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Giantscauseway - 25/09/2018 16:33:25
   
Training after an Ultra
Hi,
I am a first time ultra runner. I just completed the 40mile Causeway Coast Ultra. I took it slow and steady and finished comfortably. The next day I had a very easy spin session for 1hr 30 then three days later done a 5 mile paced run. Legs are feeling good. Would it be too early to start back doing longer runs or now that I have 40 in the legs keep at it.

Many Thanks

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SarahCrunning - 25/09/2018 23:53:21
   
RE:Training after an Ultra
Hi there,

Well done on completing your first ultra, and it's great that you are feeling good. Recovery is very individual, and part of the experience of your first ultra is learning about your own recovery - what helps, what doesn't, and how long you need. It's important to remember that muscle soreness isn't the only measure of recovery. An ultra, especially if it's a step up in mileage for you, can take its toll on energy levels, mood, your immune system and far more. It is possible for your legs to feel ok, but for you to experience general fatigue and to be more susceptible to picking up colds and other viruses. Some people find it helpful to get straight back into short and easy-paced running to keep the muscles moving, whilst others take a complete break from running after a key race. Listening to your body is vital, but don't be fooled into thinking you are fully recovered because you have no pain. I do know of people who have felt great after a race and ended up taking much longer to recover because they did too much too soon and it caught up with them. Overtraining syndrome can be very serious and lead to a long time out of action.

It can sometimes be helpful to plan your next race or your next running goal. If you have something on the horizon that you know you will begin to work towards in the near future, then it may be easier to give yourself a break now. That doesn't necessarily mean you have to stop running - you need to find out what is right for you. Personally, I would avoid anything too intense in the first week or two (e.g. speed work, hill sessions etc.) and let your legs dictate the pace. I find it helpful to hide my watch up a sleeve or not use one so that I know I am running at what my legs deem to be a low-effort pace rather than what I think the numbers on my watch should say during a recovery run.

You may find the following article helpful: https://running.competitor.com/2016/10/recovery/8-productive-strategies-week-big-race_156764

Good luck!
Sarah Cooke

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Giantscauseway - 26/09/2018 08:38:15
   
RE:Training after an Ultra
Sound advice, thanks for taking the time for a detailed reply.

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SarahCrunning - 26/09/2018 18:55:08
   
RE:Training after an Ultra
My pleasure. Hope it goes well.
Sarah Cooke

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