Half Marathon Do-able (if I can move after today)

Well, I entered my first HM (Chesterfield) with 12 weeks to go and found myself a 12 week programme that took me up to the event. All went well for the first 4 weeks and I even started thinking about aiming for a finish time that didn't look more like a marathon time :-D But then I gave a lovely bug a home for the next three weeks which meant no training! So down to 5 weeks left of, hopefully, trouble-free training. First week back I picked the flatest local routes I could find (no mean feat in Derbyshire) and still quite lumpy but slowly managed 5.2k, 8.21k and 12.89k. This week I've done a 5.6k hilly run, 3.5k c25k speed podcast (twice back to back). Which brings me to today, due to commitments my long run had to be today and I got a bit carried away (I do know the 10% rule but am a bit time challenged). There were times when I felt as though I was wearing the red shoes as I just seemed to keep going and any thoughts of stopping didn't reach my feet - or they ignored my head :-) . I was getting tired towards the end and not surprised when I saw my stats 19.95k in 2-14-12 and 169m of elevation, oh, and 1129 cals. Got back and stretched, rollered, cold showered and chocolate milk. I will be spending much of the BankHol walking round London so hoping this will ward off the DOMS and act as cross training. I have a blood donor session next weekend so will be taking it easier then, also have work commitments which mean it's going to be a challenge to get 3 runs, never mind 4 in. This training lark isn't easy is it? Upside is, as long as my legs keep working, I now know I can do it and maybe won't have to walk as much as I was thinking I might.

Have a good weekend everyone.

Keep on keeping on.

15 Replies

  • Wow, good for you!! When is your half marathon? Good luck...

  • Thanks. 14th September (I'm looking forward to the free chocolate and fruit at the end :-) ).

  • I recently did a 14 K race/run - which was my longest so far. I had completed long runs up to 15K as part of my training around home. I won't say that I found the training runs difficult - as I did them at an easy pace. But I will say that the race itself seemed much easier to me than the training runs did. I had heard people say that the excitement of the day "carries" you along on raceday. But the only experience of this was parkrun - where there is an almighty rush by everybody at the start which, if I am foolish enough to join, leads to disaster for me :) BUT - after this longer 14K race and with the large amounts of people participating in it, I came to understand what it meant to be "carried along" during the race.

    So - IMO, if you have now completed 20Ks by yourself on a training run , you have already got the 21K of your race "in the bag". :) Just remember to run your own race at your own pace - don't let the excitement of the day carry you along too fast!! :) Looking back on my run now, I felt like I was in a "river of people" during the run - and the part of the river that I was in was running just at a pace that suited me :)

    BTW - run when you feel like it - and walk when you feel like it!!!

  • I was going to enter it but chickened out as I didn't think I was ready for it. If they do it again next year I'll be putting my name down.

  • Well I did dither about entering and left it until the last moment before the price hike. Only entered because it's the inaugural one and it's close to home and it's the first time the roads have been closed off to allow running on the A617 dual carriage way! Not done the distance before and it seemed more attainable than the full. I didn't have time to train for the full one (or I might have been daft enough to put my name down for that - egged on by folk at work) and as you've seen from my post even training for the half is proving a challenge. Oh, and said folk who were going to do the half, didn't register! (Not that it matters as we weren't doing it together.

    Next year is a good aim - did I mention the free chocolate at the finish.

  • Thanks for you reply Bazza. I ran without music yesterday and pondered on many things - not going too fast was one of them, especially as my first mile was 9mins 30, I did slow down quite considerably after that - a negative split didn't feature in the overall time! I had hoped to do the whole thing without walking, and, if I'm honest, still do but unless I get "the red shoe" effect again I will definitely be doing some walking. It will be the thought of free chocolate at the end keeping me going :-D

  • Well, thought I'd sleep like a baby last night - and I did - unfortunately it was the kind of baby that doesn't sleep more than an hour at a time :-D (I well remember those days from the dim and distant past).

    Anyway, this morning all appears to be well apart from the ache between my shoulder blades. This was caused by running with my head back - what's that about! Often when running I do check what's going on with my body (thank you Laura - you have instilled some good habits). As I run through the check list of arms going backwards and forwards and not across my body, that my legs are going round, feet picked up, running tall and looking ahead, the one thing that I often notice is that my head is up and back a bit. I know when I'm doing it as my head starts to feel heavy and after a longish run I get that ache. Need to practice head up, look down more than just when running hills. It's also something I do as a passenger in a car, so not confined to running.

    Anyway looking at the profile of the full marathon, the first half is the lumpy bit with elevation gain of 206ft - the second half has 117ft, don't suppose they'll let me do my half on the second part of the course :-)

  • It's annoying that your mates have ducked out but never mind you only have yourself to think about so can focus on the task. No I didn't know about chocs or the price hike

    I've not heard any moaning about road closures yet. I'm surprised the local paper is not crammed with letters from disgruntled motorists. Still, there's time yet. LOL

    I will be a spectator for this one so I'll cheer you on as you go whizz by.

  • The price went up on 1st June by quite a bit. I suppose 'they' were trying to encourage as many early entries as possible to make sure it was a goer. I've never seen route info for other races as I've never entered anything other than a 10k, where a mid point water station was on offer. With this there's quite a few water stations, toilets (thank goodness) and gels available. And for the marathoners there's also Jelly Babies and caffeine gels.

    There's also,lots going off in the park and in Chesterfield and there are a couple of outlying areas that have been designated festival areas. Not at home now so can't bring up the info. But it looks to be a quite an event. There's certainly a lot of effort going into it - not counting competitors!

  • Good luck with the training. It may be an idea to postpone your blood donation until after your HM though.

  • Thanks smiler - it was only this morning I realised the sense in your reply (DOMS of the brain. Regular feature with me :-) ).

    Had I been doing this "in anger" I would have postponed but since it's my first organised HM and my training has been so messed up I'm going ahead with it and taking it very steady, probably more walk than run anyway. The blood donor session is another to add to my performance justification list, should I need it :-)

  • Sounds like your training are going well. I agree with bazza, with 20 km sorted, you'll have no probs with the hm on race day. Not long to go, I look forward to hear how wonderfully you have aced it.

  • Thanks Tomas. Acing it may be a bit of a dream - but definitely finishing (don't want to miss out on free chocolate. Yes I can be that shallow/greedy). Second thoughts maybe I need to finish near the front to make sure of the free rations :-D

    As an aside, I often go to reply to a post only to find you have beaten me to it and said exactly what I was going to - only you phrase it better.

  • try some swimming for those legs helps me no end im half way for my half m training program and if your at 20k id say youll be fine run at your own pace and enjoy your race

  • Thanks Moger, that's very true. I should swim (and I can, quite well) but I really do not like doing it.

    Good Luck with your training. I hope it's going well. Let us know how it goes.

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