A good training plan is tailored to you. Below you will find three different plans for running your next half-marathon.
I’ve admittedly only ran one half marathon and one full marathon in my life. So instead of writing a plan for something I have little experience in, I hyperlinked training plans put together by Runner’s World (see the bold headers of this article). Runner’s World is an online community of racers around the world.
But before you take a look at the images below, here’s a guide for how to read the graphics.
- Rest/XT: Cross-training (or take a rest day). Do an RxFIT class or one of these bodyweight workouts from home.
- M: Miles
- MR: Mile repeats. Run one mile at the given pace, then jog very slowly for half a mile to recover. Repeat cycles as directed.
- P/M: Per Mile
- T: Tempo. Ease into the given tempo for the distance shown. Tempo runs should feel challenging; on a scale of 1-10, your effort will feel like a 7 or 8.
- Strides: Do six to eight 20-30 second accelerations postrun.
- Long run: Run at a comfortable pace. Run at an easy pace; you should be able to hold a conversation.
- Easy – Easy runs should be done 30 seconds to one minute per mile slower than half-marathon goal pace
- HMP (Half-marathon pace) – This is the pace that you hope to maintain in the race. Run one mile easy to warm up and one mile easy to cool down.
- Effort hills (gradual): After an easy warm-up, run repeats on a gradual hill, maintaining a comfortable effort as you climb and descend. Cool down to complete that day’s distance
- Effort hills (steep): The same as the gradual exercise, but find a more challenging hill.
- Runs with race pace: After at least a mile of jogging to warm up, run at goal pace. Jog a mile to cool down.
- Pace hills: During your warm-up, gradually ramp up to race pace. Then, hold that effort on a mix of hills (slowing on climbs, speeding up on descents). Cool down at an easy pace.
- Long with hills: After a few flat, easy miles, seek out serious hills. Maintain a comfortable effort level as you climb and descend. Finish on flat terrain.
The only change I would recommend on this graphic is placing the yellow, long days on the day of your race.
For example, if your race is on a Saturday, I would do the long-runs on a Saturday every week instead of a Sunday. If you do switch up the calendar, just be sure you do a run every other day while mixing in rest/RxFIT workouts on your off-running days.
Sub 2-Hour 1/2 Marathon Plan
The times in parentheses are the paces you should be hitting each week. If you don’t necessarily want the 2-hour half-marathon pace, sub these times out for your own calculated times. Just be sure to have the pacing get a little bit more aggressive as the weeks progress.
For example, if I want to run a 9:00/mile pace, I might start weeks 1 and 2 running a 9:20/mile pace and finish at week 10 with an 8:50/mile pace.
Trail Run 1/2 Marathon Plan
This is the perfect plan to get ready for a Spartan Beast or trail-running Ragnar. If you’re planning on doing a Spartan Super, only do the Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday runs.
(If you’re getting ready for a Spartan Sprint, follow something like this.)