Target: Transvulcania

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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:41 pm

Sunday 30/03/14

Old John repeats
35km
1250m
Merrell Mix Master Tuff


Great run. Consistent pace throughout with no dropoff even when my legs felt battered towards the end, climbing felt solid, no knee or ankle issues, no cramp, no dogs clawing my leg open. Now to do a very short taper before the weekend's monster hill session. Slightly intimidated by the total ascent, but excited to give it a good go, and if we manage to get through it we'll be in great shape for TV as it will be pretty much the same distance and ascent as the first 2/3 of the race, before the quad smashing descent. We also have Kilian's new film to watch on Friday night as a bit of pre-run psyche up.

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“Begin at the beginning,” the King said gravely, “and go on till you come to the end. Then stop.”
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby hakko » Sun Mar 30, 2014 8:10 pm

I think running up and down the same mountain for 35 km is more madness than doing 120 km spread out over the week. :)
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Sun Mar 30, 2014 9:07 pm

hakko wrote:I think running up and down the same mountain for 35 km is more madness than doing 120 km spread out over the week. :)

Maybe, but not as daft as running up and down the same mountain for 50km...
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Mon Apr 07, 2014 1:47 pm

Saturday 05/04/14

Skiddaw
29.1km
1953m
Salomon Fellraiser


30 mins break while driving to Ennerdale

Ennerdale Water - anti-clockwise
11.2km
287m
Salomon Fellraiser


The key training weekend. The aim for the weekend was principally to get in some sustained climbing and descending whilst putting in some decent time on feet. Effectively the principal aim was to build some good race day confidence. The original plan was do do ~50km/3200m, i.e. 5 reps of Skiddaw, but we ended up stopping at 3 as the weather was rapidly deteriorating and the consequences of a slip, trip or even just fatigue were becoming more serious.

The route itself is easy to follow and required no navigation even in thick fog. From the car park the climbs starts immediately and steeply - you gain 420m in the first mile. Once up over Jenkin Hill the gradient relents a little, before a nice runnable section round Skiddaw Little Man (we ditched plans to go via that summit because of the fog). After that the route climbs again before hitting the flat summit ridge, the trig point being at the far end before the ridge drops away. Most of the route is rocky and technical, but still runnable.

When we left for the first rep it was cloudy on top, but fine down below and reasonably mild. By the time we hit the summit for the second time the wind had picked up, the fog was now pretty thick, it had started raining, and the temperature had dropped. On the descent the right side of my face was completely numb making me slur my words and dribble! We decided to swap the windproofs for waterproofs for the next lap, but by the time I reached the top it was bitterly cold. I'd powered on ahead up the climb knowing that Dan would catch me on the descent, but the freezing fog was playing havoc with Dan's lungs. I chatted to a couple of people on the summit then started to make my way back along the summit ridge. I met Dan shortly after and he said he was going to bail as his asthma was starting to play up, so I decided to do the same despite feeling confident of making the 5 reps - it would probably not have been sensible to carry on alone in those condition. We ran back down to the car at a very easy pace, and decided on the way that if the weather was better lower down we'd drive over to where we did the 50k last year and run some of that route.

With better weather I think the 5 reps would have been comfortable. I felt strong on the climbs, despite the pretty savage start to the route and my quads held up on the long, pounding descents (descending 420m in the space of a mile is much worse than climbing it, especially when it's wet and slippery and the gradient is around 26%). I paced the whole run on RPE, using my breathing as a gauge, and never felt tired. My splits for each rep were:

1) Climb 0:54; Descent 0:36
2) Climb 1:00; Descent 0:38
3) Climb 1:08; Descent 0:45

By the time we got to Ennerdale we were both pretty cold (I was shaking so much I couldn't start my GPS) but luckily we warmed up within a few minutes of starting to run again. This time round we ran the route anti-clockwise, meaning we ran the technical south shore section first, a much more enjoyable approach. Slow as hell, but it was some more kms in the bag and some good technical practice.

Total for the day: 40.3km/2240m, most ascent in a day ever, and no cramp.

Naismith's rule gives the day an equivalent flat distance of 58km, and I'm happy with that. And now that the biggest training run is over I can think about what to do for the remaining long runs. Probably around HM this week, then 35-40, then 30. My last long run will be 16-20 and on the TV course... I'm cutting back on the hills to let my knee and ankle fully recover and doing a lot of very high rep squats to build some more downhill tolerance. Other than that I'm ready to go.
“Begin at the beginning,” the King said gravely, “and go on till you come to the end. Then stop.”
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby silver » Mon Apr 07, 2014 2:24 pm

Awesome :)
It's not what you do occasionally that makes a difference, it's that which you do everyday that brings progress.

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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby hakko » Tue Apr 08, 2014 8:53 pm

I like how seriously you take your training! You're coming well prepared for Transvulcania.
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:09 am

Thanks guys. I'm feeling very good about the race now.

I'm a strong believer in the idea that the fundamental component of ultra training is building the confidence to perform on race day, and therefore whatever training you do to build confidence is the right training. Obviously you have to take your training seriously if you are to have confidence in it! This is a really good article that sums up a lot of what I believe: http://ultrastu.blogspot.co.uk/p/article-training-for-ultras.html

My legs were absolutely ruined for 3 days afterwards, horrifically sore and on the border of giving way most of the time. Those long descents are killer on the quads, and at TV the final descent is 18km long...
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby hakko » Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:50 pm

Interesting article! I do agree with some of it, but the comments about correlation between training amount and results made me a little skeptical. Maybe it's different for ultra races, but I've seen a figure posted about training amount and marathon results where it was almost linear (more training = faster time). I'd like to read some more scientific studies on mind vs physical training for ultra runners though.
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:54 pm

hakko wrote:Interesting article! I do agree with some of it, but the comments about correlation between training amount and results made me a little skeptical. Maybe it's different for ultra races, but I've seen a figure posted about training amount and marathon results where it was almost linear (more training = faster time). I'd like to read some more scientific studies on mind vs physical training for ultra runners though.


Bear in mind he's not saying you don't have to put in the miles. He's just saying that you don't need to bang out 100 mile weeks to do well, because there are far too many factors to account for over the course of a trail ultra (and even a trail marathon). Training volume for ultras varies massively, even amongst the top runners (ultrarunners tend to race a lot more than marathon runners, but you also have to bear in mind the top runners also have the time to run more, because they're being paid to do so). There are simply too many other factors to consider that influence race performance (terrain, route profile, weather, nutrition, sleep deprivation, running at night, running alone, nausea, hydration, nutrition, for example) for training volume to be the key factor. Even for short, fast races like the marathon I don't think you can just look at training volume and decide that's the key. There are so many different ways the same volume can be broken down over a training cycle/training lifetime that it alone becomes meaningless (see http://www.run-fit.com/olympictrials.pdf for some good info).

As an aside, Kilian Jornet's total mileage this year is 33km, done at a Salomon kit testing week. He literally does no running between November and May, because that's skimo season (Emelie Forsberg is pretty much the same). Last year his first race of the year (as it will be this year) was Transvulcania, where he did his first running of the year in La Palma, about 5 days before the race which he won and set a new course record. Kilian doesn't even track distance. He is, however, hard as nails and the best mountain runner in the world. Sage Canaday hovers around the 120km/week mark but runs for time (when he was running for the Hansons he was doing 130 mile weeks, no runs over 20 miles, and half the team were injured). Sage is a 2:16 marathoner. I don't think Kilian has ever run one in his life.

Edit: forgot to add the most important reason why you can't compare training volume and finishing time in trail ultras: finishing time isn't really relevant - you can't compare races, even on the same course.
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:03 am

Thursday 10/04/14

Bradgate House out-and-back
10km
154m
Skechers GoRun 2


First run since the weekend as my legs have been on the verge of giving way. First twilight run of the year. Still very sore, but runnable. Reasonable pace given the effort level and soreness.

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Friday 11/04/14

Bradgate House out-and-back
10km
151m
Skechers GoRun 2


Morning run. Slow, but legs feeling better.

Sunday 13/04/14

Home - Anstey - Cropston - Thurcaston - Anstey - Cropston - Bradgate - Home
21km
225m
Skechers GoRun 2


Sunny but cold early morning outing in a new pair of GoRun 2. Legs felt good, easy pace but faster than Friday. Knee a bit sore afterwards.

Image
Image

Monday 14/04/14

A) Bodyweight squats
5-10-15-20x5 (Total 250 over about 15 mins)

Balance disc work, barbell calf smash, barbell quad smash, banded stretches.
“Begin at the beginning,” the King said gravely, “and go on till you come to the end. Then stop.”
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:41 pm

Tuesday 15/04/14

Work - Home
7.8km
75m
Skechers GoRun 2


Then a few hours later:

Reservoir loop
13.5km
155m
Skechers GoRun Ride


Clear skies and a very large and bright full moon meant I managed to avoid using my headlamp until about the 10km mark. Slow but steady and enjoyable.
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:53 pm

Thursday 17/04/14

Home - Anstey - Cropston - Thurcaston - Anstey - Cropston - Bradgate - Home
20.2km
225m
Skechers GoRun 2


University closed for Easter so I took the opportunity to get a longer run in rather than 2 short ones. Shorter than it should have been because I turned off to Thurcaston too early, but one kilometre is neither here nor there at this stage. It's just good to know I can just knock out 20km in the same way I'd do 10km a year ago.

Knee is still giving me hassle (it actually feels OK after about 10km for some reason, RockTaped it up today and it feels the best it's done for a while) so after Sunday's final big run (40km) I'm going to do a bit of an unorthodox taper to rest it. Basically no mid-week running until I get to La Palma in 2 weeks, so just a 30km outing next weekend and nothing else. I'm not going to get any fitter now, but I can cripple myself and ruin my race. Any time I would have spent running will be much better spent making sure I'm not broken, making sure I'm structurally durable (i.e. squats, abs, pushups), and making sure I'm mentally prepared for the course.
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Re: Target: Transvulcania

Postby ninearms » Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:38 pm

Friday 18/04/14

- Monkey bars of death
- Voodoo groin wrap w/ leg swings
- Banded posterior chain floss
- Super frog
- Barbell adductor smash
- Banded wall squat
- Barbell quad smash
- Super P-Laties w/ banded distraction
- Barbell calf smash
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