2016 Goals

After I finished my 10k in October I was listless.  I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my running, so I didn’t do anything at all.  That’s not to say I stopped running, but I cut back significantly since I had no drive.  To me it seems like most people who get into running continue doing longer, more difficult races.  I was not – and am still not – interested in the next race distance after a 10k, which would be a half marathon.  It’s not to say I never want to run one, but right now I’m not interested in running for two and a half hours in one go.  That’s a lot of running that I’m just not ready to do.

Since my running was very sporadic I knew I needed some kind of challenge to keep my fitness up.  I usually run three miles three times a week, and my annual average for 2015 was about 30 miles/month, although I didn’t start running again until mid-March.  30 miles/month running three miles each time averaged out to 10 runs, which was more than doable for me!  I had  my goal!  30 miles/month would challenge me to run continuously throughout the month, but it wasn’t an unreasonable or overwhelming amount.

January proved a little difficult, so I did have to kick up my running in the second half of the month.  February is going really well, and I feel really great – and exciting – about running again.

 

10k Results!

It’s been a few months since I ran my 10k.  I ended up completing my goal (running the whole time)!  I also exceeded my expectations with my time, averaging 10:15 min/mile!  I had a great time and felt incredibly accomplished.  I would recommend the Rock ‘n’ Roll St. Louis race event for anyone who’s interested in large events.  Though it would have been nice if they had had some more music stations, there were plenty of water stands, and the course was marked clearly.

I slacked a bit on my running game after I finished my race, but this year I’ve set a new goal and have done well so far.  I’ll be updating soon!

10k Training Week 4: Push it Good

Looking back, I can’t believe four weeks have already gone by since I started training for my 10k race!  I’ve accomplished a lot in that time period, and I still have two thirds of my plan left.  I’m pretty sure I’m going to rock the Rock ‘n’ Roll St. Louis 10k.

Run 1:  3 miles @ 11:21 min/mi pace

My first run of the week was great!  My Saturday rest day combined with an easy walk on Sunday made my legs feel really fresh, so I decided to push myself to see what I could do.  I ended up running 1.5 miles, walking for a few minutes, and running the remaining 1+ mile.  Three miles in 34:04!  That turned out to be an average 11:21 min/mi pace, my fastest pace to date!  It was a great run, and I felt extremely accomplished.

Run 2:  3.01 miles @ 11:25 min/mi pace

After my stellar performance on Monday I decided to try and push my endurance a little bit more on Wednesday.  I went a little  slower and ran two continuous miles!  I walked for a few minutes, then finished out my three miles strong.  Another great run, another great feeling!  Running two miles was a little tougher for me, so I definitely had to play some mind games with myself.  I told myself I would run for a mile, then another five minutes.  Since I was almost to two miles I needed to go for it, I told myself.  Sometimes that’s what you have to do.

Run 3:  4.01 miles @ 11:03 min/mi pace

My long run of the week was incredible.  The theme of the week seemed to be endurance, and I couldn’t let myself down on my last run.  I ran all four miles without any walk breaks and averaged my fastest time yet!  What an amazing feeling – I’ve never run four miles straight without any walk breaks.  I know I’m going to reach my goal of running my entire 10k in two months, and I couldn’t be more excited to continue my training!

Yoga

I continued with my yoga practice this week as well.  Tuesday was all about stretching out running muscles, while Thursday was full of deep stretches.  It was just what I needed.  I can definitely tell that yoga has helped the performance of my muscles, and I intend on keeping it up.  I’ve been trying to incorporate more yoga into my weekly routine but haven’t been too successful so far.  Four weeks of running and yoga has been great to me.

Samantha or Sam's 10k Training Week 4 Progress
Pace is on the left, while run number is on the bottom

Here’s a cool little graph I’ve been keeping with my min/mi pace.  I’ve normalized the times so they don’t include any warm up or cool down walks.  My Friday runs are consistently my fastest runs, while I seem to take things easier on Wednesdays.  While it seems silly, seeing this information laid out makes me that much more excited about running!  My progress has been better than I imagined after only a month.

I’m very proud of myself.

10k Training Week 3: Throw Your Schedule Out the Window

Samantha or Sam's 10k Training Recap Week 3

A few weeks ago I began my 10k journey.  I created my own 10k training plan using Jeff Galloway and Jenny Hadfield 10k guides as my inspiration.  It’s been three weeks of training now and I haven’t managed to follow my own plan for even one week yet!  I could give all the excuses, but it comes down to two things:

  1. It’s too hot to run outside
  2. I’m lazy

Since I can’t seem to get four runs in during the week, I’m going to tweak my training plan.  I’m only going to require three runs per week, with my Sunday run optional.  If I don’t run on Sunday I’ll still have to do at least 30 minutes of cardio, but I’m tired of beating myself up over not getting all my runs in.  I’ll be shifting most of my long runs to Friday, which is my favorite day to hang out in the gym.

My runs this week all felt really good.  My 4 mile run on Friday was awesome!  After my warmup I ran one mile/walked five minutes three times, hitting the four mile mark.  I was disgustingly sweaty after I was finished, but I felt great.  I’m not worried about my 10k at all.  I’ve got two more months of training; I’m going to kick ass!

Week 3 Training Breakdown

10k Training Recap Week 3

Samantha or Sam's 10k Training Plan Version 2

10k Training Week 2: Fuel!

My second week of training was definitely better than my first.  I managed to get three of four runs in.

I skipped my Wednesday run in favor of a walk; I hadn’t slept well and was having trouble staying awake without the wonderful aid of coffee.  There was no way I would have been able to run and stay awake for the rest of the afternoon.

My Sunday long run was rough.  Once I convinced myself to get out of bed (an hour later than I had planned), I skipped breakfast and went straight for the run.  Big mistake.  Half a mile in I started getting lightheaded, felt weak, and started cramping.  Apparently I should not run on an empty stomach!  I had already suspected this, but had never confirmed it.  Now I have proof I needed to fuel before any run.  This was an uncomfortable lesson to learn, but I’d rather find out now than right before my race.  Fortunately, thanks to most of my runs being pre-lunch, I know a packet of oatmeal 20-30 minutes before my run is all I need for a 3 mile run.  I’ll have to see what I require for my longer runs.

Week 2 Training Breakdown

10k Training Week 2 Recap