Picking a Half Marathon: Part 2

September 14, 2012 at 10:03 am 4 comments

Much thanks to everyone yesterday for their tips and support in my search for a half marathon!

Here is some of the great advice I received:

1. Choose a half that is also attached to a full marathon. That way the cutoff times for finishing the half are a lot easier to meet.

That’s a great tip and I would have never considered that! Even though I have a goal of finishing with an average 10 minute mile pace, it never hurts to not have to worry about injuries or unforeseen issues that may result in a DNF.

2. Stay home for your first one so your family and friends can cheer you on. Amazing experience and you will want them there!

Point well taken, but I don’t have any family on the West coast so that doesn’t really apply to me. Plus, all of the races except the one in San Luis Obispo are in cities where I have friends so I would have some support–even if I had to bribe them to show up with beer tent tickets.

3. A trip out of town if you can!

Yes!

4. Something relatively flat, not a ton of people, something with great scenery and a cool finish line.

All great things to consider. My friend EJ posted this comment and after asking him how much he thought the crowd really mattered he said this:

“Personally, not much at all… after thinking about it, they corral everyone in their pace times, so it helps thin out the crowd for sure… not to mention, it is mostly crowded at the start then spreads.”

So I took the advice into consideration and ruled out the San Luis Obispo race off the bat for several reasons–long drive time, probably most expensive trip (with gas and hotel rooms) and the only city with no built in support from friends. I also ruled out the Bay Breeze Half and Davis Stampede races because there is not a marathon attached to either race, and the half would be the longest distance of the day. I also ruled those out because I didn’t want to race them. Easy decision.

So….Surf City USA here I come!

I registered this morning and my good friend Emily, who is moving to the LA area soon, is doing it with me!

With the race on February 3, 2013, I have just over four months to train, which is perfect because the Chi Marathon book has a 16 week beginner half marathon training program. The first week’s long run is 3 miles, which is also perfect because I am wrapping up my 5k training and can begin training for the half right after the Color Me Rad next week.

The training program consists of 4 runs a week, each with different intentions–focuses on the chi running form, time trials, long slow distance runs (that get longer each week by a mile), and fun runs. The first 8 weeks are designed to really learn the Chi Running technique (luckily I’ve had a head start but another 8 weeks of really focusing on technique is awesome). Weeks 9-13 are the “conditioning phase” and then the last two weeks are the “mastery” phase. The book obviously goes into more depth as to what this means and I’ll be sharing my progress as I go.

I’m excited. This will be a good challenge, not only in an of itself to complete a half marathon, but to stick to the training schedule over the holidays and travel. I was knocked off course with my 5k training by vacation and I will have quite a bit of travel in November and December, so it will be a test of my willpower to keep to the schedule.

As part of preparing for a half or full marathon, Danny Dryer writes about the importance of mental preparation and going into a training plan with intention and a clear understanding of your vision and goals. This is what I will be meditating on over the next two weeks as I finish the 5k training and prepare for the transition into becoming a half marathoner!

Stay tuned!

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Entry filed under: Half Marathon, Race. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Picking a Half Marathon The Great 108

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. aquamarineparachute  |  September 14, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    Cool! Congrats on picking a half…that’s a good first step :-) Good luck with your training!

    Reply
    • 2. Steph  |  September 18, 2012 at 2:11 pm

      Thank you!!

      Reply
  • 3. Jane Fritz  |  September 14, 2012 at 11:14 am

    Good plan and speedy graduation from 5K to 21.1K! My favorite distance. Happy training, Steph.

    Reply
    • 4. Steph  |  September 18, 2012 at 2:12 pm

      Thanks Jane!

      Reply

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