I've got 11 weeks to get from running 10k to running a half marathon (Birmingham, 19th October). Absolutely doable, I keep telling myself. This is my thoughts after week 1 of the journey.
Several people recommended the Asics training online website plan producer thingy ma jah. I had a look and plugged my numbers in. It suggested I should start by spending the next 5 days resting, and after that I should run 3 miles. This was when I had just told it that I had completed a 10k race. And forgive me for being blunt, but I want to train, not spend a week resting.
I then looked at BUPA's beginners training for a half marathon. They suggested I start with 30 minutes easy run, and end the week with a 40 minutes long run. When I have just spent 65 minutes completing my 10km. Again, I want to train to run longer, not shorter.
So I decided to make my own plan. Take the best from the various sources, listen what people on this forum have to suggested, and then blend it all together. May I present, for the first time ever in the history of running, Tomas' T4HM plan! (that'll be Training For Half Marathon, simplez!)
11 weeks, each with 4 runs. The last two weeks are for tapering.
- a recovery run of 7-8 km. BUPA suggests that recovery runs should be 30-40 mins, but I do want to get the mileage in.
- a tempo run. This will be intervals of jog / faster-than-jog-but-maintainable-for-a-longish-period run.
- a speed run. Short bursts of really fast and not really maintainable for any length of time runs with slow jogs in between.
- a long run.
Nothing revolutionary there.
Given that I've got 9 weeks to get up to speed plus 2 weeks taper, and since I start by being able to run 10km, the long runs will be
7 miles, 8 miles, 9 miles, 10 miles, 9 miles, 10 miles, 11 miles, 12 miles, 13 miles, 6 miles, race
I decided to put a reduction week in after the 10 miles to give my body a chance to catch up. The price to pay for that is that rather than increase by 10%, the first weeks see increases of 12%-14%. I don't think that represents any risk.
The tempo runs are trying to get me to run faster for a long period of time. I've started with 1 km slow / 1 km fast / 1 km slow / 1 km fast / 1 km slow, and am thinking of upping that during the course of the training period to 7 min / 7 min (repeat 3 times) -> 10 min / 5 min (x 2) -> 15 min / 5 min (x2) - 25 min / 5 min (x1). Let's see how it goes.
Not sure how far or how fast I can push the speed runs. Life got in the way this week, so I never got to run that one, but my plan was to start by 1 minute fast / 2 minutes slow (x 6).
Comments? Thoughts? Do people agree that this is a reasonable blend of other plans?
So how did week 1 go? Well, as I just said, life got in the way, but other than that I'm pleased.
Monday - cross training, cycled to the super market to do shopping and back, 18 km
Tuesday - Recovery run, 8 km
Wednesday - Tempo, 5 km
Thursday - cross training, 20 km cycling
Friday - this should have been speed training but I ended up working from 6 am to 8 pm and it was absolutely p*ssing down in the evening. So I treated myself to a day off
Saturday - long run, 11.5 km.
Sunday - rest.
It didn't feel like all run and no fun. Rather, it felt like the kind of effort I can (hopefully) maintain over the next two months.