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In part one of our three part series, Rick Prince, Founder of United Endurance Sports Coaching Academy, runs us through three of the 6 main variables to train for longer endurance events. Whether it's your first marathon or 40th 100k, these tips and tricks are tried and true to set you up for success.
Still want to sign up for the Mile Hive Challenge on July 23-25? Learn more here.
Preparing for any athletic endeavor requires quite a bit of preparation to perform at or near one’s potential. However, when preparing for an event such as the Mile Hive Challenge where the goal is to push past your prior best athletic accomplishments, the need to prepare properly and intelligently is of paramount importance.
When discussing being athletically prepared, there are six main variables:
If your goal is to go farther than you have before, you need to be sure that you’ve put in the training to go the distance. Whether you’ve done a 5K before and your goal is a 10K, or if you’ve done a 100K ultrarunning race and are now targeting a 100-mile ultrarunning race, you need to be prepared.
One common theme when training for a long-distance event is the long (insert: ride, run, swim, etc…). This is especially the case with marathons. It is commonplace for marathon training programs to have one day a week allocated to a long run and moreover, that in order to be successful on race day, a runner must be able to run a set number of miles in one shot (usually, 20-22 miles). The error in this perspective is that a singular run is much less important than the total amount of time spent running during a program. Therefore, the goal should be to focus less on a singular long endurance day and more on increasing the overall volume of a training program.
For events that are relatively short (ex: 5K running race), integrating intensity into a program is a given. However, for longer events, athletes often forgo or greatly reduce the level and frequency of intensity-based workouts in favor of those focused on endurance. This is a critical mistake.
While it’s true that the overall intensity is typically lower the longer an event is as compared to a shorter event, training intensity is still important. Here’s why…
A high level of fitness makes everything better - better able to clear lactate from muscles (what produces the muscle ‘burn’ sensation), better able to tolerate environmental factors such as altitude and heat and of course, able to perform at a higher intensity.
It goes without saying that optimal nutrition is important not just for athletic performance but for overall health. However, in respect to training for an endurance sport event, there are several things to consider from a nutrition standpoint