Half Marathon Training Plan

Hello everyone! I hope that you are all having a fantastic day. I’m giving my brain a little break at work to get this post rolling, my brain has been all over the place today! I don’t know if it’s from coming back from almost four days off, or the migraine meds I took this morning (I could feel it happening behind my right eye, luckily I took something in time, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to function), or maybe the fact that everyone is being loud outside my office. I mean, does a surgeon really need to be playing his guitar with his door open? I think not.

Well now my door is closed, and although I have a lot of work writing to get done, I thought I would get my fingers warmed up with some blogging.

Today I am going to share with you my fitness goals and the plan I have created to get me to my half marathon. I’ve broken it up into three phases, and I don’t actually start running consistently until Phase 2. Here is the breakdown:

Phase 1: general fitness/cross training
In this phase my goal is to get at least half way through my weight loss goals. The goal is 30 lbs, but I’ve noticed that the numbers aren’t dropping as quickly as I was hoping, so really anything more than 20 and I will be a very happy camper. But in addition to that, I am really focusing on general fitness and cross training. I am going to be running a lot in the next few months, and I know that right now I am not ready for it, so I am increasing my cardio and focusing on maintaining a heart rate of 150-170 (lately it’s been incline walking, holy moly!) while doing so. I hope that this, combined with my strength training will get me ready for the running ahead. After 10 weeks in this phase I am going to take a break from the plan and have an amazing week of walking and yoga to help my body refresh and reenergize.

I am following Harley Pasternack’s 5 Factor workout plan. If you are looking for a long-term workout regimen, I highly recommend this one. Every week you get a great full body workout without feeling burnt out. I’m not going to give away the plan, but you basically do five minutes of cardio, weights, and then at least five more minutes of cardio. I know that for me, more cardio is going to torch those extra calories, but to avoid burnout, I’ve been gradually adding a bit every week. This week it’s 20 min after my weights, and next week will be 25… I think you get the picture.

Phase 2: 5K training
In this phase I am going to do a nine week 5K training program, called the Couch to 5K program. It really takes you from no running, to running a 5K, which I think will be a great way to get started. Starting slow will help me focus on not getting injured and I can work on form and speed as well. The workouts are only set for 3 days a week, so in addition, I will continue my five days of weights a week, and add in spin or swimming for cross training, and a yoga class or DVD (but not like power yoga, an ooey gooey yoga class as I like to call it).

Phase 3: half marathon here I come!!
My previous phases were determined after I found a good half marathon training program, I counted backwards, determined the mileage I needed to be to begin this phase, and went from there. This eight week plan from Fitness Magazine fit really well into my already established training schedule, I like working out five days a week.

To be honest, during this phase I am not 100% sure what I am going to do in addition to my half marathon training plan. I know that I am going to need to continue my strength training, but I also know myself, and I know that I can get burnt out easily. As this phase approaches I am going to reassess what’s going on. Maybe for the eight weeks leading up to the half I will go with yoga and pilates, or maybe I will do some new workout DVDs, shaking up your training plan is always a good idea, and I know that at this point in the plan, it will keep me motivated and interested.

I think that the key to any plan or any goal is that you make it attainable. Don’t set a goal to lose five lbs a week, not only is it unhealthy, it’s just not reasonable! At the same time though, you need to set goals for which you need to push yourself to attain.

What about you, what are some fitness goals you have for yourself? How do you set yourself up for success?

(Image source)

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7 thoughts on “Half Marathon Training Plan

    • Thanks Tina! (I LOVE your blog PS, I pretty much read it every day…) I used to have a very all-or-nothing mentality, but now I realize (after quite a few burnouts) that it’s about setting yourself up for success 🙂

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