The Positive of Negative Splits

For years, my marathon training plan seemed to have no real purpose except to make sure I ran a certain amount of miles each week.  So this year I bought a plan from Runner’s World with a little bit of skepticism.  I could not understand how it could be dramatically different than what I have been doing, which was running, but to my surprise, it was different.

Every day over the 16 weeks had a purpose.  The plan had easy runs, tempo runs, long slow runs, Yasso’s, strides, fast finishes, hills and more.  It also had set paces during these runs.  Many of the runs were slower than I would have expected, especially when the goal was to get faster, but I decided to trust the training plan.  I found out later that I would have plenty of speed workouts to make up the difference.

One of my new techniques that the plan taught me was the negative split.  This method of running is where you run the first half of the race slower than the second half.  I have been using it in many of my training runs.  I also have tested this technique during the Martha’s Vineyard 20 Miler and Hyannis ½ marathon with good results.

I plan to run Boston using a negative split.  It seems a little overwhelming based on previous marathons.  The second half of the marathon has been where I traditionally get tired, and a couple of times have hit the wall.  I will have to trust my training and listen to what my body is telling me throughout the run.

It looks like many of you who have been supporting me in my efforts to raise money for Dana-Farber and the Claudia Adams Barr Cancer Research program has also embraced the negative split.  This year’s fundraising started slow.  I was getting a little concerned around the half-way point that I might not even reach my minimum required amount.  Well, we have had a monstrous negative split and during the past 7 days, you have donated almost $2,000.  This has pushed me over my goal of $6,000 and looks like I may have over $7,000 if the Company Matching Gifts come in by the marathon.

Thank you!!

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3 comments

  1. imarunner2012

    I find it hard to follow any plan. Life seems to keep getting in the way! About all I’m able to do is keep my weekly mileage building and do some speed work, usually a local 5K. I’m glad to hear that the plan worked. I’ve always been a little skeptical of buying a plan. My buddy has been using a Hal Higdon plan and it seems to be working for him. But life has gotten in the way with him also and he’s had to modify the plan here and there.
    Have great Marathon. I’m running for Children’s Hospital Boston this year. Cannot wait!

  2. Liz Pearson

    Hi Patrick,

    I’ll see you on Sunday at the pasta dinner. Just wanted to wish you a good run on Monday and we will be looking for you at mile 25! God Speed!

    Liz

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