You’re three months in on a training plan in preparation for your first half marathon. Everything has gone smoothly up until this point, but you’ve felt sluggish for the past couple of days and can’t seem to figure out why. The truth is, there is no golden training plan that works for every runner. Everyone’s body is entirely unique, which makes training for a new distance very much a test and learn process. While one runner might have no issue bumping up their weekly mileage as they move up from 5k to 10k training, someone else in their running group may experience fatigue or minor injuries when they try to do the same.
"A training log is a must for any runner! They can prove to be your best friend by helping you spot trends, both good and bad, in your training," says Mark Coogan, Former Team NB athlete and current NB elite coach. "I also used my training log to build confidence when I was mentally preparing for a big race by looking back to see all of the good training I put in. When I saw my training in writing again, I knew I was ready for a good race."
For all of these reasons, a training log could prove to be as important of a training tool as your footwear and apparel. Below are some things to consider before you start logging to make sure you capture the right amount of data for you.
First things first. Where should I log my training?
The first decision to make is where you want to log your training - in a notebook or through one of the many app-based options available. Some runners prefer recording training in a notebook so they can easily skim through it. On the other hand, many runners have migrated to app-based logs that are baked into their daily routine. One other bonus of choosing an app-based log is the ease of exporting and analyzing data to spot trends quickly.