Essential Guide To Training For Your First Half-Marathon

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Distance: The training schedule dictates workouts at distances, from 3 miles to two hours, the latter which depending on your ability may actually take you further than your half marathon race distance.

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Don't worry about running precise distances, but you should come close. Pick a course through the neighbourhood, or in some scenic area where you think you might enjoy running. Then measure the course using your GPS or www. As an Advanced runner, you probably already know the distances of many of your courses. When the prescribed workout as on Sundays is in hours rather than miles, forget distance entirely. Rest: Rest is as important a part of your training as the runs.

You will be able to run the long runs on the weekend better--and limit your risk of injury--if you program some easy training before and after. Be realistic about your fatigue level--particularly in the closing weeks of the program--and don't be afraid to take a day off. Hills: Some hill training will help strengthen your quads and build speed. Look for a hill between and meters long. Jog or walk an equal distance between each repeat.


I prescribed only three hill sessions, all in the first half of the program, but if you want to do more hill training, be my guest. You can substitute hill repeats for any of the interval workouts, or even in place of a Tempo Run or two if you want. Speedwork: If you want to race at a fast pace, you need to train at a fast pace several days a week. The training schedule begins with meter repeats, but also includes and meter repeats in later weeks. Walk or jog between each repeat.

You can do the and repeats on a track, although you may want to do the mile repeats on the road. Warm-up: Warming up is important, not only before the race itself, but before your speed workouts above and pace workouts below. Most Novice runners do not warm up, except in the race itself.

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This is okay, because they're more interested in finishing rather than finishing fast. You have a different goal; otherwise you wouldn't be using the Advanced program, so warm up before you run fast. My usual warm-up is to jog a mile or two, sit down and stretch for minutes, then run some easy strides meters at near race pace. And I usually cool down afterwards by doing half the warm-up distance.

Half Marathon Training Program for Beginners - Download PDF | Live Better

Tempo Runs: This is a continuous run with a build-up in the middle to near K race pace. A Tempo Run of 40 to 60 minutes would begin with minutes easy running, build to minutes near the middle, then minutes easy toward the end. The pace build-up should be gradual, not sudden, with peak speed coming about two-thirds into the workout. Hold that peak only for a minute or two.

In fact, the times prescribed for Tempo Runs serve mainly as rough guidelines. Feel free to improvise.

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Improvisation is the heart of doing a Tempo Run correctly. Pace: A lot of runners look at my training schedules and ask, "What do you mean by 'pace? Some workouts are designed as pace runs to get you used to running the pace you will run in the race. In Week 10, for example, I ask you to do "5 m race pace. You might want to do a short warm-up before starting each of these pace runs.

Long Runs: As an experienced runner, you probably already do a long run of around minutes on the weekends anyway. The schedule suggests a slight increase in time as you get closer to race date: from 90 minutes to to two hours. Don't get hung up on running these workouts too fast and forget about how many miles you cover.

4 Great Energy Gels for Long-Distance Running

And, yes, you may actually find yourself running further than You should finish refreshed, not fatigued. The schedule below suggests doing your long runs on Sundays, and while you can do them Saturdays or any other convenient day, you will generally find it easier to run the long runs the day after the pace runs instead of vice versa.

Cross-Train : Normally I don't prescribe cross-training for Advanced runners. That's because you're usually more focused on pure running than Novice or Intermediate runners. But if you find that cross-training helps you prevent injuries, or if you enjoy it, feel free to substitute cross-training on one or more of the easy days.

Notice I used the word substitute. Usually it's not a good idea to add cross-training, particularly hard cross-training, to an existing schedule under the mistaken belief that it will make you stronger. It may actually cause you to overtrain, which can have a negative effect on performance, because you never get a chance to rest. You may be outside in cool or wet temperatures for hours before the race begins in the pre-dawn chill. Tuck them in your shorts if you warm up, just in case you turn back in to the wind later in the race A tip from Ryan Hall.

Banned Music A lot of the courses say no music, so like a rule following girl I would show up to find tons of people with headphones.

That being said, do it at your own peril. Dump some out if it seems too full, then pinch the cup, so the side creates a point and sip. Guzzling rarely leads to a happy stomach. What matters is you showed up and crossing that finish line is automatic PR. Quitting Get real about the fact that during training and the race you will feel like quitting.

While you should be fired up for your first half marathon, a bit of realism not fear makes this moment something you can move through. They might need the pep talk too. Spectator Plan Plan ahead to know what your fans will be wearing and where they hope to be. I definitely missed friends at those first races because I thought they would certainly see ME. Weight Gain Recognize that distance training requires appropriate fueling.

Like many runners, I started running to lose weight. I assumed that marathon training would be a great way to speed up the process. High quality food keeps training hunger in check and provides energy for your runs. Put Body Glide on every conceivable inch of the body, not just select spots like your thighs, but on race day get in between every toe, under every arm, and even around your waistband.

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How to run a half marathon – half marathon training plans for every runner

If you always run with someone and find yourself solo on race day it can immediately throw off your entire day. Know you can rely on yourself. Recovery Spend time learning about recovery.

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  • Compression pants, ice baths, sports nutrition, all of these things ensure that during training you can continue putting in the miles and after the race you can resume training without too many days of walking down stairs sideways. Those who do jump back in often find themselves injured within a few months.

    A few extra easy weeks are worth avoiding months of frustration. And if you really need a coach, then work with someone who understands you! I do offer one on one coaching to a few people each year or checkout the brand new Sub Two Hour Half Marathon training plan to guide you through the process!