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# Is there a point where easy pace and race distance equal out? (Read 749 times)

qwerty85

So over a 50 mile race, it is still faster by quite a bit than normal easy pace for me  (Go by effort not pace)... and it made me think...

I know easy should always be quite a bit slower than marathon race pace, and more so as it goes down.

However, is there a distance where easy pace and race distance equal out, on the same topography/weather?

..or do they basically equal out whenever you go beyond what you are ready for?

Thanks.

(Yeah, I know, question has no purposeful application. Just a random curiousity.  Please share your experiences, or any facts.)

(I did put in shorter distance race times in one of those calculators, and it's not just that my easy pace is ridiculously slow so I assume it holds for others.)

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Wow. My 50mi pace is slower than my easy pace -- way slower if you take the net 50mi pace (including aid station time). Even my 6hr race pace is slower than my easy pace.

It's a 5k. It hurt like hell...then I tried to pick it up. The end.

Yeah I don't really have one that fits this criteria. My one 50 miler was wayyyy slower than my normal easy run pace, and everything else is faster. I'd guess 50k might be close, but there are a lot of variables to factor in, and I've never done one. It's an interesting question, though.

Sit on a potato pan, Otis.

xor

Easy isn't a pace.  Tis a perception of effort.

I ran the Mt Si 50 Miler in 8:04 (actually, technically, I hit 50 miles in 7:55, but the course is 50.9 miles long).  I ran the White River 50 Miler in 11:40.  One of those is a pace that is right around the pace range of my everyday "easy" runs, a little faster than some.  One of those is way slower.  BOTH of them kicked my ass.  Neither felt particularly easy in the second half.

The difference was indeed topography.  That changes the game on what easy is.

Could I have held my Mt Si pace for another 11 miles had it been a 100k?  Hmmm.  Probably not, but perhaps close.  100 miles?  NO.

But the thing is, topography dictates.  And for 50s, I am starting that thing out at a pace that feels on the easy end of easy.

+1 to what srlopez said.  I also think the distance you are able to hold easy pace for depends very heavily on training.  When I was training for my last 50 miler on trails, I was putting in a lot of 90 MPW, my easy runs on the technical trails were around 9:15 for around 30 miles.  My 50 mile race pace on the same trails was 8:58.

If I had to offer a guess, it would probably be around 100K or so for most well trained athletes.  There are always a few exceptions though.

And at the other end of the spectrum, low mileage runners like me run their marathons slower than their every day easy pace.  I'd say my easy pace would be same as a hypothetical 20 mile race pace.

Feeling the growl again

For races on the same type of terrain as I train on, it seems a 50-miler is probably on the faster end of my easy training run pace, when I'm conditioned.  I'll know in the fall.

"If you want to be a bad a\$s, then do what a bad a\$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

I am spaniel - Crusher of Treadmills

For races on the same type of terrain as I train on, it seems a 50-miler is probably on the faster end of my easy training run pace, when I'm conditioned.  I'll know in the fall.

Just put in the training and you will kill it!

Feeling the growl again

Just put in the training and you will kill it!

Thanks, despite the heat (which I can't handle) I'm already keeping my training far above where I was for my failed attempt in 2011.

"If you want to be a bad a\$s, then do what a bad a\$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

I am spaniel - Crusher of Treadmills

Demon of Bad Decisions

topography dictates.

+1

There are a few other factors.  In some hypothetical race (that would be hard to find in ultra running) where it is flat and fast, you first have the issue of down time.  Even a well supported runner is going to have to go to the bathroom, eat, maybe refill bottles, etc.  People imagine this being a much faster process than it actually is ("I can go to the bathroom in 17 seconds!!!").  Plus, as you get tired, ALL your movements become slower.   So that will start making your race pace slower.

While I start all races of 50 or miles at easy pace, they end up where I am working much harder and the pace that comes out of it is slower than easy pace.  This is not just due to muscular fatigue, it is heart rate creep.  At the end of 24 hours I can be at a walk/run (where the "running" is sloooow) and sucking wind as if I just ran a five minute mile.  A fellow RA'er was at FANS 24 hour, and was surprised to see how hard the female winner was breathing considering her slow jogging pace in the last hour.  I always find this part interesting, because I think a lot of people believe that if they ran at some easy or recovery pace that they could go on forever.  It isn't that easy.

I want to do it because I want to do it.  -Amelia Earhart