Posted: 30/09/2014 at 12:28
There's a couple of good reasons why a beginners plan has a maximum of 10 miles:
- Your long runs should be significantly slower than your HM race pace, so the time taken to cover the ten miles should be roughly equal to your race time (i.e. think time on your feet rather than distance).
- The long run is necessary to build endurance, which means you will be tired and your running form will deteriorate in the last few miles as you push past your current endurance limits. This increases your risk of injury. The ten miles is a compromise of going long enough to build endurance whilst minimising your time in the injury "danger zone".
Just as important for your first half, if you go more than 13 miles in training it will take some of the shine off completing the distance in your first HM. It will be a special feeling when you complete the distance for the first time.
If your race is on Sunday, then this week should be "taper" time with limited mileage so you are fully rested for the weekend. You should only run roughly 50% of the weekly distance you have been doing in training (if I mis-read and the race is on the 12th, then about 75% of weekly distance this week, and 50% next week). Your last pre-race run would be either Friday or Saturday, and should only be 3 or 4 miles at most. Personally I prefer to get out on the day before the race for a short run to loosen up and reduce pre-race nerves, others prefer to have a day of complete rest prior to the race.