Something that I’ve realised recently, quite possibly to my detriment, is that I very rarely follow a strict plan when it comes to running and training. Because I do so much (it really is a lot) reading about running, because it genuinely fascinates me, I often tend to take tidbits of advice from different sources, and different workouts from different training plans. I’ll do one or two easy runs per week, but then my speed sessions vary greatly, with me often choosing those that look the most challenging and interesting.

The trouble with this, in using different strategies, is that you don’t allow yourself to find out what exactly works for you. Also, the idea of a training plan is that this week’s running prepares you for next, and so on. So, with this in mind, alongside advice from a friend regarding putting plans into writing, I’ve decided to choose one plan and stick with it. As a result, my running is now fully planned out until March 24 2019. Let me explain…

My goal for the rest of this year is to try and improve my 5k time, and I’ve been enjoying some of the speed sessions that I’ve been taking in. I’ve also started to notice a bit of improvement, in particular during a session this Friday which involved 4 x (3 minutes hard, 1 minute easy, 1 minute hard and 3 minutes easy). The paces that I was hitting during all intervals have been among the fastest that I’ve achieved in months, so this goal still remains.

On November 17 I have a parkrun planned, and on December 2 I am doing a local 5k Santa Run, so my sporadic training will continue until then. Then, on December 3, I am going to start a ten week advanced 5k training plan developed by Nick Anderson for The Running Bug. This will take me to February 9, when I will run a parkrun with a PB attempt. Then, on February 11, I am going to start a 6 week intermediate half marathon training plan from the same coach and the same website. This will lead me into the Coventry Half Marathon on March 24 2019.

What I’ve been doing recently in 5k training, plus the next month, plus a structured ten week training plan I think will be enough for now. I’ll take what ever PB I can get during that period, hopefully under 21 minutes by the end but we’ll see. At the end of that, a change in direction I imagine will be welcomed. It’s good to mix up your training sometimes to prevent it from going sterile, and having something to aim for always helps. I’ve already signed up to the Coventry half, so it’s in the diary and a genuine target. As for the training, both for the 5k and the half marathon, it will be nice to have a definitive plan to stick to for a while. Regardless of results, I will stick with it as scheduled and, again, we’ll see where I end up at the end of it.

It’s good to have all of this laid out, even exciting some might say…

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