With a month to go until the World 24-Hour Championship in Steenbergen, The Netherlands, my training is winding down. I have one 12-hour run planned for April 20th at the North Coast race and after that, my long runs are done until the World race.
What training plan works best for a 24-hour race? It seems like I have tried them all and a successful performance on race day can depend on a number of things not even connected to one's training. I think though that my optimum training plan is to run a number of consecutive marathons as my long runs before the race. That way, I get in some faster running and longer distances but do not run too many miles and risk injury. Of course, I know some super fast runners, like Mike Morton, who run consecutive 100-mile races to prepare for a 24-hour race! The key here is to know your own body and what you can handle.
I also like to run one speed workout on the track each week. Again, this helps to put some spring in the step and keep my legs energized.
For total weekly miles, the most mileage I have run to prepare for a 24-hour race is 100 but that is a tough number to hit when you work full-time. To get in mileage during the week, I usually run twice a day, breaking up the run depending on my schedule, could be before or after work or even during lunch. This schedule doesn't leave much time for anything else so this is not something I can maintain for months on end.
At the end of the day, don't sweat the training. The mental aspect of the race is also important and sometimes I have my best races with little training but having the right mental frame of mind. So regardless of your train, go out and enjoy the race!
|Running at the North Coast 24-hour Race in Cleveland|