Aaaaah, summer. Those blossom breezy days of hammock naps and garden bounty are upon us.
Or upon someone. I’m not sure who, but it’s not me.
My days right now are filled with wrapping up homeschool with the kiddos, scheduling play dates, working, writing, and fitting in and all those catch-up appointments.
When are we supposed to go camping, exactly?
This week, the busyness hit overwhelm (because friends need help with aging parents and sometimes your kid ends up in a cast). It has been back-to-back busy since May, which feels like yesterday.
Oh, and then there’s ultra marathon race training. I have a 50K in September, and, while the peeps in my Trail Running Community for Women have been awesome cheerleaders, I still have to do the actual running.
But what’s this runner momma to do when the weekend disappears like an unmonitored bag of Cheetos and there’s no time for that long training run?
Despite my planning, this weekend’s long run… Just. Didn’t. Happen. But Sunday night I remembered that when life hits you with back-to-back busy, try back-to-back running.
the TIP: The no time for a long run solution – back-to-back longish runs
What’s that now? Back-to-back runs or B2Bs, if you want to use the hip ultra lingo which, of course, we do, is a strategy long distance runners use get in long miles over two or more days. For example, an ultra runner might hit 15 miles one day and grab 15 miles the next being able to log 30 miles over two days.
It can do a few things:
- Mega-boost confidence as you learn to push through from the previous day’s effort
- Give you the experience of running on tired, heavy legs, similar to what you will experience in your long race
But here’s what it can do for busy mommas:
- Reap the benefits mentioned above
- Allow us to get our miles in when life is crazy busy
And, we can use it even if we aren’t logging 30 miles per long run. My training plan called for a 15 mile run this last weekend. Instead, I ran two runs of about 8.5 miles in the last two days.
While there is oodles I could write about this strategy, here’s the basic how-to and cautions:
- B2Bs aren’t a complete substitute for the long training runs, but using this strategy a few times in your training season can be great when you’re managing time, managing mild illness, or managing children of any age. Oy!
- If you are doing a combination of flats and hills or trails, do the flat on the first day. It might be easier to hike the steeps on the trail day than to pound out the flat and boring on tired legs the second day.
- Be vigilant about spotting injury. You need to key into the difference between what feels like an injury or just tiredness on the second day of running.
- As with any long runs, recovery is key.
Because you can never have too many tools in the toolbelt! A little B2B action seriously saved my booty this week. And, to be honest, it did wonders for my mental state. Both runs felt manageable and I felt so good about myself that I could get in so many miles despite the calendar cra cra.
I would love to hear how your summer running is going. Are you getting any hammock time? Are you in the middle of race training, thinking about signing up for something, or just enjoying the sun? Throw me a comment below in the comments.
Still believing in you….!