half marathon training
K, so I just signed up for my first organized run, the Annapolis Half-Marathon. When I was on the CW kick and carbed up I could do it in my sleep and do awesome. Now that I have been primal for a year I feel great but am not sure how ready I am for this.
I used to run 40 miles a week and now it might be around 6.
I have 26 days to prep. Does anyone have any suggestions on how much I should run to train for the race? Also, other than one day on the weekends, I usually consume less than 50g of carbs. Should I adjust my carb intake while training?
I'll be watching this thread. I have a half coming up in January and this is my first post-Primal distance run. My Crossfit trainer neighbor swears that if we just keep up with the weekly sprints plus a longer (as in consistent pace over a few mile distance) a half in a couple months should be easy to finish. I'm not a great runner so while I will finish I won't be setting land speed records, nor do I care to. I think if you are using Mark's theory of daily slow movement plus weekly sprints, along with good nutrition, you should be okay. Especially considering you come from a runner's background. I might up the carbs a bit the evening before a longer run; for me, I eat potatoes when I know my workouts will be more strenuous the next day. My goal is to not feel a need for Gu or other such nastiness during the half. (I have completed 2 fulls, 3 halfs and a 15K over the past 3 years. I was still overweight--following CW advice--and did interval running.)
It depends on how hard you plan to run the HM. If its a "fun" run, you need not do a whole lot of preperation as it will be a low HR effort and not a ton of glycogen will be burned in the process. If you want to run it at a pace taking you over your ventilary threshold however, the need for glycogen replenishment is too great to acheve through gluconeogenesis. You will need carbs to run that far at anything more than a jogging pace.
Two days before the race, bump up to 150-200g of carbs. Use bananas, chestnuts, figs, dates and sweet potatoes as primary sources for carb fuel. For breakfast on race day, eat at least 2 hours before the race starts and add in a sweet potato to top off your muscle glycogen stores. At about 60 minutes into the run it would be a good idea to take in some carbs (100 calories ~ 25g) and then every 20-30 thereafter until you finish. You have about 90 minutes of glycogen stores (everyone is different, you may have less or more) that when they are gone you will crash hard and bonk.
Since the fire is burning pretty hot after 90 minutes of work, don't stress over the source of the carbs you are taking in. The more glucose, the better. I like to take Cliff-shots. Mostly brown rice syrup, a great source 45% maltose (disaccharide glucose), 55% Maltotriose (trisaccharide glucose) and 3% pure mono-sacchride glucose. I do not consider the use of gels "nastiness" as noted above, but rather a practical and commen sesnse way to utilize technology to benefit my race day experience. Are they "primal", NO. Do they work when used smart, YES. Some gels are better than others with regard to sugar sources and added stuff, but most are getting pretty clean burning nowadays.
Have a great time.
Last edited by Karma; 11-01-2011 at 10:28 AM.
I used to run 40 miles a week and now it might be around 6.
Awesome. Thank you everyone for the responses.
I plan on getting the best time possible. I would like to finish in under 90 minutes. I will have to buy some potatoes and bananas.
To finish under 90min, you have to hold a sub- 7min mile pace. Unless you are a very gifted runner, that seems difficult on 6 miles a week. You could train 2 sprint seesions a week, with one longer weekend run. Most runners doing a sub-7 min miles do considerably more volume.
Let us know how it goes.
Dude. a 90 minute half-mary on 6 miles a week ain't gonna be pretty. Good luck.
@Karma, by gel nastiness I was meaning my personal feeling about Gu and the Clif brand of similar gels. It's the texture, not what's in it (although they aren't all created equal). The only one I've ever been able to handle was the Gu Chocolate. Thanks for all the great info! My run is more for the fun of it (Disney, of course it's fun!).
Good luck to you, TerpsPwn.
Sunday I ran for 40 minutes.
Today I just ran for a straight hour while listening to The Wall haha. Figured I would finish my run right after the Comfortably Numb end solo!!
I was able to handle this second run today much better than the first, maybe my body needed to get used to long runs again.
I would guess I ran between 8 or 9 miles in this hour although I could be incorrect. Thursday I think I will do maybe a 3 miler where I really push myself.
Thank you everyone for the input and I'll let you know how it goes.
Also, I guess I should have done the math beforehand but maybe I should shoot for 100 minutes, I should be able to handle that.
Just this weekend, I ran my first half marathon since being primal (its been about 1.5 years). My story is that, back then, I got a stress fracture, ditched running, and became vlc primal. I was running a tad here or there (maybe around your 6 miles/week, but with many 0 mile weeks) and then a few months ago ditched vlc in favor of carb cycling and moderate carbs and started doing more hiking, pilates, strength, and a tad more running.
Anyway... as far as this 1/2 marathon business goes, after just 3ish weeks of real half marathon training (got 3-4 long runs in), in the race I PR'd (1:35) and came in first place for my age group (F 25-29): not bad. With more training, I know I can break 90 minutes. I don't think its a crazy goal at all.
I run just 3 days a week (two shorts, one long), x-train 2-3, rest 1-2, ALWAYS train fasted, and ALWAYS carb up post workout. My active day carbs are 100-200 grams. Rest days 0-75 grams. The day before the race I ate ~200 grams of carb; morning of the race I drank some coconut water and took a bunch of amino acids. I had no GUs or anything (just water) during the race, but I was wishing I did in the last 4 miles.
Oh, and I IF, eating twice a day, both in the evening after a full day's work and a workout, all done fasted.
This was definitely the easiest half-marathon I've ever done; I felt so loose and easy and light. Maybe it has something to do with the not over-training, too, a problem I traditionally fall victim to.
Anyway, thats what worked for me.