Last weekend I finished my 12 mile dress rehearsal run for the NYC Half marathon, which is - gulp - 18 days away. It went so well, just like my 20 mile dress rehearsal for the marathon. That makes me a little nervous, because I think my 20 miler went significantly better than my actual marathon, and so I'm a little worried that the 12 miler might not be indicative of how I can actually perform on race day. I finished 12.13 miles in 2 hours and 12 minutes, so a 10:53 average pace. I did feel like I could have pushed a little harder at the end, but the people I was with were struggling, so I hung back to get them through. That put me at just over 50 miles (53.65, to be exact) for the month of February. I'd like to see my monthly mileage get up to 60 by the summer.
So... pacing. I have done all of my long runs under an 11:00/mile pace, which according to the Runner's World pace calculator for my best 4 mile time (40.13) should be more like my tempo run pace, and my long runs should be closer to 12 minute miles. The thing is, I feel like that's my comfortable speed. When I get a chance to do speedwork, those paces are more appropriately on target, but should I be doing my long runs slower? And what if I don't want to? On the plus side, my predicted finish time for the half, according to the pace thingey is in the neighborhood of 2:21! My reach goal is to finish under 2:20. I know I can get under 2:25, and my totally-doable-no-worries goal is to be under 2:30.
And racing. I'm doing the Coogans 5K with NYRR on Sunday and am starting to get really excited. I would love to finish under 30:00 for a 5k (for the first time ever) but really, I'm just looking to get a sense of how I feel pushing myself without having anything hurt. I know those hills pretty well, and the last time I did this race, I finished in 42:06, so at the very least I'll be looking at setting the PR bar just a bit higher for myself. And if I don't make that sub-30, I'll be back out on the track in April and working on some speedwork to get there.