Sunday, 7 April 2013

Time For A Half Marathon Goal.

You have probably heard that it's important to set goals. Something to work towards, a sense of achievement, etc. etc.

Well sadly, it's all true.

Exercising without goals becomes a bit monotonous after a while, which makes it easier to slip away. Also, you never feel you are getting any better. And finally, you can end up not pushing yourself enough, because there is no particular reason to do so.

I feel I've fallen into a bit of a slump recently with my exercise. I've been going to the gym four times a week because I've got a gym pact where I have to, but I've frequently only been going for the minimum amount of time and surprisingly not really seeing any improvement.

So, today while I was at the gym watching the Iron Men competitions (while jogging at close to half their speed, and they had done a swim and a bike ride first!) I decided it was time to set a goal and train towards something.

For quite a number of years now, I've been saying I wanted to run a half marathon. 10 years ago my goal was to be able to run 3.5kms without wanting to die, then having met that it was to do 10km. However, since doing 10km in 2008, I've been saying I would train for a half marathon. As of yet, haven't done it. Not even the distance just out training.

I would see an event coming up (I get email updates from Start to Finish of upcoming events, which I highly recommend for Australians) and think 'okay, I'll do that.' But then never get around to actually training for it.
 Last week I received an email for Run Melbourne, which noted that I had just over 15 weeks to train for the event, AND they offered free training. Now that might be enough to get me going.

So, Run Melbourne is on the 21st July and I'm going to try for the half marathon.
I've never actually run that distance before, so my goal this time is just to jog the whole thing without stopping. Not caring about time or speed, it's just about getting to the end.

Now, Run Melbourne isn't actually my favourite race, as it is usually overcrowded and not always that well organised. For example, I was talking to a friend who did it last year, and part way through the race she was forced to stop and wait as they let traffic through. Stuffed her time completely. And as she said, if you have to stop the participants for traffic, you've chosen the wrong route.

However, since I'm not going for time and they are offering free training, I really think it might be a winner. (And I might need the stops to catch my breath!)

The details of the training as outlined in the email, for those of you interested:

The Age Run Melbourne - Enter now and join our FREE training sessions!
With just over 15 weeks to go until the big day, what better time to enter The Age Run Melbourne, raise funds for your favourite charity, and start working towards your goal - we'll even help you get there!

Join The Age Run Melbourne training sessions from Tuesday, April 30 and we'll help you achieve your personal milestone on July 21! The training sessions are free to all those who have entered The Age Run Melbourne. A $5 fee will apply to all participants who have not yet registered. The proceeds will be given to our Charity of the Week.

Tuesdays - 6pm, Federation Square, Melbourne. These sessions cater for all ages and abilities, with several pace groups aimed to help you build up to the 5km, 10km and half-marathon distances, as well as speed work groups each week.

Wednesdays - 6pm, Running Fit, 170 Queen St, Melbourne. Designed to help beginners complete their first 5km or 10km event.

Saturdays - 9am, Running Fit. A longer run for those looking to better their 10km time or training for the half-marathon.

Now, they are probably going to be packed, but some group training maybe just what you need to get you over the edge! So if you are interested in doing it, I'd love to meet up with you while there. We can both make sure the other turns up!

Or, if you aren't in Australia but have an event coming up,and you want to put your name on the line by declaring your attention, say hello in the comments and we'll keep track on your progress and cheer you on!

In the next post, I'm going to interview a friend who is a state marathon runner, to get her great advice on choosing a good training program and tips for the race.

But until then, I just wanted to encourage you to pick a goal and work towards it. And if you can get free stuff along the way, all the better!

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