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New Schedule

January 28, 2010

While waiting for the Lamb to finish up AWANA yesterday, I sat down and figured out a new training schedule. I only have four weeks before the races–and if you figure a week or so for a mini-taper, I figured I had about twenty days to fit in some key workouts and mileage before race day.

First, I tried to identify some things I wanted to do before race day. I figured out a key workout for each race distance–shorter intervals, faster, for the 5k, and then a longer tempo run for the half marathon. I also wanted to do some distance work, since I remember how good I feel running the half if I’ve outrun the distance in training. With that in mind, I listed five key workouts:

  1. 5 x 1k @ 5k pace (for this race, I’m going to target 8:00 for my5k pace even though my PR is 7:34);
  2. 5 x 3k @ 15k pace (for this race I’m targeting an 8:30 pace. I haven’t run 9.3 miles in a race before but based on the predictors it’s about the same effort as 8-minute 5k);
  3. 10k @ half-marathon pace (for the half I’m targeting a 9-minute pace, though I can run faster since it’s the last race of the weekend);
  4. two 12-mile runs back to back (to prepare for the back-to-back nature of the event);
  5. one 16-mile long run.

Now, since I only have three weeks to fit all these workouts in, I’m pretty much hitting a key workout every four or five days. In pencil, here’s how it’s all going to work out, starting next week.

Su                   M           T                W               Th               F                  Sa

KW#1          rest        S6             rest         KW#4        KW#4          rest

S6                  E6       KW#3        rest            E8              rest            KW#5

rest               E4         S6              rest          KW#2         rest              E8

E8                  S5         rest             E3           1@5k         rest              RACE WKND

Okay, that’s it. That’s the idea. It’s a lot of speedwork and distance kind of crammed in, but you’ll notice rest days before and after most key workouts and a week of very light mileage before race day. Runs marked with an S are those where I’ll throw in striders; key workouts are marked KW. For any speed workouts, I’ll run a mile warm-up and cool-down. The longest of these speed workouts is #2, which works out to about 11 miles.

Today I went out for 5 and threw in five 30-second intervals of faster running, targeting 8:00 as my pace for the intervals (the idea was to hit the 5k pace). I was a little fast on most of them, going sub-8 fairly easily, no doubt aided by the fact that I was running in the mid-morning instead of before dawn. In fact, even my easy pace was fast today. So it was a little encouraging that some speed remains in these lazy old legs.

If you see flaws in the plan, please call them out to me now.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. January 28, 2010 11:35 pm

    Doing a key workout every 5 days or so sounds like the right mix. I came across Alberto Salazar’s book on running on Google books and one of the sections I read on intervals strongly suggested doing intervals every 5 days. Looking forward to your challenge report.

  2. the Ringmaster permalink*
    January 29, 2010 9:37 am

    Thanks for the vote of confidence. I was a little worried that I would be doing too much, and will still pull back if my legs feel tired or sore, but I’m glad the scheduling seems about right. I went out today for an easy run and my pace is back where I think it ought to be–not struggling for 10:30 miles but fairly cruising at 9:45. It feels good to feel strong heading into the last few weeks of training.

  3. February 3, 2010 7:43 pm

    i like your speed workouts! i may borrow these with a little tweaking 🙂 sounds like a busy plan, but manageable. hope it’s going well so far!

  4. the Ringmaster permalink*
    February 4, 2010 1:25 pm

    So far, so well, Lindsay–busy but manageable is the idea. After this event I’ll take a few easy weeks and then go back to basebuilding to 40 miles per week before marathon training, which will probably start in July.

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