I’m more of a 3 hour half marathon runner. I do have a goal of setting a 2:45 PR by the end of this year or really 2:30 by end of year … How do I get faster and build endurance to make it to a 2:45 race finish by April? I am not running the Country Music Half Marathon, but I am doing a race in Kentucky that day. Also, I seem to have great time the first 10 miles. The last 5K takes me to that 3 hour window. By mile 11, no amount of nutrition, hydration, or willpower can help me maintain my sub-3 hour time. I end up with at 17-minute overall pace. I want to take that down to at least 14 or 15. Any advice?”~LaTamera in Nashville
Hi, LaTamera. What’s your 5K pace? It can help determine what your half marathon pace will be.
The best way to get fast is to run faster. That means adding interval training, fartleks and speed sessions to your weekly training. Read more about those kind of runs here.
Click here to download an Excel file of speed sessions I used two years ago to improve my half marathon time by about 15 minutes. Find a track, run two miles at 100 percent and plug your time into cell C6. The Excel sheet will automatically populate what your times should be for all of the workouts over 10 weeks. I hope this helps.
I know how it feels to hit the wall. The top issues that come to my mind that could be keeping you from maintaining your goal pace for the last 5K are nutrition, endurance and motivation. Are you fueling the right way in the days before the race and during the race? Is your longest training run at least 14 miles? Are you giving yourself time to taper in the last weeks before the race? Do you have the mental stamina for 13 miles? I’ll help you answer all these questions over the next few weeks in a series written for runners training for their first long-distance race.
I am leading a half marathon training group of mostly first timers again this year with East Nasty to train for the Country Music Half Marathon on April 25. Click here to sign up for the training group and view the schedule.
Please don’t hesitate to shoot me more questions as you continue training. I’d be happy to answer them here.