Adventures of my 50KM training

….and My Story Runs On….

I never thought My Running Story would take me this route….remember, I said I would never do a half marathon and now I’m tackling my first 50Km on trail.  Scared yet really excited at the same time.  I decided to do this 50KM now because I already have marathon #4 on 1/19 (Pf Changs Rock and Roll) and marathon #5 on 2/1 (Sedona Marathon)…..seems like the right time to add a few more miles while I’m training for these….ironically now these marathons have become training runs for my 50KM.

This last weekend I did an 11 mile training run on the Sedona Marathon course (hills and elevation training) and then did the XTerra 20K race at White Tanks on Sunday (ChiRunning hills and trails training).   The scenery was gorgeous on both (pics below).

Here are a few of my AHA moments:

  • I’m learning to enjoy the recovery process as part of my journey.  Usually I don’t like to take the time to foam roll, do leg drains (more on these in another post), hot baths, etc.  It used to feel like a chore.  Recently I’ve discovered how important this process is, especially when doing these distances and back to back long runs.  I can feel a noticeable difference when I do these and since I prefer not to be sore, I realized this is just part of the training process now.
  • The reason for back to back long runs is to get used to running on tired legs.  I’ve been feeling this the last few weekends for sure.  I described it to my boyfriend: “It’s like my legs are heavy and just dangling from my hips.”  But since I was doing hills all weekend, I felt my core as well;  I’ve never felt my core this fatigued.  In ChiRunning, core muscles do most of the work so legs don’t have to.  I do feel it on long runs but it felt like I had done an ab workout and feeling the effects the next day.
  • Upper body, mainly neck area was sorer than normal too. I try hard to focus on using my eyes to look ahead rather than looking down at the trail (which puts pressure on your cervical spine when constantly looking down).  This is clearly why the training is important so I can be aware of what my body wants to do but also work on improving my form in these areas.
  • Last but not least, I realize that nutrition is going to be a bigger piece of the pie.  I follow my intuition when fueling and I’m kind of anal about electrolytes (I don’t like Gatorade or any products that have high sugar content, or chemicals like red dye #40 , etc).  I love the Honey Stinger products and recently started using salt pills as well.  Now I’m on a mission to learn how to fuel the week and days before my longer runs.  I’m looking forward to learning some more hear. One of my friends recommended these 2 books which I’m planning on purchasing: The Feed Zone Cookbook and Feed Zone Portables.

Any advice or feedback to share based on your experience?  Comment below and let me know…

Here are a few photos from the weekend along with my training plan 😉 (click on them to increase size)

White rows are plan, blue is my actual mileage and the green are miles on trails.  Having to make some adjustments as I approach PF Changs marathon weekend.

White rows are plan, blue is my actual mileage and the green are miles on trails. Having to make some adjustments as I approach PF Changs marathon weekend.

Training run in Sedona...GORGEOUS views...and elevation and hills ;)

Training run in Sedona…GORGEOUS views…and elevation and hills 😉

6 miles of grueling uphill...not sure if you can see the little people on the switchbacks...

6 miles of grueling uphill…not sure if you can see the little people on the switchbacks…

At least when there is an uphill, there is a downhill too!

At least when there is an uphill, there is a downhill too! (White Tanks XTerra 20K)

From My Running Story to Yours….
(if you feel inspired to share your comments, do so below…I want to hear your story too!)


4 thoughts on “Adventures of my 50KM training

  1. Training mileage looks reasonable given the days off (to each his (or her) own) and the 1.5 to 2 multiplier on trail runs, but 50K isn’t 50 miles (see week 13). Although, if you finish Elephant Mountain in one piece, it’ll sure feel like 50 miles.

    • Good catch…checked the spreadsheet and not sure why it totaled to 50 miles 😉 I did the XTerra 20K which was pretty brutal but a great training run…been to Cave Creek Regional park and did the 1st loop of the The Elephant Mtn race and heading back to do the end of it so I can be more familiar with course. Have you done Elephant Mtn before?

      • I ran the 12K last year which was fairly easy but I have hiked in Spur Cross and Elephant Mountain is tough! I’m not sure what loop you did because the 50K is the brutal out and back via Elephant Mountain and then 2 easy loops of the 12K course. If you ran the Cave Creek Regional loops (Go John Trail), I would suggest you go to Spur Cross and run the Spur Cross Trail. I’m doing the 22K which does not have too much less elevation gain than the 50K has.

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