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Sunday, February 24, 2013

Race Report: Peterborough Half Marathon 2013

Previous Results

Original flat course:

2007- 2:07:06

2008- 1:53:55

2009- 1:49:17

2010 - 1:45:26

New hilly course:

2011 - 1:38:54 

2013 - 1:43:18 (119/400, 23/40 M35-39, 97/223 Men)

Weight and Race Pace

Before the race, I looked at my weight journals.  When I did the race in 2011, I was 174 lbs.  Today I weighed in at 184 lbs, almost exactly 10 pounds heavier.

I wrote previously on the weight penalty - it supposedly works out to about 2 seconds per mile per pound of extra weight.

So for a half marathon - 13 miles - that's 26 seconds per pound.  For me, at 10 pounds heavier, that's 260 seconds - 4:20.

And today I was 4:24 slower than 2011!  Quite remarkable how accurate that ended up being.  Sure, it could be a bit of a fluke, but it's been pretty accurate for me in the past too.  

Ultimately I will take it as my run conditioning is on target from where I was a few years ago, and so it's just my excess weight that is holding me back.  I'm confident I can lose 10 pounds in the next 10 weeks prior to marathon day, which should leave me lean, mean, and ready to rock.

Consistent Pace vs Consistent Effort

I had a lot of people pass me up hills today, and I passed a lot of people going down them.

My guess is that people try to keep a consistent pace throughout the race.  But on a hilly course like this that's a bad strategy - it's far better to keep the effort even and let the pace fluctuate based on the terrain.  Killing yourself up a steep hill may help your ego but does nothing for your overall time!

I used my perceived effort and heart rate as guides to keep things even, and it seemed to work out pretty well.  I didn't quite have the oomph to finish things off right - by 19km I was pretty sacked, but mostly it worked out.


Double Bellybuster said...

Good job Jon. I also see your time from today was better than the easier course from 2010, which looks from the stats on the right like it was 10 weeks or so before your Marathon PB.

The Half is such a tough distance to be in peak shape for. With your ridiculous Half PB, you'll likely need to focus exclusively on Half training to beat it.

Skinny helps but for the Marathon may not be a necessity. I got to the lowest weight of my adult life for a 2011 Marathon and bonked. I found I am stronger 4-6 pounds above that weight. This is a great blog post on weight vs. speed:

Jon P said...

Interesting... I always wondered where that number came from! Sounds like a little bit of their ass. Although it stands to reason that moving less weight around is easier, and my best times came from when I was lowest - by a mile - so for me the formula seems to hold true.

Double Bellybuster said...

Agreed, losing unnecessary weight is a positive. But strange how Runner's World found facts or created facts to support the article they wanted.

But if you accidentally eat 6 litres of ice cream, blame it on Victoria's blog, that is what I do.