A Season of Change

Last fall when I registered for this April's Garmin Half Marathon I decided that I was going to run it in 1 hour and 50 minutes, setting an earth shattering PR (personal record, for you non runners). That would mean I would need to cut 4 minutes off of my fastest half marathon time. A lofty goal, but I was determined to do it. I planned to run 13 miles at least 5 times beforehand, but really wanted to run that distance 8-10 times beforehand. I started running hard in January, giving me 3 months to get out there and kick some training butt.

This should be easy, I thought. I had completed a full marathon just a few months before. No problem.

Then it happened. One day toward the middle of January I was running for the 4th day in row, something I hadn't done in a few months; Suddenly I started feeling pain in my right shin. Shin splints, I thought. Take it easy and the pain will go away. After running through slowly increasing pain for 3 more days, I took several days off from running. Each day I took off, the pain in my shin increased. It quickly got to the point where it even hurt to walk, and eventually I was limping from pain.

What? That's weird, I thought. If you take time off it, shouldn't the pain get better, not worse?

If you follow my blog, you know the rest. I had a stress fracture. After a week of rest I finally went to the doctor, scared to death of what she might say. My treatment plan was five weeks in an air cast with absolutely no running. But what about the Garmin Half in a few months?

Well, last week I came out of the air cast and slowly started running again. I need to very moderately increase my miles, which is hard for someone that previous to the injury would easily run 6-7 miles at a time. Normally recovery would be no problem, add 10-20% per week into your mileage and you'll get back to running longer distances in a few months.

Normally you aren't training for a half marathon though.

My new training plan? Be able to run the whole thing, even if it's my worst time ever. This will be a new kind of training season for me. A season of change.

I am about 6 weeks out from the race (which is on April 18) and here are my new training goals:

March 1-7: Run 3 times, reaching a 3 mile run by the end of the week.
March 8-14: Run 3 times, reaching a 4 mile run.
March 15-21: Run 3 times, reaching a 5 mile run.
March 22-28: Run 4 times, reaching a 6 mile run.
March 29-April 4: Run 4 times, reaching an 8 mile run.
April 5-11: Run 3 times, reaching a 10 mile run.
April 12-18: Run 2 times, reaching a 7 mile run. Rest two days before race. Race on the 18th.

So we will see if my plan needs adjustment, but at least I have a plan. I will keep you all posted on how it goes.

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