Strategy for a 56 Mile Ultra

I am doing the Glasgow to Edinburgh 56 mile Ultra in a couple of weeks time. I have completed 8 ultras over the past 3 years but never anything over 42 mile.

Anyone got advice on the best strategy for doing Ultras of this distance?????


  • Id pretty much carry on as you have with your other races. Start at sensible soon and regularly....consider appropriate walking breaks (as necessary)

    Look at the weather forecast the evening before, and plan accordingly

  • Sprint the first 30 miles, and then just hang on as best you can for the final 26.  You're almost done by then anyway.
  • ...and try not to fall in any canals!!
  • Have a nosey at ultra results from some different races. Most of them have the results from previous years posted on their websites so they're easy to look up. Check out a couple of 50K races, and look for people who run roughly the same time as you do. Then check out some longer races, look for the same names, and see how their finishing times vary from a 50K race to a 50+mile race. 

    Might give you an idea if you should be slowing down your pace, and how much by. Might also give you an idea of what sort of time you could realistically be aiming for...

    Well, that's what I'd do anyway! image

  • Are there any reliable convertors for marathon distance upwards..................I don't even know whether I should enter some of these longer oes, as the cut-off times might be tight. (4-4:20 for a marathon).
  • Stuart42mac - Well, how did you get on then?

    Tricialitt - For some of the ultras, the cutoff times are more a general guide than something set in stone. For example the Glasgow-Edinburgh one had a nominal cutoff time of 12 hours, but if you look at the results on their website, they kept the finish open long past that and the last man in took about 13 and a half hours. Not saying all ultras are like that, just that some of them are. If you're behind the cutoff times and look to be struggling, they'd probably pull you out for your own safety. If you're looking good but just happen to be rather slow, and the weather conditions etc are fine, chances are they'll let you continue. If you're interested in a particular event, compare their stated cutoff times with their previous years results to see if they allow any leeway.

    P.S. The D33 (Aberdeen) doesn't have any cutoff times, just says it's for runners not walkers so go as fast as you can. I got to the marathon point in 4.40 and finished in just under 6 hours. The last finisher in was about the 7 and a half hour mark and loads of the faster runners had hung about to cheer the last folk in which was really nice to see. I'd totally recommend that one as a first ultra - everything about it was excellen!

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