Recruiting a Mentor

I have decided that I need to get some assistance with my training plan and nutritional advice for the upcoming ultras in 2014. So a few weeks ago I had a call with Hanny Alston from Find Your Feet and I’ve now recruited her as my mentor.

Hanny was the recommended contact on the Northface100 page, for anything training and preparation. She’s a very well known ultra marathon runner and started her career in orienteering. There is lots more I could write about her but it would take days, she’s awesome – trust me!

My first meeting with Hanny was over the phone and would be a little about her getting to know me and a lot about what training plans I need to make and stick to going forward. Hanny said the three key points to consider were:

  1. Sustainable training / Smart training
  2. Getting to know the course
  3. Nutrition / Hydration

As I have already signed up to attend the 3 day training camp Hanny is running in a couple if weeks which covers the second two key points mentioned above, we were going to focus our call on the first point – Sustainable training / Smarter Training.

Firstly I would need to add some Hill Training into my schedule, to prepare me for the ‘mountains’ that would be in my races. These could be hill repetitions, hilly loop courses, reps on various hills, hill time trials etc. The sessions would start smaller and build up to 2 hours in length over the time of my training period.

The plan going forward would be to train hard for 2 weeks and every third week I would back off the gas just a little to let my body recover, then ramp it up again and so on.  The idea is to give my body enough time to recover and focuses more on quality rather than quantity.

Hanny emailed me an awesome spreadsheet which I can use to plan, monitor and track my training schedule. I had been using one previously in my marathon planning that I created myself, but this was much more comprehensive and a lot better than anything I could have put together.

We talked for about 45-50 minutes and I walked away with a huge amount of information and knowledge. Now I have to sit down, digest it all, and start working on my plan. Wish me luck!

It really was a pleasure to chat with Hanny and I look forward to meeting her at the TNF training camp in a couple of weeks.

Happy Running

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