First ultra

So, thinking of a year off of Ironman distance next year after four years consecutive races…fancy a few shorter tri’s for fun but also venturing in to the world of ultras.
There’s a 50 miler near me in Essex in the new year as a starter, so trying to work out a plan from October onwards once recovered from Almere.
Any good sources of info or ‘must reads’ out there? Pretty sure I can build the distance gradually but always good to get some input.

This should be a good start

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It’s much simpler than an Ironman to just run the ultra.
So long as you knock the pace RIGHT back.
And start off immediately with 1 minute walking, 9 minute jogging.
Plus, get the correct kit (shorts socks backpack etc)
50 miles is a long way for rubbing to take its toll.

I ran a 40 miler 4 weeks after an IM with no specific training, As a lot of the endurance just carries over.
I had ran a 30 miler in March of that year and was only running 35-40mpw consistently.

Like @Hammerer says, read that link then ask away!

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Appreciate the link…will have a good read thanks.

9/1 run/walk, hadn’t entered my mind so food for thought already!

I think I can up the mileage enough but will need to keep the pace down as too many quicker miles generally means I’m visiting the physio far too regularly.

I’ll put my hat into the ring as well and disagree slightly with that strategy. I think it all depends on the race you are doing. 9:1 works fine for something like the Thames path that is pan flat, but if you’re doing something in a national park, coast path, hills, moors etc then let the terrain guide you as opposed to a pre ordained strategy i.e. walk the hills, run the descents (if possible) and cruise the flats.

Terrain - train for what you will race. If it’s flat, get your body used to hours and hours of slow pounding. It can be incredibly difficult, even more so than hilly races in my opinion. If it’s hilly, get the hills in every run you do, just don’t worry about walking them. If you’re heading to the mountains but live in the city, find a hill with abunch of steps and rep them until you go crazy!

Get your body used to eating real food on the go. Nobody wants to be on gels and drinks for 12-36 hours!

If you’ll be out overnight, then do a couple of simulation sessions. Sleep deprivation smashes many a good runner into the ditch!

As @Poet said - get your kit nailed early. Chaffing will likely still rear it’s ugly head. DO NOT IGNORE IT! Been there, done that, got the injuries! What is a minor irritation at the start will turn into a nice, filthy open wound in a few hours!!

I’ll think of more stuff - but yeah, as others have said an IM base will work wonders. It’s just adding that bit of specificity on top. But anyone with a decent base will be able to finish an ultra. Just depends if you want to compete or complete, as with most stuff!


Thinking of dipping my toe into the world of ultra’s next year. Will take a year out of IM distance, but still do 1/2 IM distance, then go back for one last IM in 2021.

Quite fancy Race to the King, Stones, Tower but not sure which one would be most suited. Probably do The Fox as a warm up.

I think my strategy if I do one next year will be the same as last year when I did the 405km Audax. Last year my longest ride preceding it was 107k, but on the day I just took it steady all the way and remembered to enjoy it! Plan to do the same if I do the Cotswold Way 100km… no pressure, just get 'round well before the cut-off.

Oh, and make sure I have the right kit; that really helps.

Relentless Forward Progress is a good read with decent training plans in the back.

Centurion Running have good for 50 milers

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