Half marathons are tricky (for me). It’s a distance that is long enough to test endurance, but short enough to cause trouble. You can easily sprint out of the gates at a faster than comfortable pace and find yourself at mile 10 “gassed” and done.

But that’s the beauty of it.

It’s just long enough that running a 10k speed will leave you empty and running a marathon pace will leave too much in the tank. It’s walking that fine line of pushing your endurance with a touch of speed (and some brass to run aggressive).

This weekend, I’ll be running the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon in Pasadena. My last half marathon was in April of 2012 and I set a PR dressed as a bunny. Since I won’t be rocking ears this weekend it leads me to my next question:

How fast will I go?

My half PR is 1:50 on a hilly San Francisco course. Pasadena is not flat, but (based on the elevation chart) it looks manageable to hit a new PR. 1:45 would be a good goal. That would be running 10 miles 30 seconds faster. Seems logical.



I’m going to run with a pacer for the first time. I usually use them as a self-checking gauge to see how I’m doing on race day. I’ll start between two of them with my first goal leading and my back-up following. Keep the first one in sight and hope you don’t get passed by Plan B. For this event, I’ll take advantage of the 1:45 pace group allowing me to keep my “speedy temptations” reeled in.

I’ll be utilizing the course bands provided by RNR and will run without ear buds. This will also allow me to engage in conversations with the pace group and listen to any advice or instructions the pace leader has.

1:45, here we come.

I’ll be taking a ton of photos and sharing them over the weekend. Use the official hash #RnRPAS (on Twitter and Instagram) to follow along with all the excitement from fellow myself and fellow runners.

What do you think about my race goal?

1:45 is an 8 min. pace.