Luke Nelson's Intro to Ultras Training Plan

Author

Uphill Athlete by Steve House and Scott Johnston

All plans by this Coach

Length

20 Weeks

Typical Week

5 Run, 1 Day Off, 1 Swim, 1 Strength

Longest Workout

31 miles

Plan Specs

running ultra beginner intermediate

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Summary

This 20 week ultra running training plan is designed for individuals looking at improving their trail running performance or competing in their first 50km race who have some running background and are capable of handling back to back weeks of 25 miles of easy aerobic running to start with and building to a 50 mile week that include one high intensity session.

The plan follows the proven model of three building weeks followed by a recovery week to allow your body to absorb the training that preceded it It takes you through an 8 week base period to solidify both general functional strength and the aerobic base you will need to support the hard work in the later weeks. It then moves into a 4 week running specific strength period to boost your running power and muscular endurance on uphills.

The meat of the program is a 6 week block of concentrated loading of the two principle components of any ultra distance trail run: Uphills and long distance.

The final 2 weeks are a taper and rest to prepare you for a trail run or race of around 30 miles / 50 kilometers.

Like any well crafted training program this one will only achieve the desired results if it is administered properly. This means following the intensity, volume and recovery recommendations. It also means listening to your body and resting when you need it. The stress of everyday life will impact your ability to handle the training load and must be factored in the evaluation of your readiness to train. We highly recommend that anyone serious enough about their training to use a plan like this, get tested in lab to establish their personal heart rate training zones.

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Steve House and Scott Johnston

Stats

Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
Average Weekly Training Hours: 01:02
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 01:02
Average Weekly Breakdown

Uphill Athlete by Steve House and Scott Johnston

Uphill Athlete LLC.

What originally inspired us to write Training for the New Alpinism, and what inspires us to continue to share the things we’ve discovered through Uphillatlete.com, is the information void when it comes to specialized training for endurance mountain sports. We have successfully demonstrated a more systematic approach, using proven principles, to help you improve both your chances of achieving your goals, and your long-term fitness and safety in whatever mountain sport you are practicing.

Back to Plan Details

Sample Day 1

1:15:00
Aerobic Threshold Test for Zone 1 and 2 determination

If you are careful and diligent you can do your own test using Training Peaks Premium edition. 
Thats what we are going to explain now. Read this article to understand this test better.
https://www.uphillathlete.com/heart-rate-drift/

This test can be done on either on a treadmill, stair machine or a flat to very gentle loop course outdoors.  It can not be done on an uphill/downhill out and back course.

1) TREADMILL: Set treadmill to 10% and begin hiking slowly. If training for flatter runs set treadmill to 3% and run. Gradually build speed over the first 10-15 min until HR stabilizes at what you FEEL is an easy aerobic effort. If you have a good idea of what your Aerobic Threshold HR is then target that HR for the beginning of the test. NOW YOU ARE RADY TO BEGIN THE TEST.

NOTE: If hiking you may need to use a steeper grade (10%+) in order to get you HR up sufficiently.

VERY IMPORTANT
Once that speed and grade is dialed in do not adjust speed or grade again during the test. Run or hike continuously for 60 min at this speed. Record HR and upload to TP

TREADMILL CALCULATION: Since GPS does not work indoors the pace part of the Pa:Hr will not be accurate so you can not use the TP Pa:Hr metric on a treadmill. That's why is so important that you hold the pace and grade constant once you start this test on treadmill. It is very likely that you will see an upward trend in the HR over the course of the hour. To calculate HR drift you need to select the first half of the test in the graph of HR/Pace?elevation. Note the avg HR for each half. Compare those to see if avg HR rose more than 5%

2) OUTDOORS: Run, preferably on a flat (or very gently rolling) course, at what feels like an easy aerobic pace. Once your HR stabilizes start the recording feature on your GPS enabled HR monitor watch. Record for one hour while you do your best to keep the HR as close to that initial HR number. Upload the data to TP.

If the Pa:Hr is greater than 5% your initial HR/pace was above your Aerobic Threshold and you should do the test again at a lower HR. This may take several attempts to find a Pa:Hr decoupling of less that 5%.

Once you determine your AeT HR set that as the top of your Zone 2 in your Training Peaks Zones. Subtract 10% from this and set that as the top of your Zone 1.

Sample Day 3

6mi
Aerobic base run

Complete full run @ 80-100% of Aerobic Threshold HR.

Sample Day 4

4mi
recovery run

Complete full run at 70-80% of Aerobic Threshold HR.

Sample Day 6

4mi
Aerobic base run

Complete full run @ 80-100% of Aerobic Threshold HR.

Sample Day 7

8mi
Aerobic base run

Complete full run @ 80-100% of Aerobic Threshold HR.

Sample Day 10

6mi
Aerobic base run

Complete full run @ 80-100% of Aerobic Threshold HR.

Sample Day 11

5mi
recovery run

Complete full run at 70-80% of Aerobic Threshold HR.

Luke Nelson's Intro to Ultras Training Plan

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