Yesterday marked Day One of my half marathon training plan. It called for an easy 3 miles. Easy peasy, right? Not when you took an inadvertent six day break from running. It took me a while to warm up and then my legs didn’t really feel loose until I was done. Dusting off the cobwebs. But my lungs felt good and my breathing wasn’t completely out of whack.
I went back on my Daily Mile account to try and find my “runniversary” date. I’ve seen lots of bloggers post about the day they started running or the day they first felt like a runner. It was hard for me to pinpoint a date. February 18, 2013 was the first day I did Couch to 5K and I did it almost 3 days a week for two months. But then I took a two month break due to what appears to be illness and just lack of motivation. Yeah, I checked my facebook history to figure that one out. I tried to fall in love with summer cycling, but failed when my clipless pedals and shoes didn’t agree with my klutziness. I picked up running again in June, using Couch to 5K for a bit, and then ultimately just running on my own, using walk run intervals until I finally ran my first 3 miles without stopping on August 2, 2013. That day and that run stick in my head as the day I said to myself, “Yep, I’m a runner.” It had just rained and I spent those glorious 3 miles jumping over puddles and enjoying the post rain coolness. Ultimately I guess we’ll stick with February 18th as my “runniversary.” It was the day this whole journey began.
All of that makes me really just how far I’ve come in a very short amount of time. I can run 5 miles without stopping…probably longer because I’ve yet to try running 6 miles without stopping. My resting heartrate is in the low 50s. I’m in the best shape of my life. It’s really amazing the changes you can make in six months, in a year. You just have to take that first step.
Anyway, back to the training plan… I’m using the Half-Marathon Finish It training plan out of Train Like a Mother by Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea. I can’t say enough good things about these two women. Follow their blog, follow their twitter, follow their Instagram, read their books. I looked at several training plans before choosing this one. I looked at Jeff Galloway. I still might try his run/walk/run intervals, but a big part of me wants to run this half marathon all the way. It’s a mental thing for me, but I want to RUN! I looked at Hal Higdon, but his plan wasn’t enough for me. Ultimately I went with TLAM because it most closely matched my current running routine, just pushing me to do more and go just that much farther each week. It was also one of the only programs that included a full 13 mile training run for a half marathon.
There’s so many distances on this plan that I haven’t even imagined reaching. And yet there they are in front of me, neatly typed up onto a calendar. I’ll be crossing off the days as I go, each day closer to my goal of 13.1.
Have any of you ever used Couch to 5K or followed a training plan? Which one?