Tim Flahaven lays out a strategy for setting your mind and schedule now, during the first week of training to prepare for the weeks ahead:
When we look at the 18 to 20 weeks of training that lies ahead of us, we usually do so with some trepidation. It is better to ignore all together what lies ahead, and to focus on the here and now. There are two reasons to not worry about the mileage down the road.
First, those heavy mileage weeks ahead in March and April will occur at a time when you will be in near peak shape. You will be a different you so there is no point in projecting the present you into future training scenarios.
Second, at present you only need to focus entirely on what is directly in front of you.Today is one of seven pages in a weekly chapter that you should not look beyond. Ninety percent of the drop-outs in our program come very early on. Focus on the present. Know it will be difficult at first but will get noticeably more manageable with each passing workout.
The purpose of this week is to complete the workouts of course, but in such manner that you are adjusting your busy life calendar. Running in the morning is the best type of cadence to incorporate post workout nutrition, a higher level of productivity at work, a good prep meal for the next workout at dinner, and restful sleep.
Your Saturday workout should be your first testing ground. Running or walking with your group will allow you to gauge your outlook and condition in relation to others. Listen to your coaches. It should be relaxing to converse with others. You should not be completely wrung out at the hydration stops or at the end. If you feel yourself being challenged, slow down. Cobble together this first week so everything fits with the rest of your life. Stay true to the training schedule and begin to gauge yourself on Saturday with the rest of your group.