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Topic - Should I slow down?

michael lawrence - on 30 Dec 2012
I'm running my second first half marathon at the end of March (the first was 18months ago) and I'd like to run it in 1hr35mins ish. The first half marathon I did I just ran as fast as I felt comfortable in training but made the classic mistake of doing too much too soon and had a very badly disrupted training schedule as a result.

This time around I'm being much more cautious about injuries and have been building up slowly. No injuries to date.... I'm taking a more structured approach to my training but I've only been able to fit in one run a week. I'm now going to introduce some tempo and interval training.

The question I have is around my heart rate/pace for my Sunday long run. Running books suggest I should be running at 75% max heart rate. I've just turned 41 so that should make max hr c180. I would class myself as fitter than the average 41 yr old so maybe 190 max hr is more appropriate? I have a heart rate monitor but running at 75% hrm is just so painfully slow. This morning I ran 13.1 miles in 1hr57mins ave heart rate 160, 9min mile pace over a hilly course. This felt pretty comfortable and I certainly could have run faster. Should I really slow down so that my heart rate is 143 (75% of 190)? I'm worried that I won't be pushing myself hard enough and won't improve my times if I do. Do I just have a more natural inclination to anaerobic training?
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