In 2011, I was able to check off a life goal of mine to run a marathon. It was a very rewarding experience since I had to fight through injuries and set backs for a few years of trying to complete the goal. I hung in there and did it.
Well, after reading the book “Born To Run” by Christopher McDougall, I figured I would give Ultra-Marathons a try. I’m one of those people that need constant challenges to keep me striving. Since basic “staying in shape” doesn’t work for me, I make physical challenges of myself and try to complete them. These challenges all require me to follow some sort of training schedule, regimen or discipline to achieve them mixed with health eating an making good choices. It is good for me all around.
Not 26.2, but 50.
In the “Born To Run” book, it is centered around 110 Miler in the Arizona desert. Now this is a serious challenge, but not one for me. This 50 miler is going to challenge me plenty. I’m sure of it.
2013 was the first year I decided I was going to run the 50. A friend of mine signed up for one in Chicago and I said I was in with him. However, during training,, I realized I was just flat out not ready for this. All distant training requires you to prepare with some sort of 16 week or so training process. I went through one for my marathon and watched my wife do 16 weeks of training for her marathon earlier this year.
However, the 50 miler training program was very different. Typically, after a distance run of say 15 to 20 miles you would have a rest day the following day. Not with the 50 mile training. 20 Mile runs were followed by 12 mile runs the next day. This was about 4 weeks into the training program.
I was not ready. I had just rolled off the sofa after a year of sitting on my butt calling myself a marathoner, not training ferociously in persuit of completing a 50 miler. That was a big mistake. I’m just glad my ego wasn’t big enough that I bowed out early in the process instead of fooling myself.
THIS YEAR IS DIFFERENT!
This year I have a plan. This year i’m going to complete it and become a 50 mile man. (My friend made it last year, but he is not man. He is a Machine.)
This year i’m going to run a marathon in May of 2014. That will put me in great shape to start my 4 month training program for the 50 miler in October. But this time instead of rolling off the sofa, I will be fresh off a marathon and all the training and preparation that goes into that.
The scheduling should give me a solid week or two to rest from the marathon before 50 mile training must begin. It will be great because this year I will be prepared and ready for the heavy distance early in the 50 mile training schedule.
This year I will be ready.
WHAT’S NEXT AFTER THE 50?
Well, I don’t want to look past this challenge, although I have mentally seen myself crossing that finish line. The challenge of a completing an Iron Man is also on the Bucket List. That may be on deck for 2015, but i’m a terrible swimmer.