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Stand alone Marathon times - 1st half versus 2nd half

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Just curious about those who've done stand alone Marathons, what was your first half time versus 2nd half?

My only one I had a 1:50 first half and 2hr second half.

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Only one for me with a 1.22 first half and 1.34 second half. Hardest last 10km of my life (after over pacing of course) and longest recovery period. 

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Majority (5) of mine when trying to go as fast as possible (all sub 3.1/2 hr) where go out and fade in the back end. This was because I worked on the run the best possible and have nothing left.

Last one was with pacers was controlled for 4hr and evenly split. Just felt clinical

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My last serious standalone marathon in 2010. (Every one since has had a 3.8km shampoo and 180km blow dry to warm up.)

20100704_GCM_results.jpg

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I have only run one back in 2004 which I ended up actually winning! 

1:25:39 first 21.1km,  1:29:53 second 21.1km = 2:55:32

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5 minutes ago, Tyno said:

First mara was my best.

1:52:13/3:40.42

Negative split?  I expected FB to come on and be the only one to have done that.. (in every run he's ever done... )

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I have done 7 standalone and my fastest (and easiest) was a tiny negative split. My 10km splits were all within about a min and a half of each other.

Now whenever I run one, I try and pace it at what I think will be a pace I can maintain. Going out fast really doesn't work for me.

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My only good one I slightly negatively split.

but it was basically 5min ks, but before Garmin’s and gps. 

The old cities marathon from Sydney to Blacktown. I ran to parramatta with big Chris then paced my way from there for a 3.29 and change 

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The only one I've done was negative split, but I was trying to get someone through on a time they were chasing, and when they finally gave up, I ran hard.  1:40ish / 1:28ish

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Most people who run marathon PBs run first and second half within 60-90sec. More than that suggests you either started too hard or too easy.

My PB was 75:36 / 76:34

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2nd mara had no 1/2 split, but at 20 km, I was 1:55.13, so lets say ~2:01 at 21.1

4:23.34 at the end.

I seriously contemplated catching a tram back from St Kilda that day :D

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Keep em coming, I'll post something tomorrow if work allows me some time............

 

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If you run enough marathons it's easy to see the same trend as the above replies. Your good/fastest races will be the ones that are most evenly paced. This requires a strong final 10km. 

If there is a significant discrepancy between the first and second half, it almost always means one of three things:

  1. Went out too fast.
  2. Insufficient training.
  3. 1 & 2.

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5 minutes ago, Paul Every said:

If you run enough marathons it's easy to see the same trend as the above replies. Your good/fastest races will be the ones that are most evenly paced. This requires a strong final 10km. 

If there is a significant discrepancy between the first and second half, it almost always means one of three things:

  1. Went out too fast.
  2. Insufficient training.
  3. 1 & 2.

In my one and only so far, I was probably guilty of all those but will add:

4.  On the back of Tenby LCW B)

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21 minutes ago, FatPom said:

In my one and only so far, I was probably guilty of all those but will add:

4.  On the back of Tenby LCW B)

5. Illness

6. Injury

7. Hangover

8. Still drunk

 

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6 hours ago, CEM said:

Most people who run marathon PBs run first and second half within 60-90sec. More than that suggests you either started too hard or too easy.

My PB was 75:36 / 76:34

It also depends on the courses topography. I don't think even splits are actually even splits in my local marathon.

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9 hours ago, Paul Every said:

5. Illness

6. Injury

7. Hangover

8. Still drunk

 

9. 180km bike race the day before.

Edited by Ex-Hasbeen

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What CEM said. When I was running marathons and fun runs back in the 80's and early 90's, the group I trained with had some experienced marathon runners who preached the even paced is the best pace method for running a marathon. I got a bit excited in my first marathon and blew up big time in the second half. From memory the first half was 1.31 and second half 2.15. I got better at managing my pacing over 10 more marathons over a 9 year period.  

I think about it now, we only had a watch to manage our pacing. No HRM's, no garmins, no stride power meters and no Strava uploads afterwards. How did we even manage to finish!!!! 

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It's funny, even with a GPS I still tend to pace marathons on 10km split times. I have an idea of what time I should be running the 10kms in and look at the time at every 10kms and at the half way mark and adjust accordingly.

I think I have had GPS misread so many times that I just don't trust it anymore.

With the GPS, I set it to 3km laps and if I think it is accurate, adjust accordingly. Any less that 3km laps and i am messing around with my pace way too much for me.

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I always use the km markers on course, it is ultra important when I pace at gold coast marathon.  Last year at the marathong my splits looked all over the shop but with all the buildings going through surfers its hard to know whether the watch is reading right.  As it was we went through halfway in 1:29:09 and finished in 2:59:31 but I walked most of the last 500m encouraging people home who had fallen off the back.

 

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Gold Coast marathon 2016

1.27.37 / 1.27.25

I ran a big negative split in my last IM marathon in Port last year, which would suggest I probably left too much in the tank

1.38.21 / 1.34.52

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Sorry I never got back to you guys on this but I can pretty much forget where I was going with this thought process.

In terms of Sydney Marathon in 3.x weeks

  • My Wife's injured and not racing (first reason for doing it)
  • I'm still fat
  • I'm undertrained
  • I still want the finish time to start with a 3.............
  • My friend doing his first wants the finish time to start with a 3.............(2nd reason for doing it)

 

 So do "you" do a 1:59 first half 1:59 second half 

OR

Bank some time in the first half and use grit and determination in the second?

 

The first option has you walking the tightrope with no room for error.

I personally favour the second but how much time to bank?!!

 

Now don't get me wrong, I'll get the result I've trained for but I've had some varying health issues with my back and guts and don't really have any gauge on where my pace is at.

I did do a painful 1:45 Sydney Half in May (90s fade)

and an off road half 3 weeks ago in 1:53 (even split)

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Banking does not work. Your best result will be even spilts or slight negative. If you can’t get your time on even splits then banking wouldn’t have helped. Just be prepared to hurt in the last 10kms whatever you do.

That’s my 10 cents

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On 23/08/2018 at 12:00 PM, Naut said:

Banking does not work. Your best result will be even spilts or slight negative. If you can’t get your time on even splits then banking wouldn’t have helped. Just be prepared to hurt in the last 10kms whatever you do.

That’s my 10 cents

That might depend on the course. I ran a marathon 6wks ago with 560mtrs of elevation but that vast majority was in the second half.

Last year I ran the same marathon ( slightly cooler temp) and my split was:

2:15/3:00

This year my split was 

2:03/2:23

So not a negative split but much faster after using a ‘bank pace’ in the first half, knowing what was coming up.  Not sure if that would work for a flat course but wouldn’t think so.

 

Edited by FatPom

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I'm a banker... not massively but when I managed Sydney in 2:57:XX I was hugely glad in the last 5k that I had about 5s/km banked from the first 35...

It's probably not the best way to do it but it worked that one time for me!

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Thanks for the input.

As others have said earlier in the thread and even pace race will always be your fastest, there's plenty of evidence supporting that.

The caveat to that is most people have an idea of what pace they can maintain.

I'm kind of wanting to put the cart before the horse by choosing a finish time first 🤣

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10 hours ago, nealo said:

and an off road half 3 weeks ago in 1:53 (even split)

From that, your ~1:59 strategy seems to be the best shot.

You gotta be relaxed early.

You're still going to have to suck it up for the last 7-10 km I reckon.

The other thing is to be realistic. 3:5X is a fine goal, but 4:0X isn't a bad thing, especially for your mate's first.

 

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Personally, I'd bank 2 or 3 minutes in the first half, and then drop back to somewhere between that pace & 4hr pace. That way you have a couple minutes up your sleeve toward the end in case of issues like "number twos" blisters, or just dead from being on your feet that long. It isn't always exhaustion that makes you drop the pace at the end of 4 hours running.

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Nealo, i'm also going to finish with a 3.xx, and it will be 3.5x, most likely 3.58

I will run with the 4hr pacer, until (and assuming i can keep up), we come under the bridge, then may try and gain a minute.

My last 1/2 and full i used the pacer and found it great, just keep the elastic tight and takes the thinking out of the race. Also gives motivation when required to run back up to the pacer.

Yes clinical but potentially successful method

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1 hour ago, rory-dognz said:

Nealo, i'm also going to finish with a 3.xx, and it will be 3.5x, most likely 3.58

I will run with the 4hr pacer, until (and assuming i can keep up), we come under the bridge, then may try and gain a minute.

My last 1/2 and full i used the pacer and found it great, just keep the elastic tight and takes the thinking out of the race. Also gives motivation when required to run back up to the pacer.

Yes clinical but potentially successful method

that works when you've got a good pacer... sometimes they suck (RBR has a recent story about that) and have no idea how to actually "pace". At GC there was one who was bouncing around a bit and that hurts people.

 

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1 hour ago, nealo said:

Thanks for the input.

As others have said earlier in the thread and even pace race will always be your fastest, there's plenty of evidence supporting that.

The caveat to that is most people have an idea of what pace they can maintain.

I'm kind of wanting to put the cart before the horse by choosing a finish time first 🤣

See that's the thing, if we agree that under normal circumstances on a relatively flat course, even splitting is the fastest possible way to go then banking doesn't really exist. Either you have the fitness to run your desired pace or you don't. Banking just means you will miss by more.

This is just my opinion having run a few of these now. I have learnt a lot of lessons the hard way.

 

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