Sunday, April 8, 2012

Chapter 2 page 565–Crossroads, help

I need your help – your advice – your assistance. . . .

I ran 2 halfs in 2010 and 6 halfs in 2011.  My goal for 2012 was to focus on shorter distances and increase speed.  One of the biggest reasons for my focus on shorter distance was to allow more time to do things that I have neglected over the last 2 years because I haven’t had time (6 miler = 90 minutes of running + stretching and travel; 12 miler = a total of 4 hours).  Since January, I’ve REALLY REALLY REALLY enjoyed returning my attention to things like group fitness classes, having date night with my husband, weeding the flower beds (let’s face it –that’s an endless job!).  I have also REALLY enjoyed NOT being in pain following the long runs (those who know me or have seen me following a long run know my gimpy walk that lasts for a couple of days).  I have made some big running accomplishments (endurance – I ran for 70 straight minutes), but in the big running scheme, I’m not sure that’s really going to help me out . . . especially since it was crazy slow.

So what’s the problem? 

1.  To run faster you have to run more

2.  If I don’t run further I doubt that I’ll get much faster.

3.  If I do run further than I might as well do halfs and get medals, right?

4.  I kind of miss the whole planning a race and being a part of the whole running/blogging half marathoners community – though I do like paying off some of my other bills and saving money (and planning a dream race schedule for 2013). 

What do you think? 

A.)  Continue participating and thoroughly enjoying the group fitness classes/cross training, and doing other things that I have neglected because of the time it takes to do long runs (weeding, date night, etc).

B.)  Return to running 3-4 days a week which will make my life look a lot like it did last year; aim for some summer/fall halfs (ex:  Chicago RnR, Indy Women’s Half, Fort 4 Fitness, Columbus Half, STL RnR, Women’s Half in St.Pete).

I welcome any advice you are willing to offer – thanks!


  1. I wish you could do it all! I do believe that cross training does help keep us in running shape, but (I feel) you still have to find a long run day in there somewhere. Can you add a few days of running on top of what you are doing now and see how it goes? I also really want to do that double with you in 2013....

  2. You seem to be enjoying the fitness classes so much more than the longer runs! Can you focus on some higher intensity runs of 2-3 miles a couple of times a week and still participate in local 5ks to feel like a part of the racing community?

  3. I say keep the runs to 3 a week & keep up with your classes. Throw in a half here or there because you DO enjoy it! But make time for your classes & your hunny!!!

  4. I would do what makes you the most happy. Running and training for halfs work for me cause it keeps me on track and accountable. If I was just doing group fitness classes I would find an excuse not to go, so good for you for keeping up with the group classes!

  5. I think you should do what makes you happy. Period. If running makes you happy, do it. If Pump (with me!) makes you happy, do it. I think there is a way to combine it all, and you'll find it. I'm sure of it.

  6. What about doing the run less run fast program for a 5K - start small on increasing your speed - I beleive that program has you run 3 days a week, which leaves time for cross training. I am with you though -the long training can get discouraging about training. Hence the reason I have no races scheduled for July or August - those are WA best months and I plan to enjoy them by not running more then a few miles (well I will have to do lots of walking for my SGK 3-Day 60 mile walk) but in the sun I can walk all day.

  7. You know what my answer would be!!!! LOL!!!! But really, you wouldn't have to have a long run more than 10 miles would you? You know you can do a half already.... I think before you said you put in a lot of long runs before your races to build your confidence...

    I would love to do more group classes because they are fun but I think I need to work on my running more because that's what I really like (well, the medal is what I really like...)

    I miss you Buddy!!! :)


  8. You need to do what makes you feel the happiest. Personally, I enjoy the classes but I enjoy running more. I love the way I feel after a good run. Your group classes will make you a stronger runner so perhaps you won't need to do all those long runs to run faster and longer. Body Pump and Piloxing will allow you to increase your fitness level without having to put in all those long hours of running. I think you should do some half-marathons since we all know you love the bling AND you ALWAYS bring a party to each race you in! Maybe running 3 days a week, with one run being long, is a good solution to your running dilema. Hope to do some training runs with you soon! Miss you!

  9. Chris is right! Do what you enjoy the most and that is where you will reap the most benefits. Personally, I am a fan of mixing things up and constantly keeping variety. If you want to increase speed - you don't need to run more. Taking classes that incorporate more power, high intensity intervals and such will help you with the speed and the running. Spinning classes are also great for tapping into those muscle fibers and recruiting some of the fast twitch ones back into play. You can run 3 days a week or even two and maintain your running endurance and still do long races.....if you need help organizing a plan I am happy to help you put things into focus. All you have to do is ask! :) Running more = more chances for injury, better safe than sorry. Do what you enjoy and relax and have fun as you always do, you will see those times drop!

  10. Have you read the book Run Less, Run Faster? I recommend it based on this post :)
    To keep up your running muscles, at the bare minimum you only need to run 2x week. I'd say maybe aim for that because it's doable! And maybe volunteer for a race in the next couple months and see how you feel. Whenever I cheer at marathons or volunteer I always end up signing up for a race after! So it's a good way to gauge your current interest :)

    BTW-you're rocking your workouts. Awesome!!

  11. ok, I'm late to the party here - sorry!

    first - do what makes you HAPPY! that is most important.

    second, I need to disagree with a little of what you said. to run faster, running more helps, but really? to run faster you need to RUN FASTER. it's as simple as that. so intervals, a little at a time, once or twice a week, and it doesn't need to be any more complicated than "run balls out to that tree." you need to get your body used to what it is capable of, and then push past that. repeat.

    hope this helps a little - but first and foremost is HAPPY!