No improvement

Hello

I started running March 17 and went from +40 minute 5k to 21:29 5k by December 17. I also got my Half marathon time down to 1hr 43 despite hating the distance!

I thought I would easily be able to go sub 1:40 this year in a half and at least sub 21:00 for 5k but i have made absolutely no improvements this year! It doesn't seem to matter whether i take a break, train harder or train easier/slower... nothing is changing when it comes to race day!

Surely in only my second year I should still be improving?

Although i wouldn't stop running I'm not entering many races anymore as there seems little point when i cant beat my times from 8 months ago already!

I know without knowing me advice would be difficult to give so i wondered what I should be expecting from my second year compared with the huge improvements in the first from your own experiences, and any changes you have made to improve

TIA

Comments

  • DT19DT19 ✭✭✭
    How old are you and what does a typical week look like (including training paces) and are you training consistently as opposed to having a couple of solid weeks then 2 weeks off? 

    Has your training progressed and developed since March 17?
  • In addition to your weekly km & types of runs, have you tried following a specified training plan with one race distance in mind? This would give you the structure and training progression you need.

    the other obvious things - are you sleeping well? How’s your diet (weight gain, loss etc)? Are there big things happening in your life that are added stressors + therefore impeding recovery?

    also is park run an option? You could go use it as a little test every 6-8 weeks for instance, even if you don’t want to “race” right now 
  • > @DT19 said:
    > How old are you and what does a typical week look like (including training paces) and are you training consistently as opposed to having a couple of solid weeks then 2 weeks off? 
    >
    > Has your training progressed and developed since March 17?

    I'm 32, I try to do a long run of around 10-15 miles on a Sunday at around 8:30 pace, in the week I do a medium run of 7-8 miles at around 8-830 pace and 2 shorter runs of 3-4 miles at 730-8 pace.

    my speed increased all through march 17 -December 17 quite drastically then December 17-march 18 it still increased but steadily then march 18 - now its just stayed at the same level

    > @Christine5 said:
    > In addition to your weekly km & types of runs, have you tried following a specified training plan with one race distance in mind? This would give you the structure and training progression you need.
    >
    > the other obvious things - are you sleeping well? How’s your diet (weight gain, loss etc)? Are there big things happening in your life that are added stressors + therefore impeding recovery?
    >
    > also is park run an option? You could go use it as a little test every 6-8 weeks for instance, even if you don’t want to “race” right now 

    I have tried plans and roughly follow one with my distances but i find i don't enjoy running as much when i HAVE to go because a plan told me to. I'm about 7lb heavier now than I was in December so that could be a factor.

    I do park run every now and then for that very reason! at my last one i was 15 seconds off my PB and normally finish a fairly flat course in around 21:40-21:50
  • You see very rough guides of 2seconds per lb per mile quoted. More for smaller runners, less for larger runners. Matt Fitzgerald has a racing weight calc http://www.racingweight.com/rwe/index.html#/
  • > @Christine5 said:
    > You see very rough guides of 2seconds per lb per mile quoted. More for smaller runners, less for larger runners. Matt Fitzgerald has a racing weight calc http://www.racingweight.com/rwe/index.html#/

    in 6ft 1... that website says i should be 10 stone! Im currently 13st4 im not sure i want to/can drop over 3 stone :# I could probably drop to 12 if i put some effort in. Do you really think those 7lbs ive gained make that much difference then
  • i think it would make a substantial difference -  7lbs will slow you down a bit, even with same fitness. 
    may not be full story of course 
  • First, well done that is a great improvement. Cracking work. Improvements will slow for sure going forward, but I am sure there are still plenty of gains to be made. Unfortunately weight does matter. Getting obsessed with getting skinny can get you ill and slow but it sounds like you were happily 7lb lighter, the extra ballast will be slowing you down.

    Looking at what you said about your training it looks a bit monotonous 'happy hard' to me. I dont think you need to use a rigid plan. Keep it informal but think about how to target different aspects of your fitness. Consider running faster (and slower)- Just some efforts within runs at 5k pace and above 5 k pace. Even super short fast efforts are a valuable tool. Hills once a week are awesome If your long run needs to be slower to avoid feeling mashed that is ok too. Just dont fall into the trap of wearing yourself down. Have fun with it
    Good luck.
  • Sounds like you need a new running challenge, if only there was a race harder than a half marathon....

    They really should invent a race around twice as long as a half marathon.

    If not that then join a club, track sessions would kick you on to next level.

    But your times are very good don't be disheartned.
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