Ultra Training Plan #1

Training Plan For Races Of 40 Miles To 100K On 50 Miles Per Week

Thurs Speed
Week Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat Sun Total Work Duration
1 Rest 6 5 6 Rest 12 5 34 No speed work
2 Rest 6 5 6 Rest 14 5 36 No speed work
3 Rest 6 5 6 Rest 16 5 38 No speed work
4 Rest 5 3 5 Rest 14 5 32 No speed work
5 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 16 5 40 12-15 mins
6 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 18 5 42 12-15 mins
7 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 18 5 42 15-18 mins
8 Rest 6 4 6 Rest 14 5 35 12-15 mins
9 Rest 10 5 7 Rest 20 5 47 15-18 mins
10 Rest 10 5 7 Rest 12 10 44 15-18 mins
11 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 22 5 46 No speed work
12 Rest 6 4 6 Rest 14 5 35 18-20 mins
13 Rest 9 5 7 Rest 24 5 50 20-25 mins
14 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 18 10 47 20-25 mins
15 Rest 6 4 6 Rest 14 10 40 20-25 mins
16 Rest 10 5 7 Rest 24 5 51 15-18 mins
17 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 18 10 47 20-25 mins
18 Rest 6 4 6 Rest 14 10 40 20-25 mins
19 Rest 7 5 3 Rest 31 Rest 46 No speed work
20 Rest 6 4 6 Rest 14 5 35 10-15 mins
21 Rest 7 5 7 Rest 25 5 49 20-25 mins
22 Rest 5 5 7 Rest 18 Rest 35 18-20 mins
23 Rest 5 Rest 7 Rest 10 5 27 12-15 mins
24 4 Rest 3 Rest 2 50 Rest 59 No speed work

***Bold indicates a Recovery or Taper Week

Everything is in MILES.

The above training plan was taken from the book, Relentless Forward Progress: A Guide To Running Ultramarathons by Bryon Powell. Chapter 5, page 94.

(Source: Relentless Forward Progress: A Guide To Running Ultramarathons by Bryon Powell)

Next: Training Plan For Races of 40 Miles to 100K on 70 Miles Per Week.


2013 BDM 102 Update: List Of Invited Runners

The list of invited runner for the 2013 Bataan Death March 102K Ultramarathon Race is now listed in my blog’s 2013 BDM 102 Page above or click on the link below.


Please read the “NOTE” I posted below the list. We will make sure that you will have your exact size for your Finisher’s T-Shirt. Also, we will be strict on the deadline of payment for the registration fee. Late Payments after July 31, 2012 will have a penalty of additional P 500.00 and the Last Day of Payment will be on August 30, 2012.

Good luck and train well.

Quote For The Week

This is an excerpt taken from the newly published book by Scott Jurek entitled, “Eat & Run: My Unlikely Journey To Ultramarathon Greatness”.


Regular running is satisfying in itself. If you’re the competitive type, even greater satisfaction lies in running faster and longer, in challenging yourself. Progress can be a great motivator and a great incentive to keep exercising.

If you want to improve as a runner, you can (and should) do supplemental training, which involves strengthening, flexibility, and technique work. But the simplest way to improve is to run faster. And the way to do that is to train yourself to run harder, the way I did during my long climbs to Mount Si.

Here’s how: After you’ve been running for 30 to 45 minutes at least three times a week for six to eight weeks, you’re ready to start running occasionally at 85 to 90 percent of your physical capacity, or the point where lactate is building up in your muscles but your body is still able to clear and process it. Build to where you can maintain that lactate threshold level for 5 minutes. Then take 1 minute of easy running to give the body time to recover, then repeat. As you progress, increase the number of the intervals and their length while maintaining a 5:1 ratio between work and rest. So you would do 10-minute intervals of hard running followed by 2-minute breaks; or 15 minutes of hard running followed by 3 minutes of rest, and so on.

After four to six weeks, you’ll be able to maintain this effort level for 45 to 50 minutes. And you’ll be faster.”

(Note: Taken from Chapter 10: Dangerous Tune, pages 88-89)

Pinoy Ultrarunners’ Pride

Three days before the conduct of the 2012 Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run, I made a post on this blog explaining about the significance of the said event to all the runners, specifically to ultrarunners. I specifically mentioned that we have a local Pinoy ultrarunner for the first time to participate in this event, Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale, whom I mentioned his past significant ultrarunning accomplishments on the following link.


With all the drama and the suspense along the 100-mile route, Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale and his pacer, Rick Gaston finished the race in 29:50:33 hours, barely 10 minutes before the cut-off time of 30 hours. Another Filipino living in California, Jose San Gabriel, sealed the list of Official Finishers as the last runner with barely 2 minutes before the race was closed.

I will let Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale and Rick Gaston write and tell their own story about their 2012 WS 100 experiences in their respective blogs. You can click Ultrarunning & Beyond and 365 Ultra on my Blogroll for their blogs and hoping that they will post their respective story in the next few days.

With a request posted at Facebook for anybody who could relay the good news to the media, Maria Arnie Sheila Garde, came up with a news article on the Internet which is hopefully to be printed in the local daily news. The following is the link:


Another Pinoy Ultrarunner and writer to the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Haide Acuna, promised me that she will make also another news story for the said daily newspaper. This is her news story:


2012 Western States 100 will forever be remembered in the history of the event as well among ultrarunner in the world due to the following:

1. This the second coldest edition of the event. The coldest edition was in 1991.

2. The Course Record established by Geoff Roes in 2010 edition with a time of 15:07:04 was broken by the two top finishers—Timothy Olson in 14:46:46 hours and Ryan Sandes in 15:03:56 hours.

3. The Ladies’ Course Record of Ann Trason established in the 1994 edition with a time of 17:37:51 hours was broken by Ellie Greenwood with a Finish Time of 16:47:19 hours.

4. Dave Mackey, 42 years old, broke the Masters Course Record set by Tsuyoshi Kaburaki of Japan in last year’s edition (16:07:04 hours) with an impressive time of 15:53:36 hours. He finished fourth (4th) Overall in this year’s edition.

5. Six (6) runners finished below 16 hours. 316 finished; 66 runners DNFed with 382 starters. 148 Finishers got the Silver Buckle Award for finishing sub-24 hours.

6. Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale is the FIRST Local Pinoy Ultrarunner to Finish the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run.

I will not be surprised if Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale will attempt to improve his finish time in the next WS 100 editions to come. His feat inspires us to fight to the end up to the last drop of our strength and will power. A character that is truly Pinoy in nature!

Mabuhay Ang Pinoy!

Pacer Rick Gaston & Atty Jon Lacanlale @ The Finish Area (Photo by Rick Gaston)

1st Marcos-Kennon 50-Mile Ultra Road Classic

This is the first official ultra marathon road race that traces the route from Rosario, La Union via the Marcos Highway to Baguio City and then go back to the starting area via Kennon Road. The route covers a distance of 50 miles or 80 kilometers. This is considered as an ultra mountain running event. The route is very popular among cyclists and it is always a part of a yearly professional cycling event in the country.

Now, ultrarunners will have to experience what it takes to travel on that route on foot!

I personally ran the route for two days—starting at 3:30 PM at the Saitan Junction and proceeded to the Marcos Highway, all the way to Baguio City and in the following day, continued my run along Kennon Road and got back to where I started. The details and pictures are described in the following posts:


For those who are interested to experience the run, they could join this event. This road run will kick-off the monthly ultra events that will prepare the 2013 BDM 102 and 160 participants to build-up their mileage in preparation for the “Big Dance” on the first weekend of March next year! Or shall we say the “Biggest Ultra Road Party” in the country! Last year, it was the Fort Magsaysay To Dingalan, Aurora 60K Ultra Road Race that started the “road to the 2012 BDM 102/160” to those who successfully finished the races.

If you ask those runners who finished the upper 50% of the field who joined the BDM Races this year about their training, they will tell you that they have joined the monthly ultra races before the D-Day, whether they were organized by me, Jonel of FrontRunner Magazine or by the ultrarunners in Visayas and Mindanao. What matters most is that you build-up those mileages for your foundation of endurance and at the same time assess the condition of your body.

Aside from these reasons, you could also start to find out the best apparel (shoes, shirt, shorts, socks, compression attire or not and others) for your ultra runs. Make sure to test them if they give you chafing, blisters or pain on your legs and joints (for the shoes). It is also in these runs that you test what is best for you in terms of your hydration and nutritional needs. Plus the need to find out how to deal with the heat of the sun during the run. For sure, after these monthly ultra runs you should have been able to adapt to the challenges for the BDM Races. This is where your running accessories, like headlamps/flashlights and reflectorized vest, will be tested.

Having said the importance of this run, the following are the details/rules and regulation of the ultra event:

1. A runner has the option to be self-supported or supported by a vehicle with support crew. Only four-wheeled vehicles are allowed as support vehicles. A support vehicle can support a maximum of four (4) runners.

2. No bandits will be allowed in the race.

3. Runners should position themselves ALWAYS at the left side of the road, facing the incoming traffic. Always be on Alert on the traffic infront and on your back. Runners should ALWAYS be on SINGLE FILE on the left side of the road.

4. The use of Ipods, MP3s and earphones are allowed as long as runners could still hear his surroundings and the sound of the incoming traffic. Always stay alert while running or walking.

5. Support Vehicle should stop always on the farthest RIGHT side of the road with the Warning Lights ON. As compared with Marcos Highway, Kennon Road is very narrow that your Support Vehicle needs an ample space to park in order not to impede the flow of traffic on the highway. In addition, most of the runners will hit this road on midnight up to the following early morning.

6. Support Vehicles are strictly NOT ALLOWED to “shadow” their respective runners. This is a ground for disqualification of runners. All support Vehicles should “leap frog” their runner depending on the instruction and capability of the runner.

7. Be extra careful, for the support crew and runner, in crossing the highway before and after “pit stops”.

8. All runners should have headlamp/flashlight and reflective vest or reflectorized tapes on their running apparel during the night run.

9. All runners must also bring with them First Aid Kit and Hydration system. Trekking Poles are allowed.

10. Start and Finish Area will be at the Municipal Plaza of Rosario, La Union. Assembly Time is at 2:00 PM of Saturday, July 14, 2012. The race will start at 3:00 PM.

11. The race has a cut-off time of 18 hours. The race closes at 9:00 AM of Sunday, July 15, 2012. There will be checkpoints along the route but there will be NO imposed cut-off times on them.

12. Registration Centers: ARC Manila c/o Perkins Briones and/or Deposit Registration Fee at BPI Savings Account #0296-0673-22 in the name of Jovenal Narcise. If payment will be made through BPI account, runner should send the scanned copy of the deposit slip to jovie75@hotmail.com and bring it to the starting area on race day.  Registration fee is P 2,000.00. The registration fee is non-refundable and non-transferable.

13. To cater to the ultrarunners coming from the North and nearby provinces, we will ALLOW On Site Registration provided they arrive at the Assembly Area earlier than the stated assembly time.

14. There will be NO Cash Prizes. Podium Finishers (1-2-3 for Men & Women) will receive trophies. Each finisher will receive Special Commemorative Finisher’s Medal and Finisher’s T-Shirt. Ranking based from the Official Result will earn points for the 2012 PAU Runner of the Year Award. (Note: Certificate of Finish will be given on later date)

15. Pacers are not allowed.

Good luck and see you at the Starting Line!

The Big Dance

Ultra Trail Runners call the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run as “The Big Dance”. It is considered by many as “the most prestigious 100-Mile trail run” in the world. It is due to the fact that it has challenging qualification requirements for each applicant to meet. If ever one is qualified on these requirements, then you have to go through a lottery process where only about 400+ will be finally chosen to join the race.

Finishing this race in 30 hours, which is the race cut-off time, is already a good performance. But the stronger and faster runners are awarded with the Silver Belt Buckle if they finish the race below 24 hours. And the elite trail runners in the world would always dare to break the existing course record of 15:07:04 hours set by Geoff Roes in the 2010 edition.

Starting Area of the Western States 100 (Photo Courtesy of Jorge Maravilla)

For me and to the rest of the local Pinoy Ultra Runners, this a “dream race”. At my age, I could hardly finish a sub-11 hours for a qualifying 50-mile race; sub-15 hours for a qualifying 100K race; and never experienced finishing a qualifying 100-mile race. I tried to make an attempt two years ago to qualify by joining a trail running event and the training was so hard but I fell short of the WS100 qualifying standards. From there, I was contented to just read about the stories related to the Western States 100 and have a look on the Finish Line which I did last year.

Not to mention the resources needed to train, travel, and qualify for this race, one’s preparation for this race is simply very challenging! If you are a local Pinoy runner intending to join this race, you must be focused to your training, have the resources (time and money) at your disposal, and be able to acclimate to the conditions of the route before race day, which means that you should have trained and be familiar with the route weeks and months before the event.

For this year’s edition which will be held this coming Saturday, June 23, 2012, we are fortunate enough to have a local Pinoy Ultrarunner toeing the starting line in Squaw Valley, California. Attorney Jonnifer Lacanlale, the Course Record holder and Champion of the 2012 Bataan Death March 102K Ultra Marathon Race will be one among the 419 runners in this edition. Atty Lacanlale was picked in the lottery as he qualified for finishing the toughest trail races in the world—The Great North Walk of Australia and the Ultra Trail Mont Blanc (UTMB) in Europe. Consistently being the First “local” Pinoy Finisher in The Great North Walk and the Ultra Trail Mont Blanc (UTMB), he is now considered as the First “local” Pinoy to represent the country in the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run. And hopefully, the first local Pinoy Ultrarunner to finish the prestigious trail running event.

I give also the credit to a friend of mine, Rick Gaston, whom I consider to be the First Pinoy “non-local” Finisher of the Western States 100, not once but twice! He finished in the 2006 and 2011 editions. I consider him as the fastest and strongest Pinoy “non-local” Ultra Trail Runner in North America today!

It is worthy to note also that there is another Pinoy in the list of starters this coming Saturday. He is Joselito San Gabriel of California. This is a “redemption” run for Joselito as he declared himself as DNFed after finishing more than one-half of the course in last year’s edition.

I wish the best and pray hard for the success and strong finish of Atty Jonnifer Lacanlale and Joselito San Gabriel.

On the elite runners of this race, I happened to meet, talk, and see (in the past) on how the following perform in races: Killian Jornet, Mike Wolfe, Dave Mackey, Ian Sharman, Ryan Sandes, and Jorge Maravilla. But Killian is no longer joining the race due to the untimely death of his running partner, Stephane Brosse, last week during their skiing adventure in Mont Blanc. So, this race will be interesting to the remaining runners that I’ve mentioned above.

I saw how Ryan Sandes ran in some portions of this year’s Vibram Hongkong 100K Trail Run and was able to have a brief talk and photo-ops with him at the Finish Line. The Nepalese runners were running ahead of him about 3/4 of the course but he ran faster on the last 1/4 of the course to finally win and register a course record for the race. He also won the TNF 100K in Australia few weeks ago. Being the course record holder of the Leadville 100-Mile Endurance Trail Run and familiar with races that have “heat conditions”, he could be a strong contender as the Champion in this year’s WS100.

Mike Wolfe, WS100 1st Runner-Up last year, has also a good chance to get the Championship Trophy, to include Dave Mackey, winner of this year’s Miwok 100; and Ian Sharman. But I personally believe that the heat condition on race day will greatly affect their performance.

I happened to meet and talk for a longer time with Jorge Maravilla in last year’s Miwok 100 where we were both served as volunteers. Since that meeting, I have followed his running career as he won as Champion in trail races in California and breaking some course records in the process. Due to his performance, he became as one of the members of the elite Team Salomon. Even if he would be joining this race for the first time, I could see and predict a “top 10” finish for him in this year’s edition.

WS 100 Silver Buckle

How I wish I could be at the Finish Line this coming Saturday or Sunday but my personal schedule won’t allow me. I will just be contented to follow the Live Update through the Internet and hope to relay such information via Facebook and/or Twitter to my Pinoy Ultrarunner friends.

All the best to Atty Jon Lacanlale and to the rest of my friends who will be part of this race on Saturday. Bring home the “Buckle”!

The Road To The 2013 BDM 102 & 160

The deadline in the submission of application to join this race is strictly enforced. For those who were not able to beat the deadline (Midnight of June 15, 2012),  they will not be considered to be invited to join the event.

We have reached more than the allowable limit we have set for the number of runners in this event. As of the deadline, there are 267 runner-applicants for the BDM 102 and another 110 runner-applicants for the BDM 160. Those who have finished a Trail Marathon and Ultra Marathon Events (without finishing a Marathon Road Race) will be considered for the screening process. Definitely, those who have yet to experience finishing an official full Marathon Race will not be considered and invited to join this race.

For the proper implimentation of safety and security for all the participants, we have set a limit of 200 runners for the BDM 102 and a maximum limit of 100 runners for the BDM 160, except for the additional slots reserved for the members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police and other security/armed services of the government..

If my proposal to the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), Philippine Coast Guard and to the other Armed/Security Services of the Government to include the BDM 102 in their “AFP-PNP Olympics” Competition will be approved, we have to allow at least 50 additional slots for this race. There will be NO competition among the Armed Services in the BDM 160.

Letters of Invitation will be sent to qualified applicants thru e-mail and/or Facebook starting tomorrow, June 20, 2012. All invited runners should follow the instructions stated therein. These are very simple instructions to follow.

Good luck and train well.

“Did Not Peak” (DNP) @ Mt. Apo

5th “Peak Bagging” Experience (April 6, 2012)

A simple ads on Facebook did the trick on me when a group of climbers posted an itinerary of a climbing event towards the peak of Mt Apo, the highest mountain peak in the country with an elevation of 2,956+ meters above sea level which was scheduled during the Holy Week. After a phone call and coordination with a friend in Davao City, I decided to try an approach towards the peak of the mountain which is new and not-so popular among mountain climbers. Reservations had been made with regards to my accommodation and transportation needs and everything was a GO!

Bansalan Trail (Bansalan, Davao Del Sur) Climb To The Peak of Mt Apo is a yearly activity (this is the 2nd year) being organized by the Tourism Office of the municipality in cooperation with mountaineering groups in the Davao Provinces. The itinerary of the climbing event spans for 4 days! The event started on the early morning of Holy Thursday with the participation of 300+ climbers and marshals. I was among the registered climbers but I opted to start the trek the following day, Good Friday! I was thinking that I can “run-peak bag-run” the mountain!


Although I left Davao City very early in the morning of Friday, I was delayed with so many “snags” once I arrived at the Bansalan Municipal Hall—the Tourism Office was closed; the Tourism Officer was called in their house to attend to me and receive my registration fee; it was Good Friday and there was only one eatery opened to serve food; the food order & service at the eatery was very slow. Finally, we were on our way to the trailhead which is another 20+-kilometer ride from the municipal hall.

With 6 kilometers more to go before reaching the trailhead, our vehicle just stopped and had a mechanical trouble! I had to ride on those motorcycle “habal-habal” just to be able to reach the trailhead which they call “Pluto”. I realized later that all the sitios and populated areas within the trailhead are named after the planets and stars of the galaxy.

I got the services of a guide who happens to be a “former” driver and worker in Manila for about 10 years and married to a lady from Pangasinan. Our trek started at 11:00 AM and we traveled fast and light! But the first kilometer was so steep that it took us 45 minutes to cover it! It was a sign that the trek will be a difficult one! The first mountain that we trekked was full of vegetable gardens just like those mountains in the Cordilleras where they are planted with carrots, cabbage, and radish. But after the first mountain, we entered to a place where you have tall grasses, reeds and later forest!

As compared with the trails in Luzon, the trail in Bansalan towards Mt Apo is a “beast”! It has all the combination of challenges and hardships, moreso, when it started to rain when we reached the forested area. They are foot trails/single-track and muddy which was brought about by the 300+ climbers that passed ahead of me. There are big trees that fell down due to natural causes and we have to do some detour from the established foot trail. The grasses along the sides of the trail had grown so tall that they completely cover the trails. In short, these trails are not maintained and they are usually used by the locals in the area. The Bansalan Trail is not a “tourist-friendly” trail and it is best for the “hardcore trail runners/trekkers” who are looking for challenges and risky adventures! And I guess, I consider myself as a “hardcore”!

After 4 hours of trekking (this is my first time not to be able to jog or run in any point/location towards a mountain peak), my guide and I were able to catch up with the tail of the climbers. One of the climbers recognized me and he was surprised to see me! We had some short conversation and some photo-ops. I had to pass their group and was able to reach the middle part of the group as we reached what they call “Lake Jordan”.

At this point, I had been trekking for the past 5 hours and I could see the full view of Mt Apo’s Peak. I told my guide that we have to rest and assess our chances of reaching the peak of the mountain on that day. We ate our energy bars and took some pictures while resting. I still have enough water in my Camelbak and enery bars to last for another 5 hours.

The next target to be reached by the climbers is Camp Reyes where they will spend the night and try to reach the peak of the mountain on the following day, Saturday. I was informed that I could reach Camp Reyes through power hiking in 1 hour but I would still have 2-3 hours to reach the peak. So, I made the decision to make my turn-around at this point. I was not fully equipped for the colder temperature (no tent, lack of food and water in going back to the trailhead for me and guide, and thicker jacket) as we went higher in elevation. It became colder as it rained in the mountains!

At Lake Jordan, the distance we have trekked covered 7.1 kilometers from the Pluto Trailhead and my GF305 registered an elevation of 2,428 meters above sea level. We still have another 530+ meters of elevation to trek for as to be able reach the peak of the mountain. It was a good decision to turn-around at this point. There will always be next time for Mt. Apo!

Our trek back to the Pluto Trailhead was more challenging as it rained some more and the thick mud kept on sticking to my trail shoes which made it heavier. Before we reached the last mountain from the trailhead, it was already becoming darker and it was already nighttime. With my headlight and hand-held flashlight, the guide and I were able to reach the trailhead with a slower pace making sure that we don’t slide or trip on those slippery descent and fallen trees which we have to walk on.

If my counting is right, I fell five (5) times on my butt on those slippery descents and bumped my head on fallent trees’ trunks & branches for three (3) times but I got no injuries or sprain on my body. Well, those are just part of the adventure and experience.

Finally, I reached my ride at the trailhead at 9:30 PM and reached Davao City before midnight. What a day to spend the Good Friday! This could be the longest day in my “peak bagging” feats so far!

This is my first “DNP” but it is worth the risk and adventure! I will make sure that I will be more prepared and smarter next time! This could be my first “DMB” (Did My Best) “peak bagging” so far!

Mt Apo, I’ll be back!