Runners, How Much is Too Much?

Going to need some input/feedback from fellow runners, regardless of where you live.

Basically, here’s the deal – I’m looking at doing two races in the spring season – the Shamrock Half in Virginia Beach next March and the Odyssey Half Marathon in Philly’s Fairmount Park in late May 2011.

What I’m trying to figure is if working on/training for both races – March and May 2011 – in that short a timeframe is too much especially for a “beginner” like myself. I know some of you experienced runners are running full marathons incredibly close to one another, but you guys are at the level where you know how well you can physically hold up to pull that off.

Me? Well, I’m a beginner runner, just started getting into serious running again and I’m currently working on my first half marathon in early November. (Those of you in Philly – not the Philly half, due to a conflict, I’m doing another half in Lancaster County 2 weeks before the Philly Half.)

My goal for my first race – just complete the damned thing. I’m slow now, but that doesn’t matter. Complete the first and just aim to improve times with each race.

So far, as injuries go, only “real” issue if you can call it that is dealing with the repercussions of weak quads going from couch (back) to 5k prior to my first official 5k in awhile back in August. I’ve been stretching and working those things religiously since. No problems with anything else so far.

My training for my first half is going extremely well however, and barring injury or freak accidents (and lord knows I have had more than my share, all unrelated to my training activities) between now and November, I expect to complete the race with no issues. Dehydration/eating lifestyle adjustments is also something I’ve been handling well. And I have yet to miss a day in the program I have going for race, so I’ll admit I’m quite proud of that.

Between my first race in November and the March race, I know I have plenty of time to recover, recondition and retrain in the meantime. Not sure how I’d do it between March and May, if I decide to do the May 2011 race, where/how I’d start reconditioning and not put my body into overdrive (if that’s possible?). Also here’s my second question, what is the closest time frame you would leave between two half marathons? Curious to hear what you think on this.

Finally, it should be noted that the courses for all three races mentioned above are all flat and faster courses. Additionally, logistics will not be an issue with any of the races.

So again –
1 Mid-March to last weekend in May – too short for two halfs in that timeframe? Should I just run my first half and then revisit the issue?
2 What is the least amount of time you’d allow between running two halfs?

If you came here from Twitter, just tweet away, either way would love to hear your suggestions! Especially if you actually HAVE run either of the races in VAB or the Odyssey in Philly.

Thanks everyone!

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