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Starting off steadily when racing is a wise tip... but does anyone else find it difficult to put into practice? I always set off with good intentions but end up getting carried along by club mates/other runners.
 

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It does take discipline to stay at a steady pace early on in a race but I always think to myself about the other runners flying off too fast.. "I'll be overtaking most of you in the second half of the race" ;)
 

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I've done this a few times now :)

Most recently at Wokingham where the first 2 miles were at 9 minute pace and the last two were just above 7. It really is a buzz cutting through the field in the second half (although there are always people who are faster than me!) - I particularly took mental comfort in the fact that I'd raced 2 miles less than everyone I was passing.

However, while that has worked for half marathons I'm not so sure about shorter races. In my weekly 5km outing I'm beginning to understand that the only way to race is to race the whole lot at my top speed (currently somewhere near 7 minutes each mile).
 

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I always try to formulate some tactics before racing... it's obviouisly easier if you know the course. I would agree that it's a great feeling when you are flying past people as you finish... really gets the adrenaline going.
 

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I have been guilty of the 'go like the clappers at the gun and hold on' race tactics in the past, but have found, only recently, that if you start of at a brisk pace and increase the speed into the race you can finish better. This is backed up by the number of PB's I have been breaking recently.
 

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BoabyBoy said:
I have been guilty of the 'go like the clappers at the gun and hold on' race tactics in the past, but have found, only recently, that if you start of at a brisk pace and increase the speed into the race you can finish better. This is backed up by the number of PB's I have been breaking recently.

Never been able to judge pace well, Garmin helps xcept that I like the sound of the too fast alarm & get paranoid if I've not heard it for a few mins. Will one day get the start pace right & look forward to passing anybody.
 

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Find it bloomin' impossible.

especially in XC, I always feel so good at the start.

One race early this year I set off and felt easy and relaxed. Looked back about 600metres in and I had 20 m on the rest of the field including several internationals!

Suffice to say they all came charging past fairly quickly together with a fair few other good standard club runners!

It is possible to start slow, but mentally I find it very difficult. I just prefer running even effort rather than even pace I think.
 

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I find race pace hard until my last couple of XC races because there was one runner who was slightly better than me, by not much, but I just kept to his pace (his pacing is fantastic) and up until the final kilometre, stuck with him until he goes off sprinting (I save a sprint for the last 100m usually).
 

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I'm running my first race of any sort next month (HM). My projected race pace is the only thing that's freeking me out!

I know I can do the distance in a respectable time (for me), but the last thing I want to do is crash and burn or perhaps worse finish with plenty left in the tank!

I suppose it's all about experience, and I got none:(

flakey
 

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flakey- trust me- finishing with plenty left in the tank is far better than crashing and burning. When you're at 10 miles if you still feel good, then really start working, you've still got 3 miles to do a lot of damage to your time and the people around you. On the otherhand if you hit ten feeling awful, you'll suffer far more.

Much better to take it steady from the start, at 5 if you still feel great pick it up a little and after ten just give it everything you've got.
 
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