Training for a Half Marathon on a Treadmill

Half marathons are a big commitment. It will be 13.1 miles, so that it will require some training. This distance should only be attempted if you have run at least one 10k or have a few months of running. Although half marathons are not the same distance as a full marathon, they are still widely held. If you are looking to do a full marathon, they can be a great starting point.

The half-marathon plan

We assume that you have either run 10k races before or run the same distance as a half-marathon. This plan assumes that you run 30 minutes per week. It will take several weeks to reach the desired half-marathon distance. For the long-term, we will stick to the running for minutes plan. You can always modify the plan to suit your fitness level or if the plan is too difficult for you.

Cross-training, race pace, and outside running are all part of our program. If you are not running a half-marathon outside, don’t bother with the run outside instruction. The race itself is the most important part. You will see a reduction in the time you run to prepare for either the final race or the half-marathon distance.

There are 2 rest days. You can do some strength training on one of these days, but we recommend that you start it on Friday to allow for the rest after the long run. Do not overdo strength training. Just some injury prevention work for your legs. Rest is important to allow your muscles to recover. You should always be hydrated. Consider a sports drink, energy gel, or energy bar halfway through the workout or at 60 minutes.

The Key:

  • CT & LCT: Cross-training day. The equipment is different, but you still need to do cardio. These days, you can use an elliptical or bike to exercise. LCT is a light cross-training session that helps you get ready for the Sunday long run.
  • O: This means that you should run outdoors. If possible, we recommend doing one per week only if you are running a half-marathon outside.
  • RP: You should run at a race pace or faster if you see these initials during a day. This will improve your time. These will have low mileage so that you can keep up with your pace.
Week Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 Rest 2 mile O CT 2 mile RP Rest LCT 30 minutes
2 Rest 3 miles O CT 2 miles RP Rest LCT 40 minutes
3 Rest 4 miles O CT 3 miles RP Rest LCT 50 minutes
4 Rest 5 miles O CT 3 miles RP Rest LCT 60 minutes
5 Rest 6 miles O CT 4 miles RP Rest LCT 70 minutes
6 Rest 7 miles O CT 4 miles RP Rest LCT 80 minutes
7 Rest 8 miles O CT 5 miles RP Rest LCT 90 minutes
8 Rest 8 miles O CT 5 miles RP Rest LCT 100 minutes
9 Rest 8 miles O CT 5 miles RP Rest LCT 110 minutes
10 Rest 9 miles O CT 5 miles RP Rest LCT 120 minutes
11 Rest 8 miles O CT 5 miles RP Rest LCT 130 minutes
12 Rest 8 miles O CT 5 miles RP Rest LCT 80 minutes
13 Rest 6 miles O CT 4 miles Rest Rest Half Marathon

This plan is not for everyone. You can adjust the time you spend running on Sunday, depending on your ability. Keep in mind that the maximum time spent running should be around 15 miles. To give your muscles the best training, we want it to last longer than the race distance.

This is your 13-week training plan. This is 3 months or about a quarter of a year. This gives you plenty of time to prepare for this distance. Speed work is not required except for your Thursday race pace. You can substitute speed work for this race pace to make you faster. We wish you good luck and see you at the next full marathon!

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