Now that I have made it through swim lessons, I am on to my next training phase of the year. This past Saturday marked the start of my 10 week training program for the Kentucky Derby Festival Mini-Marathon. This is the 2nd year I will be running the Mini and my third half-marathon. Last year I was disappointed with my time and hoped to have a huge improvement this year. Based on my first 5 mile training run Saturday, I doubt I can improve my time as much as I had wanted. I'm still very slow and that's something I'm trying to learn to live with while just concentrating on the fact that I do actually enjoy running now.
That said, I do have a better running plan this year. Last year, I only did long runs. This year, I'm adding speed work and tempo runs. Monday was my first speed work session and it went great. I met all my targets and actually increased my pace each quarter mile. Today will be my first tempo run. I'm not sure how it will go and I think I might have my goal set too fast, but I'm looking forward to giving it a try.
In addition to running 3 days per week, I'm going to be taking Body Pump once a week, swimming once a week, and taking cycling class or riding my bike twice a week. The cross-training will help prevent injuries and give me better cardiovascular endurance. My goal for this half-marathon is to not hit a wall. I want to be able to complete the race without needing to walk a lot at the end. I know my time will improve by running more of the race, although I'm not sure how much. I guess I'll find out in 64 days.