April: Healthy Habit

April 2nd, 2012 | Ann

March was a really good month. I logged nearly every single one of my training runs and saw some great progress – my pace and endurance are improving, and I FEEL much stronger than I did last month. I stayed injury-free and felt relatively good during and after most of my runs.

After Saturday’s successful run (read the recap HERE), Hannah and I went to brunch at Yum! in Minneapolis and workshopped my half-marathon training plan. We talked, at length, about what has been working, and more importantly, what has NOT been working.

For the last 8 weeks, my training plan has included:
Monday – Spin
Tuesday – Longer Run
Wednesday – Shorter Run
Thursday – Longer Run
Friday – Yoga
Saturday – Long Run
Sunday – Cross-Train

But if you look at the above schedule, I didn’t do Monday spin. I didn’t do Friday Yoga. And I didn’t do Sunday Cross-Train. I logged my runs, but I didn’t add ANY additional workouts – no yoga, no cross-training, no weight training. And ultimately, that is NOT helping me be the strongest runner I can be.

So I’m laying out a new plan for April. The Get in Gear is 26 days away. I can switch up my routine for the next 26 days.

Here’s my April plan…

1. Log atleast 30 minutes of additional workouts per day (with the exception of long-run Saturday).

Whether it’s stretching/yoga/weights, cross-training, an extra jog or walk at an incline, spinning, elliptical or stairclimber, a class at the gym. To move my body for another 30 minutes a day beyond my scheduled run.

I want to reach the Get in Gear starting line knowing I’ve done everything I can do to be a stronger, faster runner; I want to be an injury-free racer; I want to be a well-conditioned athlete.

2. Journal my food.

It’s no secret I’ve continued to struggle with food choices. And being aware of what I’m eating is the secret to understanding WHERE I’m struggling and WHY I’m struggling. 26 days of journaling. Game on.

3. Relax, and take things one day at a time.

Last week was an incredibly stressful week. Questioning my ability to run the pace and distance of an upcoming race gave me so much stress and anxiety. I need to remember to take a deep breath and focus on the task at hand – whether it’s a single day, a meal, or a decision. To ask myself, with every question or opportunity, “Is this going to help me reach my goals?” 

I also want to listen to my body. If my legs feel fresh and ready to run on Monday, then there’s no reason I wouldn’t move my Tuesday run to Monday. Likewise, if I need a rest-day on Wednesday, then moving my run to another day (still logging the miles), but knowing that it’s really about listening to my body and being respectful of soreness and cautious of injury.

I feel really good. 26 days of healthy living and race prep. Logging the extra workouts, journaling my food, and relaxing and focusing on one day at a time. Come April 28th, I’ll be ready to run the Get in Gear knowing I’ve done everything I could do to be as prepared as possible. Developing those good habits and continuing the healthy, active living.

What are some of your best tips or suggestions?

What’s your favorite healthy habit?

10 Responses to “April: Healthy Habit”

  1. Michelle says:

    Awesome plan. I love tha tyou gave your self a choice and went with it. Sometimes it’s about giving myself a choice and I know that I can make the right one in the end. But it’s about control.

  2. Annie says:

    I am going to track for 26 days with you! I need to GET IN GEAR! No excuses :) Thanks for the motivation!

  3. Ruby Leigh says:

    I’ve always been terrible in the past about doing my cross training. I’m trying to use the looming triathlon and threat of injury as my motivation to keep that going.

    In addition, when I put together my “plan” for the Get-in-Gear – I thought more about what my life schedule looks like than before. For instance, I know certain days are just easier for me to x and others for y. This has saved a lot of stress.

  4. lindsAy says:

    i think it’s great that you continually revisit and re-evaluate your goals! i think one of the best things i have realized as a runner is that it’s all individual. it doesn’t matter what someone else is doing – if i need a rest day or a slower run, that’s okay! :)

  5. Ashley says:

    I love your plan! Hannah sounds like a rockstar!
    I’m so so so happy your long run went well! So awesome! :)

    #10FreakingDays!!!

  6. i kinda love this. because you point out that we can SWITCH our plans around even midway through…we dont have to just give up if we have not done the plan thus far. i fall into all or nothing so much so that is what stuck out to me as a reminder in this post. also. i ran with ash at the race this weekend. and i may have gotten a tiny bit jealous she was coming to MN so soon. I MISS YOU! and MN! and i may have squealed last week when I read that the TC marathon gives away free caribou to runners!?!!!

  7. I love this new plane! Cross training (as I’m finding) is key to being strong and staying injury free!

  8. Kat says:

    Amen for cross-training. Hannah wins for championing that one. Honestly? My Monday (strictly CT day) workouts are always the worst because I’m tired and moody. But I KNOW that by the time I’m done, if nothing else I won’t regret what I did.

    And the power-walking gives me a great excuse to sport the arm warmers :)

    p.s. I owe you a novel tomorrow.

  9. Natalie at imchattynatty.blogspot.com says:

    First off you are doing great by getting mileage in- pat yourself on the back.

    2nd- some of my fastest marathon/1/2marathon race times has come with one day a week with cross training (spin and or yoga). I think one day a week is plenty if you are running 4 days/week.

    3rd- don’t underestimate the importance of rest days and so just don’t burn yourself out or worse injur yourself prior to toeing the line.

    4th- the most important thing you can do in prep for race is the long run- if you do that mileage weekly you’ll be god to go. Best of luck!

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