Fall 2011 Half-Marathons

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    Sep 02, 2011 5:29 PM GMT
    Is anyone training for a half-marathon this fall? How's your training going? Any tips to share for people who haven't run them before? I'm doing my first.

    I'm wondering what to eat and wear on race day. My race is in Boston in early October.

    I'm up to 7 miles now for my long run and hope to do 8 this weekend.
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    Sep 02, 2011 7:23 PM GMT
    If you are running 7 or 8 miles already, you will be fine, no problem.
  • DanOmatic

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    Sep 02, 2011 8:18 PM GMT
    I'm running a few trail 10-milers and HM races between now and January. If you're already up to 8-9 miles on your long runs, you will have no problem being ready for your HM this fall.

    As far as what to wear goes: it will really depend mostly on the weather. I tend to wear triathlon shorts for runs over 10 miles to avoid chafing. Other than that, just a wicking shirt and if it's cold, maybe some arm warmers that I can peel off.
  • DanOmatic

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    Sep 02, 2011 8:21 PM GMT
    Also: on race day I recommend just eating whatever you typically eat before heading out on your long training runs. You don't want to go experimenting too much with anything new before a race. Maybe take along a banana or a power bar to eat 20 minutes or so before the race starts.
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    Sep 02, 2011 8:31 PM GMT
    I am running a local half marathon in a couple weeks and the full portland marathon in a month. Did my first half last year. I second the "no experimenting" during your race. Also be sure to eat well in advance of the run (at least 2 hours). You don't want to have to take a "bio break" during the run. Take the first 6.5 miles at a moderate comfortable pace and work on stepping it up in the second half.

    Don't skip aid stations...drink a little bit frequently instead of gulping down a lot of liquid at once. Take an ice bath after...really helps flush the toxins out of your legs.
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    Sep 02, 2011 9:35 PM GMT
    NC3athlete saidAlso: on race day I recommend just eating whatever you typically eat before heading out on your long training runs. You don't want to go experimenting too much with anything new before a race. Maybe take along a banana or a power bar to eat 20 minutes or so before the race starts.


    Thanks, that's what my ex-bf told me. I usually run at night, but will start doing my long runs on weekend mornings- same timing as the race. I'll pick a breakfast- peanut butter on toast or something and see how that goes.

    Thanks for advice on shorts. I've never had a problem with chafing and I've done hundreds of long day hikes. I got some Nike shorts with compression liners- they seem to keep everything together without the feeling of fabric rubbing.
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    Sep 02, 2011 9:37 PM GMT
    JoshTPDX saidI am running a local half marathon in a couple weeks and the full portland marathon in a month. Did my first half last year. I second the "no experimenting" during your race. Also be sure to eat well in advance of the run (at least 2 hours). You don't want to have to take a "bio break" during the run. Take the first 6.5 miles at a moderate comfortable pace and work on stepping it up in the second half.

    Don't skip aid stations...drink a little bit frequently instead of gulping down a lot of liquid at once. Take an ice bath after...really helps flush the toxins out of your legs.


    Thanks for your advice. I've never eaten or drank during a run. I bought some gel today to see how my body handles that during a run. I've gotta figure out a way to carry water. Those hydration belts look so cumbersome! How do you carry water on long runs? I guess I can plan a route that goes by a public fountain.
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2605

    Sep 02, 2011 10:38 PM GMT
    Running my first half marathon next month near Lincoln.The runs are going well.I`m managing ten to twelve miles,so nearly there.I`ll tail the training off in the last week or so to rest up a bit.Aiming for 1:30:00 or under.
    I`d definitely agree with keeping it to the usual routine on the race day.
    I carry a bottle of water with me en route.
    My advice for a beginner would be to keep well hydrated before the run and drink plenty of water during and after the race.
    Best wishes!
  • DanOmatic

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    Sep 03, 2011 2:27 AM GMT
    There will be plenty of aid stations providing water, gatorade, whatever. No need to carry around a water bottle or hydration belt.

    I've run dozens of these and have managed to be sufficiently hydrated by making use of the water stations, so unless it's ungodly hot on the day of your race, you don't really need all of that extra stuff. I would only consider carrying my own water if I were doing an ultra marathon where aid stations were like 15 miles apart.
  • suedeheadscot

    Posts: 1130

    Sep 03, 2011 9:26 AM GMT
    Did the Helensburgh half marathon (ok its a wee town in Scotland, not quite as glamorous as Boston!!!) and got 1 hour 36 mins, now got the Coventry Half marathon in October 2nd - did 13 miles in a non-racing training session and got 1 hour 44 so I guess the training's going ok. The Coventry half marathon is notoriously hilly so don't think I'll be getting a PB!

    Good luck to everyone!
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    Sep 03, 2011 3:14 PM GMT
    NC3athlete saidThere will be plenty of aid stations providing water, gatorade, whatever. No need to carry around a water bottle or hydration belt.

    I've run dozens of these and have managed to be sufficiently hydrated by making use of the water stations, so unless it's ungodly hot on the day of your race, you don't really need all of that extra stuff. I would only consider carrying my own water if I were doing an ultra marathon where aid stations were like 15 miles apart.


    Thanks! I know on race day there are stations for water and gel later in the race. I was wondering how you carry water for your training runs? I think I don't need water for up to 9, but after that it might be a good idea, unless it's really hot and humid in which case I'd need it earlier.
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    Sep 03, 2011 3:15 PM GMT
    suedeheadscot saidDid the Helensburgh half marathon (ok its a wee town in Scotland, not quite as glamorous as Boston!!!) and got 1 hour 36 mins, now got the Coventry Half marathon in October 2nd - did 13 miles in a non-racing training session and got 1 hour 44 so I guess the training's going ok. The Coventry half marathon is notoriously hilly so don't think I'll be getting a PB!

    Good luck to everyone!


    Good luck. you'll do great! You've already got the distance. I'm just aiming for 8 this weekend. My race is on 10/9. I just hope it doesn't rain!!!
  • DanOmatic

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    Sep 03, 2011 8:49 PM GMT
    It depends on my route, but sometimes I stash a water bottle somewhere for a hydration stop, or I plan routes that take me near public water fountains. If I drive out to some trails, I'll bring water and maybe some gel and keep them in my car and just plan a route that takes me past the parking lot at a certain point. I tried those hydration belts before and found them unbearable (and they don't provide much hydration in those teeny bottles).
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    Sep 03, 2011 9:19 PM GMT
    brueges said
    JoshTPDX saidI am running a local half marathon in a couple weeks and the full portland marathon in a month. Did my first half last year. I second the "no experimenting" during your race. Also be sure to eat well in advance of the run (at least 2 hours). You don't want to have to take a "bio break" during the run. Take the first 6.5 miles at a moderate comfortable pace and work on stepping it up in the second half.

    Don't skip aid stations...drink a little bit frequently instead of gulping down a lot of liquid at once. Take an ice bath after...really helps flush the toxins out of your legs.


    Thanks for your advice. I've never eaten or drank during a run. I bought some gel today to see how my body handles that during a run. I've gotta figure out a way to carry water. Those hydration belts look so cumbersome! How do you carry water on long runs? I guess I can plan a route that goes by a public fountain.


    I wear a water belt with four 8oz bottles, two with water and electrolyte solution and two with carb gel mixed with water (too thick othewise). I only wear the belt because I don't want to be dependent on the aid stations. Generally, you should take in carbs for any run over 60 minutes. You can find calculations online for how many carbs depending on your weight and race length. The belts are awkward at first but then you ignore them. They are fine.
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    Sep 17, 2011 11:23 PM GMT
    Will be running in my first half-marathon in October. Only up to about 14 km right now. Hopefully I'll be able to complete the run. icon_smile.gif

    Good luck Brueges with your training!
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    Sep 19, 2011 11:25 AM GMT
    Runnerjoe saidWill be running in my first half-marathon in October. Only up to about 14 km right now. Hopefully I'll be able to complete the run. icon_smile.gif

    Good luck Brueges with your training!


    Thanks, man. You too. I ran 11 miles yesterday (17.7 km) and felt pretty good- on the pace I wanted. I'm sore today, but feel that 13 miles in a few weeks won't be so bad. My training plan doesn't have me running anywhere near that long till the race- 10/9. When's yours?
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    Sep 21, 2011 2:33 AM GMT
    brueges said
    Thanks, man. You too. I ran 11 miles yesterday (17.7 km) and felt pretty good- on the pace I wanted. I'm sore today, but feel that 13 miles in a few weeks won't be so bad. My training plan doesn't have me running anywhere near that long till the race- 10/9. When's yours?


    Mine's on October 16 in Toronto. Went up to 15 km on Sunday. Like you, just working up the distance and won't get to 21km until race day.
  • shoelessj

    Posts: 511

    Sep 21, 2011 3:44 AM GMT
    Sucks. I am registered to run the Detroit "Freep" half in mid-october, and have been running a few times a week, gradually increasing the mileage, then last week while playing softball, one of my calves gave out while i was sprinting to first base (i made it there before the throw, natch).

    i limped off the field at the end of the game, though. i could hardly walk the next couple days without an ugly limp. now i can walk fine, but i haven't run in over a week now. i actually went to a 5K over the weekend and thought i'd try running a little, but after the first few steps it was clear i wasn't going anywhere. so i walked it.

    i hope to be able to get back to jogging by next week, but i'm not so sure about the 13.1 in three weeks though.

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    Oct 08, 2011 1:24 PM GMT
    My race is tomorrow morning. I plan to have some toast and peanut butter as soon as I get up- 2.5 hours before the half-marathon. I had been doing this before my long runs.

    What do you guys eat the morning of a race? What do you have for dinner the night before? Any advice would be appreciated!
  • Lincsbear

    Posts: 2605

    Oct 08, 2011 10:35 PM GMT
    I`d stick with the familiar,dishes,times,portions,routines,etc.
    I have some breakfast the morning of the race,cereal,toast,fruit,juice,tea,etc.,but well before like you-at least two hours-I can`t run on a full stomach.
    All the best for tomotrrow!