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Negative Splitting a Long Run

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Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  ounce on Tue Dec 13, 2011 2:52 pm

This training cycle, I've been executing an untraditional long run method of running the last half of the run at a faster pace. I've wanted to get my body conditioned not to slow down during the marathon.

So far, I'm healthy and except for one long run, I've been able to do negative splits. Sometimes it's 4 seconds per mile and sometimes (including a 18 mile long run) it's 15-20 seconds per mile. Usually, I can tell by my heart rate if I'm going faster.

Lately my long run pace is about MP + 10-25 seconds/mile. Am I in a state of blissful irresponsibility? Thanks for your time.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:23 pm

No, I use that method for most of my long runs. You're fine!
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  Diego on Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:24 pm

Ounce, remind me what your marathon times have been. Once you get to 4 hour or more, the marathon pace and long run pace are not that different.

So I think you are doing fine and agree with running the last miles a bit faster.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:51 pm

Always done it. Usually the last 1/4-1/3 of my miles are significantly faster than the first ones.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  John Kilpatrick on Tue Dec 13, 2011 11:44 pm

@Mike MacLellan wrote:Always done it. Usually the last 1/4-1/3 of my miles are significantly faster than the first ones.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  ounce on Wed Dec 14, 2011 10:04 am

Thanks for the replies. Diego, I have been running 6 hour marathons (13:45 pace).

This year, my target pace for Houston is 13 minute miles. Last year, I finished at 14 minute miles. Last year, Hal told me that I would be 'racing' a long run if I ran it too close to MP.

I'm in better shape this year (lost 30 pounds, lots of cross training), so I can run faster. I'd like to be able to run 20 miles at a 13 pace, then see if I can increase the speed a bit for the remaining 10K. Guess I'll find out in a month. Thanks again.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  Seth Harrison on Wed Dec 14, 2011 3:01 pm

Ounce, a fast finish at the end of a long run for some of your long
runs, whether a faster second half, or a 3/1 format, is a staple of
marathon training, so you're definitely on the right track. Keep in mind that you don't need to, and probably don't want to do all your long runs like that. Long runs at LSD pace also have a place in the cycle, but as you've seen from the responses, long runs with fast finishes, resulting in negative splits, are something that we all do at some point in a training cycle. In most cases, it's usually towards the end, during the sharpening period of the cycle.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  Jerry on Wed Dec 14, 2011 6:39 pm

Most of my LSD turned out to be sort of negative split not really on purpose, but because of my slow warm up and fatigue from "my high" mileage. I like it.
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  ounce on Fri Dec 16, 2011 5:49 pm

I ran 16 miles this morning. Weather was breezy and 56 degrees. My goal was to negative split, to run the first half as close to 65% (130 bpm) of max HR (200 bpm) and see what pace that is, and to not get hurt. Hit all 3 targets. I felt like I could've run another 2 or 3 miles.

I think my MP for Houston should still be 13 min/mile for 20 miles, then do as I feel for the last 10K. But if these were someone else's figures, I'd say that person could reduce the 13 to a faster figure. Personally, I'm not ready to make that decision since my previous marathons were 13:45/mile or slower. Anyway, the splits are below. My last 20 miler is next Friday. I would appreciate any thoughts.

first 8 mile average 13:11 at 65%, second 8 at 12:23 at 74%, overall at 12:47 pace

1 12:55 128

2 12:54 129

3 13:14 130

4 13:26 129

5 13:26 128

6 13:23 128

7 13:21 128

8 12:47 130

9 12:52 136

10 12:54 135

11 12:30 139

12 12:32 141

13 12:14 146

14 12:14 149

15 11:53 153

16 11:43 156
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Re: Negative Splitting a Long Run

Post  Ben Z on Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:29 pm

All I want to add to this thread is that once you are below about 4 hours for a marathon there is not much point to running your long runs at 15-30 seconds/mile slower than goal MP I believe unless you do the entire long run (and I mean long, say 20-24 miles) at this pace.

Otherwise you are better off running the first 1/2 to 3/4 at MP + 60-120 sec/mile and finishing up at or below MP for the second half or last quarter.
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