Training Tip Tuesday – Train!

Yep…wanna run that race well? Train. Are you just running it for fun? Train anyway.

Why? It’s a great way to prepare yourself for what you are undertaking. Especially if it is something you have never done before. And even if you have, the closer you follow a dedicated training schedule, the better and easier and more enjoyable your experience will be.

Believe it or not, humans are creatures of habit. And most of us work better with a schedule of items to do. Doing things “willy nilly” as my husband says, isn’t always the best bet if you are planning to do something physically or emotionally taxing. Sure, it is great to do if you are on vacation and winging it. But for other things, i.e. running a race, following a training program is best.

Jack Daniels' Running Guide

Jack Daniels’ Running Guide

Which one? Well, here’t the thing. You can hire a coach. You can buy an app. You can download a free training course. It really doesn’t make a difference. But what you SHOULD do, is look through the entire program. Be sure that 3 weeks down the line you won’t be getting in over your head. In other words, if you work two jobs, have a family, and have a limited number of hours to devote to your running, then look for a plan that suits your lifestyle. No, that particular plan may not bring you a PR, but it will prep you for the distance that you are hoping to achieve for your race.

Hal Higdon's Running Guide

Hal Higdon’s Running Guide

You can ask your runner friends, or even go to a forum on line and ask the advice of others. And that is great! But what works for someone else may not work for you. So get a good look at what you are in store for before you begin. And remember, not all training programs are the same. Some prep you in just 12 weeks. Some take 6 months, especially if you are starting from scratch. So be sure you give yourself the time you need to train properly before your event.

There are a few great walk/run programs out there, the imfamous Couch to 5K, or Couch to 10K programs, half marathon and marathon training programs by some of the greats…Hal Higdon, Jeff Galloway, Jack Daniels, etc. And many races offer training programs after you pay your entry fee! All of which are great, and worth the effort to follow. There may be moments in the process where you are truly questioning what you are doing. And that is OK. It is normal. I never would have believed that following Hal Higdon’s Novice 2 Marathon Training program would have helped me to not only finish my first marathon, but beat my goal by 36 seconds, AND allow me to qualify for Boston. Trust in the process. Trust in the program. And don’t be temped midway to quit or switch programs. The authors of these training programs have been through the process. They know how it works. And they know how best to train you without the risk of burnout or worse yet, injury.

Hudson and Fitzgerald Running Guide

Hudson and Fitzgerald Running Guide

We are extremely lucky to live in a day and age where all this information is available right at our fingertips. 10 years ago as a novice runner, you’d have to seek out a local running coach, or a local gym, or even the local library to find such programs. You really have no excuse NOT to find the perfect program to use. If you are serious about the run, be serious about finding the right program!

Jeff Galloway Run Walk Run Method

Jeff Galloway Run Walk Run Method

And, remember, even though you have already run that 5K, 10K, half marathon, or full marathon, don’t deny yourself the pleasure of following a training program yet again. Unless you have been running for years, the training programs always offer a great outline for you to run your best race, without overestimating or underestimating your ability. Find one that fits. Follow it. And bask in your success! I’m rooting for you!!

 

Disclaimer: These training tips are based on my opinion and what has worked for me. I am not a doctor, or a trainer, or a professional athlete. This blog purely represents observations I have made in my 4 years as a runner. Always consult a medical professional before beginning a running or workout program. I am not liable, either expressly or in an implied manner, nor claim any responsibility for any emotional or physical problems that may occur directly or indirectly from reading this blog.

3 Responses to Training Tip Tuesday – Train!

  1. Momshomerun says:

    I’m a big fan of Jeff Galloway. His programme actually made me faster.

  2. This was great. I am currently training for Boston and started off using Run Less Run Faster which I really like, but I had a little injury and had to stop speedwork for a while and switched to Hal Higdon, and I like it!

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