Hey, so now that I’m running again, I thought I’d do an update on how I’ve been training over the last couple months. I know for some runners, it’s running or nothing, but I would have lost my mind if I wouldn’t have had other activities to fall back on.
Over the winter, a typical running week has consisted of between 8-12 hours of workouts, with 60-80 km’s of running, and the rest of the time filled up with some strength training and yoga. I haven’t been doing very much cardio style cross training. That changed in a hurry. Here are the basic activities that I switched to:
Cycling: I have a trainer for my bike set up in the basement. I bought a membership to TrainerRoad, which is an app that you can load on your phone, and connect via bluetooth to your bike. It registers speed and cadence, and after a test, it will design a plan with specific workouts, and target intensities. I biked at least 4 days most weeks, and even worked my way up to a long ride of 2.5 hrs. I really like TrainerRoad, and am still using it as a crosstraining activity.
Cross Country Skiing: One of my favorite things about running is getting outside, especially in the winter. It really feeds my soul to spend time outside. I used Cross Country skiing for this outlet. I did have to be careful though, hilly trails seemed to tighten up the muscles around my ankle.
Pool Running: One of the first things I did after I was injured, and once I had reconciled myself to taking more than a day or two off, was to buy a waterproof iPod. This was a lifesaver in the pool. A lot of people complain about how boring pool running is, but I have to admit, I don’t mind it, and might actually enjoy it a little. It’s relaxing to be in the water, and with my iPod loaded with podcasts, an hour would fly by. I’m still pool running as I ease back into running, and will probably continue to pool run once a week for the next while.
Yoga: I have been fairly consistently practicing yoga at least once a week for a long time. I find it compliments my running really well. I continued with yoga at least once a week, and over the last month or so, once I was healing, I’ve been trying to get to a yoga class twice a week. I’m also going to continue this whenever possible.
Strength Training: Lori and I have been strength training together once a week for the last 5-6 years, through pregnancies, babies, and everything else life throws at us. I love this guaranteed strength session. I do try to get in at least one other session in per week, and tried to make this a priority throughout my recovery. I’ve also been spending more time on the functional/mobility/core type strength work.
Every week was a bit different, but I tried to mimic a running schedule as best I could. I alternated easy/hard days, built in some longer endurance type days, some quality tempo type days, and most weeks had one dedicated rest day. I also gave myself cutback weeks every 3-4 weeks where I aimed for less than 8 hrs of combined workouts. Most of my weeks ranged in the 12-14 hr time frame. I also tracked my HR during almost all my activities, so that I could get a proper TSS (Training Stress Score) from Training Peaks. This helped to ease my crazy a bit, as I could see that even Training Peaks thought that I was maintaining, or even improving my fitness.
Here are the official numbers (because I like numbers):
Weeks without running: 7 (I ran on the Sunday of week 7)
Bike Distance: 971 km’s
Ski Distance: 44.64 km’s
Time Pool Running: 17:20 hrs
I feel like I did a good job of maintaining my fitness. My running has been slow, and my heartrate is much higher than it was pre-injury, but cardiovascularly I feel good. I’m also hopeful that my running fitness will rebound quickly because of all the cross training that I’ve been doing. I’ll definitely do another update in a month or so, with the results.