I consider myself lucky quite lucky to have married someone who is an accomplished marathon runner and endurance athlete, and a personal trainer superstar. I am training for this half marathon with someone who knows every little secret and bit of advice about running.
Like what kinds of gizmos and gadgets are needed to run well and, of course, look cool while doing it.
1. Garmin: gives you stats you didn’t even know existed about your run and exercise program like a mile by mile pace and elevation gain. We picked up this one for $100 at the REI Scratch and Dent sale.
2. Water Belt: Hydration is cool. Passing out from dehydration is not. Not even Giuseppe thinks so. This ensures that you don’t have to waste precious seconds at the water station (or wait until you find one) during your race in order to stay hydrated. We got this one for $20 at the REI Scratch and Dent sale.
3. iPod Shuffle: This is small and cheap enough that I can have one solely for “Amy’s Workout Jams.” Most races will allow the use of headphones. I just found out that my next race, the Duke City Half, will NOT. KILLJOYS.
4. Deep Tissue Massage Stick: The scientific term is myofascial release which helps tread chronic pain… all I know is ever since I started rolling this on my muscles, I’ve had significantly less pain.
5. Stability Ball: Studies have shown that runners with a stronger core run faster. Doing planks on these everyday help create a strong core. Apparently, France is solving the childhood obesity problem by having kids sit on these all day in school.
6. Good Running Shoes: Turns out there are all sorts of things that affect what type of shoe you wear. I’m getting reevaluated for my shoe type this weekend at a store where they have you run on a treadmill in front of everyone. Runner’s World has an online shoe type finder if you aren’t so lucky. Also, my daddy taught me to get new running shoes every 6 months.
6. A training plan that includes intervals, terrain variation/uphill/downhill, strength and core, distance runs, runs for time, and recovery: I’ve learned that running is a full body sport. Everything needs to be conditioned (including will power). Just running for distance will get you to finish, but speed intervals will make you faster.
Since April I’ve decreased my 5-k time down by 3 minutes to reach a time that would put me in the top 5 females for most races. On Sunday I ran 11 miles with no major incidents, no soreness, and no energy drain…all from following Aaron’s training plan! And this is what we’re doing this week!
TRAINING PLAN, WEEK 8
Saturday: 4 mile run
Sunday: 1 hour and 40 minute run (we got in just over 11 miles)
Monday: Easy 3 mile run, strength training
Tuesday: Speed Intervals: 2 half mile sets at racing pace with a quarter mile recovery jog in between each half mile; 4 quarter mile sets at racing pace with a quarter mile recovery jog in between each; 6 1/8 mile sets at racing pace (half way around the track) with 1/8 mile recovery jog in between each
Wednesday: Easy 3 mile run, strength training
Thursday: Tempo Run: 10 minute warm-up run, 30 minutes at 10-k racing pace, 10 minute cool down run
Friday: Rest day