Training Recap: April 1-7 and Healthy Fats

This week was full of recovery-pace runs after the Mad City 50k capped off last week with a great workout. I wanted to make sure my muscles bounced back while also taking advantage of the waning time I have to do quality work before Ice Age 50 Mile. Since I did not taper for Mad City, I was able to get a nice 20-mile long run in on the day after the race. My legs were a little sore, but I was not hurting to the extent that I needed a day off. Plus, chasing a 50k workout with a 20-mile long run is great ultramarathon training. It gave me another opportunity to develop the mental focus and physical toughness to run for a few hours on fatigued legs. With only five weeks to Ice Age, I won't have too many more opportunities for these types of workouts. I made sure to follow the intensity of this weekend with a couple of easier days to draw in the benefits from the work. I also have an intense week coming up, which will focus on hills.

Another aspect of my training I have been focusing on more closely has been nutrition. I have been utilizing Vespa for a while now, but I recently began a diet that will amplify its effects. I have been gradually trying to replace some of my carbohydrate intake with healthy fats. The reason for this is simply to improve my body's usage of fat as fuel and to keep my insulin receptors sharp. It's amazing how much bigger a boost you get from a gel or simple sugar when your body is not dulled by copious amounts of refined sugar all the time. The reason I have gone this route is basically because it is where the science points. Personally, I love listening to Ben Greenfield's podcasts and reading his blogs. He gives great tips on using fat for fuel for speedier recovery, and benefiting from the great nutrients available in healthy fats. Last year when I ran three 50-milers in a nine-week timeframe, I was not completely recovered for my final 50 miler at JFK—but I did not realize that until during and after the race. It was a big load for me to do on a high-carb diet, and very little ultra-racing experience. This year as Fall approaches I plan to bring a bit more experience, and a better recovery plan through nutrition, to a similar schedule of three ultras in autumn (God willing, I'll stay healthy and injury-free).

Sunday 20 mile long run
Monday 10 mile easy run
Tuesday AM: 10 mile easy run
PM: 10 mile easy run
Wednesday AM: 10 mile easy run
PM: 10 mile easy run
Thursday AM: 10 mile easy run
PM: 10 mile easy run
Friday AM: 10 mile easy run
PM: 9 mile easy run
Saturday 20 mile long run
Total 128 miles

April 2012 Training