Training plans

As much as I'd love to share training plans with you I can't. A training plan is as individual as you are. You need to take into account your lifestyle, your commitments and priorities. There is no point saying you are going to run every morning if you're a nightowl.

John Bingham's Marathon Running for Mortals has a great series of questions about your barriers before committing to marathon training. I think the same applies for couch to 5km.

For my 50km race, I altered a version of the Run for the Toad 50k plan which features back to back long runs. It will download in Excel automatically. I also recommend Relentless Forward Progress.

And for triathletes, there are books and books full of training plans - some technical, some simple (well a few. Okay one. and some incredibly technical. Which is why I got my coach!

The key ingredient of a training plan for me are:

  • realism: know what you really can commit to. It's better than being down on yourself for not doing what was planned. 
  • 10% - don't increase your mileage by more than 10% a week
  • mix it up: don't just run, cross train. I did my second marathon with pilates, swimming and only one run a week
  • your spirit can't tell the time: if it's your first time, why do you need a time goal? Aim to finish before the sweeper car with a smile on your face. That's why I don't fuss too much with speed work, which can be great blah blah. If you don't like running, focus on the type of running you really need. 
  • long weekly rides / runs: get familiar with the distance. If you skip these or can't finish them, re arrange your training plan
  • rearrange your training plan regularly: you don't just do a a plan in April for an event in October. You need to revisit it regularly as both your life and your body ebbs and flows. Stick your birthday and special events in so you work around them rather than just miss your training.