1st HM (Edinburgh) Taper help pls

How would you taper my usual weekly training for a half marathon? Thank you!

18 messages
12/05/2014 at 11:35
I have my first half marathon on the 24th May (Edinburgh) and I'm needing a little advice on how to taper these last 12 days if possible?

I ran my final long run on Saturday (Trail run of 13.2 miles in 2hrs 47secs - aiming for a sub 2hrs for the HM) Yesterday was a rest day (slightly different from my usual week add you'll see below)

Here is my usual training week -

Mon - 1hr kettles
Tues - 1hr pilloxing followed immediately by metafit
Wed - 6mile run in 50mins in morning - insanity class in evening
Thurs - run to metafit (3miles in 23mins) metafit - then run home again
Friday - rest day
Saturday - tough mudder training (1.5ish mile run with Hill intervals then 25mins circuits)
Sunday - long run

How would you Taper this? Do I need to taper the classes as well as the running? Thank you in advance
Edited: 12/05/2014 at 11:37
12/05/2014 at 15:52
12/05/2014 at 23:34

Monday kettles... OK

I have no idea what pilloxing or metafit are.  If it involves a lot of intense running, I'd ease back in the final week.  Perhaps replace it all with a 3 mile easy run...  30 minutes.

Wed  Instead of 6 miles in 50 minutes...  I'd be looking a 4 miles in 36mins.    I've heard of insanity. In the final week, I'd leave it out.

Thursday  3 miles in 27 mins -  Don't know what metafit is... probably leave it out.

Friday rest

Saturday... smash the race!

Good luck

12/05/2014 at 23:42
Thank you

Metafit is High intensity interval training for 20mins
Pilloxing is 1hr pilates and boxing (odd combo but works well - so half cardio amd half core strength and balance work)
13/05/2014 at 08:44
Not a lot of running in that plan compared to all of the gym stuff.

Personally I would cut out all of the gym work until after the race and cut down on all of the high intensity stuff. Do a long run of about 6 miles on Sunday. And just stick to some easy running with the odd mile or two at race pace thrown in every so often.
13/05/2014 at 15:28

I too will be doing the Edinburgh half. In terms of tapering I agree with Millsy about cutting down the intensity and doing some runs at race pace. From experience I have found that the following regime works for me:

Saturday: Parkrun

Monday: 5 miles (mix of race/easy pace) 

Wednesday: 5 miles (mix of race/easy pace)

Thursday onwards: rest up until race day. 

The key is making sure you get to the start line feeling fresh and well rested.


13/05/2014 at 16:45

I am also doing the Edinburgh HM. I did 9 miles on Saturday

-1 mile, jogging to Parkrun, 3+miles  Doing 40 minute pacers job for Parkrun followed by about 5 miles at a faster pace

I also did 4.5 miles on Monday, 

I will probably keep to no more than five mile runs between now and the day, with a mixture of easy and slightly faster efforts to keep me feeling sharp. It is a nice experience going into a half marathon without just having recovered from an injury.


17/05/2014 at 12:14

Oh and the half marathon is on the 25th not the 24th, hope it was just a typo

19/05/2014 at 08:17
Thanks all - yes it was a typo
I did 7.5m at my race pace on Saturday - felt good
Rest day yesterday
30mins on x-trainer this morning (easyish intervals)
Plan a 3 mile tomorrow am with 3 hills
Rest day wed
30 mins x-trainer thurs (easy intervals)
2mile run fri am with some sprints
Rest day on Saturday

I checked my race info (never done a road race before! Only trail obstacle races!) And is put predicted time as 2.5hrs - I'm aiming for 2hrs - oops! Well this matter? I'm in the second wave...
Edited: 19/05/2014 at 08:19
20/05/2014 at 13:31

It means you'll have to get through the slower runners if you're to finish in two hours. Don't panic and waste too much energy trying to nip and tuck around them - wait for the field to thin out a bit and then you'll be able to overtake them more easily. And remember you're chip timed, so it doesn't matter if you start a bit further back from the start line than the earlier wave. Good luck!

20/05/2014 at 14:59
Thank you!
Nervous and excited in equal amounts!
To be honest I'll just be glad to finish my first one - under 2hrs well be an added bonus
20/05/2014 at 16:41

This is my second time running Edinburgh half, the first two miles are quite tight in spots, a bit of weaving is inevitable but as an earlier comment has said don't worry about it, the field pans out once you get to the bottom of Arthurs Seat and from there it's wide open.  Watch out at the water stations for discarded water bottles because on the promenade there is a small wall and the bottles get thrown down but bounce back into your path so easy to end up on top of one and going over on your ankle! A bit off topic but thought I'd just add that!  Very best of luck for Sunday, you'll love it.

20/05/2014 at 19:45
Thank you! I will look out for escapee water bottles!
Am I allowed to run with my phone and endomondo tracking my speed etc?
Sorry that may be a silly question but I really don't know these things!
21/05/2014 at 09:10

Hi, taken from the EMF website "This event is run under Scottish Athletics rules and therefore MP3 players or other devices plugged into the ear are not permitted whilst running for reasons of health & safety, both yours and other competitors. When you wear such a device you are unable to hear other competitors, cars, bicycles or marshals instructions" So that is the party line BUT last year I used my in ear headphones and wasn't told otherwise.  The whole issue of racing while listening to music is a bit controversial, some people use them and others cast scorn if you do.  My thoughts are if it helps, use them.  An alternative is to use a GPS watch to track your speed but then you don't get the music, and not everyone has a GPS watch.  Make sure you get endomondo fired up early because picking up a signal at the start line can be tricky with thousands of others doing exactly the same!

21/05/2014 at 11:17
Thanks for the reply
I don't listen to music - it's purely for the endomondo - mainly to stop myself getting over enthusiastic and starting too quickly and tiring myself out!
And thanks for the top to locate gps early
26/05/2014 at 07:30
I survived! I was actually in the second to last wave (I'd miss interpreted the start map instructions - so was at the very back of 9000 people!)
Spent the whole time wriggling in and out off people to go faster - only really held up a few times where there were bottle necks - plus where they stopped the field to let traffic along a road! Was a bit naughty and ran the wrong side of the comes along the road a few times to keep my pace going.
Loved the first 9 miles - found the bit where you were running on the opposite side of the road to the people running the last two miles rather demoralising! But put my all in and even managed to quicken my pace for the last bit too the finish
And - I got a time if 1.50.22! Very pleased with that!
Tough mudder in two weeks then I might look at the Pitlochry oand/or glencoe half as my 2nd hm attempt.
And of course I'll have to go back to Edinburgh next year to see if I can get a sub 1.50!
Edited: 26/05/2014 at 07:34
26/05/2014 at 20:39

Well done, a great time.  The first four miles were brilliant, I love running in the rain, I find I can go a lot further being cooled off by the rain.  Then the next four were windy along the beach, last five or so just pleasant, bordering on actually getting warm!   Good for the marathoners.  My time was 1.47.13, and was aiming for sub 1.48 so very pleased getting under. So I have 1.45 in my sights for this year, either at Dundee in July or Aberfeldy in September depending on how my training goes.  Highly recommend Aberfeldy if you are based up that way. 

27/05/2014 at 21:12
I'm between Aberfeldy and Dundee so will look into both of them Thanks. I'd love to do some off road halves though too.
Yes I love running on the rain - much prefer it to hot weather
You got a great time! Well done!
I'm really surprised that I'm not stiff today - but I did have a massage yesterday. Training for tough mudder stats again tomorrow with insanity - I'm sure I'll feel my legs a bit then!

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