Since quitting drinking and smoking last summer, and losing about 20kg (was 105, now 86) I'm now finally starting to achieve a bit of consistency with getting out for runs.
In my early twenties (I'm 34 now) I played a load of football and was fairly fit. I would run occasionally to compliment football training. I entered a 10k about ten years ago and ran 49m45s (on quite tired legs!) but apart from that I never did running purely to run - it was to improve football fitness or run the beers off.
I've been slowly getting into running - purely to run, football days are over - since September. Starting with fairly miserable 1km or 1 milers. Then a few 3ks here and there. I can now comfortably run 5k (best recent time 29m25s on road and 31m05s trail) and I can run that distance fairly comfortably and safely with two full rest days in between (i.e. run on a Monday, rest, rest, run on Thursday). These runs are at 90-100% effort level. I have done one slower, lesser effort trail run of 8km at 7m30s per/km pace.
After a lot of rambling, my question and topic I'd love some advice on is: how do I now transition from regular-ish same-style running to a proper, mileage-building weekly schedule?
I don't have a specific event or distance in mind to train for. I've always liked running but never made it my primary activity. I want to do that now, and my understanding is that even if you are targeting to train for fairly modest distances (5k events for example) your weekly mileage stills needs to be 25+ (of which a vast majority needs to be 70% or less effort level). I figure I'll start with no specific goal other than to increase overall weekly mileage in a safe and structured way, build a solid base and then decided if I want to work towards better peformance for a specific distance.
Things I specifically need help with are;
- how do I judge, based on my current fitness level, what a sensible weekly mileage target is for now, for one months' time, three months' time and so on.
- getting over the reluctance to run on consecutive days. I guess this will be less daunting when I stop running all my runs at max or just below max effort.
- how might walking factor into any weekly running mileage total (if at all). I am probably walking my dog (on mixed terrain including hills) about 20 miles a week.
- what might an actual Monday to Sunday schedule look like for me right now?
Thanks so much for reading this very long post!