I successfully completed the Nike Women’s Half Marathon this past Sunday. In my post 3 Ways My NWM Training Differed From My Past Training, I mentioned that I was aiming for 9:30 – 10 pace. I was able to pull of a 8:24 pace, completing the race in 1:50:02!
I know what you are thinking…
It can be annoying when people say they are aiming for a certain pace and then do 10 times better than they planned. I fully acknowledge that I am one of those people that people probably get annoyed with.
My first marathon I said that I was aiming for 4 hours but I ended up running a 3:41:27. Because it was my first marathon, I wanted to set an achievable goal and really had no idea what would happen for my first time running 26.2 miles. I later realized that my hard work really did pay off. I read multiple books about training and was strict with my diet and workout. I started building my base and training for the marathon 3 months earlier than the typical 18 week program.
I wasn’t as prepared for the Nike Women’s Half Marathon but I don’t feel bad with my estimate of 9:30-10 pace and there are a few reasons why I chose this time…
Although my training program was sufficient, I did not have as structured of a program as I would typically have. I also was not the best at fueling post-run and workout as I normally am for races. My training paces ranged from 9:15-10 pace and I figured a safe bet for a goal pace for my first long distance race back would be one that I am comfortable running a training run at.
Unfortunately there is not a day that goes by that I do not have hip soreness. I do not have concentrated pain like I had in the past, but the soreness has been lingering for years. Running minimalist has helped drastically with this but I know that my form is sacrificed when I run faster than I should.
My conservative pace goal was made to remind myself that I need to be conscious of my form. I noticed that a few of my race photos showed bad form and I should be aware of this for my next race.
You can do your best to prepare for races but there are so many uncontrollable factors that sometimes there is only so much that you can do. What is the weather going to be like? How will your body react to what you eat? If you haven’t run the course before, how will it feel? What if you get injured? With the reputation the Nike Women’s Half Marathon has for the hills, I wanted a goal that seemed achievable. Because the race had so many downhills and I happen to be pretty decent at downhill running, I was able to run faster than expected!
I am excited, proud and can’t wait until my next race. I was using this race as a way to gauge when I could get back to marathoning. As I mentioned, my hips are still sore, but if I train properly, I think I can start thinking about my next marathon! Stay tuned for my favorite parts about the half marathon and what races I think might be up next for me!