Tuesday, April 3, 2012

My Hollywood Half Marathon Strategy | This is a Test - Beeeeeep

Hollywood Half is this weekend. 

I am using the Hollywood Half as a big test of some new race day strategies:

All of this has been tested over and over on my training runs - but my body takes on a new form on race day - so, this might be interesting...

1.  New Fueling.  Since the LA Marathon - I have been using most of my runs to rest our my new, fruit based fueling for Energy.  I call them my "little poopie packets" - they are made with dark chocolate powder, blueberries, dates and oatmeal.   So far no stomach discomfort, so I think they are safe to bring with me for this race.  It goes without saying, I am getting REAL tired of the porta-potty stops during a race. 

2.  Continue using my Heed Electrolyte capsules.  This race - I will take 2, instead of 1.  I anticipate I will get very sweaty in this race. 

3.  I will have a back-up energy source with me, Clif Blok shots, just in case my "packets" don't help.  I will know by Mile 6 or 7 if the packets aren't doing me any good.  This gives me enough time to regroup. 

Considering all is well, and I feel good that morning - my strategy is this:

1.  I will start at a 8:45 split and work to get into my pace by Mile 3.  At Mile 3-4, I will speed it up to a 8:15-30ish pace and work to keep it there until Mile 11, as the course is relatively level.  Mile 1 & 2 are always my most difficult miles.  If I can shut up my self-doubting brain, then I will be pretty relaxed by Mile 3. 

Mile 11 - This is where the incline begins until Mile 12.5 - so it will be "slay the dragon" time and keep the intensity up that hill until it crests. 

The last .6 of a mile is relatively level, so I will see if I have anything less to push me into a sprint.  I will do this, not for a time but to keep training my legs to "fire the pistons" when I am fatigued.   In addition, to get my brain to PUSH and DIG when I am my most tired. 

PUSHING and DIGGING is something I must re-teach myself.  I have lost that ability in 2012, and only the last part of last week, did I feel it start to come back.  I have been working hard on using Mantra's on my runs.  So far, so okay. 

Hollywood Half is my testing ground for my mind and body.  

I will not judge my performance based on my Finish Time, but how I felt during the race.

I am not at my fitness peak (as I was in Oct/Nov/Dec), I cannot expect a lot from myself physically.  A PR won't be happening.  My PR is 1:44 (Snow Canyon, UT).  My second best time is 1:53 (Surf City, CA).

Will be back to peak fitness soon.  

Questions I will ask myself at the Finish:  Did I push hard enough?  Did I fuel correctly?  Did I PUSH and DIG when needed or let my mind convince me I couldn't do it.

(c) C. Ragsdale 2011-12
Run F.A.B.,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
Running Coach, Certified Sports Nutritionist & Public Speaker
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