Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Half-Marathon Goals

I’m really excited about the half-marathon this weekend. Last year I just felt nervous and foolish. I couldn’t believe that I was thinking of running a half-marathon. My longest run had been around 11 miles. I thought I would run/walk but I didn’t have a good plan for that. I tried to do a 6 minute run/1 minute walk and then 5/1 and finally just walked a lot and ran if I could.

This year I have done 3 runs of 14 miles or more in the past 1.5 months. I’ve done others in the past. I have run faster training runs than my half-marathon last year. My goals are:

Goal A – break 2:30 (11:26/mile). I don’t honestly think this goal is very doable in this race but I would be thrilled if it happened. I considered ordering a race pace tattoo. They make a 2:30 HM tattoo but as I was pondering whether it was a good idea for me, I realized that I would probably be wearing a long-sleeve shirt so it would be covered.

Goal B – 2:33:32 (11:43/mile). This is my predicted race pace given my last few magic miles. It would be a 17 minute improvement over last year. I am planning to print out a pace band from the Runner’s World utility.

Goal C – sub 2:50:51 (13:02/mile). In other words, break last year’s PR (and only). I don’t want to curse myself but I can’t imagine only reaching this goal unless something goes very wrong.

Given Jeff Galloway’s walk break ratios, I should use either a 2:00/1:00 or 2:30/1:00 ratio. Right now I’m leaning toward starting out with a 2:00/1:00 to keep myself from going out too hard and fast and getting tired out quickly. I figure that I can reassess at 8-9 miles and see if I want to extend my run portion.

My only worry with the walk/run is that I’m thinking I’ll end up logging a lot of extra feet (which will add up to extra miles) moving to the side to walk and then away from the side when I run again. I would imagine this will be more of problem near the beginning of the race than near the end.

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