Happy first day of Spring!
The last three weeks were pretty great! Although I was a little low after returning from Phoenix, I’ve crafted myself up a nice little Spring Training Plan (as I call it) and I’ve spent quite a bit of time getting excited about things to come. At the same time, there has been plenty of relaxation. I took three full rest days post marathon and took the rest of the first week very light, with another full rest day to make it 4 for the first week. In the past I haven’t given myself as much rest the first week following the race and I think this really helped with my recovery (although I also think that it affected my mood at times as I’m so used to the daily endorphin high!).
The second week I got a little excited and signed up for three days in a row of 6 a.m. Pilates and added in more running, an easy spin, a 2.5 hour hike to Mt. Woodson and a long beach cruiser ride (any hill on a beach cruiser is like a mountain due to the fact that they only have one gear) for Mike’s birthday and a long run which ended up being longer than expected. I was planning on meeting Asia for the last few miles of her run but left a little too early and by the time I got to our meeting point she was still about 20 minutes away. So I just kept running and ended up running 10 miles. It’s not outrageous but probably a little more than I should have done two weeks after a marathon. I tried to spend as little time on my feet as possible the rest of the day to make up for it.
This week I was better about resting more and even had my first tempo run – the pace wasn’t fantastic but it felt good to push the pace a bit. I also got to join in on an ACTIVEx workout after work tonight with Mike’s coworkers. The workout was tabata style intervals of things such as push-ups, burpees, jump squats, and rows, among others. Each station has a workout and we rotated through in intervals. We wrapped it up with a wall sit contest. This workout definitely made me realize that P90X3 is going to kick my butt next week! I’ve lost a lot of push up strength!
In addition to my workouts easing, my diet has been much more lax. Leading up to the big race I was trying to avoid too much alcohol, sugar and dairy (though not strictly) and after it was all over, I enjoyed plenty of all of the above. It has been a fun three weeks of sleeping in, no scheduled or forced workouts, plenty of wine and beer, and treats. And that is exactly what I needed.
However, as I mentioned in my post about what’s next for me, I wasn’t necessarily feeling overtrained or burnt out leading into the marathon as I have in past big races (CdA, Euguene/OC), so my mind has been preoccupied a bit with big plans for my racing future.
This weekend I started to read one of the two running training books I bought before I started training for the Surf City Marathon about a year and a half ago. I did read Advanced Marathoning and attempted to follow one of the plans in the book to prepare for Surf City (but ultimately wasn’t feeling ready for a full marathon attempt there and dropped to the half and then ended up hiring a coach to help me for Eugene), but I never touched the other book. The book is called “Run Faster… From the 5k to the Marathon” and it’s written by Brad Hudson, a former Olympic trials qualifier and current coach to Olympians and other professional runners. I started to read it on Saturday and ended up nearly reading it cover to cover over the weekend.
I will definitely write a more detailed post about Brad’s philosophy, which he calls “training responsively,” but the gist is that although he believes there are certain things that are proven to make you a faster runner, every runner needs to take in their individual strengths, weaknesses, experience, etc. into account when making a plan. Basically, you need to learn as much as you can about yourself as a runner and adapt the plan to you. I like this idea since I have struggled with truly believing in myself when following plans set by others.
I’ve decided to use Brad’s Half Marathon Level 2 plan to train for the Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon. Although it is a plan which contradicts what I just wrote above, it will be tailored to fit what I think I need going into the race. One of those things of course, is adding in cycling to get ready for the triathlon (oh yeah and swimming at some point…) and my 30 minute P90X3 strength workouts. I haven’t finalized the plan yet but I get excited thinking about it! wrote my own training plan for Ironman CdA based on lots of my own research – it wasn’t perfect but it worked! As a born planner, I really enjoy putting together my training plan. Also, putting it together myself allows me more flexibility in shifting workouts when needed based on how I’m feeling, my schedule and what I think I need to accomplish before going into the race.
I have one more weekend of low key workouts on the schedule, including a rest day on Sunday to go downtown San Diego and watch my dad and step mom run the Hot Chocolate 15k. And then….it’s on!!!
Do you like to make your own training plans? Has anyone ever used “Run Faster”?