Anytime of Day

Consistency, consistency, consistency. Long term, that is the most important element of training. Last week's 12km race showed I can get some good results of mainly low intensity training if there is a good degree of consistency. It is fine writing out a plan to cover the weeks of training leading into races, but it s harder to actually perform the plan. Adding in the commitments of life, work and family, including the fact I won't miss out on time with the kids, there is a lot competing against training time. Last year I was fairly content with missing a few training sessions to meet the other commitments. This year, my thinking has changed slightly.

The change doesn't mean I am doing anything less with the family. It is a rethink about how I can get the training in. If the morning and evening was taken up around work, then I would accept that was a missed day of training, rearrange the rest of the key training days and move on. The result was that I usually got in all the key training runs (long, threshold etc.), but the low intensity (60-70%HRmax) runs were often dropped. In the short term this is okay, but over time it limits the advancement of all training. Very important adaptations occur over time at the low intensities. Missing this training leads to missing these adaptations.

This year I have been applying a small, but important change in my thinking. Basically there are more opportunities to fit in training than I was seeing or accepting. Taking a lot of influence from Ultra168 who go by the slogan 24 hours in a day, 7 days in a week… 168 hours to run! I work rotating shift work. A mix of early, afternoon and night shifts. So I have the ability to work around some obscure hours. Time to apply that to training. As is usually the case with finding more time to train, you have to work out what else should be dropped. For it has been some evening television. On top is being a little bit more organised and taking the extra 10-15 minutes to get everything ready for the next day.

The results so far have been a couple of earlier nights to get in enough sleep to handle getting up at 04:30 to get a run in before my 06:30 shift. Puttng on he bacpack and using running as my commute. Slipping on the running shoes after a 9 to 9 shift, finding my footing on the dark trails. Discovering that both kids are getting heavier after hitting the hills with them in running pram. My ego took a hit when my daughter asked why I wasn't running. I was, but she told me I wasn't going fast enough to be running.

So far I have got in all my planned runs. Not necessarily at an ideal time of day, but I don't quite have that luxury.


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