Switching gears

I focused mainly on sprint tris this summer and I’m ready for some longer distances. I haven’t run a marathon since 2009…geez.  Back then I was still really new to running anything over 7 miles and struggled following any sort of training plan or hitting what I knew were key long runs.  Given that, I’m really happy with my 4:05 marathon but I’m ready to put my heart into the training.

I’ve been searching the internet for training plans and trying to figure out how to incorporate longer runs with my last semester of school.  Come mid-October, I’ll have two-three 12 hour clinical shifts with an hour commute each way.  This is in addition to classes and studying but I’m not too worried about that.  This isn’t whining about my schedule; I’m just trying to get creative so I don’t miss key workouts on the days when I’m already getting up at 4:30 AM  and exhausted by the end of the day.

So, anybody out there with long days training for marathons?  How do you hit your key workouts and juggle a full work/school schedule?

One thing that really helps me is a training partner.  It’s not that I need somebody in order to run but my lofty goals of getting a morning workout in usually materialize if there is somebody waiting for me.  I reset the alarm if it’s just me.

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8 Responses to Switching gears

  1. Meghann says:

    You know… I make a GREAT training partner! Just sayin 😉 Did you pick a marathon yet?!

  2. I’m in the middle of training while working a job that involves some long hours and quite a bit of travel…and while coaching! It’s definitely doable, but you absolutely have to plan ahead and be aware of what is coming.

    My suggestion is to list out your key goal workouts on a week-by-week basis for the entire training schedule, and then fill out your calendar with potential work, school, or personal conflicts (family events, exams, etc). You might then be able to re-arrange recovery weeks, longer runs, etc. to accommodate real life on a macro-scale.

    THEN, every week, see which days are best for that week’s goal workouts. Long run on the least busy day, shorter runs on days where you have a little time but not a lot, speedwork or tempo runs on days that you can afford to be a bit tired the next day. You can do it!

    • TriCourt says:

      Thanks for that reminder for planning ahead. That’s probably my biggest weakness because I usually have a haphazzard way of training. I like how you suggested to switch things up on a smaller scale to work with the busy vs light days because I know my week won’t allow for the typical marathon plan.

      • Google calendar is your friend in this, since you can have different calendars to make analysis of the challenge that lies ahead easier. I break it down as:
        Victoria calendar: Life stuff
        Training plan: Week-by-week macro plan, all workouts listed on Sunday for the week so that I know what the weekly goals are
        Training schedule: Everything listed daily; constructed on a week-by-week basis and occasionally filled out in a skeleton manner in advance for particularly tough weeks.

  3. I’m planning on training for my second marathon in May and I think I’m going to join the local Running Room’s training group. I trained for my first marathon mostly alone (and did ALL my long runs alone) and it was brutal. Definitely don’t want to do that again!

    I would say plan to do as low of mileage as possible for your really busy and long days and save the higher mileage for other days of the week! Good luck!

    • TriCourt says:

      Thanks for the suggestion about switching high and low mileage with the busier days. I just found out my busy days for the next few weeks will be Saturdays and Sundays which means I can’t have that traditional long run on the weekends. That’s not so bad because I’ll have a day or two off during the week but I won’t have a training partner. As you mentioned, long runs are no fun without somebody else there.

  4. Hope everything is ok with you and your planning?

    • TriCourt says:

      Everything is ok! I have been a little swamped with clinicals and tests but I’m still getting my training in….just not as active with blogging. I have a post almost ready and your comment gave me the motivation to finish it 🙂 Thanks for checking in!

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