Tag Archive | training plans

Taking The Day Off

So after my post yesterday, I did some thinking.   I had a few friends contact me.   I did some more thinking and then a little more.

I’m wondering if I was also having the “I didn’t get into the NYC Marathon blues.”    The drawing was yesterday.   If you couldn’t tell, I didn’t get in.   I didn’t expect to get in, but I still dreamed of being a lucky lottery winner.   If my Grammy didn’t teach me anything, she taught me that my family is not destined to win any lottery drawing.   If that was the case, her 50 years of buying and tracking her numbers would have hit by now.   So, I knew I wouldn’t be that lucky, but I did dare to dream.  There are other dreams though:)

I am giving myself a snow day.   I am actually giving myself a snow weekend to come up with my plan.   Yes, I’m working on it.   As my cohort said, I do need “to go to the gym and lift some heavy things.”   So that is part one of the equation.   I’m working on part two.   I will have a plan and implement it.   I’m just not sure what it is yet:)


Now What?

So as the expression goes,

I’m off and running.

So far.   So good.

I’ve met my January goal having completed not just one, but two events.   February, my local MRTT group is hosting an event, so I’m good there and I’ve got races scheduled in March, April, and May for the 9+1; so I am on my way.    Although, I am not getting ahead of myself as I know I’ve got a long way to go, but it is nice to have a plan.

Speaking of plans…

My next NYRR race is the Washington Heights Salsa and Blues 5K.   It seems like a fun event.   Plus it’s short even though they say it is a hilly course.   Now my cohort in crime has informed me that we are training to do this in 25 minutes.   SAY WHAT????   Did she not see the part about it being a hilly course?   Of course, Dawn loves her hills so this will be a good excuse to run some hills.   That being said, my fastest 5K is around 27 minutes on a course that could really only be described as non hilly.    But being as Dawn is my cohort in crime and I’ve talked her into (yes, your in) running the 9+1 AGAIN this year as she already did it last year and will actually be running NYCM this year, she is doing it again.   Therefore, I will train on hills.   I will run as fast as I can.   I will hope that we can do it.   The beauty of a shorter race is that you can run full throttle and just pass out or throw up at the end.   But lets hope that doesn’t happen and we are prepared for it.


Now the question will be….

How to prepare for it?

I’m not sure, but I do believe there may be some hill repeats, some dreaded treadmill workouts, and some other torturous running involved.

The next question will be…..


Easy answer…..

Because we can or at least think we can.

That is the beauty of running.    Just lace up.   Go out and see what happens.    The way I look at it, if it doesn’t happen what is the worst that can happen?    We have to try it again.   Now, I know that I am no Speedy Gonzalez and that a 25 minute 5K is probably the fastest I will ever run it (if I ever do).   You know what “that’s what it’s all about.”   Pushing limits.   Having fun and just seeing where it will take me (and my cohort).

In a million years would never imagine that I would be running races at all let alone setting time goals on them.   So I will just see how far I can go which is already farther than I’ve ever imagined.

Word of the Week – Taper

As with any specialized activity, there are lots of words that get thrown around.   Sometimes those on the outside (by choice because anyone is welcome) don’t either appreciate our vocabulary or those of us new don’t understand it.   I’m the later and once was the previous:)   I’m learning so much and still realize that I don’t know anything.   So please take everything that I say with a grain of salt.  Preferable with a Margarita!   Please also remember that I am no expert and am just a novice trying to figure it all out.

Today’s word of the week

and something that I’m still figuring out is


Let’s go see what Webster thinks it means


noun \ˈtā-pər\

Definition of TAPER

1   a :  a slender candle (not it)
b :  a long waxed wick used especially for lighting candles, lamps, pipes, or fires (not it)

 c :  a feeble light (not it)
a :  a tapering form or figure (not it)
b :  gradual diminution of thickness, diameter, or width in an elongated object (not it)
c :  a gradual decrease   (Bingo – we have a winner!)
Now Google Runner’s taper and you will get a whole slew of responses and ways to do it.    There are long tapers, short taper, no tapers, and everything in between.   I, myself, am doing a short taper for my marathon.   The reason being is my training has been very condensed.
Now you wouldn’t think tapering would be a hard thing, but it is.   Every person is different.   Every event is different and every situation is different.   I’m still trying to balance what my body needs.
What I do know though is this week, my running is less than it has been.
Only 4, 6, 3 and 8.
Next week it is only 3, 4, 2.
Of course that week ends with
I’m not sure when I crossed the border where going for a 6 mile run is a short run, but somewhere that change happened.   I now need to reign it in.   The thing about running a lot of miles is that your body only begins to get into the pattern around mile 3 and then your stopping.   I will work on that.   Who knew that one day I would actually need to work on NOT running as opposed to getting out the door to run.
Life is funny that way!
One thing that I do know that I have to be mindful of with the diminished miles is that means that I need to step back on what I am eating because less miles also means less calories burned.

Be the athlete You Want to Be!


There are a million and one training plans. Most share similar ideas of how to improve.  The question though is not “what plan” but “what is your goal?” Asking that question will help you narrow down your plan.

As you know, when I started running, I just ran. I started with the basic running plan that my Tri Group introduced me to. The couch to 5k. It was perfect for my goal of the time which literally was just to get my @ss off the couch to run the 5K in the Tri. It worked.

When it was all said and done, I turned into Forest Gump without the beard. I just ran and ran some more. The more I ran though, the more I realized that I needed to learn more about the “art” of running.   Yes, running is simple. Just put one foot in front of the other, but there can be so much more… If you want there to be.

I will say though that if in the beginning I felt the need to do more than just run, I might not have run as far and long as I am now.  I ran just to run.   I didn’t have a plan.  I didn’t have a goal. I didn’t know about mile repeats, speed training or any of the other types of training. I thought if I put the miles in that was enough.   You know what?  For me at the time, it was enough.  If I didn’t just put on my shoes and run,  I might not be where am today in my training.   My only thought in the beginning was just pure and simple to be able to run without feeling like I was dying.

I was talking with a friend who is just getting back I to running (yes, I mean you:).  She was asking me if I was doing all these accelerated glides (not even sure what that is) and magic miles (something else to investigate).  I told her no because right now I’m too late into my Hat Trick training plan to start something new.  Stick with the plan. Keep my eye on the end goal.   I do want to investigate over the off season, but not yet.  I know that I do have  much to learn about running, but I think if I knew how clueless I was when I started that I might not have started.   I would have been overwhelmed.  I’m glad I didn’t know any better and just ran.

My advice to anyone just starting out is to not worry about those Magic Miles yet!  Don’t think about all the things that you think that you need to know to start, because the bottom line is that running really is simple.  Yes, there are many complicated training exercises that you can do to improve your running.  Yes, they can help you run faster.  But the knowledge will come in time as will the improvements.  As I said in the beginning, ask yourself one simple question (which you can share with us if you’d like):

What is Your Goal?

If you goal is just to run. Then just run…


What Training Plan Should I follow?

Ask anyone who is training for an event what training plan that they are following and I bet you get a different answer every time.    Anyone who is serious about their training is usually following something, even if it their own plan.   With anything in life the key is being prepared.    You wouldn’t book a vacation and then forget to pack.   So why would you register for an event and not prepare for it either.   Yes, there are many who probably do this and I have been guilty of it too.    I will admit that when training for my first Half Marathon, I didn’t follow a plan.  I just pulled a Forest Gump and built up my running distance.   There was no special training plan.   Yet still I was training.   I just wasn’t training very smart.

Now that I’ve got a few things under my belt and am planning more for the future, I realize that I can’t just expect it all to fall into place.   It would also be nice if I would be able to walk the day afterwards because my body will be ready.  But how to train when your training for both a Sprint Tri one month and then the following month plan to pull a Hat Trick.    Every athlete (and I don’t really consider myself one, but I digress) unless working with a trainer really needs to figure out what will work for them.   What will fit into the schedule?    What can the body do without risking injury?   Most importantly for me,   how to keep it fun?   Most of us also have lives outside our race/training schedule.   Lives that take up a lot of our time.   So how to fit it all in is usually the biggest question.    But you get out of things what you put into it.   So if you want not just to finish and event, but to finish it with a smile you have to prepare.    I think I’ve found what will work for me and help me be ready when the time is right.

I have done the Iron Girl Sprint before, so I’m not expecting any curve balls.   I also just finished up the NJ State Sprint Triathlon, so I feel like I am prepared for this event.   What I do not feel prepared for in any way, shape, or form is this Hat Trick.   So I have decided my primary focus is going to be on this event.   A Sprint Tri is not an easy event to finish, but I am more confident in my ability to do this.   What I can’t imagine is running a 5K resting for an hour and then running a 10K.  Then going home to sleep to come back for more pain of running a Half Marathon.    So my focus right now is on my running and building up my endurance.   I feel that this can and should also help me in the Iron Girl.

I have a plan this time.   A plan that is working for me.   A plan that someone much smarter about running than I ever could be came up with.   I am following the Runner’s World Training plan.   I’m sure that their running experts  know what they are talking about too.   I’m learning as I go that there is so much more to this running thing than cute shoes although those are important too.    I’m learning about Tempo Runs, intentionally running at a 3 minutes SLOWER pace than normal on some training runs, and just knowing that I am setting myself up for a good experience.  I am training smarter not just harder.    The beauty of the plan that I am following is that on my rest days, I can still (if I choose) do a bike or a swim because these are non impact and will still allow myself to train for the Tri.

I will never be the fastest, but I will be the best that I can be.   That is all you can ask of yourself or anyone else.