A few months ago I came across an article in Runner’s World that detailed some of the more popular training philosophies and their creators. Coach Jack Daniels was the number 1 critics choice. The article convinced me that i needed to immediately have his book:

Daniel's running formula

Now, I should pause here and tell you something about myself. Actually I should tell you two things about myself.

1. I am not a data analyst. I hate numbers. Mathematical equations make me nauseated.

2. I have a mild case of ADD. If you ever meet me in real life and it seems like everything and nothing is coming out of my mouth at the same time… well, that’s because I’m socially awkward, at my best, and CONSTANTLY distracted at my worst.

Now, moving on to Daniels’ Running Formula. The book was fabulous. What I skimmed of it. I gave it the ole’ college go. I swear to God. I even managed to scratch out a 5k plan using the many varied vdot charts and calculations that Daniels’ dutifully provides. If someone held a gun to my head and told me to write a complete half marathon plan from this book? Well. I’d just look at them and say, “purple aliens eat pancakes right?” 😉 Right. So.

The perfect illustration of what I’m talking about:



All of this to say that I whole-heartedly agree with Daniels that you should run the least amount of miles to achieve whatever your goal may be (less miles, did someone say FEWER MILES, hell yes!). Jack’s other golden rule is that every workout should have a purpose. Lots of mathematical algorithms and calculations should be employed to reach your directive. God. There goes my brain, off to do the rumba at the intersection of I want to visit Fiji and, “Oooo, look, Harry Potter is on AMC!”. Let’s just say that giving the Run s.m.a.r.t. Project $70 of my money was time well spent. I did not pay for coaching, I only purchased a 14 week half marathon training plan.

In the last half of January I completed the first 3 weeks of my prescribed 14 weeks of training. My goal is to run the Kentucky Derby Festival half marathon in a time of 1:57. This is how January went and what I think so far.

Total miles ran: 88.58, some of these miles were not training miles. They were easy runs leading up to the time when formal training was set to start. I’m actually kind of surprised that I hit 88 miles in January considering that I spent the first half of the month trying to become a contender for competitive cookie eating. AKA I did a whole lot of jack shit with myself.

Total workouts prescribed: 12

Total workouts completed: 10. I spent 3 days in Texas for work that overlapped with 2 of my easy training runs. I skipped them due to being in an unfamiliar place and the WEATHER. It was 80 some odd degrees in the area of Texas that I was visiting and I was coming from 30 degree weather. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

Favorite Workouts: My favorite workout in January was the below speed session. The fact that each mile was varied in pace made the workout fun, I didn’t get bored. Much different from running lots of long slow miles.

2mi warmup

1 x 2mi @ 8:56/mi

2:00 min rest

8 x 200m @ 0:58/rep with 200 m recovery

1mi cooldown

Memorable Moments: Winning 2nd in my age group at the Frozen 4 mile race with Courtney. 🙂 Check out my monster thumb photo bomb. That giant black shadow? That’s ma thumb. Yes. It’s THAT big.

frozen 4

Goals for next month: Complete every workout on my plan. Even the mid week 9 milers. Good God Jack Daniels??? How can a guy named after whiskey think a 9 mile mid week run is a good idea? As if. Looks like my rear will be up at ass-crack-o-thirty in February. Blah. I had a soft goal to complete all of my runs in January outside– and I’ve already screwed the pooch on that for February (4 mile mill run today) but let’s just pretend like today didn’t happen and make that a goal too. 🙂

So far I’m with you Mr. Daniels. I’m willing to die on your hill. Bring me home, coach.

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