At 6:10am, my phone woke me up with a loud beep beep beep sound — on a Saturday.
Guess what that means? This morning kicked off the start of marathon training season!

But before I get to the run details, let me back track to which races we’ll be doing and our training plan.

After some thought, Hilary and I decided to run the 26.2 with Donna on February 12, 2012 as our full marathon. I’m also planning on doing the St. Pete Beach Classic Half on January 15, 2012 and the Gasparilla Half on March 4, 2012. I’m still a bit concerned about my school schedule working with my running plans, but I think it’s important that I make the decision to run the races now now and then figure out how to work it into my schedule later.

Last night Hilary and I made an impromptu trip to The Globe Coffee Lounge in downtown St. Pete, where she worked on her blog and I mapped out our training plan. I figured out that we have about 27 weeks between now and the full marathon, which will give us ample time to gradually rebuild our base and increase mileage.

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I also went to Twitter and asked some of my favorite runners whether or not we should train beyond 20 miles.

During marathon training do you run more than 20 miles for your longest run? @ @ @ @

@ I only ran one 20-Miler for my first marathon, which worked out well. I'm planning three 20-milers for marathon #2.
@CarrotsNCake
CarrotsNCake

I ran a 22 miler for marathon training, it helped mentally but don't risk injury! @ @ @ @

Everyone pretty much suggested that it was better to do a few 20 milers and not go beyond 20 miles in training. I liked that idea, so I built it into our plan.

If you’re interested in seeing the training plan, you can view it on Google Calender here! I combined the Hal Higdon plan with the 26 week plan Hilary and I used for Seattle Rock n Roll marathon. I also built in the other half marathons into our training schedule, so we should be well trained for all the races.

Basically, Sundays are our long run days.
Mondays and Fridays will be cross training days (spinning, biking, swimming, and group fitness) and the days Hilary has TriGator practice.
Tuesdays and Thursdays will be run days.
Which leaves Wednesdays and Saturdays as rest days — it will be football season, so Saturday off will work out nicely.

In addition, I plan on building strength training into my plan, probably on Monday and Wednesdays, but focusing mainly on abs, core, arms, shoulders, back, and not my legs.

I’m planning on posting my weekly work outs once things get into full swing.

Cut back to this morning —
With the training plan complete, Hilary and I kicked things off today with our first 5 miler. Admittedly, it’s never easy getting out of bed early on a Saturday morning, so when 6am rolled around, I needed to convince myself that I actually wanted to be out of bed. I promise I really did, it just took a bit of self-convincing.

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We were out the door by 6:30am. We were out and running before the sun even woke up!

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One hour and five miles later we were done! It was 85% humidity during our run, which made it feel a lot tougher than I think the distance would have felt under different circumstances. Oh the joys of running in Florida.

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After the run, I quickly hopped into the shower and changed into my yoga clothes. My new friend Dee (via Twitter!) invited me to join her for some free yoga at the Tampa Lululemon. I’m so happy that I got to meet her before I leave for Tallahassee and I loved the yoga class. Thanks for inviting me Dee! Hopefully we’ll see each other again either in Tallahassee or for some of the Tampa Bay races.

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Doing an hour of yoga after my first long run in forever felt ah-mazing! Seriously, I almost want to do yoga after every long run.

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Later in the afternoon the Zen feeling from the yoga dissipated quickly when Hilary’s cat ate an ibuprofen pill and sent me into panic mode. So far she looks like she’ll be fine, but the story of how Pixie and I spent the afternoon in the pet emergency room is the story for another day.

Namaste everyone!

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