It is almost that time of year again when we make our New Year’s goals and when runners really start thinking about what they want to conquer in the New Year. For some runners, those plans may actually already be in place as training is currently happening for people running down-south marathons, like Arizona, or have early spring races like Around the Bay or Boston. For me, I have no big races scheduled for the spring, only a handful of 5K and 10K races. It is currently my off season but I wouldn’t necessarily say it is “off”, meaning no work outs. Instead of running 40-50KM per week like I did during marathon training, I am spending more time getting stronger at GoodLife Fitness!
When everyone asked me whether I felt ready to run a marathon, I tried to explain that although cardio-wise, I felt very ready to run for 5+ hours, but I was really worried that it would be my body that would give out. My heart is definitely pumping when I was running, but breathing wise, I was nice and relaxed. My body however, was a different story. My back hurt something awful after the Army Run, my IT band flared up towards the end of training and I was always worried that I would develop another stress fracture. My lack of strength in my hips/glutes muscle groups has been pointed out by pretty much everyone (track coaches, physio therapists, running friends). I can run as much and as fast as I want, but until I work on my strength, I will continue to have issues and could really injure myself one day.
This is where GoodLife Fitness comes in very handy. I have only been back for a week, but have already gone to the gym four times, including two sessions with a personal trainer for my assessment. The first few visits to GoodLife Fitness was spent doing some cross-training on the stationary bikes and rowing machines as I found out that I strained a hip flexor muscle. I also dabbled a bit with some weight lifting, focusing on the arms. I did meet with an amazing personal trainer (who is also a runner) who discussed what I wanted to accomplish at the gym and how personal training could help. She lead me through many exercises, focusing on my trouble areas. Let’s just say I could definitely feel my glutes activating with some of those exercises. The next time I saw the personal trainer, she had a great year-long plan developed for me. The plan she made for me definitely had me excited for some hardcore strength workouts. Unfortunately, the salary of a part-time teacher who spends 40% of her income on daycare means that I cannot afford to have a personal trainer for a year. But, I’m hoping that when my semester two work situation is figured out that I can see her for at least 6 weeks to get going. GoodLife does recognize that working with a personal trainer 3x a week isn’t in everyone’s budgets and provide various workout and payment plans. I really hope that I get some positive job news so I can see the personal trainer again!
In the meantime, I do have some strength workouts to start on. I plan on going to GoodLife Fitness through out the holidays and will continue to go in the New Year. There is no more room for slacking when it comes to my strength. I am fairly certain that sticking with strength training long term will help my running significantly. Cross training is also another component of training that I need to add in to my weekly schedule. I already have a number of fitness classes circled on my calendar, including one of my favorites, BodyFlow. I am very excited to be back at the gym and hopefully becoming a stronger and faster runner.
This post was written as part of the GoodLife Fitness Blogger Ambassador Program, however all opinions expressed are my own