I have probably mentioned before that I do Irish dancing in addition to my running. Or rather, I run in order to improve my dancing, usually. Normally it’s fairly easy to fit the two things together, even if it means that I cannot move on to the next level in my pre-made Polar endurance program, simply because that would entail too much training for me (at my current fitness level) per week. But sometimes… not so much.

Take this week. It started innocently enough, with dance practice on Monday (2 hours, approx. 900 kcal), and no training (I had intended to, since I had eaten far too much, but there was no time) on Tuesday. Yesterday I did an hour-long interval run, and here the fun begins. Because today I have dance practice again, for another two hours. Then, tomorrow, we have a performance coming up, and while it’s only two dances for me, it still takes its toll, and I according to plan I will have to run that day, too. Just a short one, but still. And then there’s the weekend. Saturday starts with two hours of dancing, and since our London-based instructor comes over, it will be intense. On Sunday I wisely cancelled my long run – we have four hours of dancing that day, and I expect my legs will be in quite a bit of pain at that point (technically they are already). And then on Monday there’s regular dance practice again. You don’t have to do a lot of math to calculate that that’s actually too much. But competition is coming up in a month, and I need all the training I can get to improve my technique and performance.

Normally it’s not nearly this intense, this is only when we have practice weekends. But it’s not always dance that interferes with the running. There are work conferences that I have to help organize. I have to keep a social life of sorts, since none of my friends deserve to be second priority – one of them I meet at dance practice and the occasional run together, but not all of them have the health to be able to run. There’s my writing, which takes priority over most other things in November (google NaNoWriMo if you’re curious as to what that’s about). There’s my own health, which doesn’t always cooperate, and so on.

This is why I’ve decided to look into making my own program. I don’t want to leave it up to chance, I want to have a proper program that will allow me to improve and to run in a healthy manner, but it’s such a hassle to modify already existing workouts – how do I know which workout to cut, or to move? If I make my own, I can make sure that I don’t have to go running on days where there’s no time, or when there’s a lot of dancing, and I can adjust it so that it’s easier or shorter in hectic weeks. I could add other types of training. I could factor in my dancing as part of the program, not an addition. As a result, I hopefully won’t overexert myself. Hopefully.