Tuesday, August 19, 2014

HURT 100 Mile Training Plan (take 2, part 1)!

Mike Wardian just raced two ultras this weekend on top of a 100 mile week. Anton probably logged 30,000 feet of vert and 24 hours of running in the last seven days, and I have no doubt that Killian jogged to the top of several peaks faster than anyone in history (while smiling and chatting with hikers and taking shots of tequila). I spent all day Monday flying commercial, then spent the week jet lagged in Texas running flat roads at night. Make no mistake about it, I want to be competitive at both the Peacock 100k coming up in six weeks, and at the HURT 100 in January. But my job takes time and takes me away from places conducive to training, and my family deserves as much time from me as possible. It's just not possible or fair for me to take the time away from them. Speaking of family, our fourth child is due in just three weeks. We area very blessed, and I can't wait to meet him! But there's no way that the little guy is going to help me improve, unless some new study shows that lack of sleep and less free time makes runners faster. Anyone else out there in a similar boat? I'm thinking yes... We mortals that sit behind a desk wishing we were able to run FKT's for a living! We mortals that run boring road loops over and over again because it's quicker than getting to a trail head. We mortals that sometimes would rather hang out with family (on a umm, tropical beach) rather than run for six hours on a Saturday! So what's the plan? Relax! This is only part 1! A road map if you will. A guideline I'm putting in writing in the hopes that I can actually heed my own advice. A plan has to solve a problem, so first I must identify the problem(s) accurately. The goal is to be truly competitive with some great runners coming to HURT. This year I proved I can do just that so it stands to reason that I could repeat. The problem is simply getting enough miles/vertical/quality/recovery in order to maximize my potential. This would be the same problem everyone has. Even the runners with tons of free time often mess themselves up by skimping on the recovery. So here's me talking to myself: -Written Training plan. For us people living in the real world, it's gotta be flexible. But a written training plan can help maximize your time, and keep you on track with important workouts. Without a plan I tend to run about the same amount, but end up doing less focused speed work in favor of tons of moderate miles. Also, I highlight really essential runs on my written plan. For ultra that will be the really long runs... it doesn't really matter if I miss the fartlek workout. Every week I do back to back 'medium-long' runs, and try to get runs in that last over two hours, but in the months leading up to a 100 I will accomplish several runs around the six hour mark. These are key, and something that just has to happen. This is why the plan has to be flexible. In my case I will make every effort to ensure that those runs happen while I'm on a work related trip, even if that particular weeks schedule didn't actually call for a 'long-long' run. Shuffle the deck, do the long run.. you may not get another chance! -Run when you can. Too many times I've delayed a run because I just wasn't feeling it right then. A few more minutes checking email or otherwise whiling away the time often has led to either no run, or a drastically shortened run when work or family duties end up popping up. Keep the eyes on the prize and get out that door! -Doubles. Along the same lines as the last one. If you can get out for a few miles now, then do it! Hit the road again later to up the training impulse. I like to take my oldest son out on his bike. He can ride sub 8min/mile for six miles, so that's perfect, and really is quality time. The double jogger works with the other two. -Include the family. Want to run some North Shore trails on Saturday? Maybe if you pack everything for the kids, but leave several hours early you can plan to meet up at the beach. Win-win! -Start going to bed earlier. I'm a night owl. It's time for my wife and I to talk and relax without a thousand requests and questions. But all too often the time is wasted in front of a screen. Earlier bed will make the early morning run more palatable, and/or improve that vital recovery! -Include upper body and resistance work. Hey, the goal is to be a machine that can last all day and all night in the mountains! I'm not talking about turning into a gym rat. I'm talking about dropping off the desk every few minutes to do pushups, bridges, dips, squats, lunges, pull-ups etc. I can't figure out why I'm so lazy when it comes to this obvious stuff, but I am. I suspect that many runners are the same. Time to keep the eye on that prize. The result will be a more capable body all around, and hopefully one that will feel more comfortable after the miles get long. A side benefit might even be improved work productivity, and improved motivation for the run. Nothing sucks the life out of me more than several hours at the desk. I barely feel like walking to the bathroom let alone trail running! -Force yourself out the door even when you don't want to go. Permission to quit after one mile! An oldie but goodie. If you plan on running on any given day, then make it happen. Many of my strongest runs happened when I least felt like heading out the door. That's all for now. I've got a few more floating around in my head, and I'll get another HURT training post up as we get a bit closer. Now off to bed so I can get up earlyish and run!

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