The time has come for me to start training for my next race! I will be running Around the Bay in 30k at the end of March. It takes place in Hamilton, Ontario. Luckily, I have family who live in Hamilton so I am familiar with the area and will have somewhere to stay.
I have been thinking about doing a race that is longer than a half but found the training too hard to stick to in the summer (too hot and too many distractions). I am hoping that I will be able to stick with it since I don’t have many winter activities planned. This will also keep me busy and committed to doing some activity while I continue to search for employment related to my degree. I am still searching and still waiting, unfortunately.
The Around the Bay race is also pretty interesting because it is the oldest race in all of North America. “Older than Boston”, they say. As I am WAY off from ever qualifying for Boston in the near future, this race will have to do for now. 🙂
To train, I will be using the Hanson’s marathon method. My plan is to try and follow it as closely as possible, but drop some of the distances since I am only running 30 km. The plan looks as follows:
You’ll notice two things:
1. I train in miles- This makes the distance I need to run seem shorter (it’s a mental thing). I’ve also found that a lot of training plans are written in miles, and treadmills at the gym I go to are also in miles so it just makes it easier to train this way.
2. The long runs aren’t that long- The way this method is supposed to work is to build up endurance by constantly running on tired legs. This is to make the runs feel like the end of your races as opposed to the beginning of them. The longest run here is 16 miles, but a marathon is 26.2 and a 30k race is 18.75.
I have read nothing but good things about this training plan and hope to have success with it myself. The appeal to me is that I live in Canada and will be doing these long runs mostly outside. Being outside for a 20 mile run in the winter just isn’t an option sometimes.
I have also chosen to work with this training plan because as it is for a longer distance, it will be okay if I can’t do every single workout. I also plan to try to go to Body Pump classes at least once a week and there may be days where I will be too sore to run afterwards. I may supplement some of the recovery runs for these classes; I haven’t decided yet.
I think the downfall in my previous training cycles was not doing strength training. I definitely have some muscle imbalances that developed from running and cycling and not doing anything else. Also I have the core strength of a baby, which is really not good for a runner. I am hoping that the Body Pump classes will improve my strength and make me faster. So far all I have gained from returning to the class is a sore butt and the inability to use my arms above chest height.
The hard thing about training plans with speed work in them is that you kind of need to predict your finishing time while you’re training so you know what speed to run at for all of the workouts. I will be using my best half marathon time to help predict this, and adjust accordingly once I get to those workouts. If I can maintain the speed I ran my best half in (unlikely), I should be finishing in about 3:10 for the 30k.
Maybe I am a little crazy but when I race, I like to have several goals set in my mind. Depending on how the race is going, I can decide which goal seems realistic for the conditions. It might be early to set these but here they are:
A goal: Sub 3 hours. This is probably not realistic but everything I have read about the training plan above indicates that it makes people a lot faster. It would be awesome to pull this off.
B goal: 3:10. This would be sticking to my PR half marathon pace. Still a little ambitious but it may be doable with the right amount of training.
C goal: Sub 3:20. This would require running each 10 km increment in about 1:06 and some change. Seems like that is reasonable.
D goal: Just finish. I have never completed this distance before and there is no shame in “just” finishing. Finishing is finishing and sometimes time goals have to be thrown away, especially in a bad race. (Have you read my Army Run Review? https://engineerrunnergirl.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/race-review-army-run-september-21-2014/)
All in all, I’m excited to try something that will be harder than anything I have done before. Maybe even harder than getting my degree…