Tuesday, February 3, 2015

No Training Plan? No Problem!

As the calendar turned to February I suddenly realized I am in a brand new situation, I do not have a training plan. You guys know, I am a planner. I have everything planned out with goals in mind. Turning the page in my training journal to a blank sheet was so weird, but oddly freeing.

This year is a little different for me. I usually plan two or three goal races a year, and then try to fill in races as they fit in my training's. It is something that has always worked really well for me.  When I decided I was not going to run another marathon in 2015, I switch my focus. I wanted to be able to work on speed and not as much on the distance that comes with marathon training.

I made the decision; I was going to focus on the half marathon in 2015. I want a new half marathon PR so bad, and I am pretty focused on what I have to do. My half marathon PR is 1:51, and it is from my first half marathon. Before the stress fracture, my speed was increasing and it was very realistic that I could break that PR no problem. Now, I have to be truthful with myself and my limits right now. I spaced out a few half marathons in fun locations to try to take the stress off the goal.

Still, I do not have a training plan.

The funny thing is I am not stressing having a plan. I know to reach my 1,200 mile goal for the year; I need to average 23 miles a week. I am doing at least six half marathons this year, which means I need to give myself enough time for recovery and to build up mileage.

I sat down with my training journal and think I may have figured it out.

I am going to run 4-5 days a week. This will give me a weather buffer since I am a winter weather wimp. One day will be speed workout. Those speed workouts will include 800 repeats, 1k repeats and mile repeats. I really like speed work, so I am not concerned. My long runs each week will be at least 10 miles. They will all be at, or close to, race pace. I will max out at 15 miles two weeks before a race. The runs during the week will be what I have time for. I am not going to push myself like I would with a training plan. If I only have time for three miles one day, then that is better than none!

I think this will work, for now. My goal race for the year isn't until September, so if it doesn't work I have more than enough time to figure it out. I want to enjoy the ride a little more and not focus so much on a time goal. I think taking the pressure off will help out my running so much more!

Do you follow a training plan? If you don't, share your tips!


  1. I only follow a training plan if I have a big race coming up or am trying to speed up. Otherwise, I try to mix it up with some speed work, weight training, long run one day a week, and keep my mileage up each week. Has always worked for me!

  2. Steff, I'm pretty sure that I've almost always had a training plan; I'm pretty OCD like that! I think we both know enough about what our body needs now, though, that we can make it without one. I think I'm just too lazy to have to think about what to do next, so I prefer to have it lined out ahead of time - ha! You're doing great; you have recovered so well and I know you'll have some great races this year!

  3. I never used a training plan until this time around. When I didn't use a plan I just made sure to do a long run, a speed workout, 2 normal average runs, a pace run and a cross training day. I would mix days depending on how I was feeling. My problem was i didn't hold myself accountable for missing days