I hate this time of the year…. the leaves changing, the air getting cooler, daylight becoming more desired… I hate it almost as much as I hate what it leads to: winter. Winter is that time of the year that just sucks. I hate having to wear coats (or long sleeves for that matter), hats, gloves, long pants, etc. I like to be able to wear shorts and a t-shirt… if I can’t do that, I don’t want that weather. Okay, enough ranting…this is supposed to be about running.
This brings me to my dilemma. With running ‘season’ nearing a close I have to figure out a good game plan for the winter. This is the first year I’ve been a real runner, so I haven’t really had to worry about winter running. Sure, I ran last winter, but it was sporadic and not at all enough. This winter, though, I’m still pushing harder to train. Last time around all I was trying to do was complete the Couch-to-5k program…don’t get me wrong, that was a crucial step to get me where I am now…but now I’m wanting to train for a real marathon. Training for 3 miles is nothing compared to training for 26.2.
For anyone who has been through this, or going through this, please let me know what your ideas are. Right now I’m debating between all running with some limited strength training (pushups, situps, etc…stuff I can easily do at home); more strength training (especially core) and less running… all strength training, no running; joining a gym and either doing self-lead sessions or even group sessions…. or some variant of all the above.
The end result needs to be this: no (or easily recoverable) loss in running ability come spring as well as improved core strength, weight loss and improved health. Somehow I’ll get there, but at this point I don’t now how.
All I know at this point is tomorrow will be perhaps my last race of 2011. It has been a memorable year… from my first 5K to my first 5-miler to breaking 30 on a 5K to my first half marathon, I’ve had a wonderful year of running… but hopefully 2012 will be better.
Tomorrow I’ll run the Black Cat Chase in Frankfort… my fourth race of the year in Frankfort. Knowing the hills that are involved there, I don’t know if I can realistically break my 27m12s PR, but I guarantee I can beat my 3327s time I posted on this same course in May. Granted, that time I had not training properly because I had (both during training and at race time) bronchitis. My heart wants to see sub-27, but my mind will just hope for sub-30…..ish.