Between April and July, I have done a few runs and hikes and one marathon. On top of that, I have done several longish days (7-8 hrs) in the mountains, probably every 10 days or so, mostly in ski boots. Fitness-wise, that has given me a base. And I'm encouraged that my body is acclimated to those longish efforts. But what about running-wise?
Since July 1, 2011, my training is summarized as follows:
95 miles (mostly in the mountains on technical trails)
26,000 vertical gain
That small block of training has been fruitful. By Saturday (7/16), I was toast. On that day, Andy Dorais, Tanner and I ran from Wasatch Blvd. to the Canyons resort, which ended up being just shy of 23 miles and 7500 vertical. We started off with Grandeur (3k vert in 2 miles), went off the other side, hit the Pipeline, ran up the Millcreek Freeway to Big Water, up the Great Western trail to the divide, and down to Canyons resort. On the ups, I had nothing. That was due in part to the 15 miles I did the day before. I could barely hike, and Andy and Tanner had to wait for me. But I was encouraged to know that I'd get some good over-distance and over-compensation as a result, so I plugged along. Surprisingly, the downhills felt ok, and my feet (which have been a limiting factor since I started running last year) felt relatively good.
From now until Speedgoat, I'll continue my training. I won't do a full taper because I really haven't done a full build. And I think I'm resigned to the fact that Speedgoat will just be a training event for things to come later in the year. Still, I'm looking forward to it. And I'm looking forward to employing a pacing strategy.
Question for experienced ultra runners or endurance specialists: In a 50k or 6 hour (more like 7+ for me) event, do you make a conscious effort to keep your efforts under threshold? Or are you willing to pin it on the up and hope to recover in other places?