Thursday, March 21, 2013

Packing for a 50K

This weekend is our NEO TC annual Fat Ass, this year on the Laurel Highland Hiking Trail, in Ohio Pyle, PA.

Packing and fueling strategy differs for every 50K.  For example, is it an 'actual race' with aid stations set up at regular intervals? Is it a Fat Ass, where you are on your own to bring fuel and water? Is it a Virginia Happy Trails Fat Ass where, although you are allegedly on your own, there are usually fantastic aid stations and volunteers about?

Even if it is a FA, where you are on your own, it depends on your route. Are you running loops where you can hit your car and/or cache for food/drink?  Can you cache food/drink along the trail somewhere? Or are you on your own, carrying enough fuel for your loop? How long is the loop-3 miles, 8 miles, 25 miles?

Our planned event is the "Gate 2 8 x 2" Challenge.  I will start at mile zero, on the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail, go to mile 8, then back to mile zero. Then repeat.

The first 8 miles of the LHHT has the most elevation change on the trail.  You can get some good hill workouts in by just doing this 8 mile out and back twice.  Although the big climb is the almost 2 mile uphill at mile 6, the hills at mile 3 and 5 should not be dis counted, especially on the way BACK to Ohiopyle.

The clothing piles are: left: Saturday morning run; Sunday morning run. The pile to the top of the pic are the extra clothes I will have at my vehicle.

There is only one restocking point on this 50K, mile 16, back at your vehicle.  Or the General Store in town, if you want to add another mile or so to your run.

An assortment of food stuffs.  The white powder is plain maltodextrin. That is my main fuel.  However, I will just carry two bottles with me on the 16 mile "loop".  One will be full of MD, the other will be water.  There may be a spring running around mile 7.  If so, I will replenish water there. No, I don't recommend this for everyone. I've drank out of it before.  No, it won't be there in June for the Laurel Race,  it will have long since dried up.

So I will have malto and assorted gels and chomps/blocks.  I just tend to grab a handful of assorted sports nutrition, so I can mix up flavors and textures.

I have to recommend the GU Peanut Butter in your morning oatmeal before a run!  

I also have a York Peppermint Patty and some Reese PB Eggs and some jelly beans.  Since it will be cold out, I can still carry a chocolate candy bar without it melting all over me and my pack. 

No, I don't plan on eating all this Saturday!  I've divided it up, I have one baggie for "start" another baggie for "turnaround" and the rest of the goodies in a separate bag.

I will also carry a light for the second 16 miles.  I should finish in the daylight, but sometimes stuff happens. If I slow down or get delayed, I don't want to traverse the trail in the dark!

It's been a month since my last long run...I need it!!


  1. OMG! A woman after my own heart, eggs and patties are the BEST THING ON EARTH! If we get around to our run together these will be 'must have' items...I don't care if it's 'only' 10 miles! :) :)

  2. Looking forward to it!! You are such a good planner. I wing it WAY too much. It always seems to work out for me, but ...


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