QUESTION: I am following your Advanced 2 marathon training plan. There is a half marathon scheduled for Week 9. Should I run this at the pace planned for my marathon, or go as fast as I can?
HAL’S ANSWER: You have two options. You can run the half marathon at a controlled pace, the same pace you plan (or hope) to run in the marathon. Or you can race the half marathon at full speed. I usually leave this option open for the runner to decide. But looking into the mind of a runner talented enough to accept Advanced 2, I suspect you might be happiest nailing a fast time that you can use to more accurately predict your marathon pace. Addressing another question that runners frequently ask, it doesn’t matter if you do your half in Week 9 or 8 or 7. Pick a half marathon convenient to your local area, or one you want to run.
Hal uses TrainingPeaks to power his interactive marathon and half marathon training plans. Check out more of Hal Higdon's training plans here or on his website. Archived Q&A's from Hal can be found here.