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Dan from the Profeet Run Lab is taking on the 100km ultra marathon Race To The Stones in July.  This is his sixth update on his journey from ultra running ‘zero to hero’.

It’s with some hesitancy mixed with trepidation that I write this as we get closer to the event.  With a triathlon done and then losing a couple of weeks’ training to illness, it feels like I’m now playing catch up.

The Shoes
I’ve been through the process recently of changing my shoes as my current road shoes (On Cloudsurfer) weren’t proving durable enough for my long runs. I’m now doing most of my mileage in my Brooks Defyance, which have been great, even on light park trails.

The more difficult decision for me was going into my first trail shoe for more technical trails and soft ground. I have a narrow to medium foot and like a firm-soled shoe, so after a treadmill test the Saucony Peregrine won out.

The Insole
With the accumulation of time on my feet, I’ve felt a few niggles. On short runs I don’t tend to wear my insoles, but now I have had to make some tweaks as I am feeling some plantar foot tightness and pain under my left big toe joint.

Paul O’Malley, our resident podiatrist has suggested that I’m still pronating through the forefoot in my shoes so the shearing force is causing irritation.

I tweaked my insoles appropriately for the forefoot pain and am now working on strengthening my foot’s intrinsic muscles as they contend with the workload.

The Training
Previously, my training was a mixed bag of running and cycling, which was great to still get some conditioning for the legs but my feet weren’t getting the equivalent workout. I am now focusing on longer runs, with one weekly run aimed at race strategy pacing.

  • Session 1 – Long run, for race preparation with focus on time duration allowing for walking, eating and getting used to carrying a pack. 3+ hours increasing incrementally, practicing on trail terrain.
  • Session 2 – Short Run, 4-5km the day after long run to keep the body moving.
  • Session 3 – Tempo Interval Run, 45 min including 3 x 7 min intervals. It’s nice to open the stride out on a run to keep mobility rather than always adopting the ‘ultra shuffle’ style.
  • Session 4 – Medium Run, 18-20km just running. Still with a pack and hydration.

I still do a cycle commute but only 2-3 times a week now and dependent on what the body allows me.

The Profeet Run Lab team will be heading to Chamonix soon for some training so it will be a great opportunity for some variation in routine and the challenge of the mountains.   I’ll update you on how it goes next time.

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