10 Things You Need to Know to Start Training for a Half Marathon

Stay on trend as you train for your half marathon with bow tie leggings and chic nike shoes.

leggings: beyond yoga x kate spade (in black) | shoes: nike

Happy Friday! I am so glad you stopped by today. Today’s post kicks off a new mini series on the blog – Fit Friday! Every Friday I’ll be posting about some aspect of training for a half marathon. This week is the week I started training for the Dallas Marathon. I’m training with my husband and my sister and decided to share my journey – the good and the ugly, with you all both here on the blog and via my insta stories. It’s my 4th half marathon to train for, so I’m trying to perfect my training a bit. If you have any tips, please send them my way!

10 tips for half marathon training

  1. A good training program – this is the most important part of your training. I suggest finding a plan that fits your lifestyle and physical shape. For example, I am not in peak shape, so I know I need a bit more time than normal to train. So, I chose a 12 week training program. The plan I chose has 3 short week day runs and a long weekend run. You don’t want to adjust plans too much, but little adjustments here and there are fine. For example, my husband is doing the same plan but he’s only doing 2 weekday runs due to his work schedule. Adjust your schedule to fit your life; you’ll be more apt to follow it. This is the plan I’m following if you need one!
  2. New shoes –  this is huge and maybe one of the top 3 most important things you can do. If your running shoes are shot, you can severely hurt and/or injure yourself during training. Did you know that you’re supposed to get new shoes every 350 – 500 miles? That’s about 3-6 months. This means your shoes should last through training and race day before you need a new pair. I suggest going to some place like Run On where they study your gait and suggest shoes that fit your feet. Doing something like this doesn’t cost more, but makes a world of a difference.
  3. Arm band – get an arm band that breaths well so that when you’re sweating your phone isn’t effected and your arm isn’t dripping. We use this one and love it.
  4. Running hat – this one actually makes a big difference if you live where it’s hot. I got a dry fit hat the last time I trained and to have something that doesn’t trap heat on your head during a long run is huge.
  5. Water intake – make sure you’re well hydrated. I good rule of thumb is to drink half of your body weight. If you’re running, you need to drink more.
  6. Nutrition – what you put in does effect how well you can run. I’ll be posting more on this later, but here’s a good meal plan to help you get started.
  7. Apps can be your best friend – My favorite app is Runkeeper. It does a great job of tracking your run, your mileage, and your pace. You can set it to beep into your headphones every ____ minutes and give you an update on your pace, too! It’s amazing! For more apps, check out this post on my top 5 favorite health and fitness apps.
  8. Roller – it goes without saying that you should be stretching before and after each run. I suggest having a roller to roll your muscles out, too. If you’re having muscle cramps or IT band pain, you can find some great workouts here. I swear by this thing. You’ll develop a love/hate relationship with it almost instantly (hate because it hurts, ha).
  9. Supportive bra – Ladies, this is so key! To save you from pain, invest in a bra that will keep your ladies in place. I have tried several different brands, and my favorite by far is Lululemon’s Ta Ta Tamer.
  10. Support system – having an accountability partner will both keep you on schedule and be your cheerleader for those days you’re feeling a bit down. My sister and husband are this for me. But in the past I’ve trained with friends and it’s been just as fabulous. If you’re training with someone, I suggest doing your long runs together – makes them a lot more interesting!

I hope you found this helpful. As always, let me know any comments, questions or corrections you may have!