Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Thoughts on the Half Marathon Long Run

The last two weekends I have used these half marathons



as part of my 20 mile long runs.After polling you - my awesome readers- who recommended running the extra seven miles before the race I decided that was the best course of action. Though I had to come to the terms with I would be starting each race tired, because seven miles is not really a stroll in the park, this worked out brilliantly because when the race was over I was done, medal and snacks in hand.

I would recommend this method to anyone who is intimidated like I was of the long run for marathon training.  By this point seven miles is not a huge deal - meaning seven miles does not scare me.....as much as twenty miles.

PROS of the Long Run/ Half Marathon Combo:

  • Course support means not having to run with all the stuff needed to keep you going for that many miles
  • Cheering volunteers and spectators- they are always good motivation/ distraction to keep your butt in motion
  • You get a medal at the end. Twenty miles around the neighborhood does not result in this. 
  • This equals a long run with other runners to keep you motivated.
CONS of the Long Run/ Half Marathon Combo:
  • For me I had to let the idea of 'racing' (let's be real I am more the completing type than the competing type) go- getting a PR feels out of the question with all the miles I have been running during the week and the mileage before the half. If this bothers you, being at a race might be frustrating. 
  • There is about a five to ten minute interval between 'warm-up' and race time- this will not happen during the marathon. During this time I usually eat a granola bar. I will have to figure out fueling with non-stop running on my last long run in a few weeks.
Overall I really like this method of getting the mileage in while still working on my goal of running 30 half marathons before 30. 

What do you think- would you ever fit in a long run this way?

4 comments:

  1. Oooo...this is GREAT advice!!!!! I may have to find a half marathon the same weekend I'm supposed to do 20 miles training for my full marathon. You're so smart!!!

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  2. One of the things that scares me about marathon training is the long runs. I can train for a half by myself no problem, but running 20 miles alone?! No thanks! So I think this a great strategy and one I'll definitely keep in my if I ever decide to go for a full.

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  3. Racing is pretty much the only way I manage to get in double digit runs. I have zero desire to PR or actually RACE a race so it works for me. Still have never actually added miles before or after a race for even longer distances though.

    nice job!

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  4. I tried this same method last summer when I was training (for the marathon that never was!), but I woke up and just didn't want to deal with the chaos of a race day. I bailed on the race and ran the 16 miler at home, by myself. Not sure if I'll always choose that route, but I know that it was right for me on that day!

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