Well, here is what happened to me at my goal races:
1999: first half: 1:40, second: 2:05 2000: first half: 1:46, second: 1:52
My point: in a marathon, when I crash, I really crash. In a 5K, the slow down might be a few seconds a mile. In the marathon, we are talking about going from 7:45 to 12:45 a mile! For me, too fast of a start does not mean that I merely slow down; I really crash.
I say that if the first half doesn't feel like a complete WALK, then it is too hard.
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