I haven't used a pre-made training plan ever. This time, though, I was feeling less-than-confident. Having a baby and an angry knee will do that to a girl. So I looked through plans online and plugged my numbers into the SmartCoach app but I didn't like what I found. Either the plans were way too much for me (8-mile midweek runs? no thanks) or seemed too easy. I don't want to run more than an hour or so on a weekday, but I don't mind doing that almost every day.
A lot of plans, especially the "easy" ones, ask for one or two days of cardio cross-training which isn't in the cards for me right now. For one thing, I prefer running to the elliptical or to bike riding because I can run early in the morning or late at night in the garage. I would really like to try something like Zumba, but I also know that I would look ridiculous and my four-year-old probably has more rhythm than I do.
So I did what I always do, which is make my own plan. In the past my plans have been flexible, more of a guideline for long runs than a true plan. This worked pretty well for me, but I was already fast and strong, at least for me. This time around, the plan has to build me up from 10-minute miles and not a lot of them.
The plan is simple: five days running, Wednesday and Sunday off. Hills on Tuesdays and Tempo runs on Thursdays at 8:30 pace, which is faster than my marathon will probably be this time but manageable.
I printed out a copy on hot pink paper and affixed it to the refrigerator. I think having it out in an obvious place will help me keep it.
(please notice the wonderful Bambino magnet)