This week was the first full week of following a slightly different plan to usual. I typically plan my runs out based on distance, occasionally looking to hit a certain pace. However, I had been finding my motivation was slipping quite a lot and so wanted to change it up a little. This week I went out based on time only, not really looking to go a set distance, just going as fast as my legs felt they wanted to go. I also went out with my partner 4 times this week to support him as he builds back up to 5km. The workload this week wasn’t too high as it was the first week on this new block, regardless I got a few good sessions in and even did some work on the stationary bike!
This week I covered just under 25km in all the running I did. This was from 6 runs this week, on both Monday and Wednesday I ended up doing two runs. A short run first thing in the morning with my partner, and another after breakfast to complete my plan. So here’s the complete run down, I’m also really sorry there’s not too many pictures this week I wanted to get to grips with the new session style!
MONDAY: 2km + 5.4km (30 minutes)
The day started out with a small little run with Bradley to try and work out his ‘normal’ pace, or at least a pace that he can run at the moment without feeling it too much in his ankles on shins. It was his first run for a few months and so the 2km seemed like a manageable distance for him, it was so that was positive!
Once my breakfast has settled I then went out to complete my own run which was a 30 minutes run. I had judged that I could probably do 5km in that so just took a route I knew is 5km but where I could loop my block if I had come up a little short on time. I ended up doing this and so went to the end of the main road before turning back into the road near me and almost ended the 30 minutes right at my door. To top off a good first day back to training I also got a local legends crown on Strava for one of the segments I did during this run, now I just need to keep running it to keep it!
No running today, but I jumped on the bike just to do something. I joined in with a nice relaxed cycle with a group on Zwift which was really nice. Sometimes I struggle a lot in the group rides as I get dropped and find it hard to get back on. During this ride there were so many people (over 400!) that I was in the pack the whole time. I was also starting to get the hang of the draft effect and different bonuses you can get. The course was super flat and based on a low power so it was nice just to do something low impact.
WEDNESDAY: 3.1km + 6.4km (40 minutes)
Another morning run with Bradley, however today’s run was an interval session to increase his endurance. After a warm up walk we went into 3 minutes of running and then 2 minutes of walking. Before setting off I asked how he wanted to do the intervals, giving the choice of just nicely paced or going for it. He didn’t really give an answer only that he did want to see if running faster helped his legs. Off I went, and we ended up doing 4×3 minute intervals at just over 5min/km pacing. Needless to say he got a little tired towards the end but he did enjoy it, going well past his estimations of covering about 2.4km.
If anyone remembers Wednesday you may remember this was a REALLY hot day. Having finished the first run at 7am it was already 20 degrees, meaning I was really dreading doing my 35 minute run. I amped myself up though and ran on the treadmill as I knew I could just put the fan on and deal with it. I put no pressure on for pace and walked whenever I needed to. I don’t see the point in forcing myself to run too hard in heat!
On Thursday I went with another group ride on Zwift, this time on a hillier course. I wanted to challenge myself and see if I could do a higher power output and so the groups average power was also a bit higher than I usually go for. Again I managed it though and covered yet another Zwift course. I have since created a spreadsheet of all the courses I need to cover to try and do it as quickly (within reason) as I can. I covered 33km in the hour and then later went out on a little walk.
FRIDAY: 2km + Cycling
Just a run with Bradley super early in the morning on Friday, so added a little more intensity by doing another Zwift ride (trying to tick off two course achievements) I . I’ve made his plan so that Friday runs are simply a carbon copy of those on Monday making it a little easier to see progress. GPS was slightly different on both runs but it already appears that his legs are remembering how to run as we covered the 2km route about a minute quicker than on Monday.
I started cycling at about 9am doing a bit of a warmup on a short course doing about 10.5km in total, before joining a zwift ‘race’. I’ve popped race in quotation marks as I did not race the event I just tried to stick with the group I was cycling with as we were going about 1.7w/kg-2.0w/kg.
SATURDAY: 5.7km (35 Minutes)
On a Saturday I’ve started to incorporate some sprints at the end of my run to try and help with my form and efficiency. Whilst the time on feet plan doesn’t have too much speed work I didn’t think where would be any downside to me doing any. So I completed a 5km loop and then used the rest of my time to do as many sprints and rests as I could. I ended up with 6x100m sprints with about a 30s second rest in between them. I’m still enjoying these sprints. I don’t think I’m getting much quicker at them but my legs aren’t getting as tired as they did when I started doing them about a month earlier, which definitely counts as progress.
SUNDAY: 90 minutes
Upon waking up on Sunday I just found that I was really tired, so instead of running or jogging my 90 minute session I did it as a walk. I know that in the long run it won’t give me much of a training adaptation, especially if I do it too often, but sometimes you just gotta do what you can. I walked with Bradley going up a super steep hill near to us, in the hope of seeing a good view. But alas the mist was still up so it was hard to see too much.
This week I’ve definitely become less focused on pace, but also really excited about running again. I’m looking forward to being able to do races again – I know many races are already on, but for someone without a car it would mean a lot of public transport to get to various race sites!. I don’t think my running is at the same level as it was in February but I’m becoming more secure in that knowledge. I just keep telling myself that it will come back once I’m a little less stressed and life returns to ‘normal’.