23rd December, 2018. I decided to enter a 10k. It might not seem big for some, but this was massive for me.
My friend encouraged me to give it a go.
I was worried about cut-offs, to be honest.
My PB at the time was 1hr 53. I knew I wanted to try for 90ish. It seemed achievable. So I popped on to the Vitality 10,000 website and got me a couple of shiny training plans.
I used two training plans back to back – first up, beginners followed by improver’s. This was 20 weeks of training, “just” for a 10k. But I wanted to give it my all, and become a stronger runner in the process. So it wasn’t just 10k training, it was I want to get better at running in general training. These plans worked for me, and I know everyone is different but they were a great place to start for my needs.
Below I have cobbled together from memory, and using social posts, a run down of how the training has gone. It gives a nice overview, I think, of the ups and downs of training. And all the times I decided to not follow it. Which is quite a few. Must do better!
Week 1. New adventures made me excited and off I went full of enthusiasm. I quickly developed a love / hate relationship with walk / run intervals. Sometimes I really, really hated them.
Sometimes they were OK :).
I was not finding the training easy at this point, and was beginning to doubt myself a little… the “what have I done?” feeling.
I was sick. Not a great start to the plan AT ALL. So I decided to repeat this week as I had the time.
I hated the fact I was derailed so soon!
Week 3 Repeated
This week went so well. I was so happy to be back running and enjoying the training.
I love weeks that go to plan.
I took lots of walk breaks and became sick again. The plan was starting to unravel a bit…
And then came the snow. Followed by ice. Hm.
Week 5 Repeated
I finally did week 5.
Week 6, Week 7, Week 8
I came down with illness again, and it was quite serious this time meaning I lost almost 3 weeks of training and also missed a 5km race I had signed up for. I was sad and upset that I had started the plan but I was running out of time to finish it.
I lost my running mojo in the process.
I never got to finish the beginners plan. I decided to hop right to the improver’s rather than finishing this one, modifying if I needed to.
I started back up again in mid-March…
What a great week. I discovered “Jeffing” to help me through the longer easy runs and I was back at full enthusiasm levels.
Got a cold, but didn’t let that stop me and did what I could!
I crammed in my training at the beginning of the week, then substituted my long run with a race, and had a great time in the process, getting some Strava distance PB’s! Super confident!
I did everything on the schedule in this week, a couple of segment PB’s bagged and just kept going even though sometimes I was finding it hard. I was pretty determined to get through the plan at this point – no stopping me!
Followed the plan, having magical runs where I just felt fabulous. Legs, breathing, effort… all amazing. So I decided to try and run 10km as my long run. I did, and got a PB, confidence on the up…
Feeling great about my recent success, I stuck two of the days together and decided to run 10 miles. It was a big jump, and TOTALLY off plan… but I did it. And I got a 5k PB at parkrun that week (5km time trial was on the plan).
And this is why you don’t randomly do 10 miles and then a half followed by a 5k leading up to your 10k. Niggles, niggles, niggles. Foam rollering, niggles. Tiredness.
2 of 4 sessions completed this week. I got ill. Hmm. I think I may have overdone it…
And I felt much better. Easy runs, feeling strong… nervous… under-prepared… secretly hoping to do better than 90ish minutes and go for sub 90…
coming soon is here! See if I managed to hit my goal…