Halfway to crazy

I’m officially only 12 weeks from the Ultra Ragnar! We assigned legs the other day, which makes it feel a little more real for me. Over my 6 legs, I will run about 33 miles. The longest leg is 7.3 miles. and my last leg is rated as hard, it appears that I will be going uphill, a lot. The race starts running downhill, and I’m runner 2, so I will start with a breeze.

Wonder Woman was my halfway point in my training. I feel that it went well. It was hard, don’t get me wrong. I started a little too fast. Even as I ran, I told myself to slow down, and I kept running too fast. I reached the 4 mile mark in 36 minutes, so I made myself walk for a bit. I ended with an average of 10:51, which I’m happy with. Honestly, I stopped to pee once. So I know I could have finished even faster, if I skipped that break. I can tell you that I was not going to complain that it was 12.85 instead of 13.1 miles. I had said that I would never run a half, and here I am, a half marathon finisher.
Training has been different for me this year. I have been following Polar’s heart rate training plan. My average heart rate for the Hot Chocolate 15K was 183. I feel that I cannot successfully complete 6 legs, on short rest, with such a crazy heart rate. It made my runs in March more like walks. I started to feel like I was jogging some in April. But even in May, my pace was still a lot slower than I was at the hot chocolate.

So what was my average heart rate during the Wonder Woman? 185! But, I did it. And I didn’t die. I for sure felt like it, at times, though. At this point, I thought I’d be in a better position to go into ultra Ragnar training. I took it easy last week, and have started back to regular training this week.

The information out there for training plans is so sporadic, it is hard to just find a plan to follow. I did find one plan that basically trained for a marathon, but he ran the ultra with back to back legs. I followed the polar half marathon plan for Wonder Woman. Now, I’ve got a plan to run 5 miles, 3 days a week. On the weekends, I will do a long run. This weekend, my long run is going to be a run a mile, stop and rest, repeat loop for 5 miles. I need a way to increase my speed, without reversing the heart rate training I was working towards. As time goes on, I will increase my long run. Then add a second run a couple days a week, to get used to the shorter rest. Mileage wise, I am almost where I need to be for the ultra. The biggest problem will be nutrition, lack of sleep, and tired legs. Oh wait, that’s a lot of problems. Good thing we are doing this for fun!

I managed to lose about 10 pounds this year, before my weight loss efforts stalled out. I had some GI issues pop up that could have done a lot worse to me with my training. Luckily, I pushed through most of the discomfort. I did miss some training runs at a crucial, almost race time. I have a better handle on things now. I’m also back on humira, which I’m not taking for my gut, but it may help it anyhow. That would probably be most ideal situation, heal everything right up. This means I have 12 weeks to lose the last 10 pounds, to get where I want to be for this race.

It would of been more ideal to mess with what foods I can eat during the race if I hit my goal faster, but it is what it is. My biggest concern is that I always run on an empty stomach. I can’t have an empty stomach for 36 hours. My stomach is so sensitive to what it can handle, so this will not be an easy feat to discover.

If you have any tips or tricks, or foods to try, I’m all ears! I am excited to be on this journey. Even though I’m pretty sure I’m nuts. At least I have 6 runner friends nuts enough to be on it with me! Even though our driver is “just driving” for this race, she is equally nuts for being on this journey and is totally an invaluable member of our team.