I caught the bug that's been going around, so I didn't really run this week. That's just as well - I've always preferred planning a run to actually doing it. This week, I came up with the absolute perfect training plan for my goal and decided that it wasn't for me.
The current age-class record at Afton is close to a 3:00 marathon effort (my calculation is that 3:00 marathon equals 4:22 and the record is 4:26). Checking the 25K split times available for one year, I figure that even-paced running would mean catching the competition just after AS3 on the second lap, with 9 miles to go; the plan then is that the first three hours would be easy, with a race for the last 70-75 minutes, divided into about 60 minutes of a "threshold" pace, 10 minutes at maximal heart rate in the Snowshoe Loop and 3 minutes of lactic acid tolerance going up the last hill, with a final sprint of 150m. Each section could be trained for independently, but the challenge is being able to do the harder parts AFTER having run for hours.
M 11 miles in 90, on hills, with 2x2 miles hard.
T 12 in 90 with 10x800 in 2:55-3:00, 3 minute recovery (Yasso)
W 7 in 60 with sprints, drills.
Th 7 in 60, technical trail
Sa 21 in 180
S 12 in 90 with 6-10 @ 6:45-7:00.
I could explain in detail, but I won't.That plan would've worked for me 10 years ago, but not now.
What I need is to be able to 1) run the distance 2) run pace on trail 3) run hills 4) keep up speed (one of the problems ultras have caused me is to get comfortable with a "slog" and lose the ability to push).
The plan now looks more like:
T 90 minutes, Yasso
Th 90 minutes hill repeats (steep, maybe weighted), sprints
Sa 90 minutes fast continuous run
S 50K trail (as slow as needed, with walking as needed)