I will be doing my first full marathon in 2014 in about 19 weeks from now. As Hanson Marathon Method typically goes with 18 weeks training plan, I think now is time to reflect my progress and may be do some final adjustment on my training plan.
In my recent race report (15k at Kuala Kangsar), I was confident that I am going to sub 4 in October. But the situation is changing now. I felt into sick (flu, cough and running nose) for 2 weeks. That jeopardized 15 days from my training. I only managed to restart slowly from last Wednesday. Eventually, after a week back into training, I felt the sickness and break didn't take away too much of my trained stamina and endurance. But that will be too early to tell. I was so looking forward to my mid term exam – Ipoh International Half Marathon to gauge my current progress and score my first sub-2 half marathon. Unfortunately it was postponed to November now. Hence, all training plan back to drawing board and I have to adjust my plan only with what I had from the 15k race.
I will be following the Advanced Program in Hanson Marathon Method, with a target finishing time set to 3:45 hours (target pace 5:20 min/km). The main difference of Advanced Program compared to Beginner Program was the tempo run. It’s kick in from week 3. Progressively increased from 9.7km to 16km. Towards the end of the program, I should have completed ~191km of tempo run at target marathon pace, which hopefully will map the pace into my muscles and body movement. My heart beat raise by only looking at the pace chart. The problem will be my speed. I haven’t run that fast before and the speed works recommended a pace that I recognized as my top speed previously (4:41-4:53 min/km). I may want to review the plan around week 7 or 8 after I did a few longer tempo run.
Some key lessons learned from my attempt to follow the Hanson Marathon Method program twice,
1. Avoid joining races in training plan. I was racing too much in my first attempt to follow thru the training plan. These races some how proven the effectiveness of the training program, but I was just too excited in racing and injured my leg back then.
2. Stick to the planned pace, especially if you are going to a totally new territory. If you are aiming too high, better play safe. Especially on the strength and speed intervals, your system will be under high level of stress. Pushing too fast not only jeopardized the quality of the workout, it will also invite injury.
3. Stay away from sick people. The training program is very demanding even on the Beginner Program. Some study found that running long distances will actually reduce the capacity of your immune system. I will suggest that as the high intensity of running will need more time and effort from the body to recover between workouts. These recovery activities will definitely reduce the capacity of the body’s resistant of sickness.
4. Have enough sleep. This comes hand in hand with the above. Sufficient sleeps improve the recovery and helps to ensure quality workout session.