If you’re a regular around here you’ll know one of my favourite distances to race is a 50km trail. There’s something just a little special about those few miles over marathon distance that give me that bit extra and I’ve raced a fair few now and probably half with Steph.
There’s always another challenge though and for me the next step was a double-day race. After a 50km+ race could I get up and run again the next day?
Could I run a back-to-back ultramarathon?
We set ourselves the challenge and stumbled upon a race in the Peak District. It sounded simple. Run from South to North. 50km on the first day followed by 43km the next.
A few problems – I’d never been to the Peak District and it was in late November. Cold. Probably wet. Maybe even snowy.
So we signed up.
I wrote a training plan and didn’t stick to it. Over the Summer I tried to find a job and planned a wedding instead. October came around quick, I was a Mrs and there were seven weeks til race day. I ran a 20 miler and was supposed to get up and run again the next day. I didn’t. I kept up my weight training, Pilates and yoga and hoped that cross training might do the trick. We spent a weekend in the Peak District trying to familiarise ourselves with some of the hills but all it did was worry me. Time had run out. I tapered. I did all I could to mentally prepare myself and hope my legs would follow.
If you follow me on Instagram you’ll already know the answer to my question. Yes you can run a back-to-back ultramarathon. To my complete surprise. I didn’t even believe it until about half way through the second day though. Those first few miles on Day 2 were just unpleasant and I couldn’t see the end never mind dream of being there. Where your mind goes your body follows.
After hours out in the wind, rain and sleet on Sunday, Steph and I ran into the bleak village of Marsden to finish our first multi day race. I honestly couldn’t believe it. Come back tomorrow for more details about the race.