Thursday, April 14, 2011

McMillian Running Calculator - Is it right?

Recently we've been using the McMillan Running Calculator to try and figure out our training paces and what pace groups we should try to stay with during races.  I've heard a lot of people talk about how great this calculator is for figuring out what paces you should be training at and what your body "should" be able to do in terms of setting PRs so now that I figured out the best way for me to use it, I wanted to post what I learned and see what you all think.

First Calculation:  Based on my half marathon PR from last year of 1:54:58 (Lake Minnetonka Half Marathon), the calculator says I can do the following:
  • 1 mile in 7:10.8
  • 10 mile in 1:26:34
  • Marathon in 4:02:28
  • Easy Run Pace: 9:46-10:16min/mi
  • Tempo Runs: 8:25 - 8:47min/mi
CONCLUSION:  This was not a good basis for pacing.  My current PRs for all of the above listed races except the marathon is faster than what this calculation said I could do them in.  Plus running an easy pace at 10:00min/mi is much slower than what I normally do and consider an easy pace.

Second Calculation:  Based on my 10 mile PR from last year of 1:24:02 (Monster Dash), the calculator says I can do the following:
  • 1 mile in 6:58.1
  • Half Marathon in 1:51:36
  • Marathon in 3:55:22
  • Easy Run Pace: 9:29-9:59/mi
  • Tempo Runs: 8:10- 8:31/mi
CONCLUSION: This was a better basis for pacing my current training but still didn't feel quite right.  Granted I was slighly injured when I made this 10 mile PR but these times were not enough of a push for me personally.  My 1 mile PR is already 12 seconds faster than what's listed and my tempo runs currently get down usually in the 7:50s.

Third and FINAL Calculation:  Based on my 1 mile PR from last year of 6:46 (TC 1-Mile), the calculator says I can do the following:
  • 10 mile in 1:21:36
  • Half Marathon in 1:48:21
  • Marathon in 3:48:32
  • Easy Run Pace: 9:14-9:44/mi
  • Tempo Runs: 7:49- 8:06/mi
CONCLUSION: BINGO!! I just got a new 10 mile PR last week of 1:19:55, I've been thinking I want to try to stay with the 8:15 pace group for my upcoming half marathon which puts me at a finishing time of 1:48:05 with my ultimate goal of trying to stay with the 8:45 pace group for Grandma's Marathon which is a 3:49:25.  PERFECT!!

So I am all for using the McMillan Running Calculator to determine my goals for the races leading up to my "A" race of Grandma's Marathon IF I base them off my 1 mile PR.

Who else has used this calculator and what have you figured out about it?  Anyone else have feedback or suggestions on figuring our marathon training paces?

1 comment:

  1. nothing helpful from this corner, but from poking around on the calculator, i found some happy news.

    IF i can get back to my 5k pr from ... three? years ago, i should be able to run a half-mar in just over 2 hours (which would make me very happy).

    what made me happy NOW and made me feel a whole lot better for boulder training was i popped in my 5k time from goldy's run and the estimated half-mar time ... was essentially what i ran vegas in. so despite being a sick pile of snot for most of this year, i'm *technically* not much worse than what i was in december. woo!


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