The start of something new is always fun and exciting; it’s easy to stay on task, complete your objectives, and meet your goals. The same thing is true for a training plan – the beginning of training for a new challenge is always fun and fresh; it’s easy and motivating to get out there for those first few runs. The mileage is low, the run time is short, and it’s a beautiful day for a run.
But then, as time goes on, it may become more challenging to keep up with the training process, or something may change and throw you off balance. Events such as Back to School, a change in the weather, a slight injury or something else could easily throw a wrench in your running, or have you question the training plan altogether. Recently many of these same issues affected me and I not only had to change my running schedule, but I was also questioning the training plan I had set up for myself.
My training began in August, and my next big challenge is in February, giving me a full 6 months of opportune training. But with my son starting 2nd grade, the time I would go running now coincides with breakfast and school drop off. The weather has also played a part in mood and how I feel that day - I’m learning to listen to the muscle pain and figure out when I can push through, and when I need to take a break. But through all this I have been questioning my training plan, and if it’s actually working.
I recently reviewed the Glass Slipper Challenge training plan by Jeff Galloway through the runDisney site, and it has me wondering if I’m trying to do too much. With my plan of running by time every day, I not only increase my time, but also increase my distance; it doesn’t seem to have gotten any easier. But then I started to play closer attention to the data provided by my Sensoria Fitness app.
I have my Sensoria Virtual Coach giving me 1-minute increment audio updates for distance and pace. I used to switch it to every 2 minutes or 5 minutes, depending on the time for that day’s run, but now I keep it at 1-minute updates because it’s motivating to hear the status. When I began training 6 weeks ago, my pace updates were in the 9s or 10s; lately many updates have been in the 8s and even 7s, which is hard to believe for me, but even harder to stop running and take a walk break when you hear numbers like that. I also use the minute updates to run intervals some days – switch to running or walking when you hear the status update.
Trust your training plan; it may not always feel great, or be easy, but slowly and steadily you’ll get to where you need to be. And pull some energy from that Mara’s friendly status update – the next update is just a minute away!