Last-minute tips: How to pace your perfect marathon

What should your ideal marathon look like? There is solid evidence that the best way to pace yourself over any distance longer than 800m is to run an even or negative split – that is, running the second half at the same speed, or slightly faster, than the first.

With not long to go before the London Marathon, we look at three top tips to pacing your perfect marathon:

1. Keep your handbrake on and your ego out of the driving seat

Early on in the race, you should be running at a pace that feels too slow for at least the first third to ensure the wheels don’t come off later. Getting the pace right is a question of matching your expectations to your level of training. Getting it wrong is a common thread running through many of the other problems you may face.

Related: London Marathon data shows women are better at pacing than men 

2. Be realistic

If a niggling injury meant you weren’t able to complete as many long runs as you had planned, or work got out of hand and you didn’t get in as many miles, adjust your goal so you can still run an even or negative split.

Related: Set the perfect marathon pace   

3. Start with the right goal

Training for a marathon takes such a tremendous investment of time, energy, commitment and effort that deciding to ‘just go for it’ on the day is a common scenario. But it’s a dangerous one. Start with the right goal using this quick-fire pacing plan and find the right memeber of the RW Pace Team to run with:

Have the race savvy to keep your foot off the gas, however loud the crowds are cheering you at mile four. You may feel like Mo Farah then, but you won’t at the finish line if you start too fast.