My plan was to run every 3 days for 4 weeks, and increasingly get to a longer distance, capping it at 5 miles. Somedays would be just distance, and others would be two stacked runs, to simulate the start and restart that happened during this event. My first run was 1.5 miles, with the first mile being around the track, and walking a bit, and then jogging a half mile. That was in December, and I felt slow and tired. My normal workout routine was weights (2-3x a week) and playing softball once a week. Cardio was not in the picture at all. I knew this needed to change for me to get better.
To improve upon this, I worked in the weight room on more speed / endurance exercises with less weight, and more reps. Outside of the gym, I was making sure to stay hydrated and help my body recover from the long (relatively speaking) runs. What ended up happening was the weight room plan eventually fell off, as I found myself struggling to fit a lifting day in around my running schedule. I didn't want to lift before a run and risk being sore and hurting my performance during the training run, and then I didn't want lift right after a run, and risk injury....so I cut it out.
First was the 5K, with a 5pm start time, and I was hoping to run between 8:30 and 9 minute miles...which was my training pace.....and then the adrenaline and my boy pushing me a bit helped to squash that goal, and finish in a quick (again, relatively speaking) 7:51 avg pace. Talk about starting fast!!! I was a bit worried that we'd gone too quick, and possibly burnt ourselves out for the upcoming 10k...but I shut that thought out, and focussed on the next task at hand: staying loose, and hydrated for the next race. We had about an hour in between the races, but it felt like no more than 15 before we were ready to run again! As the 10K started, my legs were a bit sleepy and took about a mile and a half to get back in the groove again. I was at a 8:50something pace through 3 miles, and knew I had to keep up the pace to stay within my goal time. Then mile 4 hits, and my legs are getting a bit tighter. No biggie, I think to myself just keep the playlist going, and DO NOT STOP RUNNING. Mile 5 hits, and now my legs are thinking of just stopping, but I see DODGER STADIUM all lit up on the top of Chavez Ravine, and the music was hittin', and I HAD to keep going!!! With heavy legs, headphone blaring, and that logo on my chest, I finished the 10k, at an avg page of 8:37, which was RIGHT ON TARGET!!!