Oct 23, 2009

Ultrarunning Listserv Gold - How to run 50 miles in 12 hours

A bit of wisdom from Joe Judd of Colorado, who writes,
You are more than ready. I think that 50 miles in 12 hours is very
attainable, especially if it is a flat course.

1) Focus on keeping moving for the whole 12 hours.
2) A run/walk startegy works well for most people. Something like run for 5 minutes, then walk for one minute. I just run at a comfortable pace for as long as I can, then walk when I feel I need to have a break. Getting exhausted is hard to come back from.
3) Don't stop for too long. Keep aid stops to a maximum of around 5 minutes, maybe 10 minutes around dinner time. Remember, if you stop for 5 minutes every hour, you've lost a total of an hour of the race.
4) Most of what you need to overcome is in your head. It's not terribly hard to run a pace of 14:30 per mile. Doing it for 12 hours is another issue.
5) Stay in the moment. It is not a good idea to think of how much longer you have to run. Focus on how you're doing at THAT moment. The hours and miles will take care of themselves. Relentless forward motion!
6) It will get bad. But, then it will get better. It's never a consistent downhill spiral. No matter how bad you feel, you WILL bounce back.

BTW, pretty much all of these things I have learned from the ultra list. Of course, I've had to wade through some bad jokes.
The signal-to-noise ratio on the listserv is pretty darn low, but when something great does come through, it really makes it worth reading.


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