Beginner’s 10-Week Half Marathon Training Program

I’ve heard about people who run half marathons without training. I consider them crazy. 13.1 miles is no easy feat and I’m not about to rely on race day adrenaline to power me through. Besides, improper training is just asking for injuries.

Even though I consider myself a novice runner, my Type A personality requires that I be fully-prepared come race day. So today, I am going to share with you my 10-week, beginner half marathon training program! Are you ready to run?

10-Week Half Marathon Training Program

I’ve done a little research on half marathon training programs for beginners. I found the Beginner’s Half Marathon Training Schedule written by Christine Luff, About.com Guide, to be a good program that I could easily personalize. Here’s what I’ve mapped out:

Print out the training schedule!

Personalize Your Program

What I love most about running is there are NO RULES! It’s all about what works for you. Forget about offense, defense, halftime, and keeping score. During your run, you are your only competition. You have the freedom to personalize your training program based on your work schedule, family life, and personal interests.

I’ve decided to shave down my training program from the original to just 10 weeks. My burnout potential is high and I need the accountability of a realistic 10-week program. I’m planning to run three times per week at most, and then cross train two times per week. Do you like yoga? If so, I suggest keeping it in your training mix. I’m going to attend a yoga class once a week for deep stretching and strengthening. Plus, it’s low-impact and easy on the joints.

Utilize rest days

From now on, I’ll take full advantage of rest days! Our bodies need rest days them to recover and repair muscles while growing stronger. Without rest, you won’t see much improvement. Think of it like this, “Rest is to training, as sleep is to life. Invest in the down time and your body will reward you with stronger performances down the road,” reports Coach Jenny Hadfield of Active.com.

Going forward, I’ll continue doing one “long run” on Saturdays. And Fridays will always be rest days. I’ll likely add a second rest day during the week, too, depending on my schedule and how my body is feeling. Again, personalize the program for you!

Don’t Forget The Basics

In comparison to most other sports, running is incredibly inexpensive. The only real must-have in my opinion is a good pair of running shoes. Check out your local running store to find the best fit for your foot. I also highly recommend investing in a few pairs of high quality socks to prevent blisters. My favorite is the dri-fit cushion cut by Nike. Don’t be fooled by fancy clothing. You can rock any old pair of shorts and a cotton t-shirt and still kick butt. I know this because I once got passed by an elder rocking a vintage track suit. A humbling moment for me!

What training program are you using?

Please share any advice or comments on marathon training. I’d love to hear from you!

Photo credit: Thomas Hawk

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Shelly works for Anytime Health as a Support and Communication Specialist. She has a passion for health and wellness, is a firm believer in leading by example, working hard and playing hard. In her free time, she loves to be with friends and family, shop, cook, clean, and exercise.