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Half Marathon Race Technique | Pacing, Fueling and Extra






What to do the day earlier than a half marathon? When do you run, what do you eat? What do you want to know race morning to lastly hit that PR or just end your first half marathon? Regular tempo, damaging cut up? Let’s discuss half marathon race technique ideas!!

Coaching is meant to be the onerous half and race day the celebration, a minimum of that’s what we’re usually advised.

However for a lot of runners, race day is crammed with nerves or they cross the end line figuring out they might have carried out higher…however how?

Right now we’re going to dive in to all the things you want to know for race weekend. As a result of if you happen to don’t deal with the few days pre-race proper, it could not matter what pacing technique you try and observe! Your half marathon tempo plan requires your physique being wholesome, joyful and effectively…the proper climate!

Let’s get began with some half marathon ideas that work for each stage of runner.

Half Marathon Race Technique

We’ll get to the precise race, however first let’s begin with all the things we’re doing within the 48 hours earlier than the race.

As a result of if you happen to make a mistake like consuming fried catfish since you’re making an attempt to please your future husband…let’s simply say that you could possibly find yourself seeing lots of the Nashville Rock N Roll porta potties on the course. (cough, not that I’d know something about this.)

Seize your printable race guidelines to be sure you don’t overlook something when packing!!

race strategy

1. Perceive Your Purpose Tempo

If you happen to’re undecided what to set to your aim, it’s positively going to make race day a bit trickier.

Begin by taking a look at this half marathon tempo chart >>

Hopefully, you’ve been doing a little aim tempo exercises or intervals that will help you know the place you need to be. However perhaps it’s your first race and also you simply need to end with out dying.

That’s completely positive!!

Use the chart to seek out your straightforward tempo. From there assume that perhaps you are able to do 10-30 seconds per mile quicker with the race day environment after which have a look at what that end time is.

  • Attempt to discover a tempo band on the expo, so you may examine your instances because the race goes alongside. If you happen to can’t discover one, then write just a few splits in your arm, so you may examine in in your aim all through the race.
  • Do not forget that your watch might ding a bit of earlier than or after the mile markers relying on if you’re operating the tangents (normally you aren’t, so that you’ll find yourself barely longer)
  • Additionally, attempt to run the tangents! Meaning not weaving a bunch, don’t take corners tremendous tight.
  • Prepare with the mantra you’re going to be repeating in your head when it will get robust.
  • Know that it’s going to get robust! Pondering it is going to all be roses results in a a lot tougher day. As an alternative, embrace that it is going to be onerous and that you are able to do it.

2. Do a Lot of Meal Planning

Don’t be like that 25 12 months outdated model of me who was ravenous by the point we discovered our lodge after the expo and simply wanted to eat, which result in discovering the one place close by.

Granted we didn’t on the time have superior instruments like Yelp, however I may have carried out a lot extra to keep away from the state of affairs!

  • Analysis close by eating places to your night time earlier than dinner and take into account one thing gentle and eat early.
  • Convey your pre-race breakfast with you or plan to swing by a grocery retailer to seize your bagel and nut butter.
  • Double examine that you simply’ve packed all of the vitality gels, race gasoline that you’ve got beforehand examined in your lengthy runs, together with electrolyte powders.
  • We LOVE grabbing groceries for the journey general as a result of it ensures each pre and publish race stomachs stay joyful and diet on level.

3. Begin Line Planning

Have you ever ever had the dream the place you’re preventing to get to the race, however all the things is in opposition to you and by the point you arrive everybody has already began? Yeah, most of us have.

Which is why we need to spend a bit of time planning forward, to assist alleviate that worry and get a greater night time of sleep.

Determine if there’s a drop off level, a shuttle, a simple stroll out of your lodge?

Assume that you simply’ll be ready in line a minimum of 10-20 minutes for a porta potty and want a minimum of 10-20 minutes to stroll round, do a dynamic heat up and soak up some final minute gasoline.

MINIMUM give your self that point.

You don’t need to waste vitality being stressed or sprinting to the beginning line.start line tips

4. End Line Planning

It looks like at this level all you want to do is sit down and eat your free banana. However alas, I’ve spent many a race wandering round for half-hour searching for my effectively which means spectators or pals, all of the whereas getting colder and hungrier.

  • Checkout the end space map and decide a spot to fulfill your family and friends. Assist them perceive that it’d take a bit so that you can get out to them.
  • Go forward and examine that bag at the beginning line with some physique wipes and dry garments to vary on the end line. It’ll guarantee you may hang around and benefit from the environment.
  • If in case you have a finicky abdomen, then have a few of your trusted meals prepared in that bag or have a plan to seek out some inexperienced juice and a meal.

Nice now that we’ve among the fundamentals out of the way in which to make this an general nice expertise, let’s dive in to the race specifics.

Half Marathon Pacing Technique

Whether or not you’re seeking to hit a PR (private document) or simply have a robust race, it’s necessary to have an general half marathon technique. Typically, we need to guarantee that you’ve got sufficient vitality to hold on via that end even when it begins to burn!

Apply Even Pacing

The very first thing you want to know is that extra research are exhibiting that EVEN pacing, not aiming for a damaging cut up is one of the simplest ways to hit a PR. I believe it is because you dial in to a tempo and as an alternative of needing to push tougher when drained, you merely keep it.

The aim is to maintain it in management in the course of the first mile and from there dial in to your aim race tempo.

All of this assumes a course that’s comparatively comparable by way of hills or flats from begin to end. If in case you have a race with extra hills in the long run, it’s possible you’ll have to push a bit of extra within the early flats (like seconds per mile push, not 30 seconds quicker).

In the meantime if you happen to begin a race on the downhill after which it flattens out, you would possibly decide up 10 seconds per mile beginning out and let that carry you later.

PR bell

Begin Line

Ideally you need to take a ultimate fast little bit of vitality in at the beginning line. Seize a honey stinger waffle or if you happen to love gels, suck on down. That is placing that rapid gasoline within the tank to your physique to attract from.

Do not forget that it takes 30+ minutes for the gasoline to enter your bloodstream.

And for caffeine it peaks at 45 minutes. So if you happen to had that espresso two hours in the past, you would possibly profit from a bit of caffeine at the beginning after which once more in the course of the race. As all the time, it’s best to have examined how caffeine impacts you throughout your lengthy coaching runs!!

Mile 1

Actually, we frequently inform those that mile 1 must be your slowest of the race. This is sensible as a result of it means you aren’t losing vitality dodging and weaving round different runners and also you aren’t blasting via your carbohydrates by overshooting the mark.

So perhaps you’re 30 seconds slower, know that that is time you can also make up bit, by bit. Ideally you is likely to be round 10-15 seconds beneath aim tempo, however regardless of the quantity don’t let it freak you out.

However if you happen to’re 30 seconds too quick, that would really end in being minutes per mile slower later within the race.

Miles 2-3

Now we’re beginning to actually dial in to our aim race tempo.

This could really feel such as you’re pushing your self, however not you can’t keep the tempo for a lot of miles to return.

Discovering our precise tempo is basically onerous!! Among the best methods to do that is to cease worrying about your watch and begin focusing in your effort ranges.

  • The primary few miles of the race ought to virtually really feel too straightforward
  • The center set of miles ought to really feel like a push, however not onerous to keep up.
  • The ultimate set of miles ought to really feel such as you’re pulling out all of the psychological instruments to carry on, however with out feeling such as you’re on the verge of an entire break down!

your watch can usually forestall you from hitting a brand new PR. You freak out in regards to the tempo, even when it feels sustainable and then you definitely maintain your self again. One of many causes I usually prescribe exercises for the runners we coach as medium or onerous effort, is to assist them study simply this sense!

Center Miles Fueling

I’ve carried out a extra in-depth article on half marathon fueling, however it must be touched on right here. As a result of with out gasoline your pacing will fall off or the race will simply proceed to really feel like a sufferfest.

  • rule of thumb is start consuming gasoline between the primary 45-60 minutes of a race.
  • Proceed each 45-60 minutes after that.
  • Roughly 30-60 grams of carbs per hour that you simply’re operating

And if you happen to want some assist with staying on high of hydration, just a few recommendations on ingesting whereas operating.

Miles 11-13.1

As you hit the ultimate 2-3 miles of the race, you can begin to push the tempo if you happen to’re feeling good.

Simply do not forget that  3 miles continues to be an extended methods to run, which suggests you want to hold your tempo enhance small and sustainable.

That is the place you must begin actually taking part in a robust psychological recreation.

I are likely to repeat a mantra like “regular and light-weight” throughout miles 10-12, in order that I simply maintain on to my tempo after which after I hit 12 it’s on. I select somebody in a brightly coloured shirt and put all my concentrate on catching that particular person, then the particular person in entrance of them, and so forth.

That breaks this ultimate mile down in to constant wins and manageable items. Which can assist to get you out of your head and cease enthusiastic about uncomfortable you might be.

Half Marathon Race Day Ideas

Now that race day has arrived, you first have to undergo my publish on managing your race day nerves. Get that beneath management after which it’s time to plot out the way you’ll be spending that point milling in regards to the begin space.

These are your ultimate moments to get your physique and thoughts proper!

Porta Potties

Simply get in line. Don’t child your self, you’ll completely go and also you would possibly as effectively get via the road sooner moderately than later. If you end up having that “do I have to pee or not?” feeling because the time ticks down, know that it’s most frequently nerves and when you begin operating your physique has a mechanism to place that on the again burner!

So in case you have time, line up once more, but when not then don’t sweat it.funny race day signs

Don’t Skip the Heat Up

As you’re standing round with lots of or 1000’s of different runners, it may be straightforward to get misplaced within the second and simply skip your heat up, however that’s a serious no-no.

Your heat up is doubly necessary on race day! It’s telling your physique that it’s time to go, to do what you’ve repeatedly skilled it to do and to make sure that all of your muscle tissue are heat and able to go the second you cross that line.

Undergo the dynamic heat up after which spend only a few minutes jogging. The longer the race, the much less operating round you want to do previous to the race as you may enable your first mile to function a heat up.

The place to line up?

Of all of the race day errors that I’ve made and discovered from there is just one that I proceed to make…lining up too far again.

This comes right down to trusting your self and your pacing, whereas additionally not trusting any of the runners in entrance of you, ha!

Most frequently I’ll see a pacer that’s according to my aim and line up someplace in entrance of or behind them. However invariably, lots of of us who’re going to be strolling or going a lot slower have gotten nervous and determined to start out means too far ahead. I get it, nerves are taking maintain of everybody.marathon race start

However once you spend the primary few miles weaving out and in of individuals, you add steps to your race and waste lots of psychological/bodily vitality.

Strive lining up only a bit farther ahead than you assume it’s best to if you happen to’re going for a PR.

While you’re new, be sure you actually search for these pacers that will help you resolve if you happen to’re too far ahead. It’s additionally no enjoyable to have individuals whipping round you continuous for the primary few miles, once you’re working onerous!

Dealing with the primary mile

It’s taking place, your wave of runners is lastly going from a bizarre run, trot, stroll via the corrals and throughout the beginning line. That is when a weird dash begins and other people utterly abandon their race targets to only fly.

Nope, not you.

You realize that by holding again in that first mile, you’ll get to catch and move these runners later within the race. You don’t need to skyrocket your HR instantly and burn via gasoline, together with fatiguing your legs.

All proper hopefully these half marathon race methods and ideas gave you some new concepts and issues to consider so you will get on the market and crush it.

On the lookout for extra half marathon ideas?

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