I've just completed Phase 1 Week 7 and I'm feeling a bit demotivated. I love the training, the intervals make it more interesting than training plans I've followed before. However, I don't see any improvement in my pace for HRZ2-3. I don't know what to expect and I'm trying to be patient and let my body respond to the training, but it's hard without seeing any change. What should I expect? Am I being impatient?
There is a really important point in a number of the messages here which is just to do what you are aiming to do each training session: in other words, the perfect session is where you run at exactly the pace or HR you were aiming to before you set off. It isn't faster than you planned, or further or at a lower or higher HR, it is simply doing what you set out to do.
The programme is just that and if every session is "perfect" or as close to perfect as you can get it, the results will definitely come, you just need to stick at it. For many (all?) runners, me included, the benefits derive from consistently training, and the real key is to avoid injury while doing that "perfect" training.
So don't beat your self up over expectations. Just do your training and enjoy it (because you do love running, right!) and it'll be even more amazing when you do notice the improvements.
Well, I've just completed my 20 minute test and there has been NO IMPROVEMENT. 3 months of training - snow, wind, hail, rain, keeping my heart rate low. Yes, I can now run 14 miles so in terms of endurance possibly, but the pace I've been forced to run, I could probably have done that before I started the training. I could already run 8 miles over hills so my guess is I could. Crushed really does not cover it.
Give yourself at least until the end of phase 2. Phase 2 is where you should really begin to notice an increase in speed.