Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Drum roll please........Ta Da......You may now begin training

    When I trained for my first marathon I followed a training plan I found in an issue of Runner's World. It seemed like a pretty basic schedule of running 5-6 days a week and included speed work, hills, recovery runs and a long run every week. The long run started around 7 miles the first week and eventually peaked at 20 miles. Twice. Once again I'm beginning to train for a marathon (my second) and I officially begin this coming Monday. (cue confetti, trumpets, and loud applause!) Fine, no ticker tape parade but I am excited! I don't care if I'm the only one who is, because after all, it's for me not them haha.
    Anyway, this time around I once again have found a new plan for training in my trusty RW magazine, the January 2011 issue to be exact. In said issue there is an article that tells all about a slightly different approach to marathon training. This plan is used and designed by the Hanson Brothers... No not the singers annoying mm-bop guild. The guys who started the Brooks Hanson Distance Project. To summarize, the idea is to focus on training for the pace you want to run your marathon at. They still have speed, strength and long distance workouts but the longest run is 16 miles! When I read this that's what caught my eye, because last go around it was tough fitting in those longer runs every week. Granted it didn't help that it was one of my busiest summers I've had but still, this sounds like it will be so much easier on my weekend schedule! I know what your thinking. "How do you get around not having an uber long 20+ mile run?" Well the article does a much better job of explaining it but the way I understand it is the increased effort and high weekly mileage throughout the training schedule will train you to continue on when you are fatigued. So if you're interested in reading into it more you can follow the link above and get the scoop. Like I said, I'm excited for it and I'm hoping it works out for me, cus I mean well otherwise that would suck haha, but I won't know if I don't try! So like I said training kicks off Monday the 4th with 0-4 miles on tap, I'm going to shoot for 3 miles and ease into it. Then Tuesday is 3 miles worth of speed work, which since I'm a member of the Kalamazoo Area Runners I get to run indoors at WMU's track for free on Tuesday mornings! Take that old man winter! Wednesday is a rest day every week which works out perfect for me because that is my long day at work and I'm always lacking on motivation come the end of work on Wed. So there you have it running 6 days a week. speed work will be Tuesdays, marathon pace runs on Thursdays and long runs on Sundays, Wednesdays off and Mondays and Fridays will be mid distance easy paceish.

    I'm thinking next post I'll let you in on the awesome running goodies I got for Christmas and also what I'm using as defense against the Michigan winter. So far I haven't froze to death so I must be doing something right! Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas, I know I did!
    Oh and if you have a minute and want to check out a pretty awesome blog I recently found and started following then jump on over to JerBear Shares. If you do you might just win a prize! She just recently acquired her 100th follower and is doing a giveaway to celebrate!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

~ From there to here ~ the abridged beginning of my life as a runner

   I love running! There's an ever growing combination of reasons, like I'm sure there is for most runners. Most likely not all the same reasons, but anyone who loves running surely has a plethora of reasons why. I've always loved sports and competition but when I was a kid I was too small and uncoordinated to be any good at football or hockey, too short and again uncoordinated to be a starter on the basketball team. Baseball was fun and I wasn't terrible at it but I was wayyyyyy too ADD to stand in the field that long waiting for the off chance that someone in little league might actually hit the ball past the in field. Then along came track and field in 7th grade and I had it set in my mind that I was a sprinter, fast as the Flash. It wasn't too long into the first week of practice that I realized I'm a terrible sprinter, damn. Again I was mediocre. This didn't mean I was going to quit, I mean after all I was still on the football and basketball teams even though I played about as little as you could while still actually being on the team.
    In 8th grade we had a new track coach who was more of a distance running oriented coach than our previous one, and when I was the only sprinter to show up to spring break practice among a half dozen distance runners he gave me the choice. He could come up with a sprinters workout for me or I could run a couple miles with them. In hindsight I'm so glad I chose to give that crazy idea of running distance a shot. When I finished ahead of at least half of the distance runners I knew this was where I belonged! That's how it started for me, my love of running. The next year I went out for the cross team instead of football and never looked back. A distance runner was born, and all the time I'm finding new reasons why I love the sport of running.
    My high school cross-country team was like a family and some of my closest friends to this day are some that I ran with in high school. Since that fateful spring break practice running has always been there for me. There have been times where it has taken a backseat to the rest of my life, pushed aside and almost forgotten. But there's always something that brings me back, and looking back at my life, I've been happiest when running has been a part of it. The most common question I get when people find out i'm a runner is something along the lines of "How do you run for fun?" It's at that moment when I remember all the amazing memories I've had as a runner and how much of my life has happened because of running. I simply respond with a smile and ask them how it's possible to not have fun?
    What about you? How did you find running? Or did running find you?

    Next post will detail my planned training for these frigid winter months and hopefully the training plan that leads me to a new marathon PR!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Due for an update!

Hi remember me! I'm the one who hasn't posted in oh... quite a while haha! I'm still alive and kickin, and still runnin! The biggest part of my delay has been my lack of a computer, it's busticated and I've been too lazy to get it fixed since my phone has been fully capable of handling most of my internet needs, but soon, very soon I tell you I shall have it fixed and once again bore... er... I mean captivate you with the trials and tribulations of training for my next grand adventure in running! That's right it's almost a new year and that means a new season of running and what better race to start it off than the inaugural Kalamazoo Marathon! I'm all signed up and ready to go as are a few of my friends. I'm excited and looking forward to it. Now all I've got to do is conquer winter training and keep my own inner demons in check! I've found a different philosophy and schedule for training in a recent Runner's World magazine that was created and used by the Hansons-Brooks Distance Project. I'll update more on this in the future. So until I return again, which I promise will be sooner rather than later happy running and happy holidays!