Some thoughts on using the Garmin for pacing. When on the main screen, the pace fluctuates considerably as you have noted. This can be improved some by adjusting the the "pace smoothing" of the unit. Second, I recently discovered when I go to one of my other screens that I have set up, specifically the lap screen, the pacing her is much more accurate. On this screen, the pace reads out in the biggest numbers, while the other two small sections are for distance of that lap and e.t. of that lap. The first pacing feature is more of an "instant readout" of that moment in time. The second accounts for the entire lap distance. Thus, when the lap distance is reached, the readout will be the same as the calculated and stored lap average pace.
I have done two half marathons. My first was last fall (Fox Cities)and I was hooked. I ran a half this spring in Green Bay as well. I am planning on running Fox cities again this fall. Beautiful time of year, flat course, great crowd support, well organized and fairly small (3,000 for half and full).
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