I took a small peak at the elevation profile of the 50k. It’s a two-loop course, so I would be running this twice. That’s 3,000+ feet of elevation gain.
For comparison, here’s the elevation profile from a recent 20k run (12.4ish miles). That’s a measly 101 feet of elevation gain.
If I want to survive this race I need to start running some hills. Lots and lots of hills. And also some trails, since this would be my first trail race too. Fortunately there is a great park with trails and hills just a short drive from my house. I ran hill repeats there this spring. I ran there this summer. But I haven’t run there in about a week because a runner was recently sexually assaulted in the park and that scared me.
But the big hill in the park is almost a perfect match for elevation of that first hill in the ultra. And it is all trails. And while I don’t want to be reckless I also don’t want to be trapped at home in fear. It was a kind of terrible run. I ran without music so I could be hyper aware of my surroundings. It took several miles before I started to relax and find my rhythm. But I finished the run feeling strong and brave and looking forward to adding a few more climbs next weekend.
I should mention that I am still not 100% on this ultra marathon. Right now I am treating it as though I will be running, but I have to keep graduate school as my top priority. I’m also not interested in running myself into an injury because I tried to run an ultra without proper training. The benchmark I have set for myself is 200 miles in November. That is on par with my marathon training last year. If I can’t manage that, then I won’t register. If I do, 31 on my 31st is happening!