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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, this is going to sound really ridiculous, but how do you race a half-marathon?<br><br>
I have run maybe 4 half-marathons in my entire life. The first one was in 2004 and I averaged a 12<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/mad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Mad">x minute pace. The second one was in 2005 and I spent the majority of it running with a woman that was doing a 13 minute which was slower than I could have done. The third and fourth were this year. The third one was two weeks after a marathon and I felt tired the entire time and average an 11:58 pace. The latest one was last weekend and I average an 11:58 pace while taking walk breaks and I just came off of a month of no running.<br><br>
So, really, I don't feel like I've actually raced any half-marathons and now there is one I would like to race on September 9th. I would love to run it at an 11 minute pace. Today, I did 14 miles at an 11:34 minute pace, but I started out at a 10:55 pace and everything just kinda went down afterwards with my slowest mile being at a 12 minute pace.<br><br>
In April, I did a 12 mile run averaging just under 11 minutes per mile, but it just seems impossible to me right now. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Sad"><br><br>
So, basically, is there anything I can do now to help (I realize it's only 3 weeks out) or is there a racing strategy I should use (should I start out slower and then try to drop the pace)?<br><br>
Will this post get any actual responses? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/confused.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Confused">
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well hmph! I guess I'll give myself advice.<br><br>
Nettie, why don't you start out between 11:45 and 12 and then drop your pace by 15 seconds every 3 miles, so maybe like so...<br><br>
1 - 12:00<br>
2 - 11:45<br>
3 - 11:45<br>
4 - 11:30<br>
5 - 11:30<br>
6 - 11:30<br>
7 - 11:15<br>
8 - 11:15<br>
9 - 11:15<br>
10 - 11:00<br>
11 - 11:00<br>
12 - 11:00<br>
13 - 10:45<br><br>
Unfortunately, your average won't be 11, but since you haven't been running too consistently as of late perhaps it's as good as you can hope for.
 

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Sounds to me like you have not prepared very well for any of your races Nettie, and that is surely a good part of the reason you have not done well. In order to race well you need to train well. And you won't be capable of training well in just two weeks.<br><br>
If this race doesn't mean anything to you, my advice is to try something aggressive here. Try going out at a reasonable pace, but pick it up over the first mile or two until you are doing 10<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/mad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Mad">x. You decide what "xx" is going to be. Once you are at that pace you should hold it for as long as you can. My rule of thumb is if I can make it to the 9 mile point without hurting then I can hold pace until the end of the race by making my brain tell my feet to keep moving and not walk. So if you manage to run at 10<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/mad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Mad">x until the 9 mile point you have it made. Just hold that pace by telling yourself you are not tired enough to slow down, and keep on choogling. If you have trouble maintaining focus you can always fix your eyes on the small of the back of the person in front of you and try to slowly reel them in. I guarantee you that technique will get you a couple places lower in the finish totem. Just focus on their back and keep trying to SSLLOOWWLLYY catch them. When you are finally up to them you need to give a little burst and pull around them and then slowly pull away.<br><br>
You may notice that I am focusing on the psychological side of the race. That's because I don't think you can do much more on the physical side at this late date. Mental preparation is about all you can do now. But it will help you run a better race, because it sounds like you are as well prepared for this one as you have ever been in the past.<br><br>
Good luck.<br><br>
Not sure how those creepy smilies got in there, but just substitute with a race pace.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Tigger, thanks for responding! Well, my first half was my first half and I was still pretty new to running long distances at that time. And, I would've been in better shape for the last one, but I was actually injured for a month, not just slacking off. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
10:something for 9 miles? Oh boy. I will try my best. I think racing for 13 miles is still psychologically hard for me to wrap my mind around. I just started running hard for shorter distances and then I got injured and blah blah blah.<br><br>
Thanks. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile">
 

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Nettie -<br><br>
What level do you feel your trainig is at right now. With aonly a couple of weeks to go, as Tigger says, there is little to be added to your training that can help tremendously, but... mentally, if you are capable of running 11 minute pace, you can run a half inside 2:30, in fact, well inside.<br><br>
Let me know what sort of mileage you are doing, and how you are running overall, not just on the 12 miler you did.<br><br>
You have 13 weeks to get it right for Philly and I hope you will be running well there - treat this as a building block/stepping stone, and you'll be fine.<br><br>
Liam
 

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Good luck, Nettie! I have no good advice, since I've only run 1 half so far and was hit with cramps about mid way. I thought I'd chime in that the smilies are the colon followed by the "x" will give you an "angry" smilie. Try separating the colon from the x by a space. 10<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/mad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Mad">x or 10: xx... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile">
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Liam,<br><br>
In November of last year, I started a marathon program based on the Hal Higdon novice marathon program, but condensed into fewer weeks. At the end of March, I ran a marathon. At the end of April, I ran another (after taking two weeks off for ITB issues). At the end of May, I ran another marathon. I finished the first marathon in 5:25, the second in 6:18, and the third in 5:18. Between marathons, I would run approximately 6 miles for my first LR, 6-12 miles for my second LR, and 12 miles for my last LR before the marathon.<br><br>
I took one week off at the beginning of June and started leading a marathon group that was following Hal Higdon's novice program. I lead them at a 11:30 pace. The weekend of the half-marathon, I lead the marathon group on a 6 or 8 miler the day before.<br><br>
Additionally, I did a 5K race, a 5-mile race, and a 4-mile race in between leading the marathon group.<br><br>
During the second week of July, I injured a tendon in my foot and couldn't run for 4 weeks.<br><br>
My mileage has been pretty sporadic since then...<br>
Post Injury Week 1 - 6.7 miles (LR 6.7 miles)<br>
PIW 2 - 31 miles (LR 12 miles, race 13.1 miles)<br>
PIW 3 (my most current week) - 18 miles (LR 14 miles).<br><br>
Because I don't want to aggravate my injury, I'll only be running 3 days a week for while; this week will be 4 miles, 8 miles, 12 miles; next week will be 6, 6, 14; and the week after that is the half.
 

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Nettie -<br><br>
I'll be honest and say I'm not surprised your marathons were the times they were as you were clearly short on mileage. You cannot really substitute getting miles into your legs, and whilst the half is obviously shorter, there is a similar need to get those legs turning over. I'm not an expert on Higdon, and would need to look up his plans, but as we have already all been saying, it's too late to do much now - But that's not to say we can't start to make groundwork plans for Philly and your next Marathon - It's still 13 weeks away, and with your running at present, you can look to get that time down to the 5 hour mark - That's a consistant pace of 11:30 or slightly under.<br><br>
If you can run this upcoming half at 11:20 pace, and KEEP at that pace, that will be Good Racing, given your levels of fitness, and taking into account the injury. Lets re-assess your goals after this 1/2.<br><br>
Hope this helps,<br><br>
Liam
 
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