The new year has started off great as far as training is going. I am preparing for the inaugural running of the Asheville Half Marathon at Biltmore Estates in March and, after a good look at elevations, I think this half could end up being a PR for me. I am aiming to slowly knock time off my current PR which is held by the Skunk Cabbage Half Marathon in Ithaca, New York.
Some hints on my training for this particular race
I am using a Hal Higdon plan for half marathon training. Strangely, his plans were the first ones I used when I started racing, after my first 5K in December of 2009. I have managed to move up to the intermediate plan and there is a lot of speed work in it. While I am not adverse to speed work, this plan has tempo runs and 400m repeats. I am starting to love them both but both are more work than my fartleks using utility poles on my road.
Even though the plan calls for a lot of speed work, I am not doing it on the track. Actually, in winter here in upstate NY, it is hard to find a track that is not snow covered. I do the speed work on a local road that is not flat. The road has rolling hills. I used to describe the road as flat and, as my routes here from my house go, it is one of the flattest I have. Consequently, when I pull off 400m repeats that are fairly consistent, I think that a PR is definitely in reach.
While I have yet to find an elevation map of the Asheville Half Marathon at Biltmore Estate, I do have a map of the course.
I will be running my first race of 2014 this weekend. The 10K that is part of the local January Freeze series fits right into my training plan. Probably best I run a race or two before running this half. I will be posting my race schedule through April soon. I also have a few other races planned but am hung up over decisions for the first weekend in May.
What races are you training for currently? Do you run races as a part of your training? What speed work do you do and do you do it on a track or a treadmill?