It’s not unusual to be a little bit intimidated by the idea of running a half marathon. After all, the 13.1-mile (21.08241 km) race requires regular running and strength training, plus figuring out exactly what gear you need to run a half marathon and what your fueling strategy should be.
Luckily, ten weeks is plenty of time to train for a half marathon — with the right training plan in your hands. Here, learn more about training for a half marathon and download a 10-week training plan, developed by Kayla Jeter, C.P.T., an RRCA-certified running coach, NASM-certified personal trainer, and certified functional strength coach, to get you ready for race day.
Who should use this 10-week half-marathon training plan?
While runners who are total beginners should stick to a 12-week half-marathon training plan, this 10-week training plan is more appropriate for runners with a little bit of experience, says Jeter. “You should be able to run 3 miles (4.8 km)comfortably, without stopping,” she advises. “You might also have experience running a 5K (almost 8K km) or you’ve done a smaller race before.” And if this is your first half marathon, this 10-week training plan is perfect for you.
Since your legs are already accustomed to running a few miles at a time, your “long runs” during training start at 4 miles (4.5 km) and peak at 12 miles (19.3 km) during week 7 of your half-marathon training plan — giving you plenty of time to taper before race day. (Tapering, ICYDK, is the period of time during race training when you pull back on mileage in order to give your legs time to fully recover for race day.)
You’ll also notice in this 10-week half-marathon training plan that some of your easy runs are determined by time (think: 25-30 minutes) rather than distance (e.g., 3 miles or 4.8 km). That’s because Jeter wants you to focus on increasing the time you spend on your feet, rather than aiming for specific mileage (or trying to get the run done as quickly as possible). “Spending that time on your feet is so important to build that runner’s strength,” she explains. “You’re getting more steps in, putting more pressure on your joints — which will help your body adapt to running.” With that in mind, let your easy runs be truly easy and comfortable. Aim for a conversational pace that doesn’t leave you too out of breath.
The 10-week half marathon training plan
Ready to start your journey to the finish line? View your 10-week half-marathon training plan for beginners below.
This story first appeared on www.shape.com
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