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For the first time in, well… ever, I’m going to try to put some structure into my running. I’ve been quite happy up til now to just run whenever and however (usually slowly), but my DNFs at the Umstead 100 and Run Rabbit Run 100 last year have me thinking that the loosey-goosey approach I’ve been taking isn’t enough to get me to the finish line of a hundred miler. And I’d very much like to make it to the finish line of a hundred miler.

Last week I bought a copy of Training Essentials for Ultrarunning, and I’m still working to digest and implement the information it contains. Unlike most other ultra training books I’ve read, the advice from which can be summarized as “this is how you should train because that’s how top runners say you should train,” Training Essentials comes at it as “this is how you should train, and here’s why the science says you should train this way.”┬áIt’s got me pretty much convinced that my low-key, almost always low-intensity approach to running isn’t going to be enough to get me through 100 miles. So the plan is to use what I’m learning from that book to create something of a training plan that I can use in the lead-up to this year’s Run Rabbit Run.

Before I start, though, I’m running the Quad Rock 50 the day after tomorrow. Quad Rock will be something of a diagnostic run, as I plan to run it honestly and with a solid effort, but not turn myself inside out chasing any specific time goal. Even if I do run stupidly, at least I’ll have a baseline upon which to build things going forward.