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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Solid Plan

I'm enjoying my new training program very much.

For one thing, it almost feels like I've got a personal coach with me every step of the way, as each day's workout is accompanied by specific instructions. It gives tip about what pace to do, recommendations for additional work, and tips on how to stay strong and healthy throughout the training process.

The other great thing is, I can already feel it working. Yesterday's run was only scheduled for three little miles at a comfortable pace. Unlike season 1, when I did my short runs as hard as I could, I'm really focusing on sitting into easier paces this time around, and building a more consistent training pattern that will allow me to have more strength and confidence come race day.

So, instead of cranking the treadmill all the way up, I set it to a quick, but not deadly, pace and ran the whole way at that. Now, the question is, why use the treadmill at all?

I have been making myself run outdoors more regularly, but I haven't given up on the treadmill workout just yet. Wednesdays, it seems, will also entail some additional strength training, which I like. Most exercise professionals will emphasize the importance of varying your workout as much as possible, working different muscle groups in different ways. It not only saves your muscles from overwork, but it increases the potential for positive growth in many ways that I am not at all qualified to detail.

Bottom line, it's good to do strength training and various other cross training activities while in the midst of a training program, and yesterday was one such day. As such, I figured it only made sense to do my run where I would also do my strength training, which now mostly consists of curls, bench press, lat pull-downs, and an ab workout that I learned in college. One of these days, I'll have to document that one. It's a beast.

The gym at our complex recently got some free weight dumbbells, which I am very excited about, even though we have our own set at home. These, combined with the benches in the fitness center, will open up a number of different possibilities for more varied strength training workouts.

My general goal is simply to be stronger, and to be smarter. That combination will allow me to be successful, and this training program will help me to do both.

Today was a rest day, so I pretty much did nothing physical in preparation of the Fiver I've got tomorrow morning. Friday is always a tough day to get up early, so I'm hoping for the best on this one. It's not scheduled to be as fast as last week's Friday run, but I want to make sure that I'm happy with my time, while not pushing myself too hard. It's a "comfortable pace" run, whatever that means.

I intend to challenge myself by not looking at my watch throughout the run. This season, I've been stopping the watch at all crosswalks where I cannot get across the road due to the stoplights. It's given me far more accurate timing with regard to when I'm actually running, but those stops also mean that I'm getting rest in that is not being accounted for. Part of me hates this, but then I remember that the only time that matters is the one on race day.

For tomorrow, I'll let the clock run. This will be additional incentive to get up early and get it done, since there will be less of a chance of getting stopped by traffic before 7 am. It shouldn't even be that cold, if the hourly forecast is to be believed. As of this moment, I am totally amped to get up at 6.

I hope I remember this at 6.

Yesterday's Run:
Indoors / Treadmill
3 Miles
20 Minutes, 55 Seconds

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