It’s eight weeks to go until my first challenge of 2018 – running the Sage Reading Half Marathon on 18th March!
I usually sign up to an event at the beginning of the year to give me some motivation to get outside when the weather is less than appealing. A half marathon is definitely a tough one to jump straight in with, but I’ve been told its a fast, flat route with an amazing finish in the Madejski Stadium. It will be interesting to compare it to Manchester Half which I ran at the end of last year, and also bills itself as fast, flat and friendly!
My training so far has started slow and steady – one short RUNch in the week around the trails near my office, and one longer run on the weekend which takes in the hills and canal paths of Hemel Hempstead. I’ve also been going to a few spinning classes with Esquared (check out my previous post for more details) and even squeezed in the odd yoga class. Not bad for January!
It’s keeping up the consistency which is always the tough thing for me. As the weekends get busier and the working days more hectic and tiring, I tend to let my training slip. However, this year I’m determined to keep up the energy and motivation through to March.
Here are a few of my top tips for balancing training with a busy life!
- Plan out your workouts at the beginning of the week – I sit down on a Sunday evening and see what my schedule looks like for the week and book in my runs on the calendar. Then I can see when I’ve got other engagements and can map my week out accordingly to make sure I fit in everything I want to.
- Try to always have your running kit with you – this is definitely easier for me now I’m driving to work, but I have always kept a spare pair of running trainers under my desk just in case the opportunity presents itself to squeeze in an extra session!
- Have one weekend day to get up early and one for a lie in – I tend to lie in on a Saturday because I’m exhausted after the Monday to Friday grind, and then can get up early on a Sunday to run/cycle/workout when I’m feeling more rested and productive. Sleep is just as important to your success!
- Ask your friends/family/partner to allow you the time to train – Explaining the importance of your goal to who you live with will mean they don’t resent you going for a run in the evening instead of cooking dinner, or getting up on the weekend to fit in that long run instead of snuggling in bed.
- Give yourself a break – Don’t expect to rigidly stick to your training schedule. Life is complicated and you need a bit of flexibility to account for illness, awful weather or changing plans.
What is your next challenge? How do you balance work, social life and training?
NB: I have been given a complimentary entry into the Sage Reading Half Marathon but as always all opinions are my own.