I have finally reached the official taper phase of my 100 mile training. It seems like not long ago I started training for this. And 6 months later, here I am.
I have had some awesome long runs this past month. I took what I learned about nutrition from my last 50 mile race and applied it to my training runs and it has helped out tremendously. Instead of only doing about 200 calories an hour, which is what I was doing before, I have aimed to intake about 300 calories an hour.
Since my last race I have done a handful of long runs. 28, 32, 26, 27 milers. Some of those were fast finish long runs and the 32 and 26 were back to back. Not once did I have a bad moment or “bonk.” And I think that all had to do with my new nutrition goal.
This was the first time I trained with solid food this past month, finding what works and maybe finding what does not work with me. I’m not sure if I was fortunate or unfortunate that I didn’t find something that didn’t work with me. I guess we will find out on race day…
My favorite thing I tried on the long runs were bean burritos. I used canned refried beans and small flour tortillas. They made my stomach feel full and satisfied. And the canned beans were high of sodium which helped with replenishing from so much sweat. I also really enjoyed PB&Js, Oreos, trail mix and pretzels. This was also the first time I used a sports drink too during a long run.
Another thing that I’ve added this past month is an extra off day. Fridays has always been my off day from running. So I can feel fresh going into long runs. And Mondays I have used as short 30 minute recovery runs up until recently. The last Monday I ran, I never felt “that” feeling when all the stiffness and soreness from the weekend runs melt away after about 15-20 minutes of super easy jogging. It actually felt like the recovery run took me back a step, bringing up a few niggles that could have possibility turned into something serious.
With the extra off day, I have felt more recovered. Which I believe has made me even stronger as a runner. And it has aided me finishing up my training feeling healthy and rested. Meaning I’m not injured and not burned out. I’m excited for this race!
Fingers are crossed that my successful streak of long runs continues on into my race. I feel I am in the best shape and my confidence is as high as can be right now. But anything can happen in 100 miles. After the half way point, I will be in unknown territory for myself.
All my long runs are done. I still have a track workout and tempo run to do in the next week. Other than that, just some easy runs for me. I’m so damn ready to run this 100 miler in Key West!