Marathon Measures Taper: The race was Saturday, but we’ve got one more training recap to go. I finished up the 3 week taper of the Hal Higdon Intermediate 1 Plan. My race goal time was 4:15.
Warning: The Marathon Measures series has a lot of numbers that will only interest data-lovers, those deep into long-distance training, or those comparing training plans. Get up to date with Marathon Measures #1, #2, #3, and #4.
After two 20 miles runs and peak weekly mileage of around 44 miles, the Hal Higdon Marathon Intermediate 1 Training plan takes a steep 3 week taper.
Looking at weekly volume, week 16 is 74% of week 15. Week 17 is 56%. And Week 18 is 21%. Likewise, the long run dropped to 60% and 40% of 20 miles.
Marathon Measures Taper [Hal Higdon Intermediate 1]
Missed Runs & Anxiety
In week 16, I missed a 5 mile run. Week 17, I completed all the weekday runs, but not on the scheduled days. I missed the 8 mile run and ran 5 miles instead of 3 the next day.
I missed a total of 11 miles in the taper.
Tapering always ends up being a struggle for me. I have trouble running fewer miles and still taking it seriously. Halloween celebrations and family in town fell within the taper. My rolled ankle still has a nagging… niggle?
And not to mention my nervousness for the race makes me anxious about my training runs. And then I procrastinate.
My 12 mile long run was 43 seconds from goal pace, which I’ve tried to stay within 60 seconds. My goal pace run was too fast at 9:23, but it really helped with my nerves. I let myself have one too-fast run in the taper.
It may work out in the end, but I’ve been a little disappointed with this training plan. The 5-8 mile pace runs stacked the day before the long runs meant I really did not feel free to go hard on either day. I don’t think I spent enough time at goal pace.
How to improve my next taper
I am going to consider doing a 2 week taper. Or at least tell myself that the first week isn’t a taper.
I will set a date I can begin to worry about the race. If I start to stress before then, I’ll interrupt myself and postpone it. (Don’t laugh, this actually works!)
Somehow I feel the reduction in miles give me permission to slack off. I get out of the runner’s mindset and start relaxing and indulging before I’ve raced my race. I’m not sure how to tackle that, but it’s definitely an area to improve. Have any tips?
Marathon Measures Taper Memories & Moments
Favorite moment: Running that pace run too fast. I was starting to think I didn’t have any higher gears, so it was nice to spend some time there.
Least favorite moments: Transferring my race anxieties to everyday taper runs. That’s not where it goes!
- How to Taper for a Big Race
- How to Not Go Crazy During a Taper
- Marathon Measures #1, #2, #3, and #4
- Day in the Life of an Amateur Marathoner
- Hal Higdon Intermediate 1 Overview
- Hal Higdon Novice 2 Review
Great blog article.Really looking forward to read more. Much obliged.