Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Training Tuesday: My Spring Half Marathon Training Plan

Once I was given the green light to return to running after my injury I immediately started thinking about how I would make a comeback and get ready in time for a spring half marathon. 

I knew the first few weeks were going to be slow going.  After 8 weeks off from running, and most all activity, I had lost a lot of endurance and stamina.  My goal was to start slow, do a run/walk, and to run for time {not distance} for the first couple of weeks.  Right after I returned to running I was contacted by my running coach from our local running group and asked to be a mentor for the new spring training group.  It was perfect timing!  This is a fun opportunity and I am really enjoying it.  After attending the first pre-training meeting I came home with the groups training plan used that as my base for my training plan. 

The group training plan calls for 5 days a week of running.  For a long time I’ve been a 3 day a week runner so I knew jumping into 5 days a week of running wasn’t something I could just start immediately.  But I was excited about building up to that.  The first few runs were a little rough but, honestly, I enjoyed every single step.  I missed running so much when I was injured and unable to run that I didn’t want to take a single mile for granted.  And I’m not.  Every day that I can run, or do any other combination of activities, is a blessing and I fully intend to relish every single day. 

The first week of my training plan I ran 3 days, for time.  The second week I ran 4 days.  And last week I moved up to 5 days.  I am running two days per week for time {not distance}, two days a week for distance including one long run with the group, and one day a week I am running with the group at the local track doing speed work.  Also I am a cross training machine.  I have a lot of free time and staying busy with activities is the only thing keeping me sane right now.  {I’ve been unemployed for almost a year and its driving me crazy.  I think of it this way --- I could be day drinking or I could be working out.  I choose working out.  For now.  That could change at any time, FYI.  Haha.}

I’ll be running the First Annual Running of the Elk Half Marathon on April 1st.  I am really excited about this race because it’s the first half marathon in our town and I know a lot of local fellow running friends, including most of the group I’m mentoring, will be running it. 

2012 spring half training plan 
If we are friends on Daily Mile or if you read my weekly recaps you know that I am doing a lot more than just running.  I’m enjoying cross training at the gym on the elliptical, my new found love of Spin class, and yoga at home with You Tube videos.  I’m also keeping up with my Plank-a-day challenge and walking the puppy.  Like I said, I have a lot of free time.  I have no visions of grandeur that I would be able to do all that I do if I was working.  But since I’m not then I’m going to go ahead and continue to stay active and keep busy.  If I don’t then I end up spending entire days on Pinterest.  Seriously.  I have 1490 pins.  Must PIN ALL OF THE THINGS.

I am making sure that I am taking the time to adequately stretch after all activity and I use my foam roller often.  Just the few days of yoga I’ve done so far this year have helped immensely with sore, tight muscles.  I have an “active” rest day on Sunday {which usually just means that I walk and possibly do yoga} and I have a feeling that my cross training will taper off as my mileage increases, especially on days that I’m currently doing double workouts.  My plan is flexible and I believe that is the most important aspect of any successful training plan.  I’ve got two 5k fun runs also scheduled between now and my half marathon race day.  These two 5ks are the first two in the four part series of 5k fun runs that our local running store puts on each year.  For the past two years I’ve completed the whole series and received the All-Series Participant award --- which is one of my goals this year too. 

Shortly after the Running of the Elk Half Marathon I’ll begin training for The San Francisco Marathon and I’m very excited :)

What spring race(s) are you training for? 
Do you enjoy cross training as much as I do?  I know a lot of runners despise the elliptical but I really enjoy it. 


giraffy said...

You know my race schedule is a little crazy ;). But my "A" half is PCRF Cinco de Mayo half in May, then Seattle and San Fran full's :)

Ali Mc said...

YAY!!! for race schedules, and for running slow and injury free so happy for you :) and for the half and full marathons!!!!

Ali Mc said...

YAY!!! for race schedules, and for running slow and injury free so happy for you :) and for the half and full marathons!!!!

ajh said...

I'm training for the Unplugged Half Marathon with a few other halves thrown in for fun. Plus that foolish tri I think I can do.

JenWa098 said...

I have been running sporadically and so I am not training for anything, yet. I had a 5k for this coming weekend, but haven't been able to run and have a mild cold anyway... The weather is to unpredictable and if it is too icy to run then I probably won't drive to wherever there is a treadmill. So, that said, I do have one, possible two half-marathons picked out for the summer, and one for the fall...

I was running 4 days the last time I trained and it made a HUGE difference for me. I may try 5, but I think I will see what you think after a few weeks!!! Keep us posted!

christa said...

I have 2 hopefully 3 if I get in half's by the end of May. Craziness.

Suz and Allan said...

You seem to have a great plan in place! I'm sure you will be ready by April 1!

I'm running 7 half marathons this spring so it's going to be interesting.