Posted in the UVRC December Newsletter, an awesome piece of work from Steve Andrews.
When I started running in high school, I was a bread and butter distance guy. A convert from soccer to cross country; on the track I raced 3200s and steeple chases. When I got to college, I stuck with the longer events and took up running twenty-five laps on an outdoor track for fun. Since college, I have completed a handful of half-marathons and a couple of marathons. So far, I like the longer distances.
I am not really sure when I had the harebrained notion that I should try my feet at an ultra-marathon. Part of me says it is just a natural progression from the marathon, and then there is the fact that many of my everyday-training runs cross paths with the VT50 and 100 courses. Either way, it was inevitable that I would eventually have a go at an ultra.
While I am no coach, and I really do not know anything about training for an ultra, I am fairly confident of one thing: I need to up my miles. Essentially, this is what I have been doing since I decided to go all in shortly before the CHaD. For the most part I am doing three main runs: a long run, a threshold workout on the track, and another shorter long-run. The other days I fill in with whatever time allows.
So far, one of the hardest things is finding the time to go for a three hour run, or to spend an hour and a half at the track. It may not seem like much, but when all is said and done, that time adds up, and with two kids under four at home, time takes on a different meaning. Consequently, I am either hitting the roads at 5:00 AM or 9:00 PM – neither are particularly enjoyable at this time of year.
While I have never been an early morning runner, I will say that I have become a bigger fan than I ever thought possible. There is no more wonderful a feeling than the muted cacophony of life that follows the defeat of the warm-bed-sirens and a grinding run into daylight hours. The sun does not welcome me, I welcome the sun. While this is not total motivation to wake up at unconscionably early hour, it is something.
Only four more months until April, eight until July. It will be a long road, but I guess that is what I signed up for. I guess that is ultra running.