Half marathons are races where people typically cover 21 kilometres (13.1 miles) in one go. Even though that seems like a lot, in practice, it is not actually that long. Anyone with the proper training routine can complete it.

How To Train For A Half Marathon

Where To Begin

The key to a successful half marathon training routine is consistently putting in weekly mileage to make your body accustomed to running for extended periods of time. Beginners can start with logging ten to fifteen miles per week in total and slowly building it up to a peak of twenty-five to thirty miles a week. Better experienced runners can start off at twenty-five or more miles a week and peak at forty or more miles. Plan the race (or virtual race) two months prior, at the very least. If you are able to run a 5K now, you will be able to run a half marathon in about eight weeks. However, the ideal plan is to train for three or four months, which provides a buffer if you fall ill, get injured, or happen to get busy at work. In short, plan for life to get in the way, because it so often does, so that you do not stress yourself out physically or mentally. If you are unable to run a 5k now, half marathon training plans with a 3-mile runs in the first week so that you can work your way up to that. Lots of people run into issues such as shin splints when they start off, so get past that point first.

The most important part of the training routine must be a weekly long run at a leisurely conversational pace, meaning that you can speak in complete sentences throughout the run, gradually increasing in distance, week after week, to build strength and endurance. If you gradually build up to being comfortable on long runs of ten or eleven miles, you will have what it takes to run 13.1 miles on race day.

How To Choose The Right Training Plan

A solid half marathon training plan should consist of these four things:

  • Cross-training days
  • A long run which is at least 10 miles
  • A rest day immediately after the long run
  • A taper

Cross-training helps to work on cardio without the relentless pounding of running. Long runs might give you the confidence you require on race day, but rest days are equally crucial to recovery. A part of training plans leave the cross-training decision up to you, but it is suggested to try cycling, swimming, or using the Stairmaster or elliptical. There is no need to worry about hitting that 13.1 before the half marathon because if you can run 10 miles before the race, you can run 13 on race day.