Berkeley Half Marathon | Tips to Master 13.1 Miles

Are you seeking more information about the Berkeley half marathon event? If so, welcome to RunDreamAchieve. I am glad you have made it here to the site. I created rundreamachieve back in November of 2011. The reason being is that I wanted to help more runners from around the world to get better results. Remember, it isn’t about the volume you are doing as much as it is the quality of the work you are doing. The Berkely half marathon takes place in Oakland, California. The race also features a 1K kids race, 5K and 10K race as well as the half marathon.

Berkeley Half Marathon
Photo Credit: Berkeley Half Marathon

It also usually takes place in the last week of the month of February. The course is USATF certified and the fee to enter is about $149 for the half-marathon. The course is rolling in the first 4 miles and then drops significantly in the latter miles of the race. That being said, the last 5K of the race is mostly uphill so you have a challenging course. So, if you want to make up time make sure you do it from miles 4 to 10.

Berkeley Half Marathon 2022

The half marathon is a highly aerobic event. The Berkley half marathon has 7 water stops along the course. Make sure you make sure of them as well in case you run to run at your optimal level. So, you have to work on your endurance. In addition, you also need to work on your speed and strength as well. A common mistake I see runners making in the half marathon is running too many miles or kilometers too slow. So, to run a new personal best at the Berkely half marathon is to ensure you train at or far below your goal half marathon pace.

Did you know the best middle to long distance runners run around 40 percent of their weekly volume at or below goal pace? So, look at how you are setting up your training. What percentage of your weekly training is spent at your goal pace? Is it 10 percent? 20%? 5%? A major reason runners are not able to sustain pace is not adequate training. Again, you have to stress the body’s energy system sufficiently enough in order to get the result you are seeking. You already have the motivation otherwise you wouldn’t be here at rundreamachieve. My goal is to help you get better results.

What Time Does the Berkeley Half Marathon Start?

The Berkeley half marathon starts at 7:30am in the morning. Remember, the race is in California so you will be on Pacific standard time. How long should you train for a half marathon? I would recommend a minimum of 8 weeks and a maximum of 16. You will notice here on rundreamachieve that I have built 8, 12 and 16-week training plans. There are many athletes who don’t always have 4 months to train for a half marathon.

Perhaps your goal is to train for a half marathon that is 8 weeks away. So, check out what we have here on the site to help take your running to the next level. First, focus on running easy and relaxed for 3 weeks before you even start a training plan. The reason being is you need to strengthen your muscles, tendons and ligaments before you start training.

I would recommend doing strides 2 to 3 times per week during your training build up. Strides are short, 50 to 100 meter sprints. The great thing about doing strides is that you won’t build up any significant lactic acid doing these types of workouts. You can do strides before, during or after your easy runs.

Tips to Help You Run a Faster Half Marathon

  • Make sure you are conducting your long runs at 160 beats per minute (85 percent of your max heart rate)
  • Vary the paces of your long runs. For example, one harder long run one weekend followed by an easy, relaxed long run the following week.
  • Focus on quality versus quantity
  • Work smarter not harder. The hardest working athletes don’t always produce the best results.
  • Read up as much as you can on glutathione. Your competition knows little about it.
  • Train at your anaerobic threshold (167 to 174 beats per minute)
  • Train at your aerobic capacity (175+ beats per minute)
  • Relax – don’t beat yourself up over a poor performance. Great efforts take time.
  • Have fun and don’t lose enthusiasm. The best runners never lose heart.
  • Take your easy days, easy. The benefits of all your hard work come within the rest, not the workout itself.

How Long Should You Tempo Runs Be?

One of the biggest mistakes I see runners training for half marathons making is doing too short of tempo runs. A 3 to 4-mile tempo run will be great for an athlete training for the 5k to 10k distances. That being said, you are focused on racing a half marathon and running one fast. So, to do that you need to lengthen the amount of time you are spending training at your anaerobic threshold. Your anaerobic threshold is the point where lactic acid begins to build up in your blood stream.

Runners slow down not for a lack of motivation. Who doesn’t want to run fast right? We all want to succeed and no one wants to fail. So, to minimize the slow down effect my goals with the products here is to get athletes to use leverage instead. Work smarter, not harder. You have to learn to get that tempo run out to around 6 to 10 miles in length. Again, the focus needs to be on improving your body’s lactate tolerance. You will not be able to do that by running slow and easy. Yes, running slow is still important to adapt to the harder workouts you will be doing. That being said, too much slow running will make you a superior long, slow distance runner.

Berkeley Half Marathon Elevation

Check out the graphic above to see what the elevation chart looks like. It definitely looks challenging in those first 4 miles. You will then have a nice downhill section from about mile 4 to 10 before rising the last 3 miles. So, make sure to train properly regardless what race you are going after. Again, investing in yourself with a course or training plan will help take the guesswork out of your preparation. We also have monthly coaching options available for athletes here as well.

I am a big believer in running faster long runs. That being said, I don’t have my athletes running hard and fast every single weekend. Remember, the benefits of your hard work are going to come from within the rest period. Your body is 2 to 3 times weaker immediately following a hard workout. So, recovery is essential especially if you are seeking to run a great performance. Again, training smarter, not necessarily harder is the mindset winners have.

Closing Thoughts

I hope this post has been helpful to you. Make sure to visit the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. I am creating new content each week to help my visitors get the best possible results they can. There are plenty of athletes who already know how to work hard.

Do the hardest working athletes always get the results? No, sometimes you can do everything correctly and still not get it right. The goal here is to help ensure you train in such a way to get the goals you are aiming for. Also, training for a half marathon like Berkeley takes a great deal of time and energy on your part. You might as well do it right the first time to ensure the highest return on your investment.

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