The Graveyard 100 miler will be my second 100. Looking back at my first 100, The Umstead 100 mile endurance run, I learned so much about myself and the distance while training for that race. Scanning my Twitter feed over the last few months I noticed one person whom I follow (and you should too) who was gearing up for her first official 100 mile race and decided to ask her to share some of her insight.
I’m pleased to introduce Michelle aka @runnermommy2008
Thanks Brian for asking me to be a guest blogger! I hope this is helpful to anybody considering doing an ultra marathon! Here’s a tid bit on #myjourneyto100miles.
“BUCKLE DOWN AND GET TO WORK”
In 2014 I decided that I was going to earn myself a belt buckle by completing a 100 mile race. Hmmm where to start?! There’s so much to say about training for 100 miler. I’ll start by saying I just felt ready. I had completed a 50k, 50 miler and 100k and a 100 miler just seemed right. I attempted a 100 miles at a 24 hr. race back in September 2014, but was not successful. This kinda hit it home for me. I knew I had to get serious and “buckle” down and get to work. So I hired a coach. And signed up for the Lake Martin 100 miler on March 21, 2015.
My Coach is amazing! He gives me my weekly schedule and is the most supportive and helpful person! He has completed many ultra distances and many 100 milers. So I know he will get me to my goal. You do not need to hire a coach to run an ultra marathon. I did because I am very poor at holding myself accountable. <– the first step is admitting you have a problem lol.
FIT THE TRAINING HOURS IN
Let’s see…. Training wise I run 5 days a week and have 2 strength training days. David has me on a very rigorous training schedule. He’s teaching me to be on my feet and upright for long periods of time. A typical training run can be 3-5 hours in length. At my pace this is around 18-26 miles. And probably the longest will be around 14-15 hrs. Again at my pace about 50 miles. Which I don’t mind b/c I’m a little obsessed with running lol! It’s just learning to fit the hours of running in with everything else going on!
But with every long run, I’m learning something about myself. Running has taught me patience and has been very humbling. I know I’m not the only runner who says this. But it’s true! I’m slowly learning that I am capable of more than I thought. And I’m learning my body will withstand an immense amount of pain. Yet with a little TLC, it forgives me and allows me to keep moving forward on my journey.
GETTING COMFORTABLE WITH GOING SLOW
I’m also learning a lot about heart rate training. And getting comfortable with slowing down. When running an ultra marathon you don’t want to bust right out of the gate since you’ll be at it all day and night and day again…. oye.
I’m learning how to fuel my body and utilize my own body fat to sustain me versus gels/gu’s etc. it’s a little something called metabolic efficiency. It may not work for everybody, but it works for me :))! Regardless, anybody will tell you to start paying attention to what you eat and what your body needs while you train for long distances.
MILES 80 – 100
Lastly, I’ll say physical training is one thing. Having a strong motivation and will, having mental stamina and strength, and determination to complete this distance is a separate beast. I work on this during my very long runs. Does it make me nervous to think about? Yes. Am I scared I won’t be ready? Heck yes! But I know I have the will and determination to finish what I started and I’m hoping that gets me through miles 80-100 ;)
Good Luck Michelle, we can’t wait to hear about your success…It’s Time To Buckle Up!