etc.

Im hoping to keep breaks to a minumum and keep a steady pace way below my normal pace. Im a 44 minute 10k runner so if i could get near 2 laps per hour I would cover around 90km. I think that may be over ambitous but its what I have in my head
Edited: 19/01/2017 at 22:28
20/01/2017 at 04:01

Sounds interesting- I have to make decisions about a 24 hour lapped race for september ( if \i get  s  spot off the waiting list)- I am hoping not to stop for a sleep, but will have a tent pitched just in case- In my mind, the main reason to sit/ lie down would be to change socks and shoes, not to stop for any length of time, but as I've never run beyond 14 .5 hours we shall see.

20/01/2017 at 13:21

Can't imagine not sleeping for 24 hours whilst covering so much distance!  All the best with that.

The 190 mile self-supported coast to coast over 4 days is a challenge I am interested in for 2018.  This is a start of training potentially towards that.

21/01/2017 at 13:29

I'm a doctor, and still have to do on call weekends that last 48hrs, plus still be able to do a hand=over ward round, and drive home at the end. It would be rare to go 48hrs without sleep, but 24 hours happens on a few occasions, so I know I can stay awake and on my feet for 24hrs. The job is excellent training for ultra running in that regard, - it's just the running that I need to work on. A multi- day ultra is something else entirely, and I don't think I'd manage that- once I stop, I need days to recover.

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