Calling All Endurance Athletes - New Backyard Ultra Format Proposal

Hi all,

I know a fair few members are into endurance sports here, so wanted to run this idea by the community.

Most people are familiar with backyard ultra / last man standing races. For those who are not, they typically entail running a 6.7km (4.2mi) loop every hour on the hour. Anyone not able to complete it counts as a DNF and there is only 1 winner / finisher. They can go on for days until the last person gives out.

I want to propose an alternate format and will aim to plan an event soon. A mixture of speed + endurance.

Participants would run a 5km (3.1mi) loop every 30 minutes on the half hour. You need to complete it within 30 minutes and have whatever rest time available before the next loop starts 30 minutes later. Definitely hard, but would speed up the process and still reward those with endurance but bring in an element of speed as well. Usual rules would apply; a single winner / finisher with everyone else DNFing.

How appealing would people find this? Keen to plan a state / national event on this relatively soon. 

 

Yeah, sounds like an interesting format. 

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee
 

For 5K every 30min, I bet you’d have people going 20 - 50mi.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee
 

Agreed. I was actually a bit hesitant to call it an "ultra" because I don't know how many people will pass the 45km mark. I think a very good runner can do 5k in 18-20 minutes, but that's going flat out and only having to do it once. I think most people will get the first 2-3 loops done in 20 minutes each and after that I would tag on 1-2 minutes per loop. Best case, a solid runner will do max 15 loops (75km) before crashing

 

I also have had dreams of hosting a race. What I think would be cool is to host a race on the local bridge in Mt. Pleasant SC on the Ravenel bridge Mt. Pleasant side incline. It’s a couple hundred feet incline. It would be an elevation endurance race. Up and down to the top of the bridge. Starts at dusk.

Lots of people in the city train for mountain races and this would be a nice precursor to a mountain ultra race, especially as everything else is flat, and you only normally get flat training in the Lowcountry. 

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee
 

I believe that If you need to leave for the next loop at the 30-minute mark would make things more difficult, especially in the later stages of the race where you need more rest for eating. But if you can run several loops in a row and take bigger breaks should make things way easier. Running 6-7 x 10ks at 50min pace with 10min rest in between doesn't sound that hard. 

Jack of all trades, master of none
 
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I believe that If you need to leave for the next loop at the 30-minute mark would make things more difficult, especially in the later stages of the race where you need more rest for eating. But if you can run several loops in a row and take bigger breaks should make things way easier. Running 6-7 x 10ks at 50min pace with 10min rest in between doesn't sound that hard. 

What is the longest distance you have run?

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee
 

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