Training Recap: Feb. 17-23

Now that training for Mad City 100k is in full swing, I wanted to share some of the intensity workouts that I have done this week. Although Mother Nature did throw some curveballs, I was able to get pretty reasonable weather on the days I needed some traction (wish I could say I planned it that way). My mileage this week crept up to 130 miles, including two intensity sessions. I was really happy with my recovery from the two intensity sessions, and I feel my body is beginning to re-acclimate to higher training loads.

The two intensity workouts I did were hybrids. I did not necessarily pick a specific type of workout, instead borrowing elements from specific workouts, splicing them together. I like doing these hybrid workouts in training for ultramarathons because I believe they do a good job of tapping a wider range of systems. In an ultra race, it is likely that by the time you reach the finish line, multiple systems will have been tapped. I liken it to gears on a bike: Hybrid workouts engage multiple gears, rather than just focusing on one.

The first intensity session I did, on Sunday, was a 20.5-mile run that included: a long warm-up, a five-mile tempo run, a bout of sprints, and a short cool-down. I structured the workout this way so the sprints near the end of the run would feel like they required extra effort, similar to what putting in a surge at the end of an ultra race would feel like. The workout specifics were as follows:

  • 10 mile warm-up (7 min./mi.)
  • 5 mile tempo (5:45, 5:42, 5:40, 5:42, 5:45)
  • 1 mile recovery jog
  • 15 x (20 sec all out, 40 sec jog)
  • 2 mile cool-down

The second intensity session I did, on Wednesday, was a 16.25-mile run, again with multiple components. The goal here was to start fast and end with a pace similar to my goal 100k pace for Mad City. My hopes are that the 3 miles at 6:20/mile will emulate how it will feel to go that pace during the latter stages of Mad City. The workout specifics were as follows:

  • 3 mile warm up
  • 6 x 400 meters with mile recovery jog (75 sec. on reps 1,2,3,5 (into wind), 70 sec. rep 4)
  • 1 mile recovery jog
  • 2 x 1 mile with 1 mile recovery jog (5:27 mile, 5:25 mile)
  • 1 mile recovery jog
  • 3 miles (6:18, 6:17, 6:19)
  • 2.25 mile cool-down

The following is a day-by-day breakdown of my training this week.

Sunday 20.5 miles (Intensity Session 1)
Monday AM: 9.5 miles
PM: 8.75 miles
Tuesday 10 miles
Wednesday AM: 16.25 mi (Intensity Session 2)
PM: 5.5 miles
Thursday AM: 8.17 miles
PM: 6 miles
Friday AM: 10 miles
PM: 10.5 miles
Saturday AM: 18 miles
PM: 7 miles
Total 130.17 miles