Dalton Half Marathon

July 14, 2010

Doug Hawley: Work way up to half marathon

On the assumption that you have passed the doctor’s physical for the challenging Dalton Half Marathon race in October, take time out to set a goal.

A realistic goal for a first-time half marathoner simply should be to finish. All of the work going into preparation should not result in a DNF (Did Not Finish).

It is surprising the number of world-class runners who do not finish half marathon or marathon races. Injuries or health issues sometimes play a part, but they often exit early after realizing that they will not win.

As role models to so many aspiring runners, those folks do not set good examples. A runner dropping out of one race will find it too easy to drop out of the next one. Most people with pride will “finish the drill,” whatever their endeavors.

If possible, it is best to run with a partner — maybe even more — who is comparable in ability. This makes for more enjoyment as the miles seemingly go by much faster.

Regarding the pace with your partners, be mindful of the “talk test.” If gasping while talking, slow down where you can talk normally.

Many runners begin with runs on a flat track. It does not take long for the boredom of the 400-meter laps and a subsequent switch to the roads.

Please be careful on the roads. Challenging a two-ton vehicle does not provide good odds.

Runners or walkers are urged by law officials to go facing the traffic.

Some leisurely two- or three-mile runs are recommended in the beginning. That comes on recommended every other day, maybe five times a week, if comfortable. Many fitness experts recommend even the elite runners to take off one day a week.

Personally, I do some running every day, most of it on a leisurely pace.

This streak now has gone for 3 1/2 years, but nobody ever has accused me of having good common sense.

During these hot months, the best time for running is early morning.

Not only do you beat the heat, but you can feel more relaxed the remainder of the day.

If the early morning does not meet your busy schedule, try to wait until the sun has gone down in the evening. Mid-day running in the 90- to 100-degree range can be both uncomfortable and dangerous.

It is recommended that you drink plenty of fluids before and after your run to prevent dehydration. Water usually serves most people the best, though much can be said for sports drinks.

This is the second in a weekly 16-part series of instructional columns leading to the first national Dalton Half Marathon on Oct. 16. It is primarily geared toward those running their first 13.1-mile event.

Doug Hawley, a competitive distance runner for more than 50 years, was a top 10 percent finisher in each of five Boston Marathons from 1976 to 1981.

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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

    Get ready to rock with the Austin, Texas-based band Fastball at the Saturday night concert following the Dalton Red Carpet Half Marathon/ 5K/2K races and the Liberty Tree Festival in downtown Dalton.

    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.
    Phillips was the first person to cross the Dalton Red Carpet Half Marathon finish line in downtown Dalton on Saturday morning, running the 13.1-mile race in one hour, 12 minutes, 1 second.

    October 7, 2012 1 Photo

  • Chris Stephens: Ready for a good run

    The best part about running your first half marathon? Finish the race and you automatically set a personal record.

    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