Spring training with Chicago Endurance Sports (CES) continues, and so far I'm really enjoying it.
I was initially worried that I would have trouble sticking with the training plan, and it was a little tough at first, but has gotten easier and has become just a regular part of my life. In fact, it is pretty great having all my workouts planned out through the end of May. I wake up knowing what I need to do each day (run, cross train, or rest), which helps me plan appropriately. I have to say, I'm in love with rest days. I usually use rest days as an excuse to take a yoga class, though I did use one rest day to go home and watch a movie after work.
The best thing so far has been the twice weekly group runs. Since I'm running out of the Lincoln Square location, the group runs are Thursday nights and long runs are Sunday mornings. It has been surprisingly nice running with other people, especially during our long runs on Sundays.
My pace group has a couple of wonderful pacers who are there every weekend, and knowing that I am expected at a certain day, time, and place has helped keep me accountable and showing up, as folks really do notice when you're not there. It is also nice having coaches and pacers available when I have questions.
My goal race, the Soldier Field 10 Mile, still seems far away, but I know that it is coming up quickly and will be here before I know what is happening. Although I'm still a little nervous, I feel that I'm much more prepared than I would have been without the help of CES. Although I'm still struggling with some things (the runs I do on my own are still very much hit or miss), I've noticed a lot of improvement when it comes to pacing, and I feel that my form is also slowly getting better. Best of all, I feel that I can easily apply the same training plan to future races.