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The Last Week of Half Marathon Training

October 3, 2011

In Leeds today we’ve seen a return to more usual autumn weather – it’s grey, blustery and it looks like rain is threatening. As much as the weather over the past week has been an unexpected pleasure, I’m actually very glad that there’s been a turn for the worse. The reason is that on Sunday morning I will be running my first half marathon and the thought of doing 13.1 miles in 29 degree heat was not filling me with joy. I did a 5.5 mile run/walk yesterday morning and nearly wilted.



I’m starting to get scared about the race now. When I entered the race in June, the 9th October seemed like a very long time in the future. I’ve been training for it, but it’s always seemed like something that I don’t really have to worry about yet. Now I’m less than a week away the reality is setting in. The furthest I’ve run in training is 11 miles, so I’ve never done the full distance. I’m not too concerned about that because nearly all the training plans I’ve looked at had 10 miles as the longest run. However, doubt has begun to creep in about how I’ll manage to do the extra 2.1 miles.

I haven’t followed a specific plan, mainly because I couldn’t easily factor in the runs that I’ve been doing with my running club. Instead I aimed for a total mileage each week. I didn’t actually get in as many miles as I thought I would and in my highest mileage week I did 26 miles. I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing because I could have been in danger of over-training if I’d done the extra. You can see how my training’s been going on my running page. If When I do another half marathon I think I will look more carefully at the different training plans available and then construct my own plan, building in running club training. I have really enjoyed my training, but over the past few weeks I’ve been feeling a little bit aimless compared to when I was training for my 10k and followed a plan to the letter.

Running club has prevented me for getting bored over the past few months and has injected some fun and sociability into my running. I particularly enjoyed the social run we did on Thursday night. We were paired up with someone we didn’t know and had to run around a block in opposite directions until we met each other, and then turn around and run to the start. We continued doing this for 35 minutes. As usual, the route was quite hilly and I kept up a challenging pace, so it was a really good workout. Doing things like this is so much more interesting than just running up and down the road.

So, my plan for this week is to concentrate on eating well to nourish myself for Sunday. I overdosed a bit on sugar yesterday, but I’m back to my normal diet today. I’m going to give running club a miss and do a couple of easy runs by myself. I’m also going to focus on stretching to make sure that my legs feel fresh. I’m really excited to experience my first longer distance race Smile

What’s the ideal running weather for you?

How do you prepare for a race or other sporting events?

14 Comments leave one →
  1. October 3, 2011 4:17 pm

    The ideal running weather for me is not hot, or to cold. I like when its slightly windy..or if theres a nice breeze! 🙂

  2. October 3, 2011 5:18 pm

    If I had to chose a weather to run it, it would have to be the rain, i dont understand how people can run in the heat!

  3. Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance permalink
    October 3, 2011 5:28 pm

    Don’t be scared– you will be absolutely fine! Your training and hard work will pay off and you will absolutely own that race 😀

    • October 3, 2011 5:57 pm

      I’m with Brit. As long as you start off slow, you’ll have plenty left for the final 2 mile kick 🙂 Plus, nervousness is basically part of the initiation process 🙂

  4. October 3, 2011 5:29 pm

    Ideal running weather is when I am slightly chilled when I start out and warm up as the run goes on…so dry and sunny, with a slight breeze around 55-60. Very specific 🙂

  5. October 3, 2011 5:33 pm

    Not too hot, not too cold. Preferably sunny and not too windy. A bit of a breeze is nice.

  6. October 3, 2011 6:13 pm

    Honestly, ANY weather is ideal running weather. I just don’t care what the conditions are like – I always want to run!!! Hot weather is tough but every winter I just want to curl up and hibernate (or die, quite frankly) because of the frost/ice/snow. I would give anything, anything in the world to have something that would grip the pavements when they have ice but not snow (Yak Trax work for snow).

    That said, I ran a 10K once when it was 26 degrees in August 2009 – a half marathon 3 degrees hotter than that plus humidity would be a tough challenge indeed.

    Trust in your training plan – you’ll be fine!


  7. October 3, 2011 6:39 pm

    The ideal running weather for me is probably a bit warmer than most people would like! You’ll be totally fine for your half, you’ve trained so consistently! Before a race I tend to just try and eat well and relax as much as possible, and of course enjoy the carb loading!

  8. October 3, 2011 7:22 pm

    Yeah I like cool weather- not so cold that I am freezing, but cool so I do not get too hot- heat saps my energy. I ease back in the final week, a little shorter or a little slower on the runs, and have a days rest before the run. 🙂

  9. October 3, 2011 7:42 pm

    I love it when it is warm but with a slight breeze. It was exactly like this yesterday and it was perfect. You will totally rock your half marathon!!! 🙂

  10. October 3, 2011 8:19 pm

    Good luck! You’ll do brilliantly. It’s all set to cool down to normal, and it sounds like you are very well prepared to me 🙂

  11. October 3, 2011 9:14 pm

    You’ll do great! Best of luck! Just keep putting one foot in front of the other…over and over and over again 🙂

    I love running in a light rain or in overcast weather but not when it is freezing cold outside.

  12. October 3, 2011 9:48 pm

    Perfect running weather for me is about 50F and cloudy with a breeze. Is that too much to ask? haha
    Don’t stress about this weekend, you’ll do great! I’m working toward my first half now too (not doing it until spring, so I have time), so I cannot wait to read about your experience!

  13. Errign permalink
    October 4, 2011 11:55 am

    My idea running weather is like 50 or 60 degrees and not too sunny! 🙂

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