Are you seeking a sub 1-50 half marathon training plan? If you are I think being a part of this private community is really going to help you. Why? You have daily interaction with me. I always answer my private members comments and questions within this private group.
I don't know where you are currently at with your training or what your personal best is. What I do know is you are competitive. Anyone seeking to hold 8:23 per mile or 5:13 per kilometer is very competitive. Obviously, you have to get used to this pace. How is that done? Train at or below 6:23 mile pace.
The best half marathoners and marathoners make it look easy for a reason. It isn't because they have ungodly amounts of talent. Well, some of them do but they are training often at such high heart rates and intensities that they make it look easy. I don't believe training 1 to 2 minutes slower than your goal half marathon race pace is going to get you closer to your goal. You have to stress the anaerobic systems of the body in order to get those physiological adaptations you are searching for.
Ways To Achieve The Sub 1-50 Half Marathon
- Do repeat miles at 6:23 to 7:00 mile pace. 5 to 7 reps is sufficient. Obviously, your goal is not to run this fast for the half marathon. It is far too aggressive a pace. That being said, if you can do 5 to 7 of these with 3 minutes rest between sets you are doing a few key things. You are improving your lactate tolerance tremendously. Additionally, you are teaching the body to clear lactic acid faster than it is building up in the bloodstream.
- Get that long run pace improved. Do not focus on running easy every weekend. It isn't going to help you when your goal is pace sustainment. Yes, long easy runs WILL help build endurance. Long, slow running will produce long, slow runners which you are not. Anyone seeking to run a 1:49:59 half marathon is a dangerous, high-caliber athlete. I was able to drop my half marathon from 1:10:29 to 1:07:06 by drastically increasing the paces of my long runs. It was a huge adjustment for me. I went from running easy every weekend to running at 160 beats per minute. This intensity (when I was fit) came out to running anywhere from 5:20s to 5:50s per mile pace. This was how I was able to drop my marathon PR from 2:43:36 to 2:19:35.
Vary The Paces Of Your Workouts
- Do one of my favorite workouts. 1 hour running 1 minute hard followed by 1 minute hard. Do you want to run 1:49:59 for the half marathon? A great test to see how fit you really are is trying this workout session. Be advised, early on especially when you are not fit it will be difficult to finish. If 20 minutes is as far as you can go then so be it. Be patient and you will eventually get out to 1 hour. The hard sections of the run should be up toward 175 beats per minute if wearing a heart rate monitor and 130 to 150 beats per minutes during the recovery sections of the run. I first did this workout with one of the Kenyans I trained with, 2:11 marathoner Gilbert Rutto.
- Get out of your comfort zone. A sub 1:50 half marathon is not going to fall in your lap. You have to truly want this. There is a massive difference between interest and commitment. The committed athlete is going to be putting in the miles, getting proper rest, eating right etc. Interested athletes do not invest in this private group so I already know you are not average nor interested but committed. I spent so much time over the years training at speeds there was no way I was going to hold for the half marathon or marathon. It was my greatest weapon to drop nearly 21 minutes off my marathon time and nearly 3 full minutes off my half marathon time. Make the commitment to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Stress your body but also have the discipline to back off when you know you should. The results come in the rest.
A sub 1-50 half marathon training plan has to focus on training at, near and far below 8:23 mile pace. Running and racing a half marathon are not the same. The quickest way to sustain 8:23 or 5:13 per kilometer pace is to get accustomed to training at 6:23 or 4:13 kilometer pace or faster and often.
The race should be the easy part. Remember, training is the place you want to test your upper limits. You should be challenging yourself to the point of near exhaustion in training. Why? So, there are no moves your competition can possibly throw at you in the race. Furthermore, you'll be able to react to any surges and be able to sustain pace while those around you are slowing down.