The half marathon is my most favorite race distance. I don’t run a ton of races each year so the ones that I do run mean a whole lot to me.
With my next half quickly approaching (October 3rd!) I am really trying to focus during this “training” period because I do believe a PR is within reach.
Even though I have a Race Recap page, let’s take a second to discuss my half marathon history to date:
My first ever half marathon was the Hershey Park Half October 2012.
I ran this race before I started blogging and I just loved every second of it! My finish time was 1:53:37.
Fitness Magazine Half April 2013– Although I had an injured shoulder, my KT Tape and I ran this race well 1:49:01.
Long Island Half May 2013 – My PR race to date 1:45:24.
Since then, things haven’t exactly been PR friendly….
Fitness Magazine Half April 2014 – Otherwise known as the time I didn’t finish a race.
I dropped out somewhere around mile 7 in the middle of central park because I just didn’t feel right. I was dizzy, struggling and something inside told me to stop before things got worse so I did.
It’s this race that reminded me of the blood pressure issues I have always had, especially during my time of the month, which taught me the lesson that I cannot run races when I have my period or if I am due to have my period (which was the case the day of this race so when I stopped and went to porta potty, it all made sense).
Long Island Half May 2014– I was still slightly traumatized by dropping out of the half only a few weeks before so I recall running super cautiously in fear that it would happen again.
Runner’s World Half Marathon October 2014 – I felt amazing during this half BUT this was also the third race in the Hat Trick at the Runner’s World Half & Festival which meant I ran a 5K and 10K just the day before.
As great as I felt, I couldn’t push during this half so a PR was not even on my mind.
Long Island Half May 2015 – You may remember that I came down with a virus only three days before this race. I still ran it but I don’t know how and will never run so close after being sick again.
But see, right now, I am ready to take on this half next month.
The fall season is definitely my favorite for running so I am banking on some good weather along with the following focuses between now and then to help me reach my goal.
My Current Training Focuses:
Not starting out too fast. I always start out too fast in every race but this time, I am really really REALLY going to try to avoid it!
I like to think that my negative split workout has taught me to start slower and finish faster while also learning how to regulate my speed to save some energy for later in the run.
I have a post coming up on race fueling strategies but in the meantime, I have been playing around with my mid-run fueling to see if something else can give me better energy than my usual jelly beans or raisins.
I really liked the Hammer Gel that I used on Sunday but may still try Shot Bloks as a comparison.
Taking the taper period seriously.
It’s not that I haven’t taken taper weeks seriously in the past because I have but this time, I feel as though I may do things differently.
I am considering an extra rest day, easing up on my mileage more than just the week before, lightening up on Pure Barre and changing what I eat in the days leading up to the race a little bit more than usual.
Expect a more in-depth taper strategy post coming soon!
Race Day Planning
I am mentally organizing a list of race day reminders for myself and here’s what I have so far:
My outfit (I think):
- lululemon Run Swiftly short sleeve shirt
- lululemon Run Inspire Crop II’s (my black pair because they fit the best)
- lululemon sweat-wicking underwear
- Pro Compression low trainers
- Adidas Energy Boosts
- Long-Sleeve shirt to leave at the start line
Pay attention to the water stops! I will never skip the first water stop again, even if I think I am not thirsty.
Update my playlist. I listen to Pandora a majority of the time but during races, I only use my playlist. I could use some new songs so that I don’t get bored.
Practice running more often with my arm band for my phone.
I am guilty of sometimes running with it and sometimes not but I really want to use it for the race so I must practice more often now so I find the exact spot on my arm where it’s most comfortable.What I am focusing on for my next Half Marathon #halfmarathontraining #running… Click To Tweet
Have you ever had to drop out of a race?
Do you struggle with starting out too fast in a race too?
Which day is normally your rest day before a race? The day before or two days before?