It's hard to believe that it's been a a year since I began taking my training seriously to where I was actually following a plan, logging over 1000 miles since last August. While it hasn't always gone well, one thing I can tell you is that I've learned a lot.
#1 lesson is to not try to do too much too soon or try to make up for missed miles. I bet you can tell by looking at this chart beginning with June 2013 that I did just that.
And this doesn't even begin to tell the whole story since I missed many runs in November and December but racked up miles on long runs. In January I was limited to one run a week due to injury and February was a washout due to injury and an unplanned travel.
In March I began the current training cycle and things have gone much better. Granted I've done a bit more than the recommended 10% increase but I've remained injury free, save for a blister that cost me some miles in July. Nice smooth curve since.
I have to tell you, it's all one big learning experience.
Last year I would be absolutely freaking out with my results lately; you see, I'm getting slower. That's right, my times have actually been getting worse as the cycle progresses. The reason why I'm not fretting this is that along with evening running and TapOut XT on non-run nights I'm also doing XT in the morning as well. This started with 10 Minute Trainer and the ante has been upped to Focus T25 for the last 2 weeks.
It's also been HOT. There is only so hard you can push when it is close to 100 and/or the sun is beating down on you. For the most part it is still 100+ at 6:30pm when I do my Tuesday and Thursday runs and even though it isn't quite to 90 when I run on the weekend, the sun just beats down on you and with monsoon season we see humidity anywhere from 50-70% which is extremely high for these desert climes.
Probably the biggest reason for the decrease in speed is that the missus and I have cut way back on our carb intake. While this is a great way to burn fat and get down to my desired running weight, it doesn't provide the right amount of fuel. The process to train the body to burn fat effectively, especially for long runs takes time but time is what I have right now.
It is said that we don't know what we don't know but this is my plan, I believe in it and I'm sticking to it. My sole focus is to run a sub 1:30:00 half in November and know that I am going in the right direction. March-April-May were about preperation, June-July-August are about laying down a strong foundation and then it is time to really let it rip as race season begins in September.
With exactly 90 days until my goal race, I wont stop believin'.