Spring Half Marathon Training is ON!

January 2nd was the start of a new year and coincidentally a new training cycle for me.  I’m running some new races this year and I’m training for the Frederick Running Festival Half Marathon on May7th, which is the first of a series of races in the King Crab Challenge. Oh, the things I do for medals.

I started this blog at the beginning of my last training cycle and found that it really helped with accountability.  On those days I felt like blowing off a run, the thought of having to blog about it definitely helped me get into my Hokas.  I’ll be posting a recap at the end of each week to show how I’m doing with the plan.  I also post my workouts on my Instagram, along with a lot of pictures of my super-adorable, comically tiny dog.

I used the Hansons Marathon Training program last year for Chicago with much success, so I’m trying the beginners half marathon training plan with a PR goal of a sub-2 marathon.  The Hanson training programs are very challenging – you run 6 days a week with three of them being a long run, tempo (race pace) run and speed or strength workouts after week 5.

A few things I learned from last fall’s training cycle using this program that I’m incorporating into my schedule this year:

  1.  Don’t change the damn schedule without planning for it ahead of time – last cycle I definitely was liberal about changing around the schedule on a whim and ended up having the SOS (something of substance) runs back to back.  So, this time around, I’m going to stick to my schedule unless otherwise planned.  There will not be last minute changes about my Tuesday speed work made on Tuesday morning.
  2. Tempo run anxiety – there is definitely a mental element to training, which was a lesson I learned the hard way last year.  I let those tempo runs really get into my head and they became a huge source of stress for me.  I don’t have the magic answer on how to NOT get all worked up just yet, but I’m hoping that my awareness of my tendency to do it will help.
  3. Bad workouts happen, and that’s ok – this is just another mental element of training.  Not every workout is going to be perfect – I may not make my target pace, I may have to stop to recover for minute or two during a SOS workout – I need to remember to let those workouts go after they are done and not let it derail my training.

The goal paces for my workouts are A LOT faster than last fall for all the SOS workouts. The good news is, I don’t have to run as far as I did for marathon training.  I’m not going to lie, I’m a little apprehensive about some of them.  I’ve got five weeks until the hard workouts start, so I’m doing the things I know seem to optimize me for hard training.  That includes a 21 Day Sugar Detox and Whole30 concurrently for the next 5 weeks.  I’ll be blogging about what those are and why I’m doing them both in the next day or so.

In terms of cross-training, I work out with a trainer twice a week, which will continue throughout the training cycle.  It’s an ambitious schedule – Tuesday/Thursday AM SOS runs and then Tuesday/Thursday PM workouts with my trainer, but this actually worked out ok last year when I did this for marathon training.

I’m excited to be training again and working towards a new PR goal in a new race.  What are you training for this Spring?




Running for Medals. And Bacon.

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