Monday, June 20, 2016

{week 1} Pile on the Pylos

Here I go again...I'm starting another training cycle--this time for the Santa Rosa 1/2 Marathon on Sunday, August 28. No specific race goals. I'm using training for the half as a way to get back into marathon training shape to start strong in early August, when I switch from half to full marathon training. My ultimate goal is to run a strong sub-4 hour California International Marathon

Same as last year's goal, except this time without injury. I'm in a better place to do that. I've worked and continue to work on my imbalances. I continue work with my physical therapist, meeting him every 3-4 weeks. I've dialed in my nutrition and have gotten back on track with healthy eating habits. But what I think has really helped in the last few weeks has been my commitment to strength training and the addition of weekly pylometric workouts. 

In May, to lose vacation bloat and get back on track with healthy eating habits, I joined a BeachBody 21-Day Fix Challenge run by fellow Oiselle VolĂ©e teammate, Nicole. It's a pretty easy plan to follow and you eat real food. Also, you do a different 30 minute workout video a day.  It was the addition of these videos to my usual cross-training workouts (because I wasn't able to run much during the challenge) that has noticeably increased my strength. Even though I've long since completed the Fix, I continue to do the plyo workout once a week. 

Plyos or plyometrics are explosive jumping exercises good for improving balance, power, strength, and flexibility--all important for running. I've done pylos consistently for 6 weeks now and I've noticed increases in both power and balance. I realized the effects on this past Saturday's long run. 

It was my first real long run since getting back into running at the start of the month and my first run back with the Runegades (my running group). Our route is very hilly with lots of climbing, including several steep climbs. Prior to the run I was worried I wouldn't be able to keep up or last. In past, I've had to walk some parts and have always had to walk one of the last steep climbs. 
On Saturday, I ran up all the hills without walking! Even the one I always have to walk! And I didn't feel like I needed to. Yes, it felt hard but not so hard that I had to take a breather. It was not the struggle fest I imagined. 

I've also noticed better balance and strength during exercises other than running. Even my PT has noticed and asked me if I've been doing plyos and my PT homework is now all jumping moves, including single-leg box jumps.

My goal for this training cycle is to continue with the extras: strength training, core work, glute strengthening, plyos, cross-training and good nutrition. A second goal is to improve my reset and recovery. I'm not consistent with rolling, yoga, sleep and other restorative activities. To remain healthy and strong I need to become consistent. These two goals are the ingredients to help me accomplish my ultimate goal for this training cycle--a strong, sub-4 hour CIM. 

Week 1 Training Plan

Monday June 20: Easy recovery run (9:13-10:09/mile) before cycle class & strength training (AM) and plyos (PM)
Tuesday June 21: 2-3 miles easy (9:13-10:09/mile) + cycle class (AM) and upper body strength (PM)
Wednesday June 22: 3-5 miles easy (9:13-10:09/mile) before strength training 
Thursday June 23: 7 miles with intervals (8x400 btw 1:46-1:52, +w/u & c/d)
Friday June 24: 3 miles easy (9:13-10:09/mile)+ Tabata & Pilates
Saturday June 25: Long slow distance 10-12 miles (9:15-10:33/mile)
Sunday June 26: 3-5 miles easy (9:13-10:09/mile)

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