This running lark isn’t just about getting fit. Well, it is. But there’s specific targets that I’d quite like to hit on the way to getting fit and if I can take in some nice scenery on the way then I’m a happy chap. Which is why in April 2013 I came up with a plan. Like the Cylons, I have a plan.
1. Parkrun. Weekly 5ks. Get into this, then:
2. Leeds 10k and Abbey Dash. 10ks to see how my time is.
3. Leeds Half. See how the time is on that. Don’t think about running a marathon because that’s just no fun at all.
4. Jack in running road races, only going on the roads for training, and concentrate on fells and cross country. (Nicer scenery.) This is Boff Whalley’s fault, for writing Run Wild.
5. Tod Boundary as annual check on how I’m doing.
Then we get a bit intense and whilst I’m unlikely to actually pass step 5 – although I think 5 is a realistic target – step 6 goes into the world of crazy.
6. Train for long-distance hikes (Lyke Wake for starters)
7. …then some of the crazier running ones.
8. …and then compete in them.
So there we have it. There is a method – and a reason – to the madness. If it weren’t for rubbish heart stuff last year I’d like to think I’d be a few steps further on than I am at the moment, which is just past step 2. In any event, I’ve had to add a few steps after the Leeds 10k.
2a. Tuesdays with HPH, which are 5mi runs at the moment but I’m hoping to see that go up a bit soon.
2b. Thurs mornings doing intervals with JB.
Starting in the very near future is:
2c. Longer, gentler runs on Sundays. A huge problem for me is pacing. I tend towards setting off too fast and not have the beans to finish at anything faster than a stumble. If I can maintain a 11min/mile pace for an hour or so then I’ll be happier than a 9min/mile for the first mile and 13min/mile for much of the rest, finishing at 15min/mile. This is something that I need to practice.
Then I have chats to people and people suggest things and I think I can do them, which is why next year might see:
3a. Start doing more swimming with the aim of competing in the Leeds Xpress Tri.
3b. Do the Xpress. I’ll come last, but I’ll have done it.
3c. Train for a marathon, calling myself an idiot all the while, because someone pointed at a very pretty marathon route around Keilder which looks lovely and happens in October. That’s 2015 at the earliest, if not ’16.
So there we have it. The overall “fitness plan” which is really a high level overview, but at least has marker points along the way.