Since I just completed Week 11 of an 18 week training plan, this post is a little late! Nonetheless, I figured I'd give you some thoughts on my training thus far.
Some quick background info in case you're new here!
I am using the Hansons advanced training plan to train for the Via Marathon on September 11th. My goal when beginning this training was to run a PR- 3:25:00.
I started out the training cycle SUPER excited to try Hansons. The book had motivated me so much. I never used a formal training plan for a marathon before, let alone one as specific as Hansons, so this was all new and exciting for me.
I figured the easiest way to do this is to break down the weeks and then finish with some overall thoughts...
Week 1: This week consisted of easy runs. I got the hang of running "slow" on the easy days pretty quickly. I ended the week feeling strong.
Week 2: I ran my very first speed session a little too fast and it resulted in a PIMA. I reeled in the paces after that scare and the PIMA went away. I ended this week's training post with a very foreboding thought: "I have a feeling in a couple weeks I will look back at this post and wish I felt as fresh as I do now!" Oh, how this statement very quickly became true!
Weeks 3-4: I was able to hit the prescribed speed workout paces, but my MP runs were all over the place! While the overall pace averaged out to my MP, my actual pace was all over the place. I reminded myself that there were plenty more MP runs in the training and my body would eventually learn to settle into MP.
Also, during Week 4, I would wake up in the mornings with a little bit of heel pain, but it would go away. I was scared of getting PF, so I did a lot of stretching and finally my morning heel pain went away. But not for long...
Week 5: This was the first week I deviated from my training plan for two big reasons...
1. We went on vacation.
2. I got a rip roaring case of plantar fasciitis by the end of the week.
Week 6: PF SUCKED. I ended up taking a complete week off running to make sure it was gone for good.
Weeks 7-9: My plan was to ease back into running without getting PF again. My weekly mileage was much lower than what my training called for, but I knew I had no choice but to ease back in. Luckily, I was still able to hit my training paces, but obviously it's much easier to do that when you're only running 30-40 mpw, not 50-60 like the plan called for...
I felt really down during these weeks and questioned whether I should even keep going. And if I kept going, should I reevaluate my goals?
Week 10: This week went very well! I actually felt like I was back in the game! My knee felt a little weak, but that was nothing new for me. My knee/ITB issues seems to be the new "normal"... as in, it is normal for it to come and go sporadically. It's annoying, but I wasn't going to let it get me down. I ran the most miles in a long time- 47!!!!
Even though I felt good about my week, I had not hit the prescribed weekly mileage since Week 4. I had been meaning to really sit down and evaluate my goals, but I kept pushing it off...
Week 11: Another great week! I had long since decided I needed to modify my training plan. I did 50 miles this week, even though the plan called for 61. I felt like the only way I was going to stay healthy and strong was to shave a couple miles off here and there. I was very scared to complete my first 16 miler, but I did it and I did it well!
My overall thoughts on Hansons so far...
I love knowing EXACTLY what to run each day and EXACTLY what pace to run. This plan really speaks to my anal retentive, rule following qualities.
The speed and tempo workouts scare me but I LIKE them.
I keep getting injured.
I don't think one rest day per week is enough.
At this point in time, I feel like this plan is way to high in mileage for me.
Due to my body not cooperating, I have not been happy following this plan since Week 4.
There has not been a single day in which I felt confident that I will reach my time goal for the marathon.
Wow, those are some pretty shitty cons, aren't they?
Have you ever done Hansons? Did you like it?
What type of training plan do you normally use for a marathon?
What's your ideal weekly mileage and ideal number of rest days that keeps your body happy?