A Week in Training (Uni edition)

After last week’s Q&A on my Instagram story, lots of you asked about my weekly training routine. So I decided to share the training regime I’ve settled into at Uni. Please take this with a pinch of salt and remember that training is personal. What works for me might not work for you, so please don’t make any changes without consulting a coach.

monday: spin & gym

I’m using the term “spin” here quite loosely. If you’ve read last week’s blog post, you’ll know that I actually do RPM classes . All the info is on there, but basically I do a 45 minute cycling class as a means of no-impact aerobic training on a Monday. Afterwards, I go through my strength programme in the gym. This focuses on legs (especially glutes), with some upper body and core thrown in for a full-body workout. Depending on how tired I am after spinning, I’ll spend between 1-1.5 hours on this.

me and Al post-spin (yes that’s sweat)

tuesday: intervals

No longer am I a participator in #tracktuesday, because my Tuesday intervals are in the Meadows. If I’m honest with you, I actually much prefer this to track running, because it’s a nice variation from the monotony of the track. Since I’m currently training for the Brighton Half Marathon, in February, I do an extended warm up (2km slow/ conversational pace, 5km at SLR pace) before completing the Harie session. Our intervals cover between 4.8-5km (e.g. 12x 400m, 5x 1km) with 75-90s rest between reps. We’ll finish off with a 2km warm down to shake the lactic out!

my gorge training partner © Dan Smith Photography

wednesday: swim & abs

Another impact-free day for me, this time with my preferred method: swimming (although I don’t dislike RPM). I usually swim for an hour, covering 2.5-3km. Recently I’ve been loving my swim sessions so much, which means I look forward to them a lot more. I also go to a 30-minute abs class called “Six Pack Attack” with my gal pal Jackie for that core strength & stability.

thursday: more intervals (or a tempo run)

As with Tuesday sessions, I do my extended warm up before the intervals. We have a different coach on Tuesdays & Thursdays which makes for more varied training (usually… sometimes they’re coincidentally pretty similar ). However, now that I’m properly beginning my HM training plan, I’m supposed to do a tempo run. So far I haven’t because a) I haven’t found a good route, b) I love training with the Haries too much and c) tempo runs are not my favourite thing on earth… But whilst I’m at home for Christmas I’ll get a few under my belt, and see where I stand in January.

some of the Harie girl gang © Dan Smith Photography

friday: rest

Friday, aka the golden rest day. I really do rely on this to help me recover from the week’s training, especially since it’s increased in intensity since moving up here. I tend to use this day to relax, meet up with some friends (often for lunch) and catch up with reading. Plus, with Saturday races it works perfectly as I can give my legs a break so they’re fresh for race day.

last week’s brunch at Brochan with Han

saturday: race day or swim & abs

If I have a race, then that’s my “training” for Saturday. If not, then I basically do the same as Wednesday (but the sessions are of course different!).


sunday: the slr

The Sunday SLR (Slow long run) is what church is like for others. It’s my opportunity to get out and explore (often solo), clear my mind and review the week. For these reasons, it’s my favourite run of the week! I tend to run about 20km, although will be increasing slightly in the run up to the Half. However, what counts as “long” is unique to everyone. A year ago, “long” would’ve been 14km for me. Make sure to slowly build up mileage to avoid injury or burnout.

SLR views

weekly mileage

Before rounding this post off, I just want to discuss the topic of weekly mileage. I track mine (although have been lazy recently) to ensure I don’t increase too much within a short space. This would be unsustainable and could lead to injury and/or burnout. My mileage has significantly increased since coming to Edinburgh, mainly because the training is tailored for athletes of U20 and above (back home it’s more for U17 and below). I’ll cover in the region of 40-50km depending on whether I’ve raced/ where I am in a training cycle/ how I feel etc. A year ago, my body wouldn’t have coped with this mileage. Please don’t compare yourself or copy me, but speak to a professional instead!

I hope you’ve found this post insightful, and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to DM me (although remember that I’m not qualified to give professional advice).

Emma ♥♥