I think I've decided to progress from the Sub 2hrs plan to the Sub 1:45 plan after the Brighton Half, working up to a May half. That will give me a couple of easy-ish weeks, and then I'll be back at the level I was at.
I won't be able to get to sub 1:45, but some slight changes the schedule should really suit me.
Ultimately I'm not too worried about my times this year - it's all building up to a Marathon in 2012
Yeah, I'm aiming to get under 2 hours - again. Did the (hilly!) Canterbury half 2009 in 1:56, but a succession of freak sickness and injury (nothing running related, though) knocked my shape and has left me with about 20 pounds extra...
Pretty much took June, July and August 2009 off, then slowly started training again. By late November I was really hitting my stride, looking to improve my half time to 1:45. Then in early January I a bad cold/flu. two weeks with no training, then starting again. My chest never really cleared up, and one day in early March I came out of the gym and drowe straight to the doctors without an appointment. The receptionist took one look at me struggling to breathe and sent me straight up. 2x10 days of antibiotics later I gave up on the May half...My chest didn't clear up properly until late April.
So, summer training, preparing for a September half. By July 19 I was doing decent pace... Got knocked down by another chest cold. Didn't start training until August 14.
That knocked out the early September half...
September was a great month for training, though. Lots of lifting, cross training and running. Then at the end of the month I got hit by debilitating pain behind the right shoulder blade. So bad I sat up and slept for more than two weeks. Figured it was just an injury from lifting weights. Not so lucky.
By late October I was diagnosed with a flying shoulder blade, stemming from a virus which has knocked out the thorasic nerve... Basically it will heal itself, or it wont, in a year or two. Until then I can't lift my right arm. Doesn't stop me running though. So since November I've been working on getting back in shape after a nightmare year.
Goal is to get through Brighton Half in Feb, sub 2 hours in May, and set a PB in the London Music Half in September (I know, that's a crazy goal for that race, but who dares not...).
There's some good advice saying that you should not increase your weekly milage by more than 10% per week. That's probably worth keeping in mind if you have had previous injury problems.
One thing I like is to not focus on the number of miles, though, but on time per session. I've always followed programs that might specify "60 minutes steady", or "Up the clock – run 1 min fast/1 min slow, 2 mins fast/ 2 mins slow, 3 mins fast/3 mins slow/4 mins fast/4 mins slow, 5 mins fast."
I find those programs much more motivating (and easy to follow) than the milage ones.
As far as the RW half program I'm just not sure about it. The EASY long slow run for week 1 is 13 miles at 8:14 minutes per mile. Were it km it would be 8 miles at 13:22 per mile. I'm sure it's for miles, it just seems pretty fast and ambitious.
Hi all, appreciate you reading (and hopefully answering) my questions.
I've trained for two half marathons in the past, but have moved on to other sports after each one. This year my goal is to run three half marathons, improving my performance in each one, while getting back into great shape on the way. We're talking the Brighton Half in February, hopefully a Kent one in May (was hoping for the Canterbury Half, but it looks like it's not running this year (any sugestions?), and the London Music Half in September.
My question is how I structure my training?
I've used Mike Gratton's programs in the past because they have really good variety built in (speed/interval workouts change every 2-4 weeks), and good progression in the long runs. Currently I'm using one of these training for the Brighton Half.
My question is what to do after the Brighton Half?
Should I go back and start the program again building up to the next half marathon? That way I would be cutting a lot of miles compared to the end of the previous program, which seems kind of like a waste. On the other hand I could look at doing everything much faster than when training for Brighton, which obviously should help my speed.
The other option I see is to keep going for the same level runs as in the last month of the program I'm currently following, only try to go faster and faster and longer and longer week by week.
Whichever option I choose would then be repeated for the Autumn half too.
After 8 months of extensive use the Pacer has just failed me. It has just stopped being recognized by Windows. I did get a full refund from the shop where I bought it, so no problem.
I've really loved it. It's been very motivating. I found it so much easier to keep track of my workouts with the Pacer. I didn't use the built in programs, but adapted my own from a Mike Gratton one and entered them into the web page. Interval workouts are so easy to do - you just plug in your headphones and do what it says. No more looking at the watch, or missing beep sounds.
The question is; Will I buy a new one?
I'm just not sure.
There is a synch/build quality issue. The product isn't built that well, and people encounter a LOT of problems with lost workouts, product replacements and so on I'm not sure it's worth it.
The second issue is data export. I like to keep my data in SportTracks, as it offers the accumulated training load addon - basically, see how your shape changes with each workout, how tired you are and so on, all based on heart rate tracking.
That would be great with the miCoach - only miCoach does not offer an export function, so I have to enter my data manually...
So am I buying a new Pacer? Probably, but I'm not sure. It's a great motivator, but the export issue takes too much time, and I don't like not knowing if I'll lose my data.
If Adidas comes out with a miCoach 2 I'll be there in a heartbeat...