Half Marathon… Should I go naked?

So, I’ve been debating something I need your opinion on, Interwebz. I’ve trained to hit 2 hours. My PR is 2:03 (so, really close), this course is hilly and I frankly don’t have a ton of confidence that I’m going to hit 2 hours. And, more importantly, have decided it’s not terribly important to me at this point. The training was tough, I’m proud of myself for doing (most of) it and am leaving my time to the Race Gods at this point.

I’ve been contemplating running *gulp* GPS-free.

I’ve never done this before. I run with my Garmin almsot every time, save for the few times the battery has run out or I forgot it. I like having the feedback on what my pace is, and I love having the DATA when I get back from my run to see the graphs and stuff. (Gotta EARN that Runnerd moniker, right?)

So why would I want to run without it? I read an article in an old Runners’ World that got me thinking about it. It pointed out that these gadgets can sometimes pull your focus away from your body, even limiting you based on the numbers you know you can do. It’s a fine theory, but I’m a little nervous to try it out on a 13.1’er… But, on the other hand, if I’ve declared I want to just run and see what I can do, etc, why not go “naked” and see what I can do? It might be enjoyable.

But, on yet another hand, I should also state that if I finished several minutes slower than my PR I’d probably be disappointed, and maybe wish I had known how fast I was going? So I guess for that reason, I’m leaning toward using it, but would still be open to being talked out of it.

What should I dooo??!

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9 thoughts on “Half Marathon… Should I go naked?

  1. Tough call. I’ve actually never used a Garmin for 13.1 but I’m also slower than you. I’d say go without it because it sounds like you have pretty much decided to run the race instead of racing the race to hit sub 2.

    Also, you are running wine country right? Leave the garmin, enjoy the hills, and drink some wine at the end 🙂

    • Ha, they do have wine at one of the stops… I’m still having a hard time mentally associating wine with running (beer with running works for some reason, wine is awkward.)

      I really *want* to relax and enjoy it and just see. But I don’t think I’m a laid back enough person to do that. I *say* I don’t care about breaking 2, but I think I’m more concerned about just getting a way worse time than my PR and being slammed with it and then falling into a puddle of sweat and tears at the fininshline. #dramatic.

  2. Is it possible to run with it, then decide after you finish if you want to look? Like, don’t check your pace during the race, but analyze it later if you decide you want to…

    • I think if I wear it I’ll be looking at it & relying on it to tell me what my pace is. (Rather than the more “sprititual” listening to your body/exertion levels or whatever.)

  3. I say run with it. Even though you say you are okay without hitting two hours you said this:
    “if I finished several minutes slower than my PR I’d probably be disappointed”

    At least with the GPS you will have an idea of how you are doing and you will know before the race ends whether you are on pace. Then you can decide while running whether you feel good enough to go faster or not.

    My last half last May, I was planning to run 2:05. GPS said I needed to go faster but I literally could not cool down and felt like complete ass, so I decided I could not do it. I felt like I was running through water but GPS still had me finishing at 2:20. Even though I was disappointed, I felt less disappointed knowing I was going to still finish with a semi-respectable time. I felt really okay with it because I knew I was going as hard as I could. Turns out I had a fever and woke up the next day with terrible strep throat.

    • In this case, if I were to get a time that’s WAY off of what I’m hoping… I think your point that you’d rather know as you’re doing it as opposed to finishing & feeling dead and being hit with “Oh PS, your time SUCKED!” would be way tougher than knowing and accepting it as you go. At least that’s what I read in your comments… and I think that’s a good point.

      Sucks to have run a half with a fever, dude! 😦

  4. I think you should run with it, you have trained with it up until now, and to change it will only throw you off. I think you could run without next time, but you would have more time to get used to the feel of your running then.

  5. Will there be periodic clocks/timers on the course so that you can know some of your splits? As someone who never runs with a watch/gps, I would vote to go without it, but I do know it can be frustrating to have no idea where you’re at in terms of pace. This might be a good test to see if you can really enjoy the freedom of not being tied to your GPS though. Do you know your pace/body well enough that you know how fast you can go without relying on the GPS? If you do go without, I would be most careful in the first few miles about not going out too fast. I say go without, listen to your body, and focus on enjoying the race and finishing strong.

  6. Pingback: VA Wine Country Half Marathon Recap | McBlog 2.0

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