Monday, January 24, 2011

New training schedule

River crossing over beasImage via Wikipedia
Have a plan
Last Saturday's race brought my last training cycle to a close. I don't like to run without a plan, so it's time for a new training schedule. I spent some time over the weekend thinking about it, and came up with the training schedule posted on my calendar on the training tab above.

This new training schedule takes me through to my next 5k on March 26. I may also do a 10k on Feb. 26. If so, I'll tweak that week a bit, but won't change anything else. Or I may make sweeping changes at any time.

This new training schedule also lays a foundation for half marathon training coming up in April and May.

It's hard to put together a training plan without goals. So, here are my goals for the next couple of months:
1. Weight loss: time to attack the "love handles"
2. Improve endurance: I think my low mileage over the past 6-8 weeks is partly to blame for my falling off at the end of the two 5k's I did this month.
3. Continue speed/core work: it's important to practice running fast.

I should also mention "staying injury free," which is always a goal.

Fortunately, the first two goals can both be achieved the same way - longer, slower runs. The third goal will be achieved by keeping a weekly speed workout and a weekly core workout on the schedule.

The Plan
With those goals in mind, beginning on Jan. 29, my training plan will follow this basic pattern:
Long -- recovery -- medium -- rest -- speed -- recovery -- rest

More specifically:
(Saturdays) Long run: 7-10 mile range.
(Sundays) Recovery run: 4-6 mile range.
(Mondays) Medium-distance run: 5-7 mile range.
(Tuesdays) Rest (core work)
(Wednesdays) Speed work: usually a tempo run or intervals.
(Thursdays) Recovery run: 4-5 mile range.
(Fridays) Rest.

Weekly mileage will increase at about 8-9% per week until I get to about 30mi/week a couple of weeks before my race. Then things start to level off and taper slightly during the two weeks leading up to my race on March 26.

Details about the various types of runs
Here are my current training paces:
Easy/Long run pace: 9:23-9:53 min/mi
Tempo pace: 8:04-8:25 min/mi
400m intervals: 1:43-1:50 per 400m (about 6:52-7:20 min/mi)

I calculated these paces using the McMillan's Running Calculator and a recent 5k race time.

Tempo runs will roughly follow the 30/60/10 setup (30% of total time at easy pace, then 60% of total time at fast pace, then 10% of total time at easy pace). So, e.g., a 35min tempo would be 10min @ easy pace, then 21min @ fast pace, 4min @ easy pace.

Interval workouts will include about a 1mi warm-up and a 1mi cool-down at easy pace. Each interval will include 400m at interval pace, then about a 2min slow jog or walk. 
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