This morning I did a four mile tempo run on the treadmill. I started at a 9:22 pace and over the first mile and a half I bumped up the speed every tenth of a mile until I was at a 8:00 pace. I ran that pace for a mile and a half, and then bumped it up to just under a 7:30 pace for a half mile. For the last half a mile I gradually worked back down to a 9:22 pace to cool down. It was a great run! It feels good to run fast (for me). :)
Ok, another question and answer. Someone asked,
"I know you have posted this before but I can't find it... what training program did you use to get up to running the marathon distance? You are inspiring me to think beyond my default 5K..."
My first real training for distance was last year when my friend Jenny and I decided to do our first half marathon. We did the Hal Higdon half marathon training plan and since I like to run six days a week we added in some miles so we only had one "off" day a week. I remember at the beginning looking at the training plan and trying to imagine running TEN MILES (and a 13.1 mile race!) but the training really, really works. We stuck to it and we were more than ready for our first half.
When we decided to train for our first marathon, we went with the Hal Higdon Intermediate 1 training plan. I went with the Intermediate and not the novice because the Novice would have been a big step down in the miles I was already running.
I like Hal! I like his training plans, I like his books, I like his attitude towards racing, training and running.The only changes I made to this training plan is that I ran 3 miles on Mondays as a recovery because I found that I felt better when I did a few easy miles after my long runs than I did when I did nothing. So every Monday I did an easy three miles. The training worked great for me... I ran my first marathon and never hit the wall, never had to walk and had no injuries during the training.
I was planning on using the same Intermediate 1 plan for the Salt Lake City Marathon in April (while adding in some speed work and using the McMillan calculator to figure out my target paces for different runs), and that is how I started off, but last week I decided to jump up to the Hal Higdon Intermediate 2 training plan (in week 8 of 18 weeks). I was really just craving more miles. I know a lot of people are going with training plans that have you run less, but I really like running six days a week and I like getting in lots of miles. My body feels great and I am hoping to improve my time, so I decided to jump up a plan. It really isn't a huge difference (for example, this Saturday I ran 8 miles instead of 7, on Sunday I ran 17 miles instead of 15, and I will have three 20 milers total instead of two).
I am still doing my three mile recovery runs on Mondays, and intervals and tempo runs twice a week and strength training twice a week. Josh said last night that he really can notice my stomach area firming up after a few weeks of consistent strength training (although he may have just been trying to get me into bed...not that he has to try very hard) :)
How about you? You ever change training plans in the middle of training? Why? What is your favorite training plan (for any distance?) Are you lucky enough to have a coach (in "real" life or online?) I would love to try a coach but money definitely doesn't allow for it.
Stay tuned... I have my first giveaways coming up and I am excited. :) More Q and A's coming soon too.