What I Learned Walking 50 Miles

Race Log: 50 Mile Walk – 14 hours, 38 minutes – August 5, 2017


So, if you haven’t heard or didn’t see on the social media channels, I walked 50 miles on Sunday.

There were two reasons. One, Joe Homan and his team at Fab Beyond 50 had asked me to be a part of Joe completing the 50 mile walk the day before his 50th birthday. Two, I have a goal of a 100 mile race in August of next year and this was the perfect way to prepare for it.

Joe and I walked 50 miles from Green Lane Park to Philadelphia. We left Green Lane at 4:00am and were joined by some awesome people for various sections and pieces of the day. From Green Lane to the Art Museum was around 45 miles, so we passed the museum and walked into Philly for 2.5 miles where we turned around and ended back at the Art Museum.

Here is what I learned:


50 miles is a long way. Put miles on the legs! I was happy about my energy levels and aerobic capacity. I wasn’t tired, didn’t get out of breath, and my hear rate stayed low the entire day. The hardest part for me was the leg pain. I’ve run 31 miles before and done a few 10 mile days, but 50 is a lot of miles. I have a 50 mile race coming up in November and I know I need to put more long runs in. If we were to stop for too long to stretch or rehydrate, I would tighten up and then have to shake it out for the next mile or so. Goal: do more 10-15 mile runs, build up to 15-20 mile runs. I have another 31 mile run scheduled for September, so I’m looking forward to that.

Partners make it better. Joe is a beast! On the first 31 mile run I attempted, my wife came with me for a while, but there were big portions in the middle where it was just me. That got old. Joe and I talked basically the entire walk and enjoyed the guests that were with us at times. Joe absolutely crushed this walk and it was inspiring to see what 50 can look like!

Hydrate the night before. And Ibuprofen! The two very practical tips that I’ll take into the next run is to make sure I’m hydrated the day before and then to bring some emergency Ibuprofen. I was busy the night before we left and didn’t get a chance to properly hydrate. I think that contributed to the tight muscles I experienced as we stop at times. Luckily Joe had some Ibuprofen and I was able to relax those muscles. I will definitely carry some emergency pain relief for the next outing.

Mental game is important! I could tell a difference when I was wallowing in the idea of 20 more miles and when I was visualizing the Art Museum steps. When I was positive, my body felt good and I was cruising. When negativity crept in, everything just seemed harder. Mentally visualizing the finish and a positive mindset makes a difference.


Overall: I’m happy that it is finished. I’m pumped that I’ve finished a 50 mile distance. I’m proud of Joe and myself for committing to and finishing it. I’m ready to keep progressing and working towards November 4th.

Here we go!

 

 

 

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