Training Plan 4 – Update

It’s Saturday morning. I keep having to remind myself that. Normally the busiest day of my week. Rushing back from parkrun to get stuck into work. But all that has changed.

The races that so many of us have been working towards have been cancelled or postponed. Whilst it’s frustrating we do have to put that into perspective. In the big picture it’s a small sacrifice to make. As runners we are lucky in that we can still partake in our hobby during these troubled times. 

If you are out on the streets of Hastings and see a lanky fella, dressed as a carrot, running towards you, don’t be offended if I cross the street to avoid you. It’s not because you smell. 

Dressed as a carrot at the last parkrun before it was postponed.

Running has been huge for me over the past 14 months. Introducing a plan has kept me motivated, positive and improved my times dramatically. My self confidence has grown too.

So whilst I can no longer set myself goals in terms of race times, I do intend to keep training hard. Even if it comes to the point of running 50 laps around my local field, I intend to do it.

To keep myself motivated I’m turning my attention to my cadence. This is the number of steps you take in a minute. At the moment I’m somewhere around 165 – 170, depending on the nature of my run. 180 is seen as the ideal cadence.

So when I introduce Training Plan 5 in a few weeks time, my focus will be increasing my cadence to that magical 180 number. I’ve used a metronome for the first time last week and believe it could be a game changer.

You can download an app and it will beep a certain number of times per minute. If you can follow the beats with your foot strike, you can increase your cadence. It’s that easy.

I plan to use this at least once a week. As I progress through the next plan I will firstly increase the distance I run to a set cadence and then increase the number of beats per minute. Then hopefully come week 12 I’ll hit that magical 180 figure, which in turn will see my pace increase significantly.

When the races do return, I’ll be in the best shape of my life to smash out some PB’s and make all the hard work worthwhile.

In other news I have a first date to look forward to next week. I mean what nobhead waits for a global pandemic to ask someone out? No theatres, no cinema, no restaurants, no cafes. On the plus side the pressure to impress is somewhat removed. Plus who says a trip to Aldi can’t be romantic?

I’ve also purchased myself a GoPro and have been adding some Videos to the website. With more time on my hands I hope to add more content to the site over the next few weeks. Whether anyone reads it or give a s**t we shall see. But it’s keeping me sane.

Try to stay positive folks. Don’t let this virus stop you running, unless of course you show some symptoms or Boris demands that you stop. In fact if you have more time, this is a good opportunity to get in the best shape of your life and amaze people with your PB’s once the races return. 

Stay healthy and be kind.

Written by Simon Linklater21st March 2020

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