Thursday, June 4, 2009

Race Preparation

One of the keys to a successful ultra is planning and preparation. Often, the stronger runners get passed up later in the race by smarter runners. I am not sure if I fall in to the "Strong" or "Smart" category, but am definitely better prepared for this one.

Having crew helps, as he will greatly minimize the chance of making mistakes. All the best laid plans don't account for the stupidity one displays at an aid station after many hours of running. My ability to do simple math and remember important things dwindles.

So here are some tools I made of for my crew. They are laminated on a clipboard. I will be assembling bags of S-Caps and Shot Bloks in the same quantities. We will swap these at every crew access aid station. This way, he will be able to track exactly how many I have taken (assuming I do not drop any) based on what is left. By the end of the race, I should have a pretty accurate tally of what I consumed during the race.

I could not transfer this as a spreadsheet picture, so here is the first sheet with overall info.

Aid station number Mile Elapsed Distance Station Name Crew Access Toilets Drop Bags Comments
0 0 0 Nordic Y Y #3
1 5.1 5.1 Tamarack N N
2 7.4 3.2 Bluff Y Y 7:10am-7:15am
3 12.3 4.9 Horseriders N Y
4 15.5 3.2 Emma Carlin Y Y #1 8:25am-8:35am
5 18.7 3.2 Antique Lane N N
6 21.4 2.7 Wilton Rd N N
7 23.9 2.5 Hwy 67 Y Y 9:50am-10:10am
8 26.5 2.6 County ZZ Y N
9 31.4 4.9 Scuppernong Y Y #2 11:15am-12pm
10 36.4 5 County ZZ Y N
11 39 2.6 Hwy 67 Y Y 12.30pm-1:15pm
12 41.5 2.5 Wilton Rd N N
13 44.2 2.7 Antique Lane N N
14 47.3 3.1 Emma Carlin Y Y #1 2pm-3pm
15 50.5 3.2 Horseriders N Y
16 55.5 5 Bluff Y Y 3:30-4:30pm
17 57.8 2.3 Tamarack N N
18 62.9 5.1 Nordic Y Y #3 5:30pm-6:30pm
19 67.9 5.1 Tamarack N N
20 70.3 2.3 Bluff Y Y
21 72.8 2.5 Duffin Rd N N
22 77.1 4.3 Hwy 12 Y Y #4
23 81.5 4.4 Rice Lake Y Y
24 85.9 4.4 Hwy 12 Y Y #4
25 90.2 4.3 Duffin Rd N N
26 92.8 2.6 Bluff Y Y
27 95.1 2.3 Tamarack N N
28 100.2 5.1 Nordic Y Y #3

Here is a fueling chart

Aid station number Mile Station Name Crew Access Drop Bags Clip-2 Heed Blox s-caps Gels A/S food
0 0 Nordic Y #3
1 5.1 Tamarack N
2 7.4 Bluff Y
3 12.3 Horseriders N
4 15.5 Emma Carlin Y #1
5 18.7 Antique Lane N
6 21.4 Wilton Rd N
7 23.9 Hwy 67 Y
8 26.5 County ZZ Y
9 31.4 Scuppernong Y #2
10 36.4 County ZZ Y
11 39 Hwy 67 Y
12 41.5 Wilton Rd N
13 44.2 Antique Lane N
14 47.3 Emma Carlin Y #1
15 50.5 Horseriders N
16 55.5 Bluff Y
17 57.8 Tamarack N
18 62.9 Nordic Y #3
19 67.9 Tamarack N
20 70.3 Bluff Y
21 72.8 Duffin Rd N
22 77.1 Hwy 12 Y #4
23 81.5 Rice Lake Y
24 85.9 Hwy 12 Y #4
25 90.2 Duffin Rd N
26 92.8 Bluff Y
27 95.1 Tamarack N
28 100.2 Nordic Y #3

..... and a gear chart

Aid station number Mile Station Name Crew Access Drop Bags Gear changes.
0 0 Nordic Y #3
2 7.4 Bluff Y Swap handheld of clip-2
4 15.5 Emma Carlin Y #1 Swap handheld of C2. Reload blox& S-caps.
7 23.9 Hwy 67 Y Swap handheld of C2. Possible clothing adjustment?
8 26.5 County ZZ Y Possible C2 swap
9 31.4 Scuppernong Y #2 Swap handheld of C2. Add gels if needed
10 36.4 County ZZ Y Possible C2 swap
11 39 Hwy 67 Y Swap handheld of C2. Reload blox, gels & S-caps. Possible clothing adjustment?
14 47.3 Emma Carlin Y #1 Swap handheld of C2. Reload blox, gels, an S-caps.
16 55.5 Bluff Y Swap handheld of C2. Reload blox, gels, an S-caps.
18 62.9 Nordic Y #3 Assess: Shoes, socks, shirt, jacket, hat, add body glide. Determine if light is needed. Reload all fuel. Possible switch to belt or back pack.
20 70.3 Bluff Y Sould have headlamp by now. Reload blox, gels, s-caps.
22 77.1 Hwy 12 Y #4 Reload blox, gels, s-caps
23 81.5 Rice Lake Y Reload blox, gels, s-caps. Assess clothing.
24 85.9 Hwy 12 Y #4 Reload blox, gels, s-caps
26 92.8 Bluff Y Beat me over the head with a baseball bat
28 100.2 Nordic Y #3 Enough said

As for running. I did one 4 mile run on Tuesday. I decided to take the rest of the week off. I am trying to minimize the amount I go up and down the stairs, and I am not doing any heavy lifting.

I slept well last night, and hope to sleep well tonight.

I try to eat the same as I have been eating on a regular basis. I will drink extra water all day today and tomorrow.

Trying to do everything to take my mind of the race.


nwgdc said...

Man, I'm psyched! I guess there's chip timing also, which means that we'll be able to follow along a little bit more easily, too.
Everything's ready to go. Weather looks great. I'm excited! Eat/Sleep Well!
And don't forget the home brew for afterwards.

SteveQ said...

If I see you at #26, I get first swing with the baseball bat!

I've done a little planning this time, but nothing like you, because I've come to believe my planning just gets in the way.

Carl Gammon said...

You're certainly both strong and smart... HEADstrong and a SMARTa$$. :-)

Seriously, all the best of luck to you as we run our separate races together.

brent said...

Wish I could be running this one are going to have a great race with perfect weather...time to throw it down on this one Matt! Have a great time and I look forward to the report.

Get Primal said...

You're ready to roll and weather couldn't be better! Okay, my plan isn't going on the blog but I'll give it to you here. Ran 7 yesterday and 4 today, really easy. Upper body workout yesterday, no legs. My aid station planning is far easier than yours.

Here's the routine I hope to repeat about 50 times. Run to bridge. Walk bridge. Run to AS2. Brief walk while consuming 8oz water. Run to AS1 (tent city). Walk through tent city while consuming 8oz of special primal drink (40 cal), 1 hunk of primal pumpkin loaf from blog (80 cal), 1 SCap. Give Carl the occasional slap on the ass when I see him on the path. Just kidding Carl, it will be a light tap if anything;)

I know my stomach will never tolerate the same routine for 24 hours but I'll take that as far as possible and improvise from there.

SteveQ said...

I'm wondering if Google Earth will be able to show my bloated corpse on the course for others to find; you'll be able to watch the zombie walk from the comfort of the finish line.

Anonymous said...

I would be there to tie your shoes, but I am babysitting my neighbors dog........Stew

Matthew Patten said...

Don't forget, Steve.... Bill will have my video camera taking footage. The "Steve Q Zombie walk" will surely be a hit.

Nic... you were kidding about the chip, right? But if you were not, they use a new invention called paper and clip board to track people coming through aid stations. Then they upload that info (not always in a timely manner.)

John, You can tie my shoes in spirit.

Steve said...

Just packed my stuff up last night and will pick up a few supplies today. See ya before the start, Matt. Have a safe trip!

Kel said...

Have a great run Matt! Can't wait for the report :)

Runnin-From-The-Law said...

This ultra running stuff sounds complicated.

Good luck!

Helen said...

ooh I love spreadsheets!! sounds like great prep. you're all set. and the weather looks awesome. rest up and have a great run. looking forward to the report.


johnmaas said...

You are ready to go!
Best of luck.
Show them your smarts and strength - you will have success.

nwgdc said...

Actually, I wasn't kidding about the chip timing. I had read it here:

Oh, and by the way, it's also stated on the FIRST PAGE, 3RD PARAGRAPH on the Website.

In case you miss it there, it's also in the FIRST PARAGRAPH, pretty much the first thing they mention, in the PDF Race Bulletin, shortly after they say "Welcome!" It goes on to mention something about "nearly live results."

All that prep work, and you miss the "chip timing?"

Matthew Patten said...


Another reason why you need to watch the Simpsons.

I read a race packet like Homer Simpson

"Welcome, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah Beer blah blah blah Race starts at 6am blah blah blah blah"

I look at the map and aid stations.

Scott said...

Good luck! Can't wait to read your report... and maybe see a few tweets?