Planning for the future

End of November is upon us and before we know it the fireworks will be over, the champagne drunk and headaches will be battling with us to stop us going out for that New Years Day run. Time flies so fast, and when running forms a big part of your life, you spend a lot of that time travelling around on your own two feet quicker than many others.

Im at that point in 2019 when I’m pretty much done for events (01 December is my last) and ive gotten through the tricky bits of the year, with a few knee issues in February and September/October, lots of trying to stick with training plans, and taking part in a number of events, from half marathons to 100Km Ultras. It’s been a crammed year, but next year promises to turn the screw further.

Right now though I have a calendar filling with events and I have some goals I want to achieve. I want a marathon PB, I want a Half Marathon at sub 90minutes. I want to run around the whole of the Isle of Wight for Macmillan Cancer Support (May 2nd 2020).

JustGiving - Sponsor me now!

So that isn’t going to be achieved without putting some structure to my running. There’s so many training methods and options out there and they all differ. They also don’t always marry up with my random selection of events – which invariably all happen close together at a couple of times in the year! So what do I do?

Since Jan 2019 I have been basing my training loosely on the 80:20 running theory using the book by Matt Fitzgerald as my guide. I very much subscribe to the basic premise that training needs to be a mix of easy runs and mixed effort runs. You shouldn’t take every run at breakneck speed trying o deliver a PB every time you step outside the door. That concept I’m onboard with. The book is based on that with 80% of running time spent at low effort and 20% at high effort. I’ve found he book has given me some great structure of run types and frequencies that are compiled in a week-on-week plan. that helps maintain my motivation as well as hopefully building up my strength and ability to achieve the overall target.

I want to continue with this general idea, but I want to also take it to the level of hitting that 90minute Half Marathon time, and my marathon PB would be great at sub 3Hr 30min. I feel I need plans to drive to these specific objectives.

As it stands I’m mainly thinking of using the Runners World training plans and training pace calculator to build my training plan.

From here they have a whole bunch of plans around different targets/times at different distances.

So what do I plan to do?

I have selected my target races for next year – the ones I want to build the training plans around. They are currently the Reading Half and Brighton Marathon in April, as well as the Bournemouth Half in October. These are ones I think I can aim to be hitting those objective times. I hope!!

So I am building a spreadsheet with my races listed and then mapping out plans based on the Runners World training plans.

I also have to consider that 2 Ultra’s next year mean I have got to get plenty of distance in on my long runs, so those long Sunday runs will be done outside of the training plans, with me just spending as much time out on the trails as I can – up to 50Km once or twice if I can get the schedule right. The rest of the time I aim to fit in with the schedule of the training plans.

The two plans I aim to use mostly are:

For my 3:30 Marathon target.


For my 1:30 Half Marathon target.

I’ll be sharing bits of my journey over the coming months and I’ll be providing training feedback as we go through the year.

Next for me is to populate that spreadsheet with the details of the Marathon plan, then overlay the half marathon bits and see how this gels. That’s where the magic starts to happen!!!

12 thoughts on “Planning for the future

  1. Sounds like we have similar plans for next year. I also have a whopper spreadsheet with my training mapped out till the 100k in mid Sept. I’m running Brighton too but chose to skip Reading Half (my local) and go for Surrey Half, a bit earlier, to give me a bit of space. Now I just need my achilles to be sorted so I can actually, you know, run at all!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Planning the training takes longer than the running !! Good luck with Brighton. Might see you around – not many people doing it I’m sure 🤣🤣. What 100k are you doing in Sep?


      1. 2020 should be some year. Be good to follow you if you are in strava. What’s your athlete ref? Or look up ridgewayrunner and I’ll follow back. Good luck


      2. Cheers. I’ll be keeping my blog up to date as well (or at least that is my intention). I have two, unwillingveteran is the running blog, the other is gardening related.


      3. Cool have followed. Looking forward to keeping up to date with progress. Happy to share any of the experiences I’ve had along the way to my first marathon and ultra this year too. You’ll be great 👍


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: