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7409 Views 18 Replies Latest reply: Nov 5, 2010 8:13 AM by HelenM2002 RSS 1 2 Previous Next
Gazelle2008 Rookie 96 posts since
Oct 1, 2007
Currently Being Moderated

Sep 7, 2010 5:09 PM

Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

Hi all,

I am shooting for a new PR for my HM in 5 weeks and have a question about how I should start to think about how you all pace or are planning to pace for your HM. I haven't run a half- mary in quite some time, but don't remember having a plan... just ran hard for 13.1 miles... with a current PR of just under 1:32.

 

For instance, do any of you run a flat spit for the first 8-10 miles and then "go for it" for the final 3.1 running a negative split that will put you at your goal? For example, if I run a flat 7:00/mile for 8-10 miles... and then go for negative splits for the balance of the race... hitting the goal... or go for a flat 6:40- 6:50 pace for all 13.1? My goal is to break 1:30.

 

Training is going great and I am hitting all my paces for training... and just not sure what approach for a half marathon has worked for everyone... in hitting thier goals on a PR attempt...

 

Thanks!

  • mimi14213 Pro 63 posts since
    Jan 8, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Sep 10, 2010 12:33 PM (in response to Gazelle2008)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Gazelle - I also have this same question and would love to hear what advice everyone out there has to give. I'm running my second HM next weekend, and for the first one I ran I did not train enough. I tried to keep negative splits of 10 secs/mile faster each mile. I kept that up for the first 8.5 miles and then burned out and ended up (sloooowly) walking mile 10 entirely. Because I burned out, I finished 13 minutes slower than my goal time. For this next one, I have trained much harder and smarter, but I still have trouble pacing myself.

     

    What strategies do other people use to pace themselves over 13.1?





    Personal Bests:

    5K - NYC Race for the Cure, 2010 (28:10)

    Washington DC National Half Marathon, 3/26/2011 (2:25:30)

    Upcoming Events:

    Fairfield CT Road Race (Half Marathon) 6/25/11

  • Surfing_Vol Legend 848 posts since
    Nov 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Sep 14, 2010 8:41 AM (in response to Gazelle2008)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    (take this with a grain of salt due to lack of recent efforts at this length and that this is my personal preference)

     

    I'm going to assume that each mile on the course is marked.

     

    I'm found that for this distance I do better if I start slower than goal pace for the first three miles.  I then go to goal pace for miles four through seven.  I try to run faster than goal pace through miles 8 through 11, so that I'm dead on target for goal at the beginning of mile 12.  I then try to pick it up but not so much that I don't have any left for a kick to the finish line.

     

    Running stores sell a "fake tattoo" that you can write your splits on and then put on your forearm.

     

    Or, you can use a sharpie directly on skin.

     

    So, if you're goal is 1:30, your goal pace is 6:52.

     

    Start to Mile 1:      7:15          (Obviously a 7:15 mile)    

    Mile 1 to Mile 2:     14:15        (A 7:00 mile)    

    Mile 2 to Mile 3:     21:15          (Start 6:52 miles at Mile Marker 3.)

    Mile 3 to Mile 4:    28:07

    ...

     

    At Mile Marker 12, your time should be 1:22:27.

     

    If I were you, I would fool around with this approach on middle-length training runs.  The key thing for me is not starting out too fast.

     

    Good luck!





    Presentation1.jpg

    Surfing Vol

    "Victory through attrition!"

    Charleston Half-Marathon 1/15/2011 -- 1:52:03

    The Scream! Half-Marathon 7/16/2011 -- 1:56:00

  • mimi14213 Pro 63 posts since
    Jan 8, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Sep 14, 2010 10:51 AM (in response to Surfing_Vol)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Great advice Surfing Vol - thanks for the tips! I love the idea of the pacing tattoo, and I found a website that generates a pacing wristband you can print, cut out, and tape around your wrist like a nightclub bracelet.

     

    http://www.marathonguide.com/fitnesscalcs/PaceBandCreator.cfm

     

    I just printed one of these out and am totally going to wear it to race in! Even if my pace fluctuates a bit each mile, I'll be able to keep myself on track every few miles by glancing down at the band to see where I should be at with my time.





    Personal Bests:

    5K - NYC Race for the Cure, 2010 (28:10)

    Washington DC National Half Marathon, 3/26/2011 (2:25:30)

    Upcoming Events:

    Fairfield CT Road Race (Half Marathon) 6/25/11

  • Surfing_Vol Legend 848 posts since
    Nov 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Sep 14, 2010 11:35 AM (in response to mimi14213)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Keep in mind that splits will change, especially if you are running a hilly course or have strong headwinds, so don't get discouraged if you're off on any given split.





    Presentation1.jpg

    Surfing Vol

    "Victory through attrition!"

    Charleston Half-Marathon 1/15/2011 -- 1:52:03

    The Scream! Half-Marathon 7/16/2011 -- 1:56:00

  • BOSNPM We're Not Worthy 2,482 posts since
    Nov 20, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Sep 14, 2010 11:44 AM (in response to mimi14213)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    I kind of take a different approach and like to start my race @ or just under my goal pace.  That gives me a little leeway for the unknown things that may happen.  I train for negitive splits and more times than not do them.  I am also not a 1:31 HM pace runner, under 1:40 and I am happy.

  • mimi14213 Pro 63 posts since
    Jan 8, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Sep 14, 2010 12:06 PM (in response to BOSNPM)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    I know I'll be faster or slower at different points throughout the race depending on different variables. But, I can use the wristband as a quick check against my own watch to gauge (loosely) if I am in line with my goal. Plus, it will help keep me mentally engaged while I run which is a good thing, since I don't wear headphones.





    Personal Bests:

    5K - NYC Race for the Cure, 2010 (28:10)

    Washington DC National Half Marathon, 3/26/2011 (2:25:30)

    Upcoming Events:

    Fairfield CT Road Race (Half Marathon) 6/25/11

  • Surfing_Vol Legend 848 posts since
    Nov 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. Sep 14, 2010 3:07 PM (in response to Gazelle2008)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    When you get your PR I expect a note of thanks!

     

    Good luck and kick a@@!





    Presentation1.jpg

    Surfing Vol

    "Victory through attrition!"

    Charleston Half-Marathon 1/15/2011 -- 1:52:03

    The Scream! Half-Marathon 7/16/2011 -- 1:56:00

  • nic4932 Rookie 2 posts since
    Mar 29, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Sep 15, 2010 5:55 PM (in response to Gazelle2008)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    This may sound like such a newbie question, but how do you even know what your pace is while you're running?  I know how fast I've run when I'm done by my distance and time, but during?

  • Samuel Picard Rookie 2 posts since
    Sep 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    10. Sep 16, 2010 5:37 AM (in response to mimi14213)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Hi folks,

    I haven't run a half in a long time but just finished a marathon and have been reading a lot about the science behind distance training. In general you run your half marathon at about your lactate threshold pace. That means any faster and lactic acid builds up in your muscles and starts to slow you down. If you've been hitting your goal pace in training it's probably the right pace for the first 8-10 miles then pick your pace up as you get closer to the finish line depending on how hard you feel like you can push. Good luck with your PR, Sam

  • mimi14213 Pro 63 posts since
    Jan 8, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    11. Sep 16, 2010 5:39 AM (in response to nic4932)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Hey nic - it's the same idea during your run to tell your pace. Just wear a watch and check your time against your distance every so often (every mile for example). There are tons of options out there for time/pace keeping, depending on what you are looking for. I just wear a Timex Ironman watch (it's cheap, waterproof, small, lightweight, has a stopwatch feature and one for splits). A lot of people download running apps to their iPod Touch or iPhone, or use a Garmin. Those things have GPS to track your route and distance, and pace calculators.





    Personal Bests:

    5K - NYC Race for the Cure, 2010 (28:10)

    Washington DC National Half Marathon, 3/26/2011 (2:25:30)

    Upcoming Events:

    Fairfield CT Road Race (Half Marathon) 6/25/11

  • Samuel Picard Rookie 2 posts since
    Sep 30, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    12. Sep 16, 2010 5:41 AM (in response to nic4932)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Hi Nic,

    The simple way to know is checking a watch each mile and adjusting your effort up or down based on your pace for the last mile. You develop a feel for pace during training that can be a good guide as well. If you want to be more precise there are pacing watches you can buy that use GPS to give you your pace and distance as you're running it. I bought one for this past training cycle and have really enjoyed having that info available as I run. They are pricey (200-250) but a great tool for serious training. blessings, Sam

  • Surfing_Vol Legend 848 posts since
    Nov 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    13. Sep 16, 2010 5:44 AM (in response to nic4932)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    That's a great question.

     

    For training runs, you can mark out mile markers on the road (spray paint before dawn works).  You can use your car's odometer to figure out the mile markers.

     

    For races, large / well organized races have mile splits, frequently with timers.

     

    In either instance, you can look at your watch for your splits (if you know what your target pace is or can subtract), or you can use the lap function, each lap = 1 mile.

     

    If you're more of a gadget person, you can buy a Garmin (the 305 is popular) and keep track of your mile splits by satellites built by Uncle Sam to guide nuclear warheads from submarine launched ballistic missiles back through the atmosphere to within a meter or so of their targets.  (Sorry, but that is what GPS was created for.)





    Presentation1.jpg

    Surfing Vol

    "Victory through attrition!"

    Charleston Half-Marathon 1/15/2011 -- 1:52:03

    The Scream! Half-Marathon 7/16/2011 -- 1:56:00

  • nic4932 Rookie 2 posts since
    Mar 29, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    14. Sep 22, 2010 12:19 PM (in response to Surfing_Vol)
    Re: Half- Marathon Pacing Question...

    Thanks for all your responses!  I got it now!  Just finished 12 miles for the first time yesterday in 2 hours and 10 minutes.  Half-marathon is in 3 weeks, so I think I'm right on target.  Any comments?

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