Summers in Wisconsin call for as much time spent outside as possible. With that being said, in the summer I like to do a running program so I can enjoy the Wisconsin heat and work on my runner’s tan. Although running is my priority, I do love to also incorporate some lifting to keep my body tone during swimsuit season. For those two reasons, I chose to test out the Nike Run Club’s Get More Fit Plan. As I’ve mentioned in my previous posts about the Nike Club Apps, they are great for customization and getting the most out your final fitness goals.
After you open the app, you can choose from 3 different customizable plans: Get Started, Get More Fit, and Get Ready for Race Day. Since I felt like I was already in decent shape and do not need to gear up for any upcoming race, I choose Get More Fit. Get More Fit is good for becoming an overall better athlete.
What You Can Expect:
- Balance Running (Benchmark, Speed, Tempo, Long Runs, Recovery)
The Plan Setup is easy to navigate. Just choose how many times you want to run per week, your activity level (miles you run per week), long run (how long you run now), race or best effort (how fast you’ve recently run) and about you (height/weight). Within a matter of seconds, your plan will be setup and you’ll be ready to start running.
The customization makes this plan super flexible to fit every aspect of your busy life. If you think you are going to miss a workout, you can simply drag and drop to make it work for you. After each week the app will also update (scale back or challenge) your workouts based on your performance from the week. Many other plans make you stick to each workout that is on the calendar everyday and don’t adapt to you and your performance. Personally, this is the best feature of the program.
I’ve done a few other shorter running programs before but I’ve never finished them because I honestly got bored. They always felt repetitive and my motivation to workout diminished as the weeks went on.
Benchmark runs will test to see how much progress you are making during the program. You will start with a benchmark run to get a good baseline of your fitness level. You will then finish with one the final week of workouts. There will be at least two more throughout the plan. The benchmark will start with a 7 minute warm up, followed by 3 minutes of running as hard as you can and then finishing with a 5 minute cool down, for a total of 15 minutes.
One of my favorite parts of the Get More Fit plan was the different running workouts. They challenged you with a speed workout each week. For example, through the program I ran 4x400s, 8x200s, and 4x800s throughout the different weeks. The goal of these workouts was to increase your mile speed and endurance. These speed workouts were nostalgic in that they reminded me of running workouts we use to do in college.
Tempo runs are created every week for you to be consistent in your running. Your goal for these runs are to maintain the same time for each mile of your workout. In my program, the miles ranged from 1.50 miles all the way to 3.25 miles. Before you start each run, the program will give you a desired pace time that they would like you to achieve.
Long runs are where I felt the most accomplished in this program. You see, I had NEVER EVER run more than 5 miles straight in my life. As this program was developed and I looked at the workouts of my final week; I saw I would have to run 7 miles. WHAT?!?! No way! However, with how the program is set up, they do a fantastic job of building you up on your endurance to be able to hit that 7 mile run at the end. Each week my long run would increase anywhere from .5 mile to a full mile. I’m happy to say that by week 8, I had run 7 miles straight!!! This has been one of my biggest goals reached in any of the workout programs I’ve done.
Lastly, recovery runs are designed to be light, easy-paced and take place 24-hours after your long run. Like the rest of the program, the distance will increase for each run. So for example, my recovery runs started at 1.5 miles and increased all the way up to 3.5 miles. Honestly, I was not a fan of the length of these at the end, but being relaxed and just “running for fun” made them tolerable.
Lifting is an essential part of the Nike + Run Club’s Get More Fit Plan. The workouts differ in time from 15 minutes to 45 minutes and take place about once a week. To get an idea of what to expect from the bodyweight lifting portion, visit my Nike Training Club Review- 4 Week Bodyweight Program review.
Maxing out on long runs:
I really wanted the ability, in the plan setup, to set a max on how far I wanted the long runs to be. Almost like a end goal. This is completely out of your control and I could see how this might turn off some people. If you can only devote a max, of say 30 minutes a day, to working out this plan might not be for you. As you progress through the plan and the distance of the long runs increases, it will require you to set aside more time from your day to complete. For example, I wish I could have set my max long run to 5 miles for the program.
When I think of a recovery run I think of something light and relaxing. To me, it seemed like many of my recovery runs ended up being around a 5K; just a little too long for me. I definitely was not expecting anything longer than 2.5 miles and I wish these were just scaled back.
Each running workout will provide you with a pace time they would like you to hit. Not bragging by any means, but I crushed these pace times. I thought that as the plan would update every week, my pace times would as well, making each week a little harder. However, this was not the case. They were consistent every workout, every week. Being challenged each workout is a goal of mine. Crushing pace times, didn’t do that for me.
If you’re goal is to be a better you, while also becoming a better runner this plan is definitely for you. As I mentioned before, the most I had ever run in my life was 5 miles. This plan is fantastic in that it not only pushes you physically, but mentally as well. I never thought I could run over 5 miles and I DID IT! I CRUSHED IT! They do a great job of setting it up to increase your endurance and keep it fun and refreshing with different running workouts. Who knows what’s next for me and running. Possibly a half marathon?!?
To learn more about the Nike Run Club Get More Fit Plan, please visit: https://www.nike.com/us/en_us/c/running/nike-run-club
*I was not financially compensated for this post. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience. This plan is customizable. My workouts and results may differ from yours.
Have you recently completed a running program? If so, comment below.