... and if so, where do I find one?
My method of running/ learning to run better so far has been to strap on my MP3 and a stopwatch, and build up my total distance, speed, and to decrease my intervals of walking/ slow running. However, I'm wanting to train somewhat formally for a 5k in March, as well as get back into running after an unintended month-long hiatus (crazy bad intestinal bug). So far I've enjoyed this method. Should I adopt a more formal/ regulated approach? I can only run about 2.6 miles before walking 45 sec to a minute to hydrate, breathe, etc. A mile takes me about 9 minutes.
Thanks for any feedback.
Do you Need One? Heck no. Do many people find them helpful - yes. I went free for all for the better part of 3 years, my own version of what are doing. I recently decided to follow a more formalized training program for the marathon. Having done so, I'm a bit surprised I much prefer having things laid out for me to not question what the heck I'm going to do today, rather than a week or two from now.
You can pay for them if you like to think you're getting better advice with cash-but you can get decent ones for free on cool running website.
Sounds like you are off to a pretty good start so far. You’re probably ready for a 5k already.
For training beyond a 5k, or for just improving your performance I like Hal Higdon’s programs:
2010 Space Coast Marathon 4:27:39
2011 Charleston Marathon 4:25:58
2011 Croom Fools Run 50k 6:16:51
2011 Marine Corps Marathon 4:24:48
2011 Jacksonville Bank Marathon 4:44:12 (4:45 Pace Leader)
2012 Florida Keys Ragnar Relay 28:20:47 (3rd place-Mixed Ultra)
Check it out - I'm bloggin'!
Consider joining your local running club or organization. The membership fees are usually minimal and a great investment to gain access to various classes and training opportunities. It is also a wonderful method to connect with other runners and become informed about all the professional resources in your community. You will most likely also meet individuals willing to offer kind advice and mentoring for achieving your goals.