Strategies to run a sub 2:30 half marathon – Taryn Allwright’s one on one coaching call

Strategies to run a sub 2:30 half marathon – Taryn Allwright’s one on one coaching call

On this episode of RUN with Coach Parry we catch up with Taryn Allwright as she works towards her goal of Sub 2:30 half marathon.

This is what we covered in the podcast:

  • How she started her running journey and some of her running
  • how to deal with the doubts in the two weeks leading up to your goal race during your taper
  • why it's better to go into a race being slightly underdone than overdone
  • We look at running nutrition, particularly the use of carbohydrates if you follow a high fat low carb diet.
  • How to set appropriate goals for a 10km, 21km and marathon in the future
  • The importance of strength training and does yoga and pilates give you the same benefit as a regular strength training plan.
  • Discover a pacing strategy for a 2:25 to 2:20 marathon.

 

Resources mentioned on this podcast:

The Ask Coach Parry Podcast: You can listen to that podcast by clicking here.

You can register for our upcoming Comrades Marathon Training Webinar by clicking here.

You can read a full transcript of this podcast by clicking here.

Do you want to shave 10 minutes off your marathon PB?

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Included in the programme:

 Detailed descriptions of each exercise so you know how to do them

 Number of repetitions for each exercise so that you avoid overtraining & injury

 Short videos showing you EXACTLY what to do (Number 6 will turn you into the "Marathon Slayer" so that you don't hit the wall and implode later in the race)

Transcription

Lindsey Parry

Hi, Taryn, awesome to have you on one of our Coach Parry coaching calls. How you doing this morning?

Taryn Allwright
Great. Thanks, Lindsay. Thanks for having me. It's nice to be here.

Lindsey Parry
It's always a pleasure. So, Taryn, tell us a little bit about your running background? What got you into running? What motivates you and your what is the ultimate goal?

Taryn Allwright
I think the main reason I got into running is because I suffer quite severely from FOMO. Everyone around me It started running and I tried it out. And ja, you get hooked. It's something that's pretty addictive and I think I've been running on and off for about 10 years now.

Lindsey Parry
Brilliant. Okay. So at the moment, you're running once a week.

Taryn Allwright
No, I'm running back four times a week.

Lindsey Parry
Okay, right. I just pull that off your questionaire, so a four times a week plus. Sorry, that's not one that says "I run and do pilates". So you've been training on and off for the last 10 years. Tell us some of the some of your running achievements?

Taryn Allwright
I think what I've enjoyed the most over the last few years is joining your program and taking the pressure off by you know, someone telling you to run slower is something I've really, really enjoyed. It's gotten me through some of those barriers where I think I just can't anymore. Like I said, taking that pressure off and just running a bit slower has changed a lot of the the mind, the head training, as I like to call it.

Lindsey Parry
It's essentially made it more enjoyable. You're not getting to each training session exhausted.

Taryn Allwright
Exactly. And over the last few years that's been the one thing that actually made the biggest difference.

Lindsey Parry
Okay awesome. And how long have you been a part of Coach Parry?

Taryn Allwright
So I joined in November, with the 12 week, program in mind, and then Sunday is my goal race. So I'm hoping that it all pays off.

Lindsey Parry
Cool, so we definitely need to talk about that before the end of this. When did you run your 10 kilometer PB of 1:01?

Unknown Speaker
That was at the Irene CSIR. So that was probably about September. September last year.

Lindsey Parry
Brilliant. That's a pretty reasonable time in terms of your actual goal. I mean that that does point to you having the ability of running around about 2:15 to 2:17. From that point of view, we are looking pretty good. So that to 2:24, PB will hopefully be falling soon. Okay, well, that's brilliant. It's always nice when we can look at the metrics and say, yes, we are on the capable of our goal. You've been following the sub 2:30 of 21 k program on the Coach Parry website, so hopefully you've got some questions, both about the race and about the training. You've got a good couple of minutes now so take advantage of that opportunity and ask me anything running related that you've been wondering while you out on the road.

Taryn Allwright
I think first of all for for this one I've stuck to it as much as I can. Obviously, it was over December, so some of the strength training that I usually do, a pilates or a yoga class for, was not available to me. So that was up to me to do and then some of that I didn't get to. I'm just feeling a little bit nervous for Sunday. I hope that I've done enough. I followed it probably about 90 to 95%. It felt great and I've been enjoying a lot. So I think I just hope that I've done enough. I think it's my head that's not in the game.

Lindsey Parry
We always get as we approach race day, we get that little picking in the back of our brain, especially because in the last two weeks we are running ess and less. We start to question how fit we actually are and have we done enough. No matter what race you train for in your life, you're invariably going to wish you just had a little bit more time to train. And honestly, that's a much better feeling and it gives you a much better chance of success than the opposite, which is, I'm tired. I'm desperate to taper and I've done too much training. So we always wanted to do slightly too little. I always have to be careful when I say that because then some people will take advantage of that but you really do want to be a little bit too little than a little bit too much. It's the better side to make a mistake on. As for the rest, one of the things I've always tried to press upon people is that a single training session will not be the difference between success or failure. So missing the odd session here and there, so if you tell me you've done 90-95% then you have done enough, you've pretty much followed the program pretty well. So I think you can be confident that you have a really good chance of achieving the goal you've set for yourself.

Taryn Allwright
Okay, that's good to hear. I think another thing that I've been going back and forth on is nutrition. I don't know what I'm doing. Up until about a month ago, I was doing the, you know, coake and water on the race. A bit of Pronutro, a banana, that sort of thing. I've been trying to switch it up for the last I would say about four weeks. I've been trying to switch it up and do a high fat low carb thing, which has actually been pretty good for me. I haven't felt too many of the effects running and so I haven't had any coke during runs and I've just stuck to water and nut butters and maybe a banana during the longer runs. I'm not sure what your opinion is and I don't know what to do?

Lindsey Parry
To fuel high performance exercise, you need carbohydrates. It's essentially the difference between putting Unleaded 93 and high octane fuel into a Ferrari. But in terms of your general lifestyle, health, and even doing like endurance exercise, the high fat low carb, it really can work and it can work well, particularly the further you go and the lower the intensity of the exercise is for the duration of that exercise. Again, if you moved into the realm of you really getting into running and you're enjoying it, and it starts to get to this point where you driving yourself towards like sub 45 tens and and sub one 1:40 21's and that that sort of thing, you will get to a point where you're going to have to fuel those efforts using carbohydrates. I do work with with quite a few people who are high fat low carb'ers and what I find is that we can still fuel in exercise carbohydrates as we need them and potentially also in the real recovery period. The other side is that for something like a half marathon, 2 hour'ish of exercise, we really don't need loads of external energy. Stuff that we take in because we do have enough stored energy. The fact that you're using things like nut butters, and the fact that you use things like bananas, if you added things like dates into that mix, you will then be getting enough carbohydrates to fuel the kind of exercise that you doing. One of the important things that you've already said is that you do actually feel quite good on this type of eating and you aren't having any negative effects during exercise like hitting low energy. So from that point of view, I'm quite happy. And again, especially because your focus is up to the 21k, nutrition isn't really not as critical as it is for a marathon and an ultra and you are experimenting on your longer runs anyway, with using nut butters which are excellent. Bananas, which are really good too and a decent form of a medium glycemic sugar. So as you went along, if you decided to go longer, as you went along you would have to experiment and the one thing that people are fearful of when they are in these high fat, low carb diets is that "well what happens now if I do take sugar on a run?". If you do need carbohydrates any you drink Coke or Powerade because you starting to run low on evergy in a run, it's just going to make you feel good because the sugars going to make you feel good. And obviously once you finish the race, you'll just go back to your normal eating of low carb high fat.

Taryn Allwright
Okay, cool. So that's a good tip actually so if I have a bit of a dip during the run, just to have a coke on the next water point.

Lindsey Parry
Exactly,

Taryn Allwright
Okay,

Lindsey Parry
Look the one thing I must say about that is that once that process starts then you'll have to just quite regularly top that up. You won't have anymore ill effects than having no energy, that's for sure. That's about as bad as it will be.

Taryn Allwright
Okay, that's fair enough. But that actually brings me to my next question. From here, once I've finished the race on Sunday my next goal is in three months and it is to do the Wally Hayward 10k in under an hour. And then I'd like to then aim for Cape Town Marathon. It'll be my first marathon. And it'll be my first, hopefully my first sub 1 hour 10k. So those are my goals for the year.

Lindsey Parry
I'm extremely confident that you'll go under an hour for Wally Hayward. In fact, we'll see how the 21 k goes and then we can work out a more accurate number for you to target. From your history and looking at where you are now my gut tells me that you are probably around between 55 and 57 minutes is what you should get to on Wally and I'm extremely confident that October you will be comfortably under 5 hours. Again, I wouldn't put a number on it yet, we can do them later but you'll be comfortably under five hours for marathan

Taryn Allwright
Okay, and I suppose nutrition wise that all that'll change but we can talk about when the time comes.

Lindsey Parry
For the marathon you'll have to start putting some strategies in place but it'll be about just seeing how often you need to take a nut butter and how often you need a banana. Honestly, you're not going to carry five bananas so it will be a the a question of what else can we try that's a little bit easier to carry that's more natural that is slightly lower glycemic sugars. Not that that makes a huge difference while you running but it's just things that you will be comfortable with on your palate that you lookforward to eating.

Taryn Allwright
Okay. I think the last question I've got is just about what to do next. I've got a plan until May, because that'll take me to Wally Hayward. What do I do then in between then and October? What sort of program should I be following? Is there a bridging program that I should look for?

Lindsey Parry
They will be a lot of time. So just in terms of physical weeks, what is the 3rd of May. So there are in there in excess of 20 weeks. I would probably go on to another 21 k program. Again, based on what your time is on the 10km, this 21km, plus the 10km where you need up, I would either look at going on to another 21k, and seeing how much we can improve the 21k time by. Or we could split up into slightly shorter things and do another 10k or a 5k or a combination ofthose thing. So you have quite a lot of options. But what I always tell people is that your biggest force multiplier of improvement is being consistent over a long period of time. So we would definitely need to then find you another goal, something that makes you excited to keep you on a nice structured program so that you do essentially have one more stepping stone between that and going onto the marathon program.

Taryn Allwright
Should I then just do that and then only concentrate on actual marathon training 12 weeks before?

Lindsey Parry
Yes, 12 to 16 weeks. Because of the level that you will be at, we won't necessarily need to target a 21k that's another 12 weeks away. We would be able to look at that and look at either six or even eight weeks away, and then start with that marathon program. And even once you start on the marathon program, we would also be able to look at sticking in a 10k and a 21k along the way that you still look forward to a few races so that is not just one race 16 to 20 weeks away.

Taryn Allwright
So then I guess just to keep in touch and chat to you on the app.

Lindsey Parry
Stay in the forums because another thing that I always tell people is that, essentially, you get out of this program, what you put into it. The more the more you ask us, the more you learn, the better get. Obviously you've got the Coach Parry app and you can follow your program and if you don't have anything to ask you don't have anything to ask. but really to get the value is to get into the forums, ask the questions and learn as much as you can.

Taryn Allwright
It has been incredibly helpful so I've tried to make use of it. As far as strength inbetween running days goes, I do a pilates class and a yoga class Tuesfays and Thursdays. Is that enough? They are quite intense, they're not beginners classes.

Lindsey Parry
The answer is yes. The pilates and yoga are slightly different. They achieve some of the same outcomes and have slightly different focuses, but both of them are really excellent and complementary to running. It always boils down to personality for me, I don't have a thing we are go, "being in a gym is better strength training for running and than doing pilates and yoga". Pilates and yoga do a lot of the right type of strengthening and as you've just said, it is challenging. I think if you got to a point where pilates was no longer challenging, then it would be debatable whether different kinds of strength training would be better because you may also at that point be absolutely strong enough for purpose. Then the need to be stronger? That's a question you have to answer at the time. So I think for now, it is challenging. The type of strengthening that you are doing the is complementary to running so you don't need to go finding more hours in your day to do more stuff.

Taryn Allwright
Okay, great. That answers all my questions. Thank you.

Lindsey Parry
Absolute pleasure. Great to chat and good luck for Sunday.

Are you running Johnson crane. Yes, that's right. Okay, excellent. So I want to just leave you with the last bit of advice then for the weekend. So the nice thing about Johnson Crane is that it's not pancake flat, but it is fairly flat. It allows for a really nice even effort of pacing. You are aiming to run at roughly 6:23 per kilometer.

Taryn Allwright
Sho! okay.

Lindsey Parry
That's your range. 6:23/24 around there is going to get you 2:15. And to get you to 2:20. Just so that you have a nice little range in case on the day you do feel a little bit overwhelmed. 6:38, so that's kind of your your range.it'll be 6:15 to 6:20. And you can run that fairly consistently. There'll be some gradual drags where you you'll slow down 10/15 seconds per km. And then you'll have some gradual downhills where you will speed up a bit. Essentially, it's a nice route for an even effort for the 21km. You can be confident that you are capable so, I think you're goning to do it.

Taryn Allwright
I'll be really happy if I break 2:20, 2:15 will be even better. Thank you so much

Lindsey Parry
pleasure. Good luck let us know goes.

Taryn Allwright
I will definitely let you know. Thanks Lindsey.

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