Cross Training, Momming, and A Day In The Life – Runner Edition

I’ve gotten a lot of comments and messages in the past few months about my running schedule. Spoiler alert: It isn’t perfect! I do try to stick to a schedule, though. My schedule changes throughout the year depending on what I am training for. Half marathons obviously merit longer runs than 10ks, etc. I also alter my schedule based on time goals.

I LOVE my current schedule, and I’ll give you a peek into it below! This schedule is great for a long-distance runner (half or full marathoner) who is in an off season and wants to set small, reasonable goals + stay in shape.

THE PRESENT

Right now, I am training for a Sub 26 5k as well as a 15k (both are in the same week…yikes). Keep in mind that I’m still in half marathon shape as I never got off track when my September 24th half came and went. A typical, current week looks like this for me:

MONDAY: 45 treadmill walk at an incline

TUESDAY: Negative splits at a conversational pace 

WEDNESDAY: Full body strength training with dumbbells, kettle bells, and body weight exercises:3 sets of Neila Ray total abs, 50 clam shells (25 each leg) with a resistance band, 20 sumo squats w/15 pound kettle bell, 20 kettle bell swings w/15 pound kettle bell, 50 donkey kicks (25 each leg) w/10 pound dumbbell, 20 squats w/15 pound kettle bell, 30 bicep crunches (15 per arm) w/8 pound dumbbell, 10 shoulder pull w/10 pound dumbbell, 10 air plane arms (5 per arm) w/5 pound dumbbell, 10 push ups

THURSDAY: Speed training that varies – 200s, 400s, 800s, 1k, 1m

FRIDAY: OFF – it’s the freakin’ weekend baby.

SATURDAY: Just kidding about the freakin’ weekend. 45 minute cross train on either the stationary bike, elliptical, arc trainer, or inclined treadmill (if treadmill – hold 5 pound weights at intervals of five minutes)

SUNDAY: Long run day! Conversational pace

I love this schedule for a few reasons:

  • I’m running enough, but I am not over-training at all. I don’t hurt.
  • I continue to keep up with cross training, so I build strength and mobility in low impact ways. This truly helps me on my runs!
  • Strength training is A MUST. It’s not an answer to everything, but it really does help you cut down on injuries and build endurance.

Where I Fit It In

I mean, it’s six days a week of workouts. I am the mama of a two year old who doesn’t like to ever be away from me, and that can get challenging. I also own a successful run coaching business, am training to become a race director, and am working on completing a fitness nutrition certification. I work full time as a Senior Manager in corporate America, and oh – I like to sleep, read, and blog.

Every day except for Sunday, I run after she’s asleep. I get on the treadmill with the baby monitor #likeaboss and get it done. On Sundays, my husband takes over for a bit so I can get outside to run.

Running on the treadmill a couple days per week has its benefits. It’s a bit more forgiving than pavement, but it’s still a great workout. All in all, I don’t mind it. I’d prefer the track for speed training, but whatever. We have to get it done somehow, right?

A Few Words About Cross Training

Sometimes, my athletes come to me and tell me that they cross train quite a bit. When we delve into their schedules, I hear a lot of the following:

  • Yoga
  • Hot yoga
  • Pilates

I hate to break this to you – but that doesn’t count as cross training! It counts as an effort, a word that we use to describe a workout that isn’t similar to running. You’re still putting forth physical effort when you perform yoga or pilates, but it should not count as a running cross training exercise.

All of my athletes cringe when I tell them a list of cross training exercises that are appropriate for running:

  • Elliptical
  • Cycling (indoor or outdoor)
  • Prolonged hiking
  • Brisk walking (with or without the incline)
  • Arc trainer
  • Stairmaster (or just climbing the stairs)
  • Cross country skiing
  • Swimming – although it doesn’t mimic running, it’s a great workout!

All of those exercises force you to move your legs in a similar fashion to running, so these are cross training exercises that will benefit you. Please don’t think I’m bashing yoga and pilates! I recommend these if they help you stretch and/or relax. However, they shouldn’t take the place of cross training exercises that mimic running.

So that is my typical, current week. Looking for a customized plan? Let’s chat!

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