Challenges make us stronger, but…
Running… aaaah one hell of a good thing to do. Doesn’t matter if you are running long distances or short, no matter where you are, this is something that can be done anytime and anywhere. Although sometimes it feels like nonsense looking 10 or 100 km into one spot.
I have always been running short distances. By short I mean 21 km max. The truth is I always have had the desire to run long distances (or at least try). Usually, the fear of long hours on my feet has been holding me back. Also, many people do not do this so why should I? “You are just killing your legs and health for fun OR why you are doing it!” My anser: “Why not?” I wanted to challenge myself and see how I can handle this (before running 100 km, the max distance for me was a marathon)!
Table of Contents
How The Preparation Went?
“This is your first ultra do not focus on time just hope you end it…! “You need to focus to end the race, not on the time!” “Bigger hikes do not run… walk!” “You will feel the pain you have never felt before!” “Start slow”
These were the things I was told before ultra and of course, there is the truth behind every saying. How did I respond? “I just go and do it!”
Okay, so I started with preparation just one month before the race. Two of my friends also came to run. I was really glad because they did super well and it was more fun.
Before the run, I looked for training preparations online and saw that the shortest was four months. So I decided to do nothing special. The longest run I did before ultra was 30 km and then I injured my left foot. Overall my goal was to get as many km under my feet as I could.
What Did I Learn After Running 100 km?
Clothing For Ultra Marathon
I was not wearing much but I had clothes that “breathe.” Because this distance was more mental and the distance was 15 laps. This means also that I could easily change clothes if I needed to. What did I wear:
- Thin running shorts
- Waterproof jacket, under the jacket thin shirt (breathing)
At first, I felt cold so I thought I needed to put on something more. When I had been running a little bit I felt that it was too much.
I mostly had raisins and also energy gels. I had energy gels with caffeine to keep myself more alert. There was a lot of stuff to eat. Oak meals, bread, sweets and salt… and the list goes on but everything made me feel bad so I stuck with raisins. It all depends on what ultra someone is running. This ultra had many eating stops and I drank a lot of water. Also, the week before I raised my water drinking.
How My Body Reacted To Ultra Marathon
Body – Although my prep was short I still decided to rest the week before. Mostly because I injured my left foot! I just did little joggings and walking to keep myself moving. Two days before the race I did not do anything.
About Mental Strength
First ultra… ooo damn. It is not a marathon anymore but more than two times that. What did I do? Every day I said to myself “I am going to do it no matter what, I finish, I finish!” I never had that thought that I am not going to finish. (So this was before the race) Turning the race when I had 48 km done, I felt such a strong pain. I was thinking many times that I should quit and I am going to do it! But I also knew that I came here to finish. So I just kept running step by step. When I hit 80 km then I started to feel better and wanted to finish with 12 h. I just kept my mind away from the pain!
Was My Prep Food Enough?
My prep was really bad and I do not recommend going ultra like that. I recovered from that race two weeks. I suggest doing a little research about landscape as well. I thought there were no ups and downs. My brother told me that you should know about ups and downs. I did not believe him. Jokes on me. There were many! More km/miles you get under your belt the better.
“I recommend everyone just to try long-running and I promise you it will be hard but also worth it!”
To Sum It Up
I finished my race in 13 h and 7 min. Ups and downs beat my legs badly. I lost two nails and next week was just hell to walk. I was running for the good feeling you get after you finish something hard. That feeling beats the pain.
I recommend everyone just to try long-running and I promise you it will be hard but also worth it! Go for it!