I have seven weeks between ES100 and Buckeye 200. It’s long enough to get some work done, but not really long enough for a full blown training block. I think of these periods more as maintaining rather than training. Not like I normally do a bunch of structured training even if I have 3 months leading up to a race.
The first step is to fully recover from the prior race. So many runners want to jump right back into things fearing that if you’re not running, your fitness is dropping. The truth is your race provided a huge training stimulus so it’s fine to take extra time off. This way your body can build itself back up stronger. Push too hard, too soon and you’ll find yourself injured in a hurry. When in doubt, hit the snooze button.
I’m planning to mix things up a bit with my runs. Normally I do an hour or longer run five days per week. For each of my last two races, I added a sixth day to up my weekly mileage. I felt fine with the extra miles and believe this was sustainable. Sometimes it’s good to mix things up just for a little extra variety. I’ve decided to cut back and just do 4 days per week in this little mini-cycle. I want to keep a similar amount of weekly miles though so I’ll be increasing the distance of each of the runs. Two of the weeks will be 50-60 miles, one week just over 40, and two will be in the 35-38 mile range.
The other difference is that starting September 1st, I’ll be using my Ulraspire pack on all of my runs. I’ll have it loaded up with 5-10 pounds or so of weight to get used to having something on my back. I use a waist belt for all of my races, however I’ll need much more storage capacity so need to use the 10L pack. I’ve used the pack enough over the years that this isn’t really necessary, but I’d rather be as trained up as possible for Buckeye.
Tldr: Maintain, not train.