Woman With A Plan

A training plan, that is. This is really the first detailed running plan I’ve ever followed. Last winter I roughly followed a plan for my first half marathon, but it just gave me miles per week/runs per week and not specific workouts with targeted paces. Well, that’s not technically true, I followed a coached plan for a sprint triathlon last year, but it wasn’t running specific.

So I’ve historically never run more than like 15 miles per week consistently. I don’t think I’ve ever run more than 20 miles IN a single week. I just always do three or four runs, one fast and short, one long and slow and maybe speed work if I’m specifically training for a race or something else. I’ve wondered if I could really improve my times with a lot more miles per week. It seems to be what everyone and their motherrunner says: more miles, faster. My body just always rebels against me when I tried to add miles, though, with nagging sorenesses and quirks that I worry might turn into actual injuries.

Maybe I just need to slowly add more miles, get over an initial hump (dead legs, bad runs, a right butt cheek that needs an elbow in it every second of the day, ouch) and then see the benefits?

Or maybe I have a decrepit body that responds better to less miles, just more quality workouts? I keep reading that if you try to get faster by just running HARDER you can make short term gains but then hit a a wall, but if you run MORE you can reach your potential over the long term. I’ve already tried the former (and got faster on it) so I might as well try the latter. I can always find my personal happy medium. It’s like experimenting on yourself.

So I signed up for the 10K challenge that Michele at NYCRunningMama put together. I chose the PR Crusher because I want to crush my PR. I’m a little worried about getting there in such a short time (I want to do the Run for the Warriors in Lindenhurst on November 10th, even though the PR plan goes through November 30). Also, I’m not even BACK to the peak fitness I was at when I got my last PR (my 50:02 on the trails). So how can I expect to BEAT that PR? But that’s what I want to do, so I’m going to try. If not now, I know it will happen soon.

So this week my legs feel like crap and I couldn’t even hit my tempo pace on my tempo run, which I was faster than just like week, and I’m blaming Crossfire, the Crossfit knockoff at the gym I did for the first time on Saturday.

I wouldn't recommend the following workout. Because apparently it makes you look like a man when you're done.

Because: 150 kettle squats + 120 jump squats + 90 sumo squats with kettle bells + 60 one leg piston squats + 30 handstand pushups + 400 meter run x 3. No rest. Just leg death. (And I used a 25 lb kettlebell.) Yeah, I hurt my quads. Or at least got so sore it was bordering on injury. Like I was swollen for two days. So every run after that kind of hurt, even though I gave myself an extra full rest day on Sunday.

So I’m hoping that’s what it was, and I can hit my paces and tempos next week. I feel so fancy writing that sentence. I DID hit my speed work paces, mostly, this morning. Although I shouldn’t start off with 5:13 pace. Guess that’s too fast. Who knew? Ha.

So here’s to planning. And running more. And less squatting.



Filed under Running and Racing

5 Responses to Woman With A Plan

  1. Barb

    There’s a lot of debate about how to make improvements on speed and endurance (half marathon is a blend of the two, so it’s tricky). But there are a few rules – if you want to add miles to build endurance there’s the 10% rule. That is, never add more than 10% to your mileage every week (wether you tack on 10% to your long run, or 10% over the course of the week…) to avoid injury. Ramping up too mileage too fast can harm you in the long term…
    That said there’s a lot to be said for doing key workouts – speedwork (track intervals) and tempo runs (not all out speed, but at the 70-80% of max. effort) AND running at your goal pace. For me, actually spending time at goal pace for longer runs has really helped improve speed…but I’m not expert!! 😉

  2. The 10% rule has no science to back it up, but it’s not a bad idea to not be a dumbass about increasing mileage. If you want to PR, you will have more luck with increased mileage, like 25-30mpw. Sure, it’s going to hurt and you’ll have aches and pains. That’s normal and no reason to worry. Your body will adjust. Our ability to quickly adapt and evolve is why we’re at the top of the food chain :)

    • admin

      That’s what I’m trying. Did 21 miles last week, will try 23-25 this.

    • Barb

      definitely didn’t mean to suggest it was “science”, but seems to be a well followed suggestion to not get injured when trying to increase mileage to reap the benefits of more mileage. of course everyone’s body is different…some adapt faster to more mileage than others…also depends on what kind of mileage – slow or fast…but i digress…

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