My journey as a runner has certainly not always gone smoothly in the past.
During my student years, when those extra “student room kilos” started to bother me, there was that one moment of revelation that everyone will recognize: “ok, enough is enough!”. And because I had been running sporadically, but with great pleasure for many years, it became my sport of choice.
That sporadic relaxation soon grew into a passion that ran out of hand. The extra pounds were quickly gone, my fitness made huge leaps forward, my personal bests kept getting sharper and I also felt better and stronger than ever before. Good job, I thought!
Running without structure.
But: I trained without a plan, and above all, without having any idea where my limits were at. Between working and studying my time to run was sometimes (too) limited, so I tried too often to make ‘the most’ of the little time I did have: going out to hard. Also recognizable for many probably! I went through fatigue, stress, lack of sleep, and unfortunately also simply through small aches and pains that then got bigger and bigger.
The inexorable consequence: a stress fracture of my pelvis. At that moment, much to my regret, I decided to give up running.
However, wisdom comes with age, they say. In my case it’s true. Only a few years later, with my medical degree in my pocket and back in school for my master’s in sports medicine, did I begin to understand the mistakes I had made as a runner. I really wanted to pick up the thread of my old passion, but I knew that things could go wrong again if I didn’t bring more structure to my training.
I didn’t have the time or money to hire a real running coach, and Garmin’s virtual running coaching wasn’t really my thing. Then I first heard about Trenara through colleagues and fellow running enthusiasts: a brand new running app that offers you personalized training plans and adapts to your abilities.
Honestly, I had a bit of a love-hate relationship with it in the beginning. If you are told after every training that you have gone “in the red” again and that they are “pulling your ears”, then that is not very motivating in the long run! But admittedly, sometimes I still had to learn to hold back, so often I got such messages through my own fault.
Gradually I learned to dose better thanks to Trenara. I learned more and more to feel what it is like to run really slow – and as a result I was able to run really fast. I followed a perfectly structured training plan for the first time in my life, and at the same time I never felt like there was so much variety in my workouts. And above all, after all these years full of injuries, I was finally able to build something up again – only in a responsible way this time, with much less risk of injury!
In the long run my condition even improved to such an extent that I gradually got my old personal bests back in sight. So I made it my goal to attack those old records one by one – with success so far, may I say with pride! Trenara has already helped me break my half marathon and 10-mile records (read: smash!), as well as my best time on the shorter distances (1000m & 1 mile). If I am also to believe the (amazingly accurate) race predictions of Trenara, my last remaining “old” records on the 5 and 10 kilometers will follow soon.
I never expected this kind of performance from myself. In fact, until recently I literally thought it impossible that as a rusty thirty-something I would be able to beat my top-fit 25-year-old self. The fact that this was allowed to happen is largely due to the targeted and personal guidance from Trenara. For that I remain eternally grateful to the Trenara makers Christophe and Gert. So I didn’t hesitate for a second about that subscription to Peak Pro, as a thank you and as a gift for myself!
When all those old records are shattered, and only the marathon remains to finally cross it off my bucket list, then I already know where my training plan will come from… 😉