For the first time since having the twins last April, I shifted my fitness priority to running instead of Beachbody workouts. I am training for the AFC Half Marathon (August 18th) and want to start chipping away my time toward a half marathon PR. My favorite program for combining with running is LIIFT4, so naturally that is the program I decided to do along with my training! It also worked out perfectly as I was able to finish it just before the new Morning Meltdown 100 began on July 29th!
My Half Marathon Training Plan with LIIFT4
I put together a half marathon training plan with my coach Jim O’Hara from the Seaside Striders. Jim’s running club, the Seaside Striders, meets twice weekly in North County San Diego and he puts together individual schedules for his runners. This is the best of both worlds in my opinion as I get quality, yet more hands-off individual coaching with group support and motivation, at a lower price than detailed individual coaching. I do not upload my Garmin data for Jim to analyze, he simply provides the pan and group workout tailored to my goals and he expects me to execute his plan. He is there to check in with me and answer questions.
As a busy mom with 3 kids, the compromise I made with my husband was that I would go to the speed workout sessions with the Seaside Striders every other Wednesday. My coach Jim gave me two speed workouts to do on my own on the weeks that I wasn’t able to make it to the group. Because I knew he’d be asking, I always did the speed workouts on my own (can’t say the same for past attempts at speed work solo!).
I started “officially” training for the race 13 weeks out and also started LIIFT4 the same week. Last summer, when I was losing the baby weight from having my twins, I completed LIIFT4 start to finish while running 3 days a week and lost 11 pounds.
This summer, my intention for LIIFT4 was different – I wanted to finish the program, with a couple modifications. Ultimately, due to some travel and prioritizing running, it took me 10 weeks to complete LIIFT4 with my half marathon training. My long run peaked at 14.8 miles (last weekend, it was meant to be 14 but we went the long way) and averaged about 11 miles. I ran 4 days a week, averaging about 28-32 miles/week.
Adding In 80 Day Obsession Booty to LIIFT4
LIIFT4’s Leg workout alternates format each week. The first week, you lift heavy weights, followed by HIIT and core, called a 50/50 workout. The second week, you do 100% HIIT, with focus on legs. Given I was already doing a really intense speed workout each week, I decided to switch out this all HIIT workout every other week with 80 Day Obsession Booty.
Runners are notorious (and the PT I saw postpartum confirmed it was true for me too) for having an imbalance between quad and hamstring/glute strength, so I wanted to continue to focus on my glutes (plus, I knew it wouldn’t hurt for swim suit season right!?) . The workouts I ended up selecting were A Little More Obsessed Booty (45 min) and A Little Obsessed Booty (30 min). I really wanted to do 80 Day Obsession Booty, but given that the workouts were usually 60+ minutes long and my focus was running, it didn’t happen.
LIIFT4 & Running Hybrid Sample Week
Here’s a sample of how a week would look for me (speed work sessions with my coach are Wednesday nights, so I move the LIIFT4 workouts around. Joel says it is fine to do the workouts in any order). My goal was always the 4 LIIFT4 workouts and 4 runs, though I as mentioned earlier, sometimes I only had time or energy for 3 LIIFT4 workouts so the program took me a little longer to finish.
Monday: LIIFT4 Legs or A Little Obsessed Booty
Tuesday: LIIFT4 Chest & Triceps & 5-6 mile run
Wednesday: Running speed workout
Thursday: Recovery run (~45 minutes easy)
Friday: LIIFT4 Back & Biceps
Saturday: Long Run (10-13 miles)
Sunday: LIIFT4 Shoulders (take it a little easy on the HIIT portion)
LIIFT4 & Running – Nutrition
Because the focus was on running performance, not weight loss, and I wanted to have more balance this summer, I didn’t track my containers this time. Instead, I followed more of the 2B mindset plan by eating when hungry, filling my plate with lots of veggies, and drinking plenty of water. I also enjoyed plenty of summer BBQs and my share of S’mores. For those who DO want to lose weight, I recommend following the LIIFT4 nutriton plan, but bump up 1-2 brackets depending on your mileage and scheduling your “cheat day” for the same day as you long run to help with the hunger.
LIIFT4 & Half Marathon Results
I can’t tell you how much my half marathon time has improved YET (will keep you posted after the race), but my running paces have definitely improved. Physically, I lost 2.5 pounds and 2.7 inches overall. I didn’t really think there was a big difference physically until I put my before/after pictures side by side (this is why I always tell people to take those before pictures!!!).
What’s Next?! Morning Meltdown 100 & Running
I went straight from finishing LIIFT4 into the New Morning Meltdown100! I plan to complete Morning Meltdown while running and have decided I will tackle all 100 workouts, including the cardio ones, because I love a challenge and I want my tracker to be completely crossed out!
I’m already done with the first 5 workouts and so far I’m finding it compliments running really well!
Join an Accountability Group Full of Runners!
There’s still time to join our MM100 only accountability group OR you can join my next monthly multi-program accountability group and complete LIIFT4 or any other Beachbody program with fellow runners. The next group starts August 19th!
Fill out the form below & I will email you detailed information on how to join!