While half marathons may seem like hefty distances, they're attainable for runners of all backgrounds, with the proper planning. Effective half marathon training should not be rushed, but instead carefully crafted to sharpen your endurance, develop your sense of pacing and strengthen your entire body. A well-planned training regimen will protect your body against injury and inhibit exhaustion from mile one to thirteen.
Training for a half marathon from scratch is not something that should be rushed. Some say it can be done in about eight weeks, but this time frame comes with the assumption you'll be running about five times a week. Few people's weekly personal and work schedules can afford that many intense workouts, so a more realistic training duration is about three months. Start out with a short run of one or two miles, a medium run of about three miles, a long five-mile run and a cross training day per week. Don't fret when you can't get all three runs in per week; just make sure the runs you do are quality ones, by adding hills or sprinting intervals.
Build up Your Endurance
As you grow comfortable with your running routine, add about one mile to each category of run every two weeks or so. The final two weeks before the half marathon, you'll want your short run to be about five miles, your medium run to be between seven and eight miles and your long run to hit around 10 miles. Be sure to allow time each week to really dedicate to the long and medium runs, as these will teach your body how to endure long distances and will strengthen your muscles