Training Plans and Running Clubs

I have been taking some time to work on my half marathon training plan the past couple of weeks, and I think I’ve decided what I’m going to do.

I came to my decision in a rather unexpected way.

Towards the end of December one of my running friends asked if I was going to join this local running club to participate in their 14 week training plan in preparation for a local half marathon that we are going to attend in the month of May. I hadn’t even considered it, or really even been aware of it, but I went to their Facebook group and decided I should go to the introductory meeting. I met that friend there but she had forgotten her running gear so just signed up and left. I had worn my running clothes, expecting to probably run a couple miles. 5 rather cold miles later (I had forgotten my gloves), I had made a couple new running friends and was really excited about joining-so of course I signed up!

The program includes speed training on Wednesday evenings, strength training on Thursdays at a nearby gym that we are given access to for 12 weeks, and long runs on Saturdays with the group. In addition, they provide us with training plans based on our experience levels. Well, with my history of running half marathons I have had great success with Hal Higdon’s training plans. However, I have also recently purchased some books that have various forms of advice on how to train and implement my own personal plan.

I was overwhelmed a little by the over abundance of information in the books I was reading, and since the half is approaching, I decided to attempt the Hal Higdon advanced plan…then as I got closer to this past weekend, I noticed it called for a 90 minute run already in my first week?! I appreciate the fact that I need to get used to longer training, but this seemed extreme for the first week-at least for me. It just so happened that I had my Wednesday meeting again with my local running club where I discussed their training plans. As it turns out, their advanced plan called for a simple 6 mile long run this past Saturday. I could have probably done 7, but I ran 6.5 with another runner in the club, which worked out well! I feel it was much more realistic at this point than 90 minutes!

So, thanks to joining this running club, I have decided to combine the Hal Higdon plan with the Fleet Feet running club plan and come up with my own customized plan this way. Drafting this plan is a work in progress and truth be told, I’ll probably be writing it as I go. But I think at this point, with 5 half marathons under my belt, I can create something useful for me and my specific needs-especially given I need to avoid injury!

Now as I say this, I’m always willing to hear suggestions on training plans. So please, if any of you out there have a suggestion to implement a training plan for increasing speed in a half marathon, or a great book you love that is either informative or just inspirational, please do share! I’m always willing to learn more-especially when it comes to running! 😊

Hope all you runners out there have a great week and crush your running goals! Please, feel free to check out more of my fitness journey on Instagram (@irish_runner80).

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2 thoughts on “Training Plans and Running Clubs

  1. Hal Higdon’s Half Marathon book is a great one where he goes through each of the training plans and says what is the most important, and how you can tweak each one to meet your needs. He also discusses how to build your own training plan based on his simple principles. Awesome read! I discuss building my training plan and philosophy in my week 1 training post: https://runningmybestlife.com/half-marathon-training-diaries-week-1/

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