I’ve been looking back at my previous runs, especially the 10k and longer runs and noticed that I seem to make a habit of going off slowly for a few miles before speeding up around halfway and towards the end. I’m not sure how much of a conscious decision this has been. I think it’s more to do with just being wary when I start running of aggravating an existing niggle or causing a new one. After I’ve got going and warmed up it always seems a lot easier to increase the pace without feeling that I’m doing myself any harm.
This being the case, it was interesting to read earlier today about negative splits. This is where you run the second half of a run slower than the first. Unlike in my case, this is a specific strategy that is often recommended, especially for longer distances. It seems to work for me. I started off quite slowly in the Birmingham half marathon in October, despite the urge to fly off at the start, and it really helped me towards the end.
I’m pleased I’ve accidentally adopted a recommended running strategy and I’ll be trying to plan negative splits into my 10k and longer runs over the next couple of months. I’ll also need to work out how this will impact on the pace I aim for in the Marathon. Taking it too easy at the beginning will certainly put paid to any idea of a sub 4 hour run, but might be the difference between finishing strongly or barely dragging myself over the finish line.