My next half marathon is just 4 ½ weeks away. My longest training run to date has only been 6 miles. I had really hoped to get in a strong training cycle for this half marathon, but due to my back injury I started training late – probably a little too late. My longest run going into the Half will be 10 miles – and that will be the weekend prior to the Half. Not ideal, because other than race week I have no real taper period, but I think that’s ok, since my training cycle has been fairly short.
I’ve mentioned before in my blog that I’m a very slow runner. I know, I know – “slow” is relative – but no matter how you slice it I’m slow. I have completed two previous Halfs with times of 2:52 and 2:50 (that’s a 13:07 and12:58 pace). I only trained for 6 weeks for the first Half and a full 16 weeks for the second Half. My biggest problem in the second one was that although I trained and trained hard, I didn’t train for hills and it was a very hilly course. My average pace time on shorter runs is between 11:30 and 12:00 – so I was really hoping that if I didn’t have to walk any in this Half, I would be able to set a new PR. If I just maintained a steady 12 minute mile pace my time would be 2:37.
So, I was considering using a pacer during this race. In both of my previous races I just ran – by myself, no friend to run with, no pacer. However, I just looked at the OKC Race website and they only offer pacers up to 2 hours and 30 minutes. That would be an 11:26 pace. Last week I ran 6 miles at exactly an 11:26 pace – but that was only 6 miles. I’m not sure I could maintain an 11:26 over 13.1 miles at this point. I really don’t think I will have it in me to run the whole thing.
So, what are your thoughts? Should I run with a pacer of 2:30? Would it be good to push myself – or would that be pushing myself too much? Have you ever used a pacer in a race? Did you like/not like it? I could always start with the pacer and if it was too difficult I could leave the pace group.
Help, I need opinions!