Dalton Half Marathon

August 14, 2010

Doug Hawley: Building up strength, endurance key to race

As runners prepare almost two months to the day for the first Dalton Half Marathon, they should be aware of one key word: PATIENCE. That old adage, “Rome wasn’t built in a day,” long has imparted to us the message of a building process. The same can be said for our national 13.1-mile foot race on Oct. 16.

In anticipation of the event, some area runners already have run the course. That is noble to a certain extent — if you are ready for it.

One veteran area runner had been nursing an ankle injury. With the lure of running this distance with his friends, the ankle did not prevent him from negotiating the full distance.

His reaction after the run: “I’m exhausted!” It is no wonder that he has spent extensive time over the years on the injured list.

As world-class coaches and runners emphasize, build up your distance over a period of time. Do not cram everything late like that college exam (one of my past failings).

By this time, if you are serious about participation in the Dalton Half Marathon, you should be doing one weekly long run of at least six miles. Try to make it as comfortable as possible.

Plan to run anywhere from one to two minutes per mile slower than your projected half marathon time. Otherwise, you can cover relaxing three and four-mile runs on your other four to six days.

Marathon (26.2 miles) participants long have been urged to build up to at least one or two 20-mile runs in their preparation. We hear much less about the half marathon’s long runs. Logically, the half marathoners can shoot for a distance of 10 miles.

In either the half or the marathon, the idea of the longest run is to be on your feet — with the slower pace — about the same amount of time as the actual races.

If doing six miles now (at least two or three times) as your long run, you might feel ready to go eight miles. Do that weekly for three weeks or so.

If not having a particularly good week running or other problems, there is nothing wrong with cutting back on the mileage. When feeling a little stronger, go as far as 10 miles. Do at least two such runs.

If you feel inclined to run the full distance, do it no later than two weeks before the race. Use the two weeks prior to the race for tapering and the final week for more resting.

Be mindful that there is nothing wrong with occasional walking in your workouts. Jeff Galloway, an elite private coach and former U.S. Olympic marathoner, long has advocated this aspect.

Many people would do well to walk extensively after their workouts, which can help minimize muscle tightness.

Particularly in this blistering weather, please stay hydrated with liquids before, during and after the workouts.

• EXTRA FOCUS: Dalton’s Karen Clement is going “beyond the call of duty” as she awaits the half marathon.

“I will be running the Dalton Half as part of my training run for the New York City Marathon on Nov. 7,” Clement said via e-mail. “Not only will I be running the 13.1 miles, but I will also run seven miles that morning before the race starts so that I’ll have a total of 20 miles when I cross the finish line.

“I’m not running for a PR. I will be running the NYC for a charity called Team For Kids which funds local elementary school running programs in all 50 states. I’m running in order to get more kids running. I consider myself a beginning runner since I’ve only been running for less than 18 months.”

She will be doing the New York race with Sabrina Locklear of Calhoun, who also plans to run the Dalton Half Marathon.

 

This is the eighth in a 16-part instructional series leading up to the Dalton Half Marathon, which is scheduled for Oct. 16. Doug Hawley, a competitive distance runner for more than 50 years, finished in the top 10 percent of the Boston Marathon in each of five races from 1976-81. You can write to him at Dhawley@optilink.us.

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Dalton Half Marathon
  • Time to roll out the red carpet

    Organizers are expecting nine states to be represented Saturday at the fourth annual Dalton Red Carpet races, where the action — which starts and finishes downtown — will include a half marathon, 5K and 2K.
    “I feel sure that it’s the most states that we’ve had represented for this event,” said co-race director Rick Little. “It’s become so well-known. People outside our area know that it’s a quality event.”

    October 25, 2013

  • Run back for concert downtown

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    October 25, 2013

  • Half marathon male winner.jpg Red Carpet Half Marathon: Phillips outkicks the field

    Isaac Pacheco stuck with Geno Phillips for around half the race.
    Then the Chattanooga resident “broke” the North Murray High senior.
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    October 7, 2012 1 Photo

  • Chris Stephens: Ready for a good run

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    October 3, 2012

  • s-MartinezFamily1-3x-col.jpg Racing runs in this family

    If officials for Saturday’s Dalton Red Carpet races are looking to award a family for having the most participants, a local contingent rates as quite a favorite.

    October 11, 2011 1 Photo

  • Runners can try out half marathon course

    Area runners are invited to help test the reconfigured course for the second Dalton Red Carpet Half Marathon, 5K and 2K event, which is scheduled for a downtown start and finish on Oct. 15.

    June 7, 2011

  • 5k 3 mlh.jpg Tight finish

    October 17, 2010 1 Photo

  • Doug Hawley: Firsts not only bests

    October 17, 2010

  • 5k 12 mlh.jpg Perfect day for a race

    They came mostly from the Southeast and a few from as far away as Colorado and South Dakota. Some ran Saturday’s half marathon for the first time, while one Dalton podiatrist used it as a tune-up for the real Marathon race in Greece later this month.

    October 17, 2010 1 Photo

  • Dalton Half Marathon2010.jpg Day of distance near

    Lauren Sain was already planning to run a half marathon in a city halfway across the country when she saw an advertisement for one in her own backyard.
    On Saturday morning, Sain will find out how far her training has taken her in preparation for the first Dalton Half Marathon, which will also serve as her first attempt at a distance race beyond a 5K.

    October 14, 2010 2 Photos