When I first made my OBX Marathon Training Plan I was pretty conservative with it. It was towards the end of the craziest, most stressful school year of my career, and the lack of time I had to run was fresh in my mind. Even though I knew I was starting to train in the summer when I would be off and have more time, I didn’t know how difficult it would be to get out for runs since I’d be at home with the baby. I also wasn’t sure how my body would respond well to higher mileage and “speed work” again. So I created a plan with a lot of flexibility, that focused on 3 runs a week, 2 days of strength training, and one day of cross training or an optional 4th run. I didn’t assign any particular days to do these runs and decided I would fit them in where I could throughout the week.
I have completed two weeks of this training plan and I realized very quickly that I may have been selling myself a little short. It was not difficult to get out to run 4 times each week and fit in strength training, and it felt really good on my body. I actually chose to do a 4th run both weeks rather than cross-train because I wanted more time on the road. I can tell my endurance is still there, but my speed is lacking and not where it used to be before baby. But running fast is always tough in the summer, and I know it will be easier to hit those paces once the weather cools down from September to November. Despite the weather, it’s like my body is just remembering what to do and is falling back into it pretty easily. This has made me crave a more structured and challenging plan than the one I originally created.
Shortly after making my plan I read the book Train Like a Mother, and I really liked the marathon training plans they had in there. Luckily I had some wiggle room since my original plan was 20 weeks long (I wanted to build up a good, strong base since it’s been 2 years since I’ve trained for 26.2.). So I decided to switch over to the “Own It” marathon training plan in the book very soon after starting my original one. I even ended up adapting my first two weeks to make it more like the plan in the book. This plan is a little ambitious yet realistic at the same time (made especially for busy mommies!). I like it because it’s more detailed and the workouts are more specific, and it will build my endurance and speed more than the plan I made before. It’s also 18 weeks, so it is perfect timing to officially start it right now. I did adapt it a bit to fit my specific needs, to make time for Body Pump and strength training, and plan around trips and races I have coming up. It’s also still a little flexible- I can still rearrange the runs if I need to and some of the runs have options in terms of how many miles I can run.
Here is the new plan! The black is what is planned and the red is what I actually did.
There are a lot of abbreviations in the plan and I will explain the workouts in more detail as I complete each week. You can also find them in the Train Like a Mother book. I am really excited about this new plan and feel ready to take on the challenge. 2 weeks down, 18 weeks to go 🙂