Small Study Says Long Run Distance Is Telling
Study says the closer you get to race distance in training, the better you can maintain your target pace.
A recent study conducted at the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire—which tracked 16 female and two male students over a 10-week period as they prepared for Eau Claire Half Marathon on May 3—showed that the runners who trained to within 10 percent of their targeted race distance were within 5 seconds of their average pace set in the month leading up to the race. On the other hand, those whose longest run was less than 90 percent of the race distance averaged almost a minute increase to their normal pace.
The information for these runners—who were all enrolled in a kinesiology course that taught students how to run—was gathered using the Milestone Pod, a stand-alone distance tracking device which attached to your running shoe and collects various data points including pace, cadence, stance time, foot strike and distance. The data was sent to a mobile app that allowed the students and professor to track progress over the course of the training cycle.
“The program was a success with many of the students being able to complete their first half marathon,” says Milestone Pod CEO Jason Kaplan. “The take home message is to trust that you will be able to sustain the pace at which you have been training, so long as you get within 10 percent of your race day distance.”