Half Marathon Trainers

1

Great! *NOW* I find this out... (Read 574 times)

    It's about 6 weeks before my HM, and I've finally discovered that I've been training too slowly! "Great!" I hear myself muttering, "Why did I have to find this out now, when I'll never be able to get ready in time?" I've been using a heart rate monitor for several months now, and have found it to be a great guide to keeping things easy but still moving... but after several months of using it I found my pace still wasn't increasing any! And while my pride can take training at an 18 minute mile for a while, I don't want to be stuck there forever! I decided to start tinkering with things - bumping it up only 5 BPM dropped that time down to 16 1/2 minutes! Wow, what a difference! And going for a long run today, I put some music on and just kept it down to a "conversational" pace... and found that I was averaging about 14 1/2 minutes per mile. Oh. In other words, while the nice, leisurely pace that I was going was great for building up my endurance (I can "run" at that pace for hours without getting tired!) it was probably nowhere close to the effort level I needed in order to actually improve my speed... ::sigh:: And now it's 6 1/2 weeks out from my HM. I've got a nice endurance base built up, LOL, but I'll need about all day in order to finish at the speeds I'm currently used to! I have no idea how long it will take to adjust to a higher training pace, and I'm scared to death that I'll over-do it (I've got a history of that!) and end up hurting myself instead of just getting faster safely. Ack! What to do, what to do, what to do... I know I probably won't be able to run as well as I could have if I had been training for months at these higher speeds. Do I change what I'm doing now, so close to the race, in the hopes of making some improvements, or do I keep on plugging away at snail's pace and accept the fact that it may take me well over 3 1/2 hrs to complete a HM... What would you do?

    Roads were made for journeys...


    Needs more cowbell!

      Boy, I have no advice, but I think I'm glad I don't have an HRM--I think it would mess up my training more than do it good...but that's because I tend to overanalyze stuff that I shouldn't (and blow off the stuff I should, incidentally). k

      I shoot pretty things! ~

      '14 Goals:

      • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

      • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

        Like bleeding blisters, by any chance? :: blink:: :: blink:: Wink

        Roads were made for journeys...

        bas


          Wingz, Maybe you do this already, but the general advice is to do speedwork once a week: fast intervals with some rest in between. Your long runs build up your stamina and the intervals build your speed. Is there a running club somewhere in your neighborhood? I joined one last year, especially for speed training. I go there once a week, do their interval training and do my long runs by myself. I don't use a HRM, I just try to find a pace that feels comfortable. And one more thing: I find that running a race is vastly different from training. My problem there is not so much being too slow (of course I am too slow! everyone always is) as starting the race too fast... I think this is true for almost everyone. The crowd will take you along. Your time will be much better than what you think based on your recent long runs. BTW, in another post I mentioned the Smart Coach on the new RW site. Did you see it? I think it might give you a schedule for the remaining six weeks that you could use. And they never mention heart rates in the schedule! Smile bas

          52° 21' North, 4° 52' East


          Needs more cowbell!

            Like bleeding blisters, by any chance? :: blink:: :: blink:: Wink
            Hush, you! Big grin k

            I shoot pretty things! ~

            '14 Goals:

            • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

            • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

              Roads were made for journeys...

                How long was your last run and how long did it take you to complete it?
                  Wingz, Maybe you do this already, but the general advice is to do speedwork once a week: fast intervals with some rest in between. Your long runs build up your stamina and the intervals build your speed. Is there a running club somewhere in your neighborhood? I joined one last year, especially for speed training. I go there once a week, do their interval training and do my long runs by myself. I don't use a HRM, I just try to find a pace that feels comfortable. And one more thing: I find that running a race is vastly different from training. My problem there is not so much being too slow (of course I am too slow! everyone always is) as starting the race too fast... I think this is true for almost everyone. The crowd will take you along. Your time will be much better than what you think based on your recent long runs. BTW, in another post I mentioned the Smart Coach on the new RW site. Did you see it? I think it might give you a schedule for the remaining six weeks that you could use. And they never mention heart rates in the schedule! Smile bas
                  Bas - thanks for the reminders. There is a running club here in Raleigh - I ran with some ladies there before I went off to do my own HRM thing. Problem I have now is that the ladies who were my speed still are my speed, but they're only going 2.5 miles on a run... I dunno. I'll have to think about it some more. I'm hesitant to jump ship on a training routine 6 weeks before the big race, especially when I'm currently injury-free. I've never done any "real" speedwork - so that would be starting something new on top of running at a newly faster pace. I don't think that's a good idea for me at this point. I'll probably keep with my modified Higdon plan, just running everything somewhat faster. There will be time to hurt myself ... I mean time to try something new... after the race. I would be VERY disappointed if I couldn't run that day, since I've been working towards it for several months already! Though I do hope to continue running halves for a while...

                  Roads were made for journeys...

                    How long was your last run and how long did it take you to complete it?
                    Most of my longer runs have been on nice, hilly trails... so it's hard to really tell. Last week for longer runs, I had a 7 miler on pavement in 2:15 (19 min) and a 7.86 miler on trail in 2:26 (18:38 min). Yesterday so far I had a 6 miler on relatively flat asphalt in 1:28 (14:44 min). Times are all over the place right now as I get used to my newer pace. It's almost like learning to run all over again! I still suspect I'll end up somewhere around the 3:30 mark for the HM - I don't have much endurance at this faster pace yet, and I could feel fatigue in my legs yesterday during that 6 miler...

                    Roads were made for journeys...

                    bas


                      Problem I have now is that the ladies who were my speed still are my speed, but they're only going 2.5 miles on a run...
                      That sounds like a problem for the ladies, not for you Smile What I really mean is: It goes to show that you have made a lot of progression. So the way you have been training was obviously not so bad... I would never advise you to change your training in such a way that you risk an injury. Running slower than you want to run is so much better than not running at all. So maybe the best plan for you is to experiment just a little with the schedule you are using. Let the primary goal be to worry less, not to run faster. Forget about heart rates. Or whatever works for you. Keep up, and you will run your half marathon - which will make you feel great, I can guarantee you that! All of us are here to virtually cheer you on. bas

                      52° 21' North, 4° 52' East

                        That sounds like a problem for the ladies, not for you Smile What I really mean is: It goes to show that you have made a lot of progression. So the way you have been training was obviously not so bad...
                        One of them told me a few months back that she was quite happy with their level/amount/speed of running and didn't have any desire to change or improve. While I have trouble understanding that, I can respect it - I mean, you gotta do what makes you happy, right?
                        I would never advise you to change your training in such a way that you risk an injury. Running slower than you want to run is so much better than not running at all. So maybe the best plan for you is to experiment just a little with the schedule you are using. Let the primary goal be to worry less, not to run faster. Forget about heart rates. Or whatever works for you. Keep up, and you will run your half marathon - which will make you feel great, I can guarantee you that! All of us are here to virtually cheer you on. bas
                        Kind of what I was thinking. My primary goal of getting to and getting through the HM in one piece far outweighs my secondary goal of getting faster. Incidentally, I went to the McMillan running calculator Trent had plugged on one of the forums and put in my race time... Turns out that my suggested long run time is indeed around 14:30, so I guess that's what I should be trying to shoot for afterall! It's nice when your body and a guide agree on something! So often I find that's not the case... Thanks everyone for the advice and support! I'm going to try to stop worrying now... Undecided

                        Roads were made for journeys...


                        Needs more cowbell!

                          One of them told me a few months back that she was quite happy with their level/amount/speed of running and didn't have any desire to change or improve. While I have trouble understanding that, I can respect it - I mean, you gotta do what makes you happy, right?
                          You know, until I ran my first 5k race I felt pretty much the same way--I planned to run 10-15 miles/week, now I am looking at running that far for my long runs, alone. Do those gals ever run races? k

                          I shoot pretty things! ~

                          '14 Goals:

                          • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

                          • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

                            Once in a blue moon. The one who'd told me she was satisfied actually ran in one with me. She's 63... and came in about 1:30 behind me. We laughed about it for a while because she took first in her age group - she was the only one in it!

                            Roads were made for journeys...