The most common question runners get asked is “Have you done a marathon?” or “Are you planning on doing a marathon?” and as a runner who mainly races 5 and 10k this question frustrates me. No one is impressed by my 10k PB (not just because it’s not very good!) because it’s not a marathon. The problem with running a marathon is training for one and racing a marathon takes a lot of commitment, in terms of your running year.
I think the half marathon might be the solution to this (click here for a Half Marathon PB!), you see it’s an achievable distance for all runners and the best part is that our non-running friends know exactly what a half marathon is! They also know it’s pretty hard so are impressed by our achievement… but, what about the running related reasons half marathons are great?
Firstly – the pace is slow enough that it doesn’t hurt immediately. Running a 5k is very uncomfortable for 85-90% of the race, but the first half of a half marathon should feel mainly comfortable, this means you can enjoy the race.
Secondly – you don’t get that horrible last 5 miles like you do in a marathon, sure the end of a half marathon is difficult but it’s not that horrible wall hitting nasty run out of glycogen feeling at the end of a marathon.
Thirdly – the pace isn’t that slow! At least, I’m always surprised how fast ‘half marathon pace’ actually is in comparison to my 10k pace, it makes me feel quite good about myself.
Smashing your half marathon PB is one of the most satisfying things to do in running. If you want a custom half marathon training plan you can get one here.