Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Here's a quick way to train for a mini-marathon

The first weekend in May, Eric and I will run the Indy 500 mini-marathon. This will be my third time, Eric's fourth. While I'm by no means the fastest runner, I actually enjoy the way training forces me to do something those dreary winter months when it's easy to keep my posterior planted on the couch. So how do I get ready?

I'm so glad you asked. This month (January) I've tried to get on the treadmill three times a week...if for nothing more than to remind my body how to move. I quickly learned I needed new shoes and then had to take the week to break those in. But now I'm ready to move to the next level. Official training.

But starting February 1st, I'm pulling out a three-month training program that has worked great for me.

For official training, I use Hal Higdon's 1/2 marathon guide for intermediate runners. This allows me to work on increasing my speed without going nuts. With four kids and my schedule, I simply don't have the margin for lots of long runs. One of the things I like about this system is he works in intervals so it's not all distance running. I also love that there are different levels for different runners. My first year, I wasn't even sure I could finish. I wasn't doing anything three months before the mini. Using a system like this, I ran the entire distance.

I noticed that this year he has apps as well as the online information to help runners who want to complete  1/2 or full marathons.

If you're not quite up to the challenge of a mini, don't worry. He has guides for shorter runs, too.

Is anyone else training for a long race to help beat the winter blahs? What systems do you use?

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