Using half marathons as training races
As runners train for long races, it’s recommended to do a shorter race distance in preparation. For example, doing a 10K before a half marathon, or a half leading up to a full marathon.
Working in another race as part of your training plan can pay off in several ways. First, it gives you a good practice leading up to the real race. Runners can also test out their gear, nutrition, hydration and more before their goal race. Remember: Nothing new on race day.
It’s also a good idea for runners to find a race that can mirror similar conditions for race day.
One good example is the Nutrabolt Oktoberfest Half Marathon and 10K in College Station, Texas, which is Oct. 21. If you have the opportunity to add it to your race calendar, use my discount code NBRAVE2018 for 15 percent off.
Or you can look to it as a race to do as a build up to a longer race a year from now. The Nutrabolt Oktoberfest is a quality race, run by those who produce the well-known BCS Marathon and Half Marathon. The BCS Marathon is highly regarded. In fact, the half marathon was named to the inaugural BibRave top 100 races.
Tips for successful training runs/races
I wrote about the benefits of running the Nutrabolt Oktoberfest earlier.
By taking a quick scan at the race’s Facebook page, not only are runners excited about participating this year, they are using it as part of their training plan. Among the races cited: the BCS Marathon, Houston Marathon, Rock ‘N Roll Las Vegas, Rock ‘N Roll San Antonio and the Austin Marathon.
Here are some tips to consider when running a race leading up to your goal race:
Enjoy the journey. If you are using a half marathon as a training run for your first full marathon, don’t concern yourself with the performance details. Finishing a half marathon is an achievement unto itself. Take pride in the finish and keep focusing on the goal of 26.2 miles.
Learn what works — and what doesn’t — when it comes to your pre-race morning routine. Practice what you will eat on race day. If it sits well, great! You’ve got an important part of the morning routine down.
Practice, whenever possible, with the fueling that will be served on course for your full marathon. If aid stations provide Gatorade and water at the full marathon, for example, check to make sure the half marathon does the same. If not, carry a handheld with you and use that to test how your body handles the fluids that will be dished out at your goal race.
Enjoy the post-race celebration. You’ve earned it! There will be plenty of time, if you scheduled the race correctly, to rest and resume training for your big, goal race. But for now enjoy the accomplishment.