fast half training plan

I’m posting later than I would like today.  I was sick all day yesterday with the stomach flu, so I spent most of my day on the couch (if I wasn’t in the bathroom).  I’m home sick today, but feeling better, so I figured I’d catch up on actual work and blog work while I had the chance.  Just hoping I can keep some food down today!

It’s that time of year again!  Half marathon training has officially begun.  I actually wasn’t planning on running the GO! St. Louis Half Marathon this year.  I really, REALLY dislike the course – it’s hilly and mentally tough.  But, my newest running buddy, my brother Brian, wanted to take the next step in his running career and attempt the half marathon.  So, I promised I would train and run with him.

The half marathon, while not my least favorite race to run, is definitely NOT my favorite.  I’m a competitive 5K and 10K runner.  I like to be fast and typically for me, training for longer distance races really slows my pace down.  I’m determined not to let that happen to me this year.

Last year, I went without a training plan.  I did certain runs on certain days, but I gave myself some wiggle room since I never knew when I would be able to get some of those runs in with a new baby in the house.  This year, I’m taking a different approach and created a training plan.  I love having a training plan because it gives me motivation.  I know exactly what I’m doing and when I’m supposed to do it.  It keeps me accountable for my workouts and gives me a glimpse into where I will be 14 weeks from now.  No excuses for this girl!

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I adapted my training plan from Hal Higdon’s Intermediate Half plan.  I would love to follow his Advanced plan, but I just don’t have the time to train 6 days a week.  But, the intermediate plan just doesn’t have enough speed work to help me maintain my speed.  So, I flipped some days around and gave myself an extra speed day.  I’m also following McMillan’s training calculator for my 5K speed (my goal right now is a 20:30 5K – about 30 seconds faster than my current time and 30 seconds slower than my PR).  I’m hoping that by following those paces and keeping up with my speed work, I won’t lose any speed this training cycle.

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I may or may not share my weekly training on the blog.  I haven’t decided yet.  I post so rarely that I think my posts of my weekly training are quite boring, but if you’re interested, you can always follow me on Daily Mile.  I try to keep my training updated on there daily, so that’s a great way to see what I’m doing.

Here’s to another week of training (minus today – thanks to the stomach flu).  Have a fabulous Monday!

How do you try to keep speed when training for longer races?  Do you follow a training plan or make it up on the fly?

  • I’m doing the GO and starting my training this week! I’m actually doing a CrossFit Endurance training plan that includes a bunch of repeats and a few long runs. Here is to hoping for a PR!!
    Courtney @ Journey of a Dreamer recently posted..GEARing Up for 2013 – My Favorite Apparel

    • Kristen

      I can’t wait to hear how CFE goes for you! I did their endurance program for awhile when I wasn’t training for anything and liked it – it was tough! But, 3 days a week of running is not enough for me mentally!

  • Jan

    That looks like an excellent plan! I love the speed work that is a part of it.
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    • Kristen

      Can’t go wrong with speed! I need it!

  • Angela

    I haven’t decided whether to do GO! Or not. I like a 10 week cycle so I have a little time. That course is awful. I wish I had your speed. I love following your training.

    • Kristen

      Thanks! The course is awful. Those rolling hills are killer! There is really no flat parts for a break. Let me know if you decide to run it!

  • I usually make up my plans as I go but I always look at Hal Higdon’s plans for some direction. Decided not to do Go! because I really want to PR this spring before I get knocked up again! Running a fulls in Indiana and Iowa instead.
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    • Kristen

      Hal’s plans are the best! Haven’t failed me yet! Go! is a hard one to PR at – although I set my current half PR there! Good luck with your races!

  • Looks like a great plan! I’m going to start my half training soon too, and haven’t picked a training plan yet, I’m still debating on a few, so I’m adding this one to the bunch!
    MegG recently posted..In My Twenties Tuesday: I loved to go clubbing

  • Jessica Goodman

    Oh no! Now I am really nervous to do the half marathon. Go! Half will be my first half. I really need to start focusing more on my training but it is so hard with two small kids in the house…my youngest is six months old. I have already decided because I am signed up for the half and 5K that if I am not ready that I will forgo the half but I really want to do it.

    • Kristen

      Don’t be nervous! It was my first half 8 years ago and I survived and have now run it 3 times since then. It’ll be my brother’s first half as well! I’m planning on doing a post on how to train for that race, so hopefully that will help you prepare! :)