On October 11, the race that made me want to run a half marathon is happening again. Maybe. It’s not cancelled yet and small races are slowly starting back up in my country. Even though it’s a large race, I’m keeping hope. I’ve also decided together with a friend that if it does get cancelled, we’ll run that half marathon on that day anyway. Not together as it’ll take me about 30 minutes longer, but it’ll be nice to know there’s a friend nearby doing what I’m doing.
This means I need a new training plan. I’ve been running with Garmin Coach for 1,5 years now and I really like the ease and structure of the plans. However, after running with Coach Greg for almost all this time, I figured it was time for a change. I was dreading the speed work in the summer heat and wanted a slower, different plan. I considered some plans outside of Garmin, but didn’t find anything that spoke to me. I ended up with Garmin Coach Amy. Together we are aiming for a half marathon time of 2:38 in 18 weeks. I’ve selected 5 workouts a week, but will likely do 4 or 5 workouts each week depending on my schedule. Most of these runs should be easy runs, which sounds perfect for me during summer running.
Eindhoven (half) Marathon, I’ll be ready for you. I hope you will be too!
For more information on Garmin Coach, start at my What is Garmin Coach article.
The benchmark run is a 2 minute warming up, 5 minute all out run and 2 minute cooling down. It’s a way to see where you’re at and it’s the start of every Garmin Coach training plan. I like to compare my times as I progress. I ran my first benchmark on January 19, 2019 with an average pace of 7:15 min/km. My fastest benchmark was on March 15, 2020 on a cloudy 9°C morning. Average pace: 5:59 min/km.
Today it’s June 14 and a cloudy, 18°C day. Not my best running weather. I ran today’s benchmark at an average pace of 6:01 min/km. I’m pretty satisfied with this result. I know I’d be able to run faster under better conditions and I feel I’m getting fitter.
The first run on my schedule is a tired/recovery run, usually meant to be done after a long run. You’re supposed to run as well as you can on the tired legs from your long run. Slow and steady, do what you can but don’t push yourself. As it’s the first run of the plan, I don’t really have a long run to recover from. I woke up extremely tired though, so it still felt fitting. It was warm and I had trouble keeping my heart rate down. A few walk breaks and a lot of slowing down led to a small 5K run at an average pace of 9:01 min/km. Not the best start, but it’ll have to do.
The warming up towards my “hill” is just about 1K. The hill: a bridge over a highway. The repeats: 150 meters. I had already negotiated with myself that instead of 10 repeats, 8 would be fine as well. A bad start.
1. 5:45 min/km
2. 5:41 min/km
3. 5:47 min/km
4. 5:13 min/km
5. 5:19 min/km
6. 5:22 min/km
After 6 repeats I debated with myself and decided I was done with my workout and went home. Looking at my statistics now, I should’ve done at least those two more repeats and would probably have managed just fine. When I got home my Garmin told me it still wasn’t satisfied with my anaerobic efforts, my Vo2max went down and I’m unproductive. Thank you! I’ll just stick to the plan then.
A short 4K run on the trails, my heart rate never left zone 2 and I was able to keep an average pace of 8:33 min/km.