When I get into conversations with people about running, they still have that moment of eyes bulging out at the point when I say that I have done 2 ultramarathons. Quickly it goes into the whole outward thought process of "I'm not an ultramarathoner in my head though because the distance destroyed me", but tons see any running to be "long distance" not just 30+ miles. Something I never realized until a year or two ago...when I looked starry-eyed at cross country running as a kid, I never realized that the furthest distance they did was 3 miles. 3 miles. That's what I trained for in 8 weeks as an adult with a double stroller. Why did I not look at all of that younger in life? Why did I shoot my want to "run free" down? It was just 3 miles. Gosh...to be able to go back and slap myself sometimes for the hesitations I made when it came to amazing things.
ANYWAY! There are a few things that I can share on my journeys running crazy distances...
- Setup for success!
- Prep everything and lay it all out the day prior.
- Spend your night off your feet and in bed...or watching a movie. The long-running season for me meant picking a new Netflix show to binge on early to bed nights or grab a new book!
- In the morning, envision how awesome your run is going to be
- Do not go on social media in the morning before you leave the house. The time suck may talk you out of your run
- Early mornings are not easy but they are the easiest. Getting out and getting it done early in the morning leaves room for all the fun of the day AND a great chance for active rest/recovery
- Find your groove. No two people run the same way. The fact that my routine consists of waking 30 minutes prior to leaving my house, grabbing a banana only and eating it on the car ride to where I am meeting someone to run with...works for me. It's not the end all to be all.
- IMODIUM - Some people simply need to...I take one the night before and again the morning of
- Also, I have less GI stress if I fuel every 15 minutes with smaller portions and dilute the fuel with at least 4 oz of water
- Day before is protein heavy, no greens & late night carb snack
- And last...proof...here's a list of all of the things that I accumulated with long distance running don'ts for me...
- quest bars
- power gels
- fiber one bars
- gu chomps
- gu vanilla flavor gel
- hydration belt
- 1 full nuun tab
- compression sports bra
- tie laces
- regular socks
- cough drops
Everyone is different...remember that. The only way to know what kind of things work or don't work for you is to put the work in and try it! AND be patient in the process!