Wednesday, October 7, 2009

New Half Marathon Training Program

After completing my second half marathon on September 27, 2009, I decided to make some changes to my training program.  I ran a great race, finished in 1:54:38 (a personal record) or a 8:42 minutes/mile pace.  I'd like to continue to lower my half marathon pace next year so that I'm able to run at or near 8 minutes/mile at next Spring's Illinois Half Marathon. 

With this new training program, I will alternate hill workouts and progression runs using the treadmill on Fridays.  My rest days will be Thursdays and Sundays unless I do a 5k or 10k on the weekend.  I've also started the Two Hundred Squat Challenge to strengthen my legs since there aren't many hills to challenge me locally.  The goal will be to gradually increase distance and speed and strengthen the legs over the first 10 weeks.  The final two weeks I will reduce or eliminate the strength training and lower my mileage.

Today's Run
I completed week 1, day 3 of my 12 week half marathon training program - a 3 mile Pace Run. I am noticing the squats improve my running posture and give me a good kick at the end of the run. I can also run up my stairs a lot easier these days!  I thought I'd dread doing them, especially before a run.  But with the colder temps these days, completing 100 or more squats is an excellent way to warm up before a run.

The first week of training is almost over.  I completed an Easy Run Monday; a treadmill Interval Run Tuesday; and a Pace Run today. I'll take a day off from running Thursday and then do my first Hill Run on Friday.  I'm inclined to do Saturday's 8 mile Long Run at the local Forest Preserve.  Two laps around the track should be about 8 miles!
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