Ultra Running For Beginners

I learned about ultra running not long before my first marathon. I do not remember what article I first read or what link I clicked on that led me to the wild and crazy world of trail and ultra running. What I do know is that I was soon down a rabbit hole so deep that I still haven’t found the bottom.

Ultra Running for Beginners: What to Avoid

Maybe you’re like me and after completing a marathon, you’re like ‘what’s next?’ You scoot over to your computer and google ‘ultra running for beginners.’ You start learning about road vs trail ultras, multi-days, etc. You envision yourself crossing the finish line before you’ve even signed up for a race. To help get you to the finish line in much better shape than I was, hobbling along the course of the Cruel Jewel in the middle of the night, do not do the following.

  1. JUMP DISTANCES – Seriously. I went from running one flat marathon to attempting a 50 mile mountain race. Big mistake, huge. Be reasonable with yourself and set small goals leading up to a big one, even if it takes a couple of years.
  2. DO ZERO STRENGTH TRAINING – Guys. Did you know there are other forms of exercising besides running? This still blows my mind and is an area I struggle with, but one that always leads me to a successful ultra.
  3. TRAIN FOR THE TERRAIN – Do not do all of your training miles on flat concrete when you’ve signed up for a mountain race. It’s understandable if you can only get out to the trails on the weekend, but make sure you get out there.
  4. WEAR THE SAME SHOES FOR A YEAR – Invest in yourself and plan on rotating shoes in and out every 2-4 months depending on your mileage/shoe/etc. A lot of injuries come from continuing to train in worn out shoes.
  5. ASK QUESTIONS – The ultra running community is a weird and wonderful place filled with people who want to help. Don’t stay silent if you ask questions. Ask runners at a race. Shoot a runner a DM. I’ve yet to meet one ultra runner who doesn’t love to talk about ultra running.

If you avoid making these mistakes, I can personally guarantee that you’ll be that much closer to crossing the finish line of your first ultra marathon.

Curious Ultrarunner’s Secret Society was established to inject a sense of whimsy into training calendars, split times, and fartleks. Our goal is to build a community that creates a space for the individual to fall in love with the magic of running.

Mission: To help others fall in love with ultra trail running

Vision: To make you and the world slightly better through laughter & pain

Be sure to join the Facebook Group to get in on other upcoming running challenges.