Yesterday I completed my first half-marathon. Since I am rather new to running, I had a primary and secondary goal for this race. The primary goal was to have a finish time of less than two hours, and the secondary goal was to finish, regardless of time. To do this, I followed Strava’s Project 1:59 Training Plan, which is a 10-week plan to do a half-marathon in less than two hours. Admittingly, I did not have much faith in this plan because it only had me running at race-pace only for small amounts of time. Because of this, I was nervous that I would not be able to sustain race-pace for 13.1 miles. However, I finished a time of 1:55:30.
For this race, I used Garmin’s PacePro™ feature. However, after mile 1, I felt like I was barely working, which I am pretty sure was due to training at high-elevation in Denver and then running at sea level. I decided to speed it up a little bit even though I told myself before the race that I wasn’t going to. I decided to try to do each mile 20-30 seconds faster than what my pacing strategy was set at. Luckily, I was able to execute this strategy for the majority of the run; however, I did start slowing down towards the end of the race, but I was still faster than my original targeted pace.
Overall, I was thrilled with this first half-marathon. I have a goal of completing my first full marathon in 2020 (hopefully NYC), and this race gave me confidence and the encouragement to continue training and to become a better runner.