Thursday, April 27, 2017

Six-Month Half-Marathon Training Plan for Beginners

Finally! I've been working on this plan for what feels like forever, and I finally finished it up today. I've posted it on my Training Plans page, but I'll share it here as well.

CLICK HERE FOR THE PLAN (PDF FORMAT)

My original thought for this plan was to take a true beginner (non-runner) and prepare them to run a half-marathon (particularly the Rock 'n' Roll Vegas Half in November, since I'll be doing that with lots of From Fat to Finish Line tribe members). However, I don't want it to be specifically for that half, because you could use this plan to train for any half marathon.

This is a six-month training plan--26 weeks! If you are currently capable of walking 30 minutes, four days per week, and your doctor okays it, then you can certainly follow this plan to run your first half-marathon as soon as November.
I basically combined my "Walk to Run" plan, my "Base Building" plan, and my "Finish Strong Half-Marathon" plan, made some tweaks here and there, and kept it as simple as possible, while still being effective.

At first, there are four workouts per week, and then in Week 15, a fifth day is added. The plan starts by building up from walking to running for a full 30 minutes, non-stop. From there, it slowly builds up the long run on weekends, while still running at a very easy pace. In Week 15, I introduce some very simple speed work--intervals from 60 seconds to (eventually) 5 minutes long.

The majority of the plan is EASY running. I stress that because easy runs are so important! Please read my post about The Importance of the Easy Run before you start any training plan. I became my fastest, while staying injury-free, by doing most of my runs at a very slow, easy pace. The post I linked to above describes it much more detail.

So, without further ado, I give you the link to my Six-Month Half-Marathon Training Plan for Beginners (it's in PDF format for easy printing). I hope you enjoy! I welcome any feedback, good or bad, about the results of the plan. I've gotten very good feedback about the other plans I've written, so I hope this one will serve you well :)

(P.S. If you are using this plan to train for the Rock 'n' Roll Vegas Half on November 12, then this plan will start in just a couple of weeks on May 15!)

19 comments:

  1. Thanks for this!! I am doing my first half in two weeks and I wish I'd had his six months ago!
    Just a quick question, what is "T" on sundays during weeks 21-22, 24-5?

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    1. Ahh, thank you! I must have missed that. It's for "Tempo"--I will add the description right now. Appreciate your asking! :)

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  2. You should look into making a running app with your plans. I think people would love to do them and have them right on their phones.

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  3. I can't tell you how perfect this is for me. After having a baby and surgery, I'm woefully out of shape. I need to start from scratch and I signed up for a (different) half marathon in November! I was going to try to build up to a training plan starting in may, so this is perfect for me! Thanks a ton! Also you are my inspiration!

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  4. Thanks a ton!! I had already signed up for my first half marathon at the Vegas Rock and Roll Marathon in November and now I found the perfect training plan... totally meant to be!!

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  5. Thank you for this! I'm considering a November half, so this might be just what I need to train for that.

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  6. Hi Katie,
    Okay....I am going to try this starting on Monday. I am nervous. I am not sure I can even run for 30 seconds. :) My goal isn't necessarily to run a full half but just run something. Could I repeat weeks, if I needed to move slower? Thanks for doing this...it's awesome. Tonya

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    1. Of course!! Tailor it to your own needs. Repeating weeks or workouts is a great way to build up even slower.

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  7. I'm super excited for this!! Thank you so much! I am registering for the Disney Princess Half Marathon in February. I tried to do it in 2016 and was swept after mile 7 due to pace requirements (and, honestly, a lack of training) but I'm ready to give this another go. I have a bit more time since it's in February, so my plan is to do all 12 weeks of your Walk to Run plan before Week 7. I am really excited and hopeful, thank you again!

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    1. Doing all 12 weeks of the Walk to Run plan sounds like a great idea for you! Getting a head start on training will make the race be much easier and more fun! :)

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  8. Looks like a great plan! I'm planning on joining usafit in a few months to start training to walk a marathon. Since it sounds like there are a few of us who are starting to train for monger distance races, could you do a post or series of them on fueling for training? Specifically what to eat before, during, after. How often to fuel during a longer distance run or walk? Thanks!

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    1. I actually just did a post about that last year! You can find it here: http://www.runsforcookies.com/2016/07/all-about-fueling-during-runs.html
      Hopefully that helps! :) Good luck with the marathon training!

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  9. Thank you for this training plan. I am going to use it and sign up for the Rock and Roll 1/2 marathon in Las Vegas.

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  10. Hi, thank you for this plan. I plan to use this for the Rock n Roll 1/2 in Las Vegas. I will let you know how it goes.

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  11. I've run a few halfs and a full now but I would love to share this plan with some friends. What days do you recommend strength straining and what type and how long? Thanks you.

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    1. If you aren't doing strength training already, I wouldn't start it when you are training. But if you are already doing it, then you should be able to do it as you have been already. I would still recommend taking at least one day OFF of all exercise so your body can recover!

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  12. Thank you for sharing so concisely what took you 6 years of hard work to learn! I'm excited, I've done two halfs but not recently and my non-runner hubby has agreed to give this plan a try with me. It seems really manageable and I'm optimistic, but who isn't on day two? :)

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  13. I started your training plan and today i ran for a minute. I love that the plan starts off so slowly. It makes it so doable!

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  14. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you. I decided to face my fear today and sign up for my first Half Marathon at the Detroit Free Press. Our race is October 15th so I better start training asap

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I'd love to hear from you! I read all of my comments, and if you have a question, I do my best to respond; sometimes, however, I get busy and forget to go back to reply, so if it's important, just email me! :)

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