How to Structure your Ultra-trail Australia Training

Whether you are a new or returning athlete, your objective in this base phase is to build as much weekly volume as possible.
If you are beginning your training for the first time or returning from an absence of running, start by increasing your training frequency first. Increase the number of times per week you run by running only short distances at first, prioritising the frequency of your training. Even if this means 3-5km runs, as many times as possible per week.
Once you have established your maximal training frequency, start to build in greater volume by extending the distance of your runs while maintaining the frequency. Consider occasional ‘double days’ (morning and night) if possible.
Once a week, get out for a ‘long run’ that constitutes in the vicinity of 30% of your total weekly volume in one run. Where possible, build your long run up to be 2-2.5hrs. This applies to athletes training for all UTA distances.
Early in the General Prep phase here is no pressing need to exclusively run on trail or ‘UTA-like’ terrain as the core adaptation is primarily through easy running and comes from aerobic adaptations of the cardiovascular system.

This high level Macrocyle overview can now be reversed and planned forwards from where you are today to look something like the following:

MonthMeso/PhaseTraining SpecificityObjectivesTraining Structure and surface
October (and Prior)General PrepLeast SpecificBuilding Training Frequency and VolumeMostly easy running on easy surface
NovemberGeneral PrepLeast SpecificBuilding Training Frequency and VolumeMostly easy running on easy surface
DecemberGeneral PrepIncreasing SpecificityBuilding Training Frequency and VolumeMostly easy running on easy surface
JanuarySpecific PrepMost SpecificMaximal Training VolumesIntroducing hills and stairs
FebruarySpecific PrepMost SpecificMaximal Training VolumesBuilding in Speed and Strength
MarchSpecific PrepMost SpecificMaximal Training VolumesMostly trail and ‘UTA-like’ terrain
AprilSharpenLess SpecificDecreasing Training VolumesMaximizing Speed and Strength Work
MayTaper and RaceLess SpecificDecreasing Training VolumesMostly easy running on easy surface

With the above table you should be able to map out a pathway to Ultra-trail Australia. If you seek devil in the detail with exactly what your day to day running should look like for you feel free to contact us at SQUADRUN for a structured training programme to UTA that’s right for you.

For further articles and free information on how to prep, train and race your best check the SQUAD.RUN or Ultra-trail Australia Websites.