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By no means is this meant to be a definitive, but purely reflects my brief thoughts of what a moderate runner might like to consider in preparing for this race.
Physical fitness is the least of most racers problems in tackling an extreme ultra marathon of this nature. If you have entered the race you will undoubtedly already be physically fit (the alternative being mentally nuts).
Having said that, you can’t be too complacent and some serious training is necessary.
Endurance is the fundamental block required and should generally be gauged by hours
on your feet. A typical long run (but by no means the longest) in preparation for
something like the 6633 ultra race will be 8-
This will undoubtedly run hand in hand with the physical training and to a degree
with the systems element covered below. In basic terms you have got to be mentally
prepared to suffer -
With regards to the trials that will present themselves, spend as much time considering
what type of problems will present themselves and go through the scenario time and
time again in your head. What do you do if you sweat and subsequently get cold??
What are you going to do if your shoe laces break?? What if your sled breaks?? The
list is endless but the more you have covered in your mind prior to going to the
race the better prepared you will be. This will mean a lot of sleepless nights prior
to the race while you toss and turn thinking about these situations -
What I mean by systems is that you must be well prepared prior to the race for all situations that might logically present themselves. There are a multitude of systems that need considering such as..
a) Racing schedule -
In preparing your racing schedule you will need to consider the terrain, the distance,
the start time of the race and perhaps the most important -
How long at a time you want to go depends a lot on how your training has gone. Over
How long do you want to rest at a time will depend on where you are in a race. Bear in mind that different length rests will offer different opportunities. A short rest of a couple hours may only offer you enough time to sleep for 1½ hours and perhaps sort your feet out. A longer rest will allow you to obviously sleep for a lot longer, will allow you to get perhaps 2 meals in your body (1 before a sleep and one after) and will give you ample time to sort you kit and your body out. This really isn't rocket science but I strongly recommend you consider what you are trying to achieve when you stop and when you want to stop. If you don't have a plan in mind it is very easy to make errors such as stopping earlier than is necessary, or not getting enough food inside you, or one of a hundred other things.
Finally in preparing your schedule you obviously must have regard for where the checkpoints
are and what you want out of the checkpoints. Many racers use the checkpoints as
an opportunity to have a rest. In some circumstances, doing the exact opposite may
be advantageous -
b) Sleeping systems -
c) Eating -
The second type of food is that which can be prepared when you have stopped. Typically
and very much for moral purposes hot food is recommended. But don't wait until you
get out into the arena to find out that your stove melts into the snow when it gets
If you have planned you race well (see a. above) you can work out a daily menu with all your nibbles pre packed and handy and just your daily hot meals to hand.
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