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What strategy would you recommend for running a 1/2 marathon 15 weeks from now when the longest run I've done is a 10k?

asked over 4 years ago | Report

I'm 46. I've been running for 6 weeks and I'm up to about 10 miles a week, with a 10 minute mile average without any pain or even aches. My only ambition for the 1/2 marathon is to finish. I suppose I should combine some percentage of walking and running. I'm thinking to walk a miles, run 5 miles, walk 2 and run the rest. How does this sound?

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  • Here's the plan I used to run my first half marathon:

    http://www.the-fitness-motivator.com/half-marathon-training-plan.html

    I don't intentionally walk during races, except through water stops or for gu, but I'd recommend more of a mix of walking and running like Galloway suggests.

    Good luck!

    answered over 4 years ago |Report

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  • Hey, I'd say you can finish it! I've never run a race before I run my first half-marathon, and boy I did finish it! I wasn't crazy about finishing it fast, I thought about having fun and getting the feeling-which I did. I suggest that you run more long runs so you won't be dreading running the race itself. You will be more confident that you've ran that distance and that you will be fine.
    You can do it. Goodluck!

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  • I'm in a very similar boat. Same age, relatively new runner (since August 09), running 15-20 miles a week now. I'm looking at a half marathon in late May. I'll probably go with one of the Higdon plans, which are 12 weeks. http://www.halhigdon.com/halfmarathon/index.htm

    He comes highly recommended for his marathon plans.

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  • Hi Sharon,
    You have enough training time that you can probably be ready to run the half without walking. Of course, if you get in the race and feel like taking walk break(s), that's nothing to be ashamed of! On a first one, be proud to finish! The 12-week Higdon plan that Keith referenced fits your timetable. The program only assumes that you already can run 3 miles, 3 to 4 times per week. You are at 10m/wk, and have run 10K, so that seems to describe where you currently are at. If you choose the 12-week program, don't start it now. Wait until exactly 12 weeks before your race. The program is designed to give the right workouts at the right length of time before the race for best performance. Between now and then, just continue building your base. Good luck. We'll be pulling for you on your half!

    answered over 4 years ago |Report

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  • The one thing I might add to Vern's suggestion is that you might want to start a week or so before the 12 weeks, just in case you get sick or injured or something and need to take a week off. If all goes well, you can repeat a week. Then again, I don't think half marathon training is so rigorous that if you missed a week it would be the end of the world. Just a suggestion I've seen made on other programs.

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  • Sharon,

    I am a new runner (since August) and I too am training for my first 1/2 marathon. I can run 5-6 miles now, but I am S-L-O-W. I am working on building mileage (not so concerned about speed right now). There are some great training programs online and in books---you have plenty of time. I like the training program in "Complete Book of Women's Running" from Runner's World. Although, I have found all the programs are similar in the fact that you are increasing your total weekly mileage and increasing your long run mileage consistently (gradually) over time.

    I too am not opposed to walking if I have to, but I personally have found that once I stop to walk---running is so much harder after that. I think I am going to work on a slow-steady pace instead.

    Good luck with your training!

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  • Hi Sharon,

    Looks like you are in better shape than I was when I did my first 1/2 last year. There is a group training program in my town that worked really well for me. The schedule of runs is still online. They have schedules for walking, run/walking, and running.

    good luck!

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  • Go to runnersworld.com and then click on smart coach...fill out your info and it will spit out a training program for you according to your desired effort/timeline.

    answered over 4 years ago |Report

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  • Joe
    Joe Sendmail

    When are you planning to do the 13.1mls?
    Absolutely everyone can do a 13.1ml or even a 26.2ml race but I'd suggest you don't yet have the mileage in your legs to jog it.
    Run, Walk, Run, Walk is an OK strategy but be warned that with you're plan outlined above it'll be difficult to get you're 2nd run going and you could end up walking the last 8mls which is probably not really what you want
    Give yourself time... possibly up to 13 weeks training allowing for increase in weekly and long run mileage. There are loads of plans out there like this one.............. http://www.halhigdon.com/halfmarathon/index.htm.
    Consider building 5K, and 10K races into your training plan but #1 is to get a training plan.

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  • I ran my first half marathon last year. My plan was to extend my long run by one mile a week until I got to 12 miles. I didn't want to do 13, because I wanted the race to be the longest I had ran up to that point. I wasn't two concerned about speed because my goal was only to finish. My advise for the half would be to be very conscious of speed in the beginning. It is easy to get caught up with the crowd. Besides that just enjoy. It was ten times funner then my 10K.

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  • Sharon, I too am training for my first 1/2 marathon (the Maryland Half) at the end of May. However, my longest run without stopping is only a 5K, so I am worried about being able to run all 13.1 miles. I am 24, in pretty good shape from playing other sports, but JUST got into the whole running thing. I think that for your first half, just finishing should be the goal - regardless of whether you walk or not. As for me, I just hope to run all 13 miles and finish - and not worry about my time. I have been running 3-4 days a week and usually do about 3-4 miles per run, about 13 miles per week. My half is still 16.5 weeks away, so I haven't decided on a training plan yet. Any one have any more suggestions for a first time half-marathoner?

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  • Sharon, I'm planning my first 1/2 this spring as well. I definitely think you'll be ready to run it. Lot's of good suggestions here. I'm planning on following one of Hal's plans too and you're at a point training wise that you could do the same! Good luck with training and keep us posted!

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  • When I trained for my first "Half Marathon" all I did was get my miles up more, and concentrated on getting at least one longer run in. Before I actually raced the "Half" I got my long run up to 15-miles at an easy pace. I did a few of those before stepping on the starting line, and it really helped me out alot. I did fine come race day, and didn't have to walk at all.

    Others advice are great. Really! but for Me, it was a very long time after I started running that I subscribed to "Runners Wrold", and even longer than that before I started browsing the internet at our local library. Good-Luck with your RACE. I know you can do it. God Bless You & Your-Family is My Prayer.+

    answered over 4 years ago |edited over 4 years ago |Report

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  • Like with a marathon, your weekly long runs are the key. They give you the aerobic base to handle it physically, plus the confidence to handle it mentally. I had a break-through performance in a half marathon by basically doing plenty of longer runs and not as much speed training as I'm accustomed to. I think my longest runs were 15s and I might get in an easy 7-10 miles twice a week. I don't think I even did any speed until a few weeks before the race.

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