Monday, January 28, 2013

Running, running, running....

Well, I am still at it! I have not backed off my training plan. I moved indoors last week for all my runs. I have to say that the treadmill was not as awful as it could have been. The saving grace for my long 6.2 mile run was having a HUGE fan blowing right on me. I can't complain about that!

One thing I totally failed at last week was making it to my local running store for new shoes. I paid for that laziness today. The weather was foggy and kind of wet and totally reminded me of the beautiful Pacific Northwest. I was super excited to be outdoors but my legs and feet were not happy with my shoe situation. Ugh, slowest 5k ever!

My current shoes are Brooks adrenalines and I am not sure about staying with Brooks or trying out Mizuno. Are you loyal to a brand and line or do you change it up often??

Monday, January 21, 2013

Random running tips and other cool finds

Brr, it is really cold here! My personal threshold for running outdoors in the winter chill is about 15 degrees Fahrenheit. I looked around the world wide interwebs for guidance on what I should be wearing to stay toasty. I found a pretty detailed explanation at Runner's World.
Here is the chart, straight from the article (which has other great tips).
30 degrees: 2 tops, 1 bottom. Long-sleeve base layer and a vest keep your core warm. Tights (or shorts, for polar bears).
10 to 20 degrees: 2 tops, 2 bottoms. A jacket over your base layer, and wind pants over the tights.
0 to 10 degrees: 3 tops, 2 bottoms. Two tops (fleece for the cold-prone) and a jacket. Windbrief for the fellas.
Minus 10 to 0 degrees: 3 tops, 2 bottoms, extra pair of mittens, 1 scarf wrapped around mouth or a balaclava.
Minus 20 degrees: 3 tops, 3 bottoms, 2 extra pairs of mittens, 1 balaclava, sunglasses. Or, stay inside.

According to the chart, I dress for no less than minus 10-0 degrees when it is 30 degrees out! Well, I do stop short of wrapping a scarf around my mouth. I find 3 tops  and two bottoms (running tights and a second workout pants) to be my comfort zone. I wear mittens that I can peel back and bare my fingers after I warm up, but I always keep my ears covered.

Other note worthy tips for cold weather running included, changing out of running gear as soon as possible when you finish and to warm up indoors prerun.

I have a basic training plan in mind but I can't seem to stop searching and reading other plans. A neat plan that I found uses the Runners World website again. Their smart coach training plan is free and pretty easy to customize. It uses your goal and a past race time to calculate average paces for your training runs and helps guide you to a specific finish time for your upcoming race. This plan really made me realize how I need to actually race when I run a race rather than coast by at my usual training pace. What I really liked about this tool is that you can select your long run day and the tool adjusts your training week from there. 

My last cool find is a treadmill pace conversion chart! Like I said above, I have no shame in hitting up the treadmill for temps below 15 degrees. Personally, running on a treadmill doesn't inspire me to up the ante and use the incline feature. In my mind, I am a winner for not just going back to bed so it is not likely that I am going to challenge myself too much on the treadmill. This chart is a great motivator for me to either push my pace or try to increase the incline for at least part of my treadmill runs.  

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Just life...

I had a pretty good training week last week. I hit all my goals and only had to hit the treadmill for one workout. I even got lucky enough to have a huge fan blowing on me for the entire 4 miles. Usually I feel like I am going to burst into flames 2.5 miles in on the treadmill.

This week has not been a glorious training week. In fact, I have not been able to make a single run so far. I wish I had a crystal ball so that on Monday, when I chose to put off my run because it was FREEZING, I could have known that Tuesday would be spent with my sick-at-home 1st grader. The poor thing has her second case of strep throat for the 2013 calendar year.

I can still take control of this flop of a training week and squeak 3 runs out. Keep your fingers crossed!! How do you recover from plans that get thrown out the window? I have to really talk myself into going with the flow. Change comes hard...

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Training Season!!

Yikes! I have been a bad blogger! Now that winter break and the holidays are over I am happy to be getting back into training mode. I always work better under a deadline, even if it is a manufactured deadline, I need the pressure to get motivated.

Currently, I am signed up for a 10K and two half-marathons. The 10K is in early March, the first half-marathon is in early May and the second half is in late August. I am strangely excited to finally be training for a half. I wanted to last year and just could not make it work with my schedule. This year I am getting promoted to the big 3-5 and it feels great to have such a concrete goal as my prize.

My challenges for training will likely revolve around the weather, the health of my kids and my husband's work schedule. Right now our weather is cold but manageable. However, I am really not going to get out and run on snow and ice covered roads. I know some runners do and I applaud them, but I am not as coordinated or sure enough on my feet to brave icy roads. So far my route has been in great condition and I hope it stays that way.

Sick kids and and a non-traditional work schedule for my husband will just have to be handled as they happen. My plan for dealing with those obstacles is to allow extra weeks in my 13 week training plan. Or send my kids to school hopped up on Tylenol and run fast enough to out pace the Tylenol wearing off. ;)

This week's training plan is pretty basic and focuses on getting used to running 4 days a week again. I ran very little (once a week) while the girls were on winter break. I ran 3.15 miles on Monday and 3.30 today (Tuesday). Wednesdays will always be my rest days and I plan to do my long runs on Thursdays with Friday being a slow easy recovery run or cross-training. This Thursday's long run will only be 4 miles and Friday I will run 3 miles at the insanely hot gym.  

I hope to share my training each week and hopefully keep my self accountable through this blog. Next week I plan to post my training schedule. It will be a mixture of a Hal Higdon's schedule and the Train Like a Mother's Finish it half-marathon schedule. I can't have any weekend runs and only can run 4 days during the week so I am trying to work out a happy medium between the two plans.

What training plans do you like best? What are the biggest obstacles to your training plan? DO you have any special goals or prizes in mind while you are training?