I’ve been following a very different training plan for my spring half marathons this year vs. last year. Last year I followed Hal Higdon’s plan, which was just based on distances. It didn’t matter what pace you ran, just that you made it to those distances. I followed it for both my spring half marathon and summer race. I was stronger and seeing faster training runs during the summer training while still following the same distance plan. But that was pretty much because I jumped right back into training as soon as I finished the first race.
This year I decided to try a new approach. I am hoping to PR in Indy, so I needed a little more guidance on how to get there. I am not a fly by the seat of my pants type of girl. I need a plan. So I picked up Run Less, Run Faster to see what it had to say. I really liked the idea of this plan because it has a 3 day a week running schedule with cross training in between, which is what I typically like to do anyway. And it gives me target paces for all 3 runs. And I like details, so this makes me super happy.
Though it also meant stepping out of my comfort zone. But that is something I should be doing anyway. I’m never going to get faster if I stay in my comfort zone, right? Interval runs and tempo runs are new for me, but despite my complaints (particularly on interval day) I’m liking what I’m seeing!
Saturday – 10 miles (9:37 min/mile) I had to run alone on Saturday morning because I needed to be done early. So I set out through the neighborhood to the bike path. It makes the most sense logistically when I need to log lots of miles to head out to the bike path, but it is hilly. Even with the hills, though I crushed my goal pace. If I can maintain that pace for the 3.1 more miles I’ll have myself a shiny new half marathon PR.
Sunday – rest
Monday – Group Power. I’m really enjoying this class. I upped my weight factor this week and I really felt it both during class and the next day. Especially in my arms. I thought my biceps were strong……….
Tuesday – the dreaded interval day. The plan said 6 x 800m intervals (4:05) with a 90 second recovery. I was stroller pushing, so I was a little slower than my target intervals, but I kept all of them under 4:15, so I was pretty happy with that. And I walked so slow during the recovery for 3.5 total miles. I also did some plyo when I got home, which was tough on tired legs.
Wednesday – I dragged my tired legs to the Y for CSI (cardio, strength and intervals) and was tortured with lunges, squats, burpees, squat jumps and all those other things that my tired legs didn’t want to do. I could barely walk after the 1 hour class. But that didn’t stop me from going to the Pub Run that night. I ran 3.65 miles and rewarded myself with a delicious pulled pork sandwich from a food truck and house made cream soda and the brewery. And had great conversation with friends while enjoying the toasty fire.
Thursday was tempo day. I had 7 on the schedule (1 easy, 5 at 9:13, 1 easy). My tired legs weren’t happy and neither was my stroller running buddy (after 5.5 miles she was over it!). It was snowing and windy but we managed 6.5 miles (10:01, 9:37, 9:10, 9:33, 9:27, 9:50, 9:47). I only hit the target pace for 1 mile, but I was pretty close for 4 out of 5 and covered it snow, so I patted myself on the back and followed it up with 10 minutes of ab work.
This morning we headed out to the Y and I hopped on the elliptical for 30 minutes and then did my ActivTrax exercises. It was a very tricep focused workout and I’m sure I’ll have a hard time lifting my arms later.
Overall I’m really happy with the week as far as running and cross/strength training go. Spring half marathons are sneaking up on me, but I’ll be ready for them!!!
Do you have a favorite training plan?