Last week I talked about my races for the first half of 2017, and today I'm going to be sharing my planning. As I mentioned, I'll be running 3 races in preparation for a full marathon in April. This will help me break down the long 20 weeks of training and also test my fitness along the way! I picked out two plans to follow and made a few changes to them. Here are some thoughts on each, along with the changes I'll be making:
Training Phase IRight now, I'm following Kara Goucher's half marathon training plan, with a few modifications: I'm making my long runs a bit longer and switching a rest day to Thursday (instead of Friday). Other than that, I'm really liking this plan and think it's doing a great job of building a strong base.
The mileage comes in right at my comfort zone (25-30s) and the "workouts" are different each week. Speed workouts are always my favorite runs of the week, and I love how challenging Kara's are. Every week it's a different workout that's difficult but doable, and also makes me feel strong and confident. Most of the workouts are designed to work on getting comfortable at race pace, so I think these will really help me!
I also like the fact that core workouts are built in to this plan. Every time that I start a new training plan, I have goals to make core exercises a priority but never follow through. Since it's written down in this plan, I feel like I have to do it, and it's already making me feel stronger! The moves aren't difficult but definitely work all of my muscles that I need to run.
Training Phase IIEventually, I'm going to switch over to the Women's Running Break 4 Hour Marathon Plan (what a name)! The mileage is really similar to Kara Goucher's plan, so it won't be much of an adjustment. The long runs will get longer, and the mid-week runs will also get a little longer as well. I will also adjust this so that my rest days are on Thursday and Saturday, which seem to work well for my body!
Since I really like the speed workouts in Kara Goucher's plan, I'm going to keep doing those even when I switch to the marathon plan. I might eventually switch over, but for now that's what I'm planning on doing, but add on more mileage in each workout to make it more full-marathon-appropriate.
Cross TrainingBesides core work, I'm also going to continue to do yoga. Right now I'm doing it every day for the 30 Day Yoga Challenge. After that's over, I want to continue to do yoga at least five days a week. The videos that I'm doing are usually on the shorter side (30 minutes or less) and are more focused on stretching than doing anything really strenuous. This has been helping me out SO much with recovery and flexibility, so I want to keep it up!
Another big change that I'm making is no more alcohol during the week. I usually have a beer or glass of wine with dinner, but I realized it was just making me feel like crap and isn't worth it at all. I decided to eliminate it during the week and might even stop completely! Of course, if something comes up and I have a happy hour after work or go out with friends I'll have a drink or two, but otherwise I'm going to up my water game and treat my body better.
GoalsTo be honest, I didn't want to share my "real" goals on here because they kind of scare me. They're super ambitious and I'm afraid that everyone's going to laugh at me or tell me I'm being unrealistic. I know that there's a pretty good chance that I won't get my "A" goal this year, or maybe ever! That's fine with me.
I was listening to Lindsey Hein's podcast where she interviewed Shalane Flanagan, and Shalane said "If you're achieving all of your goals, you're probably not setting a high enough standard for yourself." I loved that, because it's so true. Who cares if you don't reach all of your goals? We should all have those scary goals that seem impossible, because it forces us to challenge ourselves and push towards being better. Even if I don't make my goal this year, or next year, or the year after- I'm on the right path and working towards something I care about.
After all that rambling- here are my goals for the year/my life!
- Break 1:45 in the half marathon - I think that my favorite distance is the half marathon. Lately I've been training with my "goal pace" being 8:00, so I actually think that this one is do-able. I'll be running a great course for the Rock n Roll DC Half Marathon, so I'll be interested to see how I do there!
- Qualify for Boston - This is the scary one! I haven't done a full marathon in such a long time, and my current PR is 4:38:12 after a less than ideal training schedule during my final semester at college. For my age group, I'll have to take over an hour off that time just to qualify (and probably an hour and fifteen minutes to actually register). That sounds just about impossible to me right now, but I know that if I put a lot of effort, dedication, and time in I'll be able to do it. My first step to getting there is breaking four hours, which I hope to do this year. Will I achieve my dream of BQ? Maybe, maybe not. But why not try?
- Do a handstand in yoga - Now that I'm practicing yoga regularly, I'm challenging myself to try out new poses and getting stronger and stronger. I've always dreamed about being able to do a handstand, so I figured I should throw this in with my other goals.
There you have it! My training plans and my goals. As we get closer to race time, I'll go into more specifics about realistic goals and break down my A, B, and C goals. For now, these three are what I'm dreaming and thinking about and hope to achieve one day.
What are your scary goals?
Do you like to set realistic goals instead of "dream" goals?