Well, your probably thinking its been a long, hard, season. You have either raced your big Ironman or tackled several tough races. Either way, the big race is behind you now.You‚Äôve had time to reflect on your season, you know what next year‚Äôs goals are, but maybe you are not quite ready to get after it. Now what?
Well as an athlete and a coach, I see it from both perspectives, and I‚Äôm going to give you a few recommendations for a post season plan.
First of all, lets consider reducing volume, intensity and maybe even consider being a single sport athlete. I do believe the fall is the best time to become a runner. The leaves are changing, the weather is cooler, leaving us much more comfortable to go out and run. This cooler air temperature will also keep our core body temperature better regulated for some good performances if you chose to go that route.
Initially, I would consider stepping way down, almost remedial in how much total running your going to do. Many of my athletes, even though they just finished an Ironman, will still enjoy getting some work done by starting a simple run program with 10 minute runs, maybe 5 days a week. I would turn your watch on, but if you have a Garmin or similar, make sure you only see time. Do not worry about pace, distance or heart rate at this point, just go by feel and enjoyment. Your goal is to run and be finished with your run before any hint of fatigue has set in. Being mindful of your posture will promote good habits, regardless of a 10 minute or 3 hour run. Try to always be aware and mindful of good form.
I would recommend adding some strides or 20 second accelerations within or after your run, twice a week, just to get some good leg turnover. They shouldn‚Äôt be too hard, taxing or leave you feeling like this is a chore, or a serious workout. I would consider getting back to some fun trail runs, and social runs with friends that you may have neglected do to your earlier prescribed and focused workouts. I would also add 5 minutes to your run every week. Once your running 5 days a week for roughly 30 minutes each run, you might have a decision to make. You can keep running and enjoying the process, or maybe you will find the fire inside to test out the legs.
There are now two paths you can choose:
Here are some fun ways to keep up your speed:
Running will keep you active with very little prep time and with very little overall volume. It kicks up the metabolism, and the endorphins without needing to spend much time training. It can be done anywhere anytime with minimal supplies needed.
Have fun, go run!
Jim Hallberg believes that every one of us has the capacity to improve our efficiency, get stronger and run, bike or swim faster. Sure, it takes time, dedication and discipline but it‚Äôs possible. Working with an experienced coach can make sure that your efforts are targeted in the right areas to make sure you reach those goals!