Getting Serious

The PR miss in Oakland this past weekend made me really think about how I've been training lately - and admittedly it's been a bit sporadic. I've been doing track workouts, long runs especially on trail, and running during the week, but it's been a long time since I've followed a true half marathon training plan. Once I felt comfortable with the distance and didn't need to re-start the ramp up to a 12 mile long run each time, I started to play the 'whatever I feel like running today' game and just made sure to hold a good weekly mileage total. I thought adding speed workouts in general to that would help, but I'm realizing it's not the answer.

Side note. I actually had a race photo I like taken in Oakland. Yes, I bought it, crazy I know. Now I have a better Oiselle team profile pic!

I paid for it, so it needs to be shared on the blog.

Now back to training schedules. In the last few days, I've been thinking about how I can improve my training and follow a real schedule without losing the fun aspects of running that I love so much. I want something that lets me do the runs I want to do while also guiding me on quality workouts like speed and tempo runs. I don't feel the need to drop back down to 6 or 7 mile long runs as I used to do for the Hal Higdon plans. After a few Twitter friend suggestions and my subsequent research, I've decided to use the Hansons half marathon training plan as my guide. In addition to the website info, I picked up the Hansons Marathon Method book and it arrived from Amazon today. If all goes well, I hope to use the Hansons marathon training plan when it comes time for CIM training this fall.

The half marathon plan looks like this:

Even at first glance I know this plan suggests running one more day per week than I usually do; I'm more a 4-5 day runner than 6. I think recovery days are important and I know I can't jump right into a big mileage increase, so at first I'll be dropping the Friday run each week. I'm also a Saturday long runner and will make appropriate changes to fit my schedule. Even so, I believe following this guide for long run mileage, recovery mileage, and tempo mileage will be really helpful. Plus I get to keep my favorite weekend long run distance of 10 miles going.

My schedule uses this plan with the target race being the SF 2nd Half Marathon on June 16. I also have the Eugene Half on April 28 as a mid-schedule race tune-up. I love half marathons, so I won't necessarily be dropping any for one big goal race. I prefer to have a few to look forward to, especially when some go well and some just...don't. 

In addition to a new training plan, I'll be checking in again with my weekly training recaps and how everything is going. I know it might be boring, but of course you don't need to read them if so! I find I enjoy reading about training plans, so hopefully I'm not the only one. 

What training plans are your favorite? Do you change it up often?


  1. I don't necessarily follow a training plan. Which I probably should since I do like some guideline to how to train. I have been very laize faire about it. I did use Fitsugars 1/2 marathon training guide as a template for my first 1/2, but never really stuck to it. I know I need to find something that will work for me when training for CIM.

    I like the photo btw! i never get a good shot mid race :\

  2. I'll be curious to hear what you think of the Hanson plan - will definitely be following your training recaps! After training for four marathons using a Higdon plan (or loosely using it for the last couple), I was ready for something different. I've been sort-of-kind-of-not-really following the Hanson marathon training plan for Eugene (I'm definitely not a 6 day a week runner). I might have to pick up the Hanson book and recommit to it for CIM as well!

  3. I have some friends running the Eugene half (and full) and I'm planning to come down to support them so look for me on course!! I LOVED Eugene last year. It's a really fun and well-organized race.

  4. I think it is good that you created a new plan for yourself. Sometimes after a while you just need to follow a plan rather than going with the flow/ running what you feel like. I look forward to hearing how this plan works out for you.

    Awesome that you got a great race photo! I always think it's exciting when they actually turn out well.

  5. My friend/running partner is following the Hanson plan and just yesterday we were talking about it and she is really enjoying it! And despite the increased # of days of running, she feels great and strong! And is definitely getting faster.

  6. Great Race Pic!

    I've done Hanson's for the marathon and while I was definitely the most fit I've been in 4 years for that marathon due to the high weekly mileage, I found that the long runs weren't sufficient for me to have enough mental toughness and confidence going in to the actual marathon. Good news for you, it looks like for the half, the length of the long runs is not an issue at all. I'm guessing you'll kick serious butt!


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