Training, Racing & LCHF Fueling For Skating And Endurance Sports
So quite obviously, I have wanted to keep my plans as low profile as possible this year.. to the point of denial during casual dinner party conversation. However, I guess that word is getting out that I’ve signed up to attempt the South Downs Way 100, which takes place on 10th June. That’s 100 miles over the South Downs, in case it wasn’t obvious.
First question(s), I guess, are “WHY??” And “ARE YOU FUCKING CRAZY??”
Yes, maybe. You. can detect the foul stench of my hubris from an ultra away, and I have to admit that this is biting off a considerable chunk more than I think I can comfortable chew, never mind swallow. But the best reason to do anything difficult in life is that you inevitably learn something about yourself during the process, and the person at the end is never the same as the one who started it. And that, as far as I’m concerned, is the only reason I really need. There will be highs, there will undoubtedly be lows, but I’m going to learn a few things along the way, and this time next month I will look at the world differently – of that I’m confident. And I guess there is that dark curiosity lurking that will simply never feel satiated until it knows what it is like to run one of these things.
So, I’ll just level with you here and say straight away that I’m not sure that there is really any training plan, per se, that can adequately prepare you to run 100 miles. Oh sure, there are plans out there designed to cater specifically for the hundred mile distance, and some may even have been followed and delivered relative success. But they don’t cater to your life or your own preferences, and as I’m officially old and obsinate now I can’t be entertaining thoughts of traning plans that don’t fit around the other aspects of my life. So in order to prepare I have just been running on as consistent a basis as I can, but it has been on my own terms and nobody else’s… if you had looked at my training log (not that I officially kept one) without any other information you wouldn’t have thought that there would be a 100 mile race at the end of it all. Most weeks have been 6-8 hrs of aerobic running, peaking at about 10 hrs – which was plenty, I felt. In addition I’ve been supplementing with plenty of cycling. You could call it an intuitive training plan, but I’d prefer just calling it “getting fit.” It’s been enough to get my fighting weight down to a very competitive 65kg, which is as light as I can ever remember being, although some of this will be that I have lost a bit of buffness up top as my gymwork has been almost non-existent this year. Pound for pound I reckon I’m not too far off.
And of my running – it has all been by feel, as I have barely strapped a heart rate monitor on in months nor gone near a fitness app. The compunction just isn’t there to care enough. When I’m trying to hone in on pace/effort I just focus on my breathing. If I feel that I’m bumping at the top of the aerobic zone, I just close my mouth and make sure that I can comfortably breath through my nose only as I run – that’ll do for me. Longest run? I’m going to say 19 miles. It’ll be fine. Or it won’t. Not much I can do about it now.
So this time next update I’ll have either joined the Hundred Club or I’ll be a proper ultra runner by way of DNF. Shit’s about to get real.