Follow-up thoughts on the 2011 Half at the Hamptons results

Posted: February 21, 2011 in Uncategorized
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Above are the top ten finishers from yesterday’s half (click for a better look); full race results are posted on Coolrunning.

Here’s the local paper’s write-up on the event- both the male and female course records fell, I don’t think I mentioned that in my original report. I got mentioned as the “top local finisher,” which is kind of cool.

Additionally, having never run a road 10k in my life, my 35:48 through the 6.2 mile mark (according to my Garmin) is actually a PR for that distance. I’ve run a couple trail 10ks, but never finished faster than 36:31. So the race was actually a double PR…very cool.

Given the amount of thought that I put into this race going into it, it only makes sense to put a similar effort into the interpretation of its results.

I am obviously very pleased with the PR. Given that the race was Boston prep, I figured it made sense to do a little research into half marathon to marathon conversion times. According to the brilliant minds behind the Letsrun forums, the standard is to double your half marathon time and add ten minutes. That gives me a 2:43:30 approximation. Which sounds scary fast.

The McMillan Running Calculator goes much, much further in-depth. Below are the equivalent efforts for a 1:16:44 half, or “what would be an equivalent race time at one race distance based on your recent race time at another distance.”

That lists a 2:41:50 marathon. Again, that sounds horribly fast compared to my 3:06 marathon debut. I ran that post-last year’s 1:17:56 half, for which I’m sure my marathon equivalent time would have been mid-2:40s, so I suppose that goes to show that naivety and the lack of a race strategy can trump even the most scientific race calculator.

To further investigate the above claims, I looked up the four people who beat me at the Half at the Hamptons in 2010 in the 2010 Boston Marathon results. Three of them ran it. Here’s how they fared (half time in parentheses):

Guy #1: (1:14:33) 3:08:15

Guy #3: (1:15:33) 2:36:44

Guy #4: (1:16:44) 2:58:16

Those are some incredibly widely-different results. I think that goes to show that the conversion process can be very individual. My plan is still to aim for sub-2:50, and hope that I learned something the first time around.

I have to admit that it seems almost wrong to be running this fast these days. I sort of danced around exact numbers in my pre-race post, but here are some facts: I ran a total of three times in the 13 days prior to this half marathon, for a total of about 27 miles. All three of those efforts took place in the six days prior to the race (I ran on Monday, Thursday and Friday). To be honest, I also went Nordic skiing twice in those 13 days, although my lack of skills in that sport prevents me from referring to those efforts as a cardio workout.

Sadly, those 27 miles weren’t a planned part of the greatest taper ever, either; it just reflects my far too sporadic training methods these days. I haven’t topped 40 miles a week since the 100k. I don’t necessarily have a problem with those numbers, because running is only one of the focuses in my life right now. But I can’t help but wonder: What if I was doing 70-80 miles a week like I’d like to? What half marathon times would I be running then?

It’s something to think about, certainly. Which is why I’m going to post daily workouts on here, for that greater sense of accountability. But that starts tomorrow; today’s a rest day.

  1. Wow, smoking race yesterday! That realm of the unknown does make things interesting. You’ve got a lot of talent, look forward to seeing what you can do in the future. Keep up the good work.

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