June 7th, 2022
While it may seem like a daunting task, a half marathon is doable for most people. While we always recommend seeking the advice of your healthcare provider before beginning any new exercise routine, here are three key questions to help you determine whether a half-marathon is doable for you – and a couple of tips for training safely and effectively.
Three Key Questions
To figure out if you have the ability to train for a half marathon ask yourself these questions:
- Do you have up to 4-6 hours, spread throughout the week that you can run?
- Do you have 16 weeks or more before the race?
- Are you currently injury free and without any health concerns which can inhibit running?
If you answered yes to these questions then you have what it takes to go from where you are right now (even if that’s the couch!) to 21.1km. When it comes to training for a longer distance, the most important things to have are patience and commitment. With the right attitude and perseverance you can conquer a half marathon – and you might just have a good time doing it.
Tip #1: Go Slow and Steady – Especially at First
It is important not to do too much too soon. The first few weeks are going to be hard but once you get past that barrier you will see great improvements. We generally recommend for beginning runners to take it easy by alternating run and walk intervals 3-4 times per week. This could be something as easy as jogging for 5 minutes followed by walking for 1 minute (repeat 4 or 5 times). As this gets easier you can lengthen the run section.
The goal isn’t to run as fast as you can but to maintain a pace that doesn’t leave you at the brink of collapse. Maintaining a sustainable pace will leave you wanting to run again instead of thinking your new shoes were a huge mistake. Once you have built up some endurance, you will add in different types of workouts to challenge your body in different ways to build strength and speed.
Tip #2: Consider a Professional Training Plan
Getting into the specifics of an entire training plan is beyond the scope of this blog but it’s important to know that working with a trainer or coach can be very beneficial when training for a half marathon. If you are interested in knowing how you can maximize your results while minimizing your risk of injury, please feel free to get in touch with us. Our team of professionally certified trainers are experienced in prepping clients for half marathons and marathons alike. We would be delighted to help you launch your running career on the right foot!