I updated my schedule quite some time ago when I decided to most likely participate in the Lincoln Marathon in 2016. But I want to make it official with its own blog post.
My sister lives in Lincoln (that's in Nebraska, folks) and we have been talking about doing a race together. It made sense consider the Lincoln Marathon for several reasons, really.
- I will have absolutely no reason to go to Lincoln <slash> run the Lincoln Marathon once she doesn't live there anymore. This makes it a good candidate for my Thirty in my Thirties goal, which is to not repeat a race.
- There's a half marathon distance which follows the marathon course for 13 miles so we can run together if I can't convince her to run the full...
- I get to visit the cuteness that is my niece.
- It's precisely five months out which gives me time to train and be motivated but not too much time to where I have to do something else first.
I could probably think of another several reasons, but why? There may be some cons to this race, though. Based on a few things I have read, the second half of the marathon course isn't as well-spectated as the first half so the energy will probably be a bit low. Also, it's in Nebraska, so the scenery cannot be expected to be anything better than bad. (I've actually been there and am not purely speculating.)
I started officially training on Nov 26 after taking four rest days post-Griffith Park Trail Half Marathon.
The training plan I decided to use (and yes, I mean actually USE as in FOLLOW and not make up my own instead like last time...) is Hal Higdon Marathon 3. I'm REALLY excited about it for a few reasons.
- It's 24 weeks long meaning I don't have to wait to start it. In fact I started it midway through week TWO. I'm super impatient, so I like to start everything now. Like, right now.
- It only calls for THREE running days per week. Two days are bike/cross-train and two days are rest. As you know, I'm recovering from the longest bout of peroneal tendinitis in history (I'm currently starting month 12) so three runs per week with lots of rest for my ankle is perfection. I also have that awesome bike I was telling you about so I may as well use it.
- It has FOUR warm-up races. That sounds like fun. Plus, it gives me little goals along the way. Winning.
- It's simple. There are only FIVE different types of workouts on the plan: run, tempo, pace, bike, cross-train. That's it. I love math. In fact I do mathy stuff for a living but when I see "400x8 x6" on a training plan I close the tab.
- It's free. Hey, I could pay for the interactive version, but I feel pretty motivated to stick to a plan right now, so I'm going to save the $45 for some new long-sleeve running tops that I already ordered because running at SIX A.M. is butt-ass cold.
Alright, that's probably enough reasons. Wait, you want more? Oh, okay no, I misheard you. I think a lot of people choose Hal Higdon's plans for some or all of these reasons already, but this plan really spoke to me. I ended up mashing up my own plans in the past because nothing out there was a good fit. I don't think I have to do that at all this time, except for moving some things around for vacay time.
My biggest goal for the training cycle is to hit 90% of the workouts. I have two blocks of the plan outlined where my goal is to hit 100% of the workouts. I made this my goal so I would have a goal each day and week and not just a "this is going to get me to the marathon, so I better do it." I really would be excited on April 30 to say "I did 90% of my workouts!"
I also plan to run all four prescribed races, but I don't want to spend my life savings, so hopefully I can find some at a good value.
This will only be my second marathon. I hadn't planned to spend 2015 marathon-free. However, if I hadn't sat out for a bit, I wouldn't be able to call this a comeback and it would be much less epic.