I took the suggestion of a readers comment, and decided to get a gameplan for my new adventures in running.
When I first started out running, my goal was to just be able to run a mile without stopping. Once I reached that, I wanted to run a 5K distance without stopping. Now that I'm there, I'm not sure what to do. So, I guess I need to work on improving my running pace, as well as increase my milage.
I've decided I'm going to follow Hal Higdon's plan for improving my 5K time. I'm going with the "Intermediate Plan". You can find it HERE, or check out the chart below. This will be my plan:
|1||REST||3M||RUN 5X400||3M RUN||REST||3M||5M|
|2||REST||3M||3Omin tempo||3M||REST||3M FAST||5M RUN|
|4||REST||3M||RUN 35 min TEMPO||3M||REST||REST||5K TEST|
|5||REST||3M||RUN 7X400||3M||REST||4M FAST||6M|
|6||REST||3M||RUN 40 min TEMPO||3M||REST||5M||7M|
|7||REST||3M||RUN 8X400||3M||REST||5M FAST||7M|
|8||REST||2M||RUN 30 min TEMPO||2M||REST||REST||5K|
I think I'm going to start this plan AFTER running the 5K on the 21st. This will be good too because Parker will be done with TBall, and I won't be stressing about being 2 places at once. This plan is great because it's broken down for even a new runner can understand. Here's the rundown.
For the parts that say "RUN" that means run at an easy pace. Whatever is easy for me. I should be able to talk with a running partner and not be too much outta breath. Same idea for the "fast" runs except opposite. Got that?
For the days that say longer run days, I want to run at a comfortable pace- not worrying about time. This should be an enjoyable run- not a punishement. Okay to walk if needed.
For "Interval Training", you should try to improve speed, at a pace somewhat faster than your race pace for the 5-K, about the pace you would run in a 1500 meter or mile race. Run 400 meters hard, then recover by jogging and/or walking 400 meters. Before starting this workout, warm-up by jogging a mile or two, stretching, and doing a few sprints of 100 meters. Cool down afterwards with a short jog.
Here's what Mr. Hal says about "Tempo Runs": They are a continuous run with an easy beginning, a buildup in the middle to near 10-K race pace, then ease back and cruise to the finish. A typical tempo run would begin with 5-10 minutes easy running, continue with 10-15 faster running, and finish with 5-10 minutes cooling down. You can't figure out your pace on a watch doing this workout; you need to listen to your body. Tempo runs are very useful for developing anaerobic threshold, essential for fast 5-K racing.
Not sure if I really get what a tempo run is, but hopefully someone can explain that one to a prior blonde..
I'm happy to finally have a plan- just like other sports that have practices, I'm learning running does too.