Now it’s for real

I noticed on my blog last night that the countdown clock I have set for Surf City is now “2 months away.” YIKES! 

So I pulled out the training plan my coach drew up for me for the Philly half.  And talk about lucking out–that plan is a 10 week plan, and I’ve got 11 weeks to go until Surf City.  An awesome spot to be in.

The first three weeks of the plan are what my coach calls ACE–aerobic capacity and economy, and the focus is just that–building aerobic capacity with most of the runs at a 10-11m/m pace, and some strides and hills built in–with 5 days a week of running. Given my hip/butt issues, I think this is do-able right now, but I’m going to stay with 4 days/week until I either shake this hip crap or can stand the discomfort better. Since I’m not an elite runner (or even a fast runner), there’s only my personal goals on the line.

It’s weeks 4-10 that are exciting, with more strides, some fartleks, trails, and tempo training at different paces all built in.  I’m really lucky that I’ve got a track, trail, and excellent roads all within my reach.  

Aside from the stupid hip/hammie crap, the only other obstacle in my way is my head.  Right now, it’s just so easy to just go out and run. Motivating myself to do hills or tempos or fartleks, or strides is hard.  Not that I can’t do them, but I guess I’m a little lazy–my head knows the training plan says fartleks at 5×1′, but my body and legs just keep plugging along at my 10m/m pace.  tra la la. 

Since my LRS doesn’t have another training class until Feb, I’m left to do this work on my own.  Coincidentally enough, one of my fave bloggers (A Veteran Runnah) reviewed a new app for his iphone, and it seemed to fit my needs as well. iSmoothRun (i got the pro version, though I probably would have done just fine with the free, but I like to reward creativity and function) has now replaced my reliance on Nike+ which I have a love/hate (mostly hate) relationship with.

Here’s why I like it more than my Nike+ app: it autopauses when I’m stopped at stoplights.  It allows me to create workouts, so I can set up my fartlek or tempo training specifics and have the prompts tell me when to speed up or slow down.  Maybe that stuff is already on the Nike+ app, but if it was, it wasn’t intuitive enough for me to figure out, so that’s as good as not having the function. It also measures my cadence, which the non-physics person in me is having a tough time figuring out.  But I will, one day. No worries.

I’ve used the app for a week so far (4 runs).  The first three I set up as “free” runs, which means I didn’t have a goal distance or pace programmed in.  The GSP was quite accurate (it was spot on with the A8K mile markers).  IMO, Nike+’s gps sucks. This morning, I thought I’d try out a distance goal (6 miles) and goal pace of 11m/m.  Wow! Susan (the name I gave the voice) tried her darndest to keep me on pace (slower! slower! steady! faster! she kept saying).  I overshot the goal distance by 1.2 miles but the timer and mile counter kept going (which is good).  I think this will work out when I’ve got more specific workouts on the docket, and I’m pleased about that. I also like that the app syncs seamlessly with my Daily Mile account and FB/Twitter. 

I think if i were developing an app, I would add two things:

1.  “what am I wearing” info.  Going into winter (which is bound to be a harsher winter than last winter, which was too wimpy to even earn the moniker ‘winter’), I’m constantly second guessing as to what I should be wearing–everyday so far has been an experiment–two shirts, jacket and vest? fleecy tights or compression capris? crew length socks or peds?  I guess I can manually add that to Daily Mile, but I generally don’t log into DM before my runs (not having an app is a real hindrance for them).

2. pre and post run stretching/strengthening workout info.  then i’d have more memory of how many sets/seconds I did every time I set out. 

oh, i guess i need to add my disclaimer: the folks over at iSmoothRun have no idea who I am. I was not compensated for this app, and my opinions are just that: my opinions.  



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