Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Current training

As my regular reader (or possibly readers) will know, I've decided from a couple of months ago to not do any long distance running this year, or at least until the latter part of the year. Instead I'm focusing on middle distance running and races. To that end I'm working off a 10k plan that I found online (I really don't remember where, sorry) and then proceeded to "cut and shut" it.
The plan was in miles, so I had to convert it to metric. Then there's certain days I usually don't run on, like a Monday, but I can cross-train then, so I edited that. Also, I've never done a "tempo run" in my life, and I'm happy with that, so I took that off too. Then I moved the interval/speed sessions to suit the evenings when I go to the track. Then I put in all the races I have planned for the 10-12 weeks or so and put in rest days around them to suit. Before I knew it the plan bore very little resemblance to the original!
I've been reading up on running websites etc about different training plans and trying out some of the speed sessions, not enough room here to go into them all. But I even did one recently on an evening when the weather was just horrible, but I did it on a treadmill. I'm not a fan of treadmills, but needs must.
The speed session was a warmup jog of 7 mins, then put the incline to 1% and run hard for 1min and easy for 30sec - repeat 6 times. Then go straight into 30sec hard and 30sec easy - repeat 8 times. All of this was followed by an easy jog and then walk. I did all of it in my VFFs too, which I love.
So my running/training week looks like this...
Monday - Rest or cross train. Cross training for me is gym work. It is mostly free weights with some time on the rower and also body weight exercises.
Tuesday - If I didn't get to do cross training on Monday I'll do it today, but without leg work, just upper body and core. That will be before work. In the evening the club has it's track session, so I'll do my speed work then. Usually intervals based around multiples of 400m or 800m, but can also be time trials or 1,600m repeats.
Wednesday - Usually 40mins easy pace with HR kept low
Thursday - Speed session again, nicknamed "Fartlek Thursday" as I usually do a fartlek but change it from week to week. Once every 4-5 weeks I'll do a time trial (TT) on Thursday's. They will either be distance or time based. TTs are either 3k, 5k or 15mins.
Friday - Cross training in the morning if I can and may either be a rest-from-running day or an easy 40min run, depending on the weekend schedule.
Saturday - May be either a rest day or a long run. If a long run then Friday will be a rest day. "Long" runs on this plan don't go over 90 mins, again at an easy pace.
Sunday - If long run was Saturday then today is a shorter run or a rest day. Short runs are 45mins, mainly to get used to running on tired legs. This is done at an easy pace.

Note: Apart from speed sessions, all of my runs are at an "easy pace". This is done keeping my HR low, zone 1-2 to build on endurance and my aerobic base.
One of the hard parts I find is trying to fit in an "easy week". I was wondering about this recently and I happened to get a head cold, so no training for 4 days. I guess that was an easy week!

Any questions?


Monday, May 7, 2012

Royal County 5k

A wet summer's day in Kells today for the Meath Local Sports Partnership road race. Registration and post race tea/coffee was held in the Headford Arms Hotel, very close to the start line.
We did our warm ups and - of course - it started raining again. Once the race started we were running downhill for the first 800m or so and in the rain it felt like most of the rest of the race was climbing back up. Pic of the race elevation below...

Throughout the 2-4k section I felt like I was going too fast, probably due to uphill sections, so I backed off a bit. When the road leveled out I'd try and pick it up again. From about the 4k mark the rain got really heavy and I had to squint to see the road ahead. I could hear my feet squelching with every step and a lot of the last section was like running in a shallow stream, although we were running back into the town. Near the end I heard the announcer say 22 something, and I assumed there were 22 finishers so far, then I glanced at my garmin and it said 21:xx! I put the pressure on and managed to finish in 22:13 (official). That's over a minute off my PB, not bad for the conditions. There was free water bottles at the finish line and also at about the 4k mark. The tea and coffee afterwards was just what I needed and all in all it was a very well organized event. Many thanks to all involved and well done to anyone who braved the elements!

Update: I was 44th overall out of 420, not sure about age group placings though. Almost in the top 10% :-)


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Upcoming races

Ok, I've been checking my schedule (and that of the rest of the family!) and have booked myself on the following races:
Royal County 5k - May 7th
Pheonix Park 5k - June 9th

Dunshaughlin 10k - June 23rd
Irish Runner 8k - June 30th
Fingal 10k - July 22nd
Meath cycle tour (50k/100k/160k) - July 29th
Frank Duffy 16k - August 25th
Dublin half marathon - September 15th
Killarney Adventure Race (relay) - October 6th
...and possibly the Dublin Marathon - October 29th (not booked yet)

Is that enough? :-)

And yes, I really should stop leaving my wallet beside the computer!