It's time to focus on an actual goal race: the NYC Marathon.
My training plan is set up on RunCoach.com, which I've been using off and on for the last three months to see if I like it. There is a membership fee to access their training plans, but I was lucky enough to have a really good discount and decided to give it a try. The site uses an algorithm to create a training plan based on things you enter: preferences, past race times, logged workouts, and so on. You can recalculate the plan at any time if you have new race times or after a few weeks of logging workouts. I'm not yet convinced I can run the plan as it looks pretty aggressive for my abilities, but I suppose I'll never know if I don't try.
August Training Calendar
The most overwhelming part of the plan is the speed work. I'm incredibly scared of speed work in general, and the days with 11-12 or 12-13 miles of it after work don't feel remotely doable to me. Really, those workout are mile repeats and probably not that bad, and if I need to I could cut some of the repeats down to my ability level. We'll see how it goes. I'm telling myself not to give up until I at least try it. Confidence, right?
Example of a long speed workout. More of those come along in September.
What I DO really like about RunCoach.com is how interactive it is for logging workouts and for changing preferences. You choose how many days per week you want to run, plus it's really easy to set what days you prefer rest, cross-training, long runs, and speed work. I have always struggled with taking plan outlines and deciding how to move things around to fit my schedule, and this program does it all for me.
Preferences and Pace Chart page.
My main race goal for NYC is to prepare well and to finish feeling strong (unlike last year at CIM where I fell apart), ideally under 4:25 for a small PR. My current PR is 4:28 from December 2013 and I think I can beat it, but I also know that NYC isn't generally a great PR course and that it'll be very crowded. And even more, this is the NYC Marathon we're talking about - a once in a lifetime event - I want to enjoy the experience without a crazy time goal!
One last thing to mention: I'm running NYC on the Every Mother Counts charity team and I'm at 48% of my fundraising goal. Any amount helps, and I'd love you're support if you are up for it! You can find my donation site here.
Now tell me, what is your fall race? How is training? What is your favorite marathon training plan?