I can't believe that my half marathon is a little over a month away. I was thinking about that this weekend and about training. As I was doing in August, I'm currently training for 2 races - a 5k and then a half. It was hard this summer, and I didn't really know what to do. It was purely trial and error...but in the end it turned out okay. This time around I'm determined to take what I learned this summer and put it to use to make me a better, faster runner. I'm not just running these two races to run - I'm running to PR. And, to be perfectly honest, if I don't PR you should not talk to me for a good month.
Training for a PR in a 5k is relatively easy. I know this week and next I need to do my speedwork days and be on pace with them, but other than that I'm not too concerned. My issue lies with training for the half. Back when I started to run half marathons, in college, I asked my brother how to train. Keep in mind he was in college at this time as well, but had run a few marathons already. He said that my long run should be 10 miles, and do it the Tuesday before the race. Wednesday he said do 5, Thursday, 3, Friday 1 and then race on Saturday. Looking back, this does not allow for any rest days leading up to the race. There is no taper time. However, I do not need long tapers. The shorter, the better for me.
In September I was training for the QC half and did 11 for my long run the Saturday before the race. I only ran one time more that week, which was 4 miles on that Tuesday. The rest of the week I took off. The race was good and I had tons of energy the first few miles, but then I could feel the lack of miles hitting me. I felt like I should have run more.
So here lies the question: how long should my long run be during my half training? Ten miles, like what I did for my first 5 marathons successfully, is on the short side of training. However, I know people who run 15 more their long run before a half, which seems rather ridiculous to me. To each his/her own, though. Would you stick with what I have been doing for years - running 10 as my long run - or would you change and run a higher mileage long run? My goal is to do my last long run on Monday, as the race is on Saturday. I am hoping to break 1:40, and I feel like this is a critical part in order for me to do so.