50k recovery/length btwn races

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    What factors do you consider when determining recovery time post-50k, or how long to space out races of similar lengths?

    My 50k was cancelled this past weekend, so I ran the distance solo as a “fun run” (e.g. not pushing the pace, stopping a couple times to meet friends for coffee/drive to another trail). My body was definitely tired towards the end and was sore the next day, but 3 days later and I’m already feeling great and ready for a workout of some sort.

    In contrast– my first 50k was last summer, and although I felt decent during it and the following days, my body didn’t feel like running for a couple weeks.

    Thinking of whether to sign up for a May/June 50k… would that be enough time between races? How long should my initial recovery be (starting now), or maybe if I’m feeling well I could just jump back into a training plan? Maybe jump into my usual 50k plan but skip the first few weeks?

    I know there’s no one-size-fits-all formula; just looking for ideas from more experienced ultrarunners. 🙂

    Matt Fitzgerald

    The advice I find myself giving most often in answering versions of this question is that athletes can generally get away with milking one base for two peaks, but no more. Hence, having completed one full training cycle, it should be okay to use a compressed build to get ready for a May/June race. But after that race you will need to take a little more downtime and then build a fresh base.


    Makes sense! Thanks Matt.

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