It is so appropriate that this week's Take It and Run (TIaRT) topic is the half marathon. I am running a half marathon on Sunday that I trained pretty hard for. I didn't run miles and miles (only about twenty miles a week), but I think I trained pretty smart adding tempo runs and speedwork.
What I like best about half marathons is the fact that it is long enough to feel like I have really accomplished something that most people would not or could not do. I feel proud just finishing it. I love getting comments like, "you ran 13.1 miles..... in a ROW?" On the flip side, it doesn't overtake your life while training for it. The long runs are a couple of hours on the weekend and some hour-long runs or shorter mid-week. I don't have to pay a babysitter, my husband still has a wife and I feel like my life is not really affected negatively.
I have only run one half marathon and it was hard. I actually ran a marathon before running a half. During my marathon training there was only one half marathon that I could have done. The La Jolla Half Marathon was in April and we considered it. We decided against it for two reasons 1) it is difficult and hilly and none of us wanted to get injured and 2) it is difficult and hilly and none of us wanted to lose our confidence. When I ran the AFC in August, I think I was relying a lot on my residual fitness from the marathon. The Carlsbad this weekend is a race I trained specifically for and I am looking forward to it.
Since I am relatively new to this distance (although I am pretty sure it will be my favorite in the long run), I don't have a ton of advice. I will share my approach to Sunday's race: train smart and try to have fun. In the end, it isn't worth it if I don't enjoy myself.*
*I have been sort of obsessing over my sub-two-hour goal and I am trying to focus these last days on having fun. I need to trust in my fitness and training... :-)