Posted by: Rachael | March 28, 2011

Spring half-marathon training plan

One of the things I look forward to most about Spring is running outside again. There is no form of exercise or stress relief I enjoy more than a good, long run – especially with the warm sun shining on my face and some good tunes in my ears. Winter is a rough time for me because I literally cannot brave going outside in temperatures below freezing to run. Needless to say, my physical activity regime involves a lot of stair stepping/elliptical at the gym…and subsequently means I don’t work out as much. Does anyone else hate the gym as much as I do?? It’s just so B-O-R-I-N-G!

Despite the fact that it is hardly Spring here in Albany, I did just sign up for a half marathon in June, and so today marks the first day of my 10 week training plan! I am really looking forward to warmer weather in the future and getting back into the routine of training with a running goal in mind.

Here’s a look at my 10 week half-marathon training plan, modified slightly from Hal Higdon’s advanced program for runners who race or compete regularly and are looking to improve their time. I ran my first half marathon, last fall’s Maple Leaf  in Vermont, in 2:09, so my goal this time is to break 2:00! It’s ambitious but I think I can do it!

Week Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat Sun
1 (3/28) 3 mi run + strength 7x hill 3 mi run + strength 30 min tempo Easy run 3m pace 90 min run
2 (4/4) 3 mi run + strength 8x 400 at 5K pace 3 mi run + strength 40 min tempo Rest 3m run 90 min run (3/1)
3 (4/11) 3 mi run + strength 8x hill 3 mi run + strength 45 min tempo Rest 3m pace 90 min run
4 (4/18) 3 mi run + strength 6x 400 at 5K pace 3 mi run + strength 30 min tempo Easy run Rest 90 min run
5 (4/25) 3 mi run + strength 4x 800 at 5K pace 3 mi run + strength 45 min tempo Rest St. John’s 10K 4m pace
6 (5/2) 3 mi run + strength 3x 1600 at race pace 3 mi run + strength 50 min tempo Rest 5m pace 1:45 run (3/1)
7 (5/9) 3 mi run + strength 5x 800 at 10-K pace 3 mi run + strength 30 min tempo Easy run 5m pace 1:45 run
8 (5/16) 3 mi run + strength 4x 1600 at race pace 3 mi run + strength 55 min tempo Rest 5m pace 2:00 run (3/1)
9 (5/23) 3 mi run + strength 6x 800 at 10-K pace 3 mi run + strength 60 min tempo Rest or easy run 3m pace 2:00 run
10 (5/30) 3 mi run + strength 6x 400 at 5K pace 2 mi run + strength 30 min tempo Rest Freihofer’s 5K Iron horse half marathon

 

Here’s a little more info on what each of the workouts in the table entails (according to Hal):

Easy Runs: Comfortable runs at a conversational pace.

Strength training: This includes any combination of stretching and strength training – yoga, weight lifting, body pump, etc…whatever gets you pumping a little iron. Usually combined with easy runs.

Hills: These help build speed and quad muscles – good hills should be between 200-400 meters long, and you can walk or jog an equal distance between each hill repeat.

Speedwork: These help improve your time and are meant to be fast! Walk or jog in between each rep, same as you would for the hills. I find it’s best to do these on a track if you have access to one.

Long Runs: Building distance is important for longer races like the half-marathon. These runs, generally done on Sundays, should be easy, and focus more on the length of the workout (reaching a max of 2 hours) than the actual distance covered.

Tempo: Tempo runs usually start slow, have a continuous build-up during the run, and end at a near 10K pace at the end.

Rest: Remember to rest – it helps with muscle recovery, and prevents injury!


I’m headed to the gym now to get in my easy 3 miles (it’s wayyy too blustery to go outside today), and following that up with an evening Ashtanga yoga class at my studio! Let the half-marathon training begin!

Have a fabulous evening friends!

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Responses

  1. so excited for you, dear! you have a great plan out in front of you – and I am so looking forward to running the SpringOff 10K with you and all the other bloggers 🙂 so much fun!

  2. Thanks Heather! Me too – it’s gonna be a blasty and I can’t wait to hang with you all again soon! =)


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