14 week beginner half marathon training plan

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Training for a half marathon needs to see you build up some regular running miles. Start this plan if you can already run for 20 to 30 minutes continuously. Your training should be progressive and balanced so you don’t feel too tired. Monday is a day for rest or active recovery. For example, going to the gym or for a swim or cycle. Tuesday is a day for fast intervals, Thursday is a mixed day for developing your race endurance and the weekend is for building your strength and stamina. Wednesday and Friday are rest days and Sat (or Sun) is an active recovery or rest day. Change the days to fit your lifestyle if preferred but always ensure a balanced running week.

Walk: run
This is a strategy for many new runners and involves breaking up the race into periods of running then walking. For example, 8min run–2min walk repeated.

Easy or recovery runs During an easy run you should feel relaxed. You should be breathing comfortably and be capable of holding a conversation throughout the run. If you’re a new/novice runner then you’ll probably be questioning whether any runs feel easy and holding a conversation may feel impossible. Slow down,walk if necessary and control your effort.

Steady runs These are the bread and butter of your training, the miles in the bank’.  Steady runs build the aerobic base that acts as the foundation for the rest of your training. Conversations are still possible at this pace but in sentences rather than long gossip.

Threshold or tempo runs Running at ‘threshold’ pace is about running under‘controlled discomfort’ and is great for improving your running economy. You will find them slightly uncomfortable and they’ll require concentration but they are well worth the effort. You’ll only be capable of uttering a four or five words as you run. As you get fitter and more experienced you’ll learn how to find your own ‘threshold’ pace and this will change the fitter, stronger and faster you get.

 

14 weeks to go:

 

M
T 30 mins brisk walk
W
T 30 mins brisk walk
F
S 10 mins walk, 20 mins easy, 10 mins walk. = 40 mins
S

 

13 weeks to go:

 

M
T (10 mins easy run, 10 mins walk) x 2 = 40 mins
W
T 10 min walk, 15 min easy run, 10 min walk = 35 mins
F
S 5 min brisk walk, 25 min easy run, 5 min brisk walk, 5 min easy walk. =40mins
S

 

12 weeks to go:

 

M
T 30 mins easy running
W
T 5 min easy run, (3 min brisk run, 3 min easy run or walk.) Repeat 3 x 5 min easy run
F
S 40 mins easy run
S

 

11 weeks to go:

 

M
T 35 mins easy run
W
T 5 min easy run, (4 min fast run, 3 min easy run/walk) Repeat 4 x 5 min easy run.
F
S 45 mins easy running
S

 

10 weeks to go:

 

M
T 40 mins easy run
W
T 30 mins easy run
F
S 50 mins easy run
S

 

weeks to go:

 

M
T 45 mins easy run
W
T 30 mins easy run
F
S 55 mins easy run
S

 

8 weeks to go:

 

M
T 40 mins easy running
W
T 5 min easy run (2 min fast run, 2 min easy run) Repeat 6 x 5 min easy run
F
S 65 mins easy running
S

 

7 weeks to go:

 

M
T 40 mins easy running
W
T 5 min easy run. 20 min ‘tempo’ run (quicker than normal–but not really  hard), 5 min easy run.
F
S 75 mins easy running
S

 

6 weeks to go:

 

M
T 45 mins easy running
W
T 5 min easy run (6 min tempo run, 3 min easy run) Repeat 4 x 5 min easy run.
F
S 1 hour 30 mins easy running. (walk every 30 mins if you need to)
S

 

5 weeks to go:  A lighter week or race week.

 

M
T 30 mins easy running
W
T 30 mins easy running
F
S Race a 10k this weekend or do a 30 mins tempo run.
S

 

4 weeks to go: 

 

M
T 45 mins easy
W
T 10 mins easy (3 min steady, 1 min faster, 2 min jog) x 4 10 mins easy
F
S 1 hour 50 mins easy running, (take walk break if you need too.)
S

 

3 weeks to go: 

 

M
T 50 mins easy running
W
T 10 min easy run, (2 min fast run, 2 min very easy run) Repeat 8 x 10 min easy run.
F
S 90 mins easy running
S

 

2 weeks to go:  A lighter training load

 

M
T 20 mins easy
W
T 10 mins easy running, 25 mins at your half marathon pace 10 mins easy running
F
S 50 mins easy running
S

 

1 week to go: An easy run week to put the energy back in to your body.

 

M 30 mins easy run
T Rest
W 20 mins easy run
T Rest
F 10 mins easy run
S Rest
S Race day ‐ Good luck.