Half marathon training diary – 27 weeks to go

It’s been a while since my last running update, nearly 2 months in fact. There’s still 27 weeks to go until the half marathon, and things are progressing well, but there’s still a lot of room for improvement. Let’s check it out.

Calendar recap

The last time I wrote was back on the 2nd of December. Since then we’ve had Christmas and New Years, aka the silly season.

As you can see the mileage is pretty low and I haven’t been sticking to my 3 – 4 runs a week goal. There’s a few reasons for that:

  • Life…seriously, it’s hard when you have a child, you get ~ 1.5hrs to yourself a day, and running takes up at least 50mins of that when you factor in a 30min run, showering and pre time. Life is the main reason my blog posts have been few and far between lately.
  • The lunch time heat – I’ve been trying to run at lunch times when I’m at work due to the aforementioned lack of time. In Australia the summer heat has been ridiculous this year. It’s often sweat-worthy temperatures by 7am. We don’t have a shower at work, so post run I sponge bath in the disabled bathroom (there’s no one that needs this room at work so it’s typically empty). I’m going to be taking in an attachment for the tap so that I can have a “shower” of sorts now. But even still it’s not enough to cool down quickly, so even after I shower and get back to work my face remains beet red for hours. I need to be prepared, having hydration drinks before and after the run. Sometimes I’m just not hydrated enough; in those cases I feel it’s best to postpone the run and do it at night on the treadmill.
  • The evening heat – sometimes at home it’s just as hot. I’ve been running on the treadmill with a cold rag on my neck, a fan blowing on me constantly and water on hand and I still struggle. One night I managed 3km and then had to call it off, I started to feel lightheaded.
  • Tight Achilles. I’ve been trying to do yoga to loosen it up, but there were a couple of days where I was afraid of potentially doing damage if I forced it. On those nights I focused on doing 30mins of yoga instead.

Revised plan

Obviously the lack of mileage can’t continue. As the date draws closer I have to run further, so moving forward my plan is as follows:

  1. Bed every night by 8.30pm (I’m very much struggling with getting enough sleep at the moment so this is a goal towards improving that too)
  2. Up every morning by 4.20am (just shy of 8 hours of sleep every night, much better than the 5.5 – 6hrs I’m averaging now)
  3. On the treadmill by 4.30.

My husband leaves for work by 5.40am every morning, and my son typically wakes at 5am. So in theory, this should allow me time to get my run in while it’s cool, shower and get ready before my husband leaves for work. If my son wakes early my husband will get him and give him his morning bottle and breakfast. I should be done and ready shortly after 5.15am, leaving him time to get ready as well.

On the days where I have a long run, something that I expect will take longer than 30-40mins, these will be scheduled for the weekend when my husband can take the bub while I run.

Let’s see if the plan works as well as I’m hoping.

New equipment

My beloved Garmin went a little crazy this month. I’d been having some problems with it charging for a while but had managed to bring it back from the brink. Then suddenly a BIOS screen flashed, and it was no more.

I was devastated. I’ve written previously about how using my Apple Watch for proper training isn’t enough, and so I used the last of my personal savings to splash out on a new Garmin (for those playing along at home my husband and I have a bazillion accounts, including a joint savings and our own individual savings accounts each to purchase whatever we want without justification).

Behold, my new Garmin 735xt.

It’s pretty, and round (unique from my old Garmin and Apple Watch), has stats galore and works with my chest strap. I loooooove it. Best of all it still supports multisport, so if I ever do another triathlon (still on the bucket list) I can still use this one. One day I might look at writing a review on it, but know that it’s all good.

Summary – Running Progress Report

In a nutshell I can feel that I’m a lot fitter. I’m back running 5km nonstop again, and even better, I’ve hit a new PB. I’m back under the 40min mark, and on the day I managed my PB at Park Run I managed to snag the best running photo I’ve ever taken!

(Photo credit: Tami Joy Photography)

I’m thrilled my fitness is improving and I’m definitely getting faster, I just need to focus on mileage. So far my longest run to date is 7.5km, I’m hoping to improve on that over February.

I look forward to my next update, and hopefully more good news to share!

2 Replies to “Half marathon training diary – 27 weeks to go”

  1. Nice job Kelly. It sure is hard to find the “right” time to fit in a run especially the long runs. I remember when I was train for my half marathon I only had 1 day a week where I had time to run for an hour and a half at 9am. It worked for me. Life and kids will always change “the plan”. Be adaptable is the hardest lesson I have learnt but you will and you can!

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