Even though I’ve been running for five years now and doing ultras for 3 of them, I’m still not sure if I’m doing the whole taper thing right. You’re supposed to ramp down your weekly mileage from your peak week to race day. My problem is that the only variance in my weekly mileage depends on my weekend long runs. So with my peak weekend 3 weekends out, do I cut back 20% the following weekend? 40%? 50%? I really don’t know what the correct number is. Twenty seems to many miles and ten not enough so last year I came up with the 10 and 2 workout, which is 10 miles of running followed immediately by 2 hours of walking. I think this is the right balance between time on my feet (about 3.5 hours) and low impact/less stress since over half the time is just walking. Here’s the digits for the 3 workouts that I’ve done:
The first one isn’t comparable as it was on trails and lots of hills for the run portion, however the last 2 were done on the exact same routes. I didn’t get a good heart rate reading for my 3/18 run, however I think I may have exerted a bit more effort today. But I’m not sure I exerted a full 45 seconds per mile more effort. I was pushing a bit in a couple places, however I was no where near max effort. Part of me is really excited to see numbers like this, but part of me is scared that I’ll use this to start extrapolating finishing times in 2 weeks. The absolute last thing I need is to develop anything remotely close to over-confidence as there are so many things that can and will go wrong. I’ll get a better reading next weekend when I take my MAF test, but all my numbers over the past month of training point to me being in better shape than I was at Umstead. How much better remains to be seen.
Hope your transition from spring to summer is going well.