So close…


It’s hard to write this as I had such a great running weekend, but it’s something I keep debating back and forth.

On July 10th there is a half-marathon that I really wanted to participate in.  But I have been focusing more on my marathon training plan lately, which has us easing into the longer mileage runs.  If I were to decide to run in the half, I would be left with one weekend to get in one more 8+ mile run before my first time ever running 13.1 miles.

My longest run to date was 8 miles, in which I embarked on this past saturday.

Truth is, I don’t think I am ready. It’s hard to admit that out loud.

I mean, I know I could probably sign up for it and do it and possibly do okay.

I think my major struggle is that I can’t find another half marathon in this area until the end of August or September. It’s the feeling that I am missing my opportunity to run it now.

What are your thoughts on running in a race you are so close to being ready for, but just need a tad more time.

How about running a marathon without ever actually running a half-marathon?

I appreciate your thoughts on this subject. I am just feeling a little down that the reality of it is that I will probably not run in the half-marathon race, because I would hate to do it unprepared possibly have a bad experience.

But the good news is that I feel good about running longer distances now. I am excited about the possiblities of hitting the double digits. And I am mentally ready to do it.

What do you think? Should I sit this one out?


19 thoughts on “So close…

  1. thats a tough one!
    i mean, u can try. and not care about the pace and just do it for the sake of doing it. also to say that you have done one before the marathon.
    i dont think its a big deal running the full without running a half.

    i think this question is more of a mental question. if u think u can run 10 miles, then u can do it. just take lots of walking breaks and run it just to finish. even it if takes u 3 hours.

    but if u r gonna stress out about it, then running it will be worse for u than not running it.

  2. I think your long distance training is more important than squeezing in a half. I would hate to see you risk an injury and mess up your marathon plans due to being undertrained.

  3. I would talk to your coach first… one of the great things about TNT is the coaches and Brad knows his stuff! I would probably go ahead and run it… using it as a EASY LSD run, have fun and take your time… but I would check it out with Brad first… you are injury free right now and want to stay that way! You never know….

  4. I’ll tell you what I did a few months ago but I’ll also tell you that I’m not sure what I did was the most wise choice! After getting into running at the beginning of the year, I signed up for an half in April. Things were going very well for me and I was psyched. There was a half in the town I live in in March. I don’t think I was ready but the day before the prices went up, I signed up. The week before the half, I ran my longest distance up to that point, a 15K race (I’d done an 8 and 8.5 before it). The half went great for me and I went in with the mindset that I just wanted to finish. I ended up feeling great and ran the whole thing, but I pushed myself. Everyone might not have the luck I did, but I was glad I did it and figured I would have regretted it if I hadn’t tried. But, I’ve also learned a lot about running since then and realize it wasn’t a smart choice…to push too much too soon, could have injured myself and been out for a long time.

  5. I think as long as you go into the race with realistic expectations – knowing that you might be a tad unprepared but simply participating for the experience – you’ll be fine and could have a really good time. I don’t think running in a half unprepared will kill you – you have the common sense to stop and walk if/when you need to. There is really no need to “race” this distance, but as you said, it would be nice to run a half and sort of mentally prepare yourself for the full. That said, if you think it will kill your motivation or confidence if you don’t excell at the half than I would pass on it. No need to stress yourself out unnecessarily, you know? One thing you can do is take a look at a half marathon training plan and see how what you’ve been doing for the past two months compares (you may be more ready than you think – I ran my 1st half with only a single 10 mile run under my belt and it was great!).

  6. Definitely follow your instincts girl!

    The stress will definitely affect your performance and just your mental prepared-ness of the whole situation.

    Listen to your gut and you will make the right choice! can’t wait to read about it!!

  7. I agree with Olivia – as long as you have the right mindset and expectations, I think it might be a good chance to get some racing experience in. But I would definitely talk to your coach about it. I think for me, running a half marathon was a really humbling experience, and one that I would definitely want to have before running a marathon.

  8. Does it have to be an official race? Why not compromise and get some friends together on your team and do the distance when you’re ready? Make it special by marking a route in a different city and setting up stations or looping your vehicle…just a thought.

  9. Hey, I recently found your blog and am excited to follow your journey!

    To give you my point of view: I have not run a marathon yet, but have run 2 half marathons this year (my first one ever being on Valentines Day). Before doing HM training, I had never run much further than a 5K (though I had run a few of those since doing a Couch to 5K program in the fall of 2008).

    All that to say, I really think you should listen to your gut here. There is a big difference between running 8 miles and 13 miles, especially when you are first delving into double digit runs. I’m not claiming to be an expert and there are some who may feel differently, but expecially since you are training for the full, you don’t want to do anything to jeopardize that! I’m not sure about the TNT program, but a lot of programs follow the rule of thumb not to increase your total weekly mileage by more than 10% as well…

    I have had quite a few friends to run the full without ever having “formally” done a half and have crossed the finish line(s) smiling, so I think you will be fine. Good luck with all of your running and training and with your decision!

  10. Judging from your progress lately, you probably could run the half in July. Though strictly for the point of completion. Mentally I think you can do it. Physically it might not be the wisest idea, and personally, I prefer to only race when I think I have something to achieve.

    If I were you, I’d probably not do the half in July, but seriously consider one later on in your training like you mentioned. At that point you’ll be well past being able to run the half distance and can maybe even be a bit competitive about it. Make sense?

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with running a full without running a half before. It’s just a race afterall, and you should be well prepared for it.

  11. The decision is yours alone. I think a lot of very wise ladies are telling you to listen to your gut, and that’s pretty much what I was going to tell you, too :). I was pretty pooped after my first (and only, haha!) half and I was sufficiently trained for it. If you think you can do it, by all means, try. There’s no harm in trying, if you’re listening to your body. But remember that pushing yourself too hard too fast can also result in injury. I know I would be upset if I did the half and ended up injured, derailed from my marathon training or took me out of training all together.
    Just food for thought. Good luck with your decision!

  12. I agree with all the above posters….as long as you go in with the right mindset – IE, do the race for the experience, do the race for a training run, do the race just to see what it feels like – it will be fine. DON’T do the race to actually race it.

    Good luck with whatever youd decide…and for what it’s worth, I think you can definitely do a full marathon without doing a half-marathon first.

  13. I’m going to throw in my two cents, but like many above have said, the choice is yours and yours alone. Do what you feel best.

    Don’t stress yourself out. The race that matters, that you’re taking this journey for, is the marathon. You will get there. You will run 13 miles, 16 miles, 20 miles…you will shock and amaze yourself! You don’t need to rush the process or prove you can run 13.1 miles by July 10th.

    Ingrid was right when she said to talk to your TNT coach…they honestly know best!

    Try and enjoy the journey and let go of the worries…it will all pay off on marathon day!

  14. The plus side to running the race would be knowing that you can finish that many miles and feel even more pumped up for your marathon. The down side to running the race is if you don’t do so hot when you are running it. Then you might get discouraged and feel like you are starting all over with your training.

    I think you should just continue training and not rush things too much! You are already kicking butt and taking names! I wish I were as good at running as you are!

  15. You have to do what you think it’s right.

    For me personally I would stick to my program. I’m not confident enough to run 13 miles when my longest would have been 8 but that’s me and luckily we are all the same. Maybe you could consult your coach about it, ask him/her what he/she thinks.

  16. I was the same as you as I really wanted to sign up for a half in Sept to see if I could PB…my coach asked why would I do that? I have to add in some taper before and after…I might get injured etc. so I am not doing any races except for my full in Oct.
    (save me some $ on race fees as well).

  17. Oh gosh that’s tough. Everyone is so different! My body would not be able to handle adding on another 5 miles come race day. I would injure something for sure. Do I think you can run a marathon before running a half? Certainly. I only had one 5K under my belt before I started training for a half. I personally don’t think that race experience has anything to do with training (just my opinion). It’s totally up to you but since your marathon is your end goal, my advice if you’re asking, would be to focus on that.

  18. I think that you’d be ok. Even if you decided to run 10 miles and walk/run the last three, you would value the experience. I raced many half marathons before my marathon, and I am very glad that I did–it gives you a way to gauge how you feel at that mid-way mark.

    Let me know what you decide!

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