Back... And now I will go even slower... (Read 855 times)

    Last year, I was doing so well...

    And when in May someone from work was proposing to do the half marathon in October, I really thought I could do it...

    But probably I was adding miles to fast (I'm turning fifty this year after all...), and by mid July I started to feel bad... And after a 12K long run I felt so tired, that I didn't run for a week, and decided to alter my scheme and I didn't do my long run for a few weeks... but I kept feeling terribly tired, and eventually stopped running by the end of august...


    And here I am again... No racing plans anymore... just building up slowly (and even slower, and slower...) No goals, except for enjoying my runs....

    Running in Belgium




      Ann, glad you're back.  Maybe you're one of those people for whom external goals are not helpful.  So, keep in mind that you are running just for yourself.  Running time is a very special time, regardless of your speed or distance.  Your enjoyment of it is what counts.  Make that special time for yourself at least three times a week, and enjoy.  Who knows, maybe in a year you will find yourself running a half marathon anyway.

      Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject. - S.J.


        Slow and steady is a great way to reach your goals! Good luck staying injury free and I hope you enjoy your runs Smile

          I'm 59, and find that I have to do things differently than when I was young.  It took me a full year of running until I could run 20 miles per week.  When I run too many miles, I get extremely tired.  My limit has changed over the years - it was about 20 miles per week for a year, then 30 miles for another 2 or 3 years, and now is just under 50 miles per week. 


          Your goal of enjoying your runs is the best possible goal.  It's not possible keep at it if you don't enjoy it. 


          I suggest putting your efforts toward running every day, or at least 5 or 6 days per week.  Don't worry about distance, just try to get out there every day.  No speed work, no tempo runs, no intervals.  Once a week go a little farther, but not more than twice your normal distance.  If you want to run a half marathon some day, just concentrate on running as often as possible.  Let the mileage creep up on it's own,  When you find yourself averaging about 20 miles per week, with an occasional 25 mile week, then think about a half marathon. 

            Thanks for your replies, and @JRMichler, thank you for your sound advice!

            Running in Belgium






              Welcome back to the running world. When I started out, I did the same thing---I was a fast walker for a few years (which really helped build an aerobic base), and started running and training for a 4-miler for about 4 months. I ran the race, and was hooked. I then proceeded to race almost every week while training way too hard (in retrospect). A few months later, I was slowing down in race, feeling tired, and blah. It was then the brilliant thought occurred to me: "educate yourself about running."  Well, I followed my inner directive, and after many years of reading, racing, and training, I am still standing and going, even though there have been down times. I will suggest a few things that I think can help you to guard against over-training (it can happen even on a relatively low volume if the stress in your life skyrockets). 


              --get a heart-rate monitor and use it to learn how to run aerobically and easy. Running at one of the suggested heart rates out there for aerobic training (like 70% MHR, 70% HRR, 180-age etc.--most of them are in low, fat-burning ranges) will slow you down at first, you might even find you will have to run/walk or walk to keep your heart rate at the target heart rate, but that's good. If you have to walk to stay at any of these heart rates, then your aerobic system is pretty deficient and needs work. BUT, what happens is that you will eventually have to speed up to stay at your target heart rate, and you will keep getting faster and faster. Training paces are never forced upon a body that can't handle it---there is no guesswork. Your body will get faster when it is ready to do so. What was once a 12:00 pace, might become a 9:00 pace at the same heart rate---and that 9:00 will feel as easy as the 12:00. The heart rate monitor is also a great way to keep yourself easy on recovery days. 


              --use MAF tests (click to read about them) to monitor your aerobic speed, which is your speed at a particular aerobic heart rate. When this speed is progressing, then your training is working. When this speed is regressing, there is something wrong. It could be over-training, too much anaerobic work and racing, your life-stress levels,  it could be an iron-deficiency---something is going awry, and your training needs to be adjusted, or you need to be checked out by a doc (if training adjustment doesn't work).


              --learn to cherish and love off days and cutback weeks. Guard against obsession with the thought "if I don't run I will lose fitness."


              --follow hard training days (long runs, medium long runs, tempos, intervals, races) with easy days at a low-HR or very easy perceived effort, or rest and enjoy.


              That's it. Those things I listed will increase the probability that you will stay healthy and not over-train. I wish you the best. And keep us posted on your journey! Cool



                Thank you, excellent advice again...

                I haven't used a HRM for years, considered it as 'something for more advanced runners than I am', but the article you pointed me to definitely makes sense!

                Running in Belgium