Running a Race – Start off Slow

For new runners looking for advice on keeping a pace to finish their race, my advice is typical of most experienced runners, start off slow.

Running a race and keeping your race pace should be secondary to avoiding injury and finishing the race. So, whether your running an upcoming Turkey Trot 5k or a winter 10 milers, the advice doesn’t change, start off slow.

The first benefit may not be something you thought of. Considering the time of year, late fall, early winter, almost any race you start will be in whether that can be from chilly to downright cold. Cold weather makes road racing tough because it is tough for you to get a good warm-up in before your road race. If you are running a 10k, but the temperature outside is near freezing, chances are you will spend a few extra minutes in your warm car or a nearby gym before getting out to the starting line. By starting off slow, you will give your body a chance to warm up, thereby reducing the chance for an injury.

Even though you may be off your targeted running race pace, starting off slow will also keep your adrenaline in check. Chances are, you are very anxious about the start of the race. So, keeping your pace down may be difficult. Often times, when I tell someone to start off slow, they do. Or, at least they think they are starting off slow. However, when they hit the first mile marker, they find that they are on pace or slightly ahead of race pace. Starting off slow kept that extra energy in check to avoid burnout later in the race.

Running Splits and Negative Splits for Road Racing

As you know, running a race is all about maintaining your pace. Most runners strive to maintain a steady pace throughout a race. Other runners develop strategies for changing their pace during certain parts of their race. In this post, we’ll discuss what a negative split is and how it affects your running performance.

A negative split is when you run your race at a faster pace in the second half of the race. It can be broken down into the first half and second half of the race. Or, it can be further subdivided.

If you divide the race evenly into halves, a simple negative split is to run the second half faster than the first. For example, if you run a marathon in exactly 4 hours, and you reach the half marathon at 2:01, you have successfully run a negative split. That is, the second half of the marathon was run in 1:59.

You can further subdivide your race by miles or kilometers. For example, if you are running a 10 mile race and average the first 8 miles with a 7 minute per mile pace, you can run a negative pace the final two miles. To do so, pick up the pace and strive for 6:45 miles.

Running negative splits is very tough. Most runners who haven’t trained for this usually start the first half of a race too fast for their fitness level. The result is that the second half of the race is slower than the first half. With the right amount of training and pace preparation, you should be able to achieve negative splits in your next race.

Determine your Running Race Pace Using a Pace Chart

A pace chart is a very important tool for runners who plan on attempting a road race. Whether it is a 5k, 10k, 10 miler or marathon, a pace chart is a key tool in race planning.

There are many aspects to race planning. Aside from the obvious of training, race registration, preparing meals, preparing clothes and more, you must have your target race pace. The target race pace is what your pace goal is for the race.

Most runners strive for even splits during their race. What this means is that you run an even, steady, pace for the entire race. If your race pace is 10 minutes per mile for 5 miles, then the finish time would be 50 minutes. Even splits are something that most runners strive for.

Using a pace chart to determine your race pace is very easy. To begin, find your target race distance on the chart. Let’s assume you plan to run a 10k road race. Next, you need to decide if you want to track your pace in miles or kilometers. If your race is in the United States, chances are the markers will be set a 1 mile intervals. Elsewhere, the markers will be at each kilometer.

Next, refer to your training runs to find a challenging pace for the target distance. You’ll know if the goal is reasonable by looking at the projected finish time on the pace chart.

Use the pace chart on running pace calculator for assistance.

What is a Running Pace Calculator

A running pace calculator is a tool for calculating a your pace to run or race. But, let’s take a look at what “pace” really is.

There are many meanings of the word pace. The simplest is that a pace is a single step. However, for running marathons, a pace is more than just a step. Another meaning is your manner of stepping, such as your gait. However, this isn’t on trace for use in a running pace calculator.

A closer meaning of pace for running is your rate of movement. Or, more specifically, the measurement of the rate of movement. So, your running pace is the rate, or speed, of your movement over a measured distance.

More simply, pace is how long it takes you to run over a distance. Typically, on runningpacecalculator.com, pace is how fast you run over a measure mile or kilometer in minutes and seconds.

The running pace calculator will take any given run and calculate your consistent pace for a kilometer or miles.