16 week 1/2 marathon training plan

So, you’ll remember the other day I told you guys I agreed to run a ½ marathon.

Yep. I’m silly.

So, let me share with you my training plan! (click to see the whole thing)

1/2 Marathon training plan

So far this year, I’m up to W4D1 of Zombies.



I had 19 days off zombies when I hurt my legs, but I did a couple of very short walk/runs and a 9km walk in there instead. I also did lots of yoga, some spin and pump classes. My legs seem to be in really great shape, and I think that’s because I’m stretching lots, foam rolling and doing yoga. Fingers crossed everything stays healthy!

Foam rolling is a necessary evil

Foam rolling is a necessary evil

I’ve decided to follow a 16 week training plan for the ½ marathon for a few reasons:

  1. Confidence – if I have a good build up, I’m more likely to be able to follow through and hurt a lot less
  2. Running 4 days a week is more appealing than running 3 days or 5 days a week
  3. 16 weeks means if I miss a run or two, so long as it’s not a long run, I’ll be ok 4.    If I leave starting training much later, I’ll chicken ou

So, my 16 weeks starts on the first week of March. I have 18 days until I start my training program. That’s kind of scary. The training program starts with 3 x 3mile runs, then a 4mile run. That’s 3 5km runs, then a 6.5km run is my long run.

If I’m 100% honest, I’m not sure I could run 5km right now without stopping for a walk break. Interestingly enough, the first time I learned to run, my lungs and breathing was what was holding me back. This time, it’s my legs. Some of that’s because I’m a bit scared I’ll injure myself again, but some of it’s just…I don’t have running fitness in my legs.

The way I figure, 18 days should be enough time to finish the Zombies 5k training program, and do a couple of 5km runs, if I run 5 days a week. Easy, right?

So, a few things about this training plan:

  1. Running 4 days a week, 2 cross training days – that means I can continue to do pump twice a week. I don’t need chicken arms, and weight training is always lots of fun
  2. Longest run 17.7km – the excitement of race day will (should?) carry me that last few km
  3. No specific speed or hill work – the Wellington ½ is flat, but hills build speed, and I’m very slow. Luckily (or sadly, perhaps) there are LOTS of hills around so basically, if I want to run outside, I have to run hills. Damnballs.
  4. The first run of every week is 5km – so hopefully I can see improvements how long this takes over the 16 weeks.
  5. The last week of the training plan is nice and low on runs (taper!). I’m actually planning on being on holiday that week, so that works out well. Hopefully I can chill out and not be too nervous and freaked out about the 1/2 that weekend!
  6. The long runs line up with a couple of 10km races around (or I’d just have to run an extra few km to make up the full distance), so that might help keep me motivated, and give me a of experience of how races work. The only other race I’ve ever done was Round the Bays in 2011, and I feel like I should get a couple more under my belt before running a ½.

The plan between now and when the 16 weeks starts – 5 days a week running, pump 2-3 times a week, and yoga every night.

Also, if you want to come run the 1/2 with me, PLEASE do. I need like…a million supports and bullying to get me to the start line. So if you’ve ever thought about doing it, or even a 10km which is at the same time, come run with me!

2 thoughts on “16 week 1/2 marathon training plan

  1. runningwhio February 7, 2013 at 9:40 pm Reply

    So excited for you – and love how much you’re preparing (good job!). So gutted I can’t be there to run or to support you – I’ll be there in spirit!
    Also, if it helps, I have a friend who once told me ‘if you can do 10km, you can do 21’. This has, over the last month or so, become ‘if you can do 3km, you can do 21’. She’s clearly deranged, but it does surprisingly make me feel more confident.

    • sp041 February 7, 2013 at 9:42 pm Reply

      I’m a chronic planner. Planning is almost 1/2 the fun! And it makes me feel a bit less stressed about the whole idea!!! I still think we should go on runs together though!

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