So I'm a tad bit behind on getting this out, because I've actually been training for 2 1/2 weeks already. I always have this great idea that I'm going to write a little story/book after I get done training one of these years for the Marathon. I'd write about the training schedule, my nutrition (what I eat during the 18 weeks of training- honest documentation of my ups and downs), my thoughts or ideas that are hatched on my long runs, and of course the mental struggles I meet along the way. Well since I'm already behind by 2 1/2 weeks I probably should leave that for another race, another year. But for now- I am going to try and do a better job with some weekly updates of the training schedule. Its a way for me to track my progress, but it is also a way to show people how you can get the training done despite being a mom, wife, part time professional, and still have some fun along the way.
So first thing first- I should tell you how I came to this schedule/training plan. I had this idea that I was going to switch things up this year, because I want to try for a Marathon PR (my best time running the marathon). So I thought I needed to look to a more advance plan including speed work, strength training and cross training. I looked online. A lot of the plans you have to pay for and I wasn't interested in that. I then received "Train Like a Mother" by Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea (they wrote "Run Like a Mother"- one of my all time favorite running reads- read it if you haven't). Well they have "Finish It" and "Own It" plans nicely organized in calendar form for 5K, 10K, 1/2 marathon and marathon. The only issue- I was totally intimidated! The "Finish It" plan alone was a lot more mileage than I've done in previous marathon training plans and the runs weren't your typical run 6 miles or run 6 miles at Pace. They instead introduce a whole regimen for running 6 miles- their 6 miles would read: 6miles: as 10 min WU: 2x2 min in 24, 2x4min, in 23 all with 2 min, recovery; 10 min CD . You need a abreviation key, which they give you to even understand what they are saying. O.K. for all you Math junkies (my BRB included) this is right up your alley, but not me. All these numbers confused me and I thought "How the heck am I going to remember this plan in the run". I actually have a friend on dailymile who is using the "Own It" Marathon plan in this book and I asked her via Internet- "How do you remember this schedule?" Her response "sometimes I write it on my forearm in marker". Sorry- as you know by the picture I sent last night after a mere 4.8 mile run I'm a sweaty mamma and hence I'd have black magic marker running all over me and my clothes if I wrote on my arm.
So now what- well I spent a week in agony- no really I was stressed out trying to figure out how I was going to train this year and also throw in training for the sprint tri in August. So I went to my coach- my hubbie. I asked him to look at some schedules I was looking at and asked for his input, especially what to do around my 1/2 marathon in July (Rock N Roll Chicago) and the Sprint Tri in August. I needed help figuring out what mileage I should shoot for pre races and post races without totally losing my training schedule and mojo and avoiding injury or worse turning into cranky, BI***Y training ChattyNatty.
You know what he said: "Why are you changing what has worked for you so well in the past". He made me stop and think and he was right- in the past 4 marathons overall I've gotten faster every race (last year was 5 minutes off my PR, but if you factor in that I didn't start training until July due to "fish tank" fall I think I did great). I've also never really had major injury that has prevented me from finishing or even toeing the line for Chicago (now the first year I did get a steroid injection in my right foot due to over use/inflammation of some annoying tendon in my leg that was referring pain to bottom of foot- but I still was able to start and finish my first marathon).
So I've modified a little, but am generally sticking with Hal Higdon. I am moving up to his Marathon Training Schedule: Novice 2 and I'm adding some miles to some of his shorter runs in the week by 1 or 2. I'm not moving up to his intermediate plans because then Hal has runners running 5 days a week and I don't think I can mentally run 5 days a week and also try to get a bike and swim in there too.
Well here is the plan:
Week 1: 3 mi, 8 mi, Cross Train and Strength (Spin bike 11.5 mile and 20 min strength workout)
This week was lower miles because I had just run 1/2 marathon weekend before
Week 2: 4 mi, Speedwork Track Group, 5 mi, 10 mi, CT/Strength (Spin 10.5 mile, 20 minSWO)
Week 3: 4 mi, Group Run (4.72mi), 6 mi, 4 mi, CT/Strength
Week 4: 4mi, Speedwork, 5 mi, 11 mi, CT/Strength
Week5: 5 mi, 4 mi, 4 mi, 12 mi, CT/Strength
Week 6: 5 mi, Speedwork, 4 mi, 9 mi, CT/Strength
Week 7: 4 mi, 3 mi, Chicago Rock N Roll 1/2, may CT/Strength
Week 8: 4 mi, 3 mi, 8 mi, CT/Strength
Week 9: 6 mi, 6 mi, 4 mi, Tri Sprint
Week 10: 4 mi, 7 mi, 4 mi, 15 mi, CT/Strength
Week 11: 5 mi, Speedwork, 5 mi, 10 mi, CT/Strength
Week 12: 5 mi, 8 mi, 5 mi, 17mi, CT/Strength
Week 13: 6 mi, Speedwork, 5 mi, 18 mi, CT/Strength
Week 14: 5 mi, 8 mi, 5 mi, 12 mi, CT/Strength
Week 15: 5 mi, 7 mi, 20 mi, CT/Strength
Week 16: 5 mi, Speedwork, 5 mi, 12 mi, CT/Strength
Week 17: 4 mi, 3 mi, 4 mi, 8 mi, CT/Strength
Week 18: 4 mi, 2 mi, Chicago Marathon
Week4- Week 8 Need to swim 250 yards once a week plan to do it Wednesday a.m. so that I will then run Wed evening. We'll see how that works. I'm not training too hard for the swim portion of the Tri- just enough so I swim smoothly and don't totally wear out right at beginning of the tri.
I'll keep you posted on how the training goes. I next need to figure out my nutrition issues- I've kind of fallen off the wagon and am going back to old comforts (had my first Diet Coke since January 2010 when in Hawaii (just craved it and thought "I'm on vacation why not" and since the trip have probably had 6 Diet Cokes- not that it is the worse thing I could pick for a vice, but then what follows are the other non-nutritional stuff- Peanut M&M's, etc). Always a work in progress!