On November 12, I’ll be running my first 50-mile ultramarathon. I’m excited and nervous, but mostly excited. I’ve been training since May for a 50-mile race, and I’m ready to get this thing done.
Since I haven’t updated in a long time, I thought it would be nice to answer some FAQs regarding ultrarunning, and in particular my 50-mile race and the way I will be running it.
Most of the people in my various social circles know that I run, and that I run a lot. So, one of the common questions I get is: “When is your next race?” or something along those lines. Here are the answers!
1. When is your next race?
Tunnel Hill 100/50. I’ll run the 50-mile race!
The Tunnel Hill course is a crushed-limestone multi-use trail in Vienna, Illinois. It’s part of the rails-to-trails conservancy project. The trail was built on an old railroad bed. They took out the tracks and threw down some crushed limestone. It has virtually no hills, lots of bridges, and a notable 543-foot long tunnel. Through a hill.
2. 50 miles????
3. How long will that take you? Is it all in one day?
I’m estimating it will take me between 10 and 12 hours. My goal is to finish in 10. Yes, it’s all in one day, technically. All runners (of both the 100 and 50-mile races) have to finish in 30 hours.
4. What will you eat?
Throughout this summer, I’ve been working on perfecting my nutrition plan for this race, and I’ve gotten it down pretty well now.
- Roasted sweet potato wedges
- Medjool dates
So it goes like this: I eat throughout the whole race beginning at 45 minutes to an hour in. It’s super important to keep fueling the whole time, not just when I get hungry or when I crash. It’s really hard to bounce back after totally depleting resources.
At about 45 minutes in, I’ll eat my first date. Then a little later, I’ll have some Tailwind. Then a little later, I’ll have some potato wedges. Repeat for the rest of the day. This is my main source of fuel.
I also like to have some Chex Mix (salty, crunchy, lovely), and it’s really nice to have a soda in those later miles. Occasional Gin-Gins to help settle a crazy stomach.
And of course I’ll drink plenty of water.
Why would you do this to yourself?
I love the challenge. It feels so good to set a crazy goal, work really hard, and eventually achieve that goal. There’s nothing like it. I know that no matter what happens in other areas of my life, running is a constant. And if I work super hard, no one can take away the progress I make, and no one can tell me that I can’t finish my ultramarathon. It’s all up to me.
But what about…
Do you have any questions about trail and ultra running that I didn’t answer? Feel free to leave me a comment below, and I’ll answer it!