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What should my HM pace be? (Read 801 times)

TxDiverMom


    Some of you know I'm trying to figure out my pace for my upcoming HM.  I've been running since June and run/walking for about a year.  My mileage the last couple of months has been in the 20-25 per week range.  I frequently run 4-6 miles and I've done a 10, a couple of 9's and several 8's. I am slow.  I originally just hoped to finish.  However, my training has gone well and I think I can do it in less than 3 hours.  I will be running the whole time (barring some big blow up).  I'm trying to figure out how to pace myself.  I went out WAYYY fast in my 5k, but usually I'm very steady.  I was shocked to find out that I can run a 5k at that speed and 5 miles at the speed below as well.  Please help me figure this out!

     

    I ran my first 5k last week and it went great.  My pace was 11:28.  On Sat. I ran 8 miles, the first 5 at 12:42 and the last 3 at 13:50.  I felt great and am certain I could have maintained that 13 something pace for several more miles.  McMillan says 2:49:00 or a 12:54 pace based on my 5k time.  Based on the 5 miles, it says 2:57:19 or 13:32 pace.  I really want to be below 3 hours but of course, I want to be faster, if possible.  Should I start out at 13:00 or 13:30?  Do you really try to run it evenly?  I feel like sub 3 is reasonable for me.  Any suggestions?

     

    Thanks for everyone's help!  I have been full of questions (only the RWOL folks would know that...but I have been!).

     

    Melissa


    day after day sameness

      Based on the limited info in your message, it looks like you actually faded quite a bit in your 8 miler, loosing over 1min/mile in pace in the second segment. If you have that same fade from 8mi to 13mi, that's gonna be a tough run. 

       

      Unless you have a solid base to support the 13.1, projecting up from the 5K is pretty shakey.  Think of it in this context, you know what you did in your recent 10mi, and from there you have another 5K to run. Could you run the pace of your 10miles for another 5K?

       

      I get the feeling you're set on running the whole 13.1, but from the data points in your message, I'd guess right now that structured walk/run would give you a better time than trying run it and fading from 8-10mi to the finish.

       

      You need more 8 - 11 mile training runs to really dial in a projected or best-guess pace.

      I've done my best to live the right way; I get up every morning and go to work each day...

      TxDiverMom


        The fade was intentional.  I planned on running the 5 at a faster pace  and then 3 more at a slower pace.  I had never tried to run 5 miles at that speed, even though I frequently run 5 miles and I didn't know if I'd be able to.  My normal pace for 5 miles is around 13:10-13:30.  I mostly haven't run faster because I lack confidence and am a bit scared of blowing up.  Sounds silly, but I'm 51 and had never run before.  So I didn't give out at all on my 8 mile run.  Instead, a ran a run at way below what I think my HM pace will be and then added 3 miles at about what my HM pace will need to be to stay below 3 hours.  The theory was to run fast (for me) and then run my HM pace when I should be tired.  It wasn't hard to hold it at that time.  My most recent 10 mile run (2 weeks ago) was at 13:53.  I only need to do 13:40 to stay below 3 hours.  I probably didn't give enough information. 

         

        As far as run/walking goes...I am short and the fastest I can manage to walk is around 15 mm.  I am much faster running than walking.  I actually have good endurance and breathing wise usually feel like I can go on forever.  It's the leg strength that gets me.  I've also felt somewhat successful in running (8-10 mile runs) when I run a while at say 12:30-13 and then drop down to 13:45 or so.  The breathing is fine, but that seems to rest my legs.  Is that normal? 

         

        How long should my run this weekend be?  I forgot to mention that my race is 12/9.  This is one week before my race.


        day after day sameness

          How long should my run this weekend be?  I forgot to mention that my race is 12/9.  This is one week before my race.

           

          I wouldn't try to run anything Herculian, your body wont absorb and incorporate it for your race weekend 6 days later. It's better to toe the start line fresh and undertrained that tired and worn down, generally.

          I've done my best to live the right way; I get up every morning and go to work each day...


          not lazy, just tired

            If you're calculating what average pace you need to get under 3:00 in your half, don't forget that, unless you run the tangents perfectly, you'll be running more than 13.1. I ran my first half in October. According to my Garmin it was 13.3 miles, so my average pace, according to the Garmin, was 9:58, but according to the race results (based on 13.1) was something like 10:07.

             

            I'm not experienced enough to give any other advice. Just don't start out too fast, and good luck!

            Not if it makes sense.

            meaghansketch


              While I do agree that more information is needed, I would try going for a 3:00 finish (13:40 pace).  It's hard to tell exactly where your fitness is, but I think that at best, that type of goal can be very motivating, and at worst, you may fade somewhat in the last 3-5 miles.  If you can run 5-7 miles at that pace in training, I think your chances are pretty good at keeping it up over the course of the whole HM.  I wouldn't go for a 2:50 at this point because unless you *know* that your endurance is your strong suit (once you have done several races of different distance this should be fairly easy to see) you can't assume that that is the case.  Especially for a newer runner, you're not likely to have the aerobic endurance for a 5K to predict an HM.  

               

              For your LR this weekend I would probably do around 6-8 miles, unless you've been doing runs over 13, in which case I might do as much as 10.  

              Up next: ???

              Jamezilla


              Follower of Forrest

                If this was me I would do the following:

                1. Make my A+ goal to run the whole race

                2. Make a B goal to finish under 3:00

                 

                To hit the B goal, there are 2 main options

                1.  Target a pace of 2:55 and try to hold it...you might blow up, you might put up a really nice time

                2.  Target a pace slightly slower than 3:00 for the first half, then put the pedal down for the 2nd half

                 

                Its good to set ambitious goals, but after finishing your first 1/2 marathon you should not be disappointed in any way.  Make sure you are willing to give up your 3:00 goal if things don't go right at the race.  There are a lot of factors that come into play when you are trying to reach a goal that is at the borderline of your abilities...many of them out of your control.

                 

                Relax, don't start too fast, and just enjoy the run.  After the 1st one you will have a better idea of what your target time should be.

                 

                GOOD LUCK

                4/5 - Lost Brook Trail 10mi  1:15:42

                4/27 - Ironmaster's Challenge 50k

                6/21 - Manitou's Revenge 56mi


                 

                   

                  How long should my run this weekend be?  I forgot to mention that my race is 12/9.  This is one week before my race.

                   

                  Run 7 miles this weekend with 3 at 13:00 - 13:15 min pace. Dial into this pace. I think you should start at this pace and hold it until last 2-3 miles and then go for it.  Just don't start too fast in the half. If anything run first mile in 13:15-13:30.  A too fast of start would be bad for you. I think you can do this as on race day you have a little more adrenaline. My calculator I use says 2:43 based on 5K time. I don't think you can do this but you have a 15 min leeway. Race smart and you have a chance to break 3. Good luck.

                  Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!


                  Shakedown Street

                    I like what Jamezilla said. Goal A = run the whole damn thing. That was my goal for my first HM. I went out VERY SLOW for 1st two miles (around 11mpm) and finished under 2 hours. For me, the going out slow on the first race gave me some confidence that I would not blow up. I got to around mile 5 and just felt great...so I picked it up from there.

                     

                    Are you running Dallas, if so I am there! Not going to race it as I am running with a VERY slow friend....we are in the back group....

                    Started-5/12, RWOL refugee,5k-24:23 (1/12/13),10K-55:37(9/15/12),HM-1:52:59(3/24/13)


                    A Saucy Wench

                      instead of a goal pace

                       

                      Run the first 4 miles so easy that you are annoyed you are running that slowly can you even call it running I might as well be taking walk breaks dammit .

                      Run the next 4 miles easy

                      THEN decide what you want to do with the last 5 miles.

                      I have become Death, the destroyer of electronic gadgets

                       

                      "When I got too tired to run anymore I just pretended I wasnt tired and kept running anyway" - dd, age 7

                      TxDiverMom


                        Thanks so much for all the suggestions!  I am getting closer to having a plan now.  I like the suggestion of running 7-8 this weekend at 13:00-13:10 and running about half of my long run at this pace and then letting go and seeing how much I have left.  Historically, I've run most of my runs too slow and ended up with negative splits, sometime even having my last mile be my fastest.  The reason for running my first 5 faster this past weekend was because I usually do the opposite, sort of seeing how it would go. 

                         

                        I'm now trying to decide between these 2 options...I'm usually a conservative person and I don't usually like to be disappointed, BUT...that actually sounds like a good reason for me to go all out and try to hit 2:55 or better.  I am almost positive I can hit 3:00 and it's good for me personally to do things outside my comfort zone.

                         

                        If this was me I would do the following:

                        1. Make my A+ goal to run the whole race

                        2. Make a B goal to finish under 3:00

                         

                        To hit the B goal, there are 2 main options

                        1.  Target a pace of 2:55 and try to hold it...you might blow up, you might put up a really nice time

                        2.  Target a pace slightly slower than 3:00 for the first half, then put the pedal down for the 2nd half

                         

                        Right now, I'm leaning towards starting out at 13:10-20...this is a comfortable pace for me and trying to hang onto that for at least 9 miles.  I feel pretty confident about that, since I've come pretty close to that in training runs.  Then if my pace on the last 4 ish miles ends up at 14, I'll still make my 3 hour goal.  If I can drop down to 13:30 instead of 14, I can possibly make 2:55.  If I blow up...oh well, I'll just have to schedule a spring half and see how much better I can do in 4 months!

                         

                        Thanks for the help!

                        Melissa

                          instead of a goal pace

                           

                          Run the first 4 miles so easy that you are annoyed you are running that slowly can you even call it running I might as well be taking walk breaks dammit .

                          Run the next 4 miles easy

                          THEN decide what you want to do with the last 5 miles.

                           

                          this sounds way more fun than

                           

                          Run the fastest 5K you've run in 18 months

                          PB 10K by 90 seconds

                          Try to speed up

                          Stagger home almost 30sec/km slower than I started.

                          2013 Goal: Make 3:00:16 go away - FAIL.

                          2014 Goal: Make 3:00:16 go away.

                          TxDiverMom


                            I did my 7 miles this AM. My pace for the 1st 4 was 13:54. It seemed quite easy to me and not tiring. The last 3, I ran at 12:43. It was really hard, the temp was 76 and the humidity high (I'm in Houston). About 2/3 of the 3 back was with a headwind. I was happy to hang in there in the 12s. I'm planning my pace for the HM to be 13:30. I think I'll be fine as long as the weather is below 60. There's supposed to be a cool front coming thru late next week. If its either badly windy or above 70, I'm screwed. If it is raining, (20% chance) I've got no clue. Here's to 13:30 and sub 3:00!

                              You already have some good and pretty specific advice but there are a few things I would like to add:

                               

                              1) Being 51 does not pose a problem unless you have some age-related health problem. I was 56 when I started and am 61 now.

                              2) It is a good idea to keep a log of your running recording distance and time and possibly other details. This helps keep your motivation up as you see your progress and will help others give relevant advice.

                              3) I waited a year before my first half marathon, my first race was a 10k.  I had prepared  for the half marathon by running 13 miles eight times, and 15 miles twice. I had a very good idea of what to expect and how fast I could run.

                              With your training I would suggest you don't worry about your time, just enjoy the experience.

                               

                              Good luck and have fun!

                              PBs since age 60:  5k- 24:36, 10k - 47:17. Half Marathon- 1:42:41.

                                                                  10 miles (unofficial) 1:16:44.

                               

                              TxDiverMom


                                Thanks Simon! I feel like I have a plan now. I have A, B, and C goals. A is sub 3 hours and will take lots of stars colliding, but definitely feels possible. B is finish and don't walk at all. C is get my ass across the finish line however possible. Only 6 months ago, I didn't think it possible. I do keep a log. It's all in nike+. I sometimes even add notes, but only started that recently. My runs go back to Oct of last year when I was still mostly walking.
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