October 20, 2018

My First 50k

Saratoga Trail Run Race Recap


Not the fastest, not even really that competitive, I rolled into the finish of my first 50k trail run after 6:42. After some ups (approx 6000ft of climbing) and downs (GI issues due to some over execution on food and electrolytes), I had no idea my legs could maintain power that long — 2.5 hours and 12 miles more than my longest training run. As I crossed the finish line, I felt good. In fact, I could have kept running, and I learned a ton about what my body needs for these kinds of endurance events. That was the exact result I had hoped for when I signed up. Coach Bree said I was ready, and she was right.

The Training

I started working with Coach Bree in June 2018. After some assessments, form tweaking, and 1:1 drill work, we moved into a regular weekly cycle to build my running volume and fitness. With a mix of tempo, hill threshold/repeats, fartleks, and long steady runs, she built my weekly volume from 25mi to more than 50mi (along with more tweaks to shoes and nutrition). Some weeks were definitely harder than others, and I found that the shorter, intense track type of work to be hardest for my body to absorb — probably because I was coming from years of unchanging, slow and steady running on the same route, at the same pace, with the same shoes, week after week.

However, my biggest learning curve was (and is) really listening to my body and communicating that to Coach, so she can adapt my training appropriately. I was honestly worried that my legs weren’t ready for 50k when even my longest training run of 20mi had me pretty worn down and feeling drained. But Coach assured me it was a cumulative process, and now I see the path to 100k. Maybe beyond 😉