10 Week Half Marathon Training Plan

Congratulations! 13.1 miles to go! Relax, whether you are an experienced runner or a novice, we shall walk (and run!) with you in this 10 week half marathon training program.

This simple article will give you a detailed 10 week half marathon training schedule to follow and offer some simple tips to avoid common mistakes when training for your half marathon.


Basic Terms Used in Training

These terms may seem obvious to some but we shall cover them anyway so you know exactly what they mean for you.

Pace

Run at a pace where you can hold a conversation using complete sentences without gasping for air. Don’t focus on how fast you run during workout sessions.

If you are wearing a heart rate monitor, 65 to 75 percent of your maximum pulse rate should be your target zone.

Distance

Pick a neighborhood or course where you want to train and focus on coming close to the scheduled distances as per the half marathon training schedule. You can always talk to other runners and ask for tips on good areas for running.

Rest

Rest is critical for your body to recover and repair itself. Resting before and after your long weekend runs optimizes your fitness levels.

Long Runs

Long runs are the key to this 10 week half marathon training program. Progressively increasing your distance each weekend will help to cover 13.1 miles before race day.

Cross Training

Cross training exercises include cycling, swimming, aerobics, elliptical training, skiing, snowshoeing and a combination of these which builds resistance and physical strength.

Walking

Walking is a great form of exercise to include in your workouts and is beneficial when you’re feeling tired and need a break.

Strength Training

If you are an experienced weights lifter, continue with your strength training but taper off towards the end of the training schedule. If you’ve never done weights before, now is not the time to start.

Racing

Consider familiarizing yourself with the feeling of being in a race by doing a couple of short races at the end of week six and week nine.

Juggling

This training schedule is flexible. Juggle the workouts from week to week and from day to day as long as you remain consistent with your training.


Whether this 10 week half marathon training is geared for a single accomplishment or as a stepping stone to a full marathon, completing the race will you give an incredible sense of accomplishment. Good luck with your training.

Let’s get started...

10 week half marathon training schedule
Mondays

Mondays are rest days. Rest is critical for recovery and repair to minimize injuries. Don’t ignore rest days.

Tuesdays and Thursdays

After your warm up exercises, run the designated distance at a moderate pace. Cool and stretch after your run.

Wednesdays

Some Wednesdays are also designated either as rest days or cross training days. Do cross training activity for 30-45 minutes.

Fridays

Do a moderate to easy cross training activity for 30-45 minutes. If feeling lethargic, take a rest day.

Saturdays

Do your long slow distance run.

Sundays

This is an active recovery day. Do a short easy run to loosen your muscles. You can also cross train or do a run/walk combination.

10 Week Half Marathon Training Schedule
Week 1

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 2 miles

Wednesday: Rest Day

Thursday: 2.5 miles

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 3 miles

Sunday: 20 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 2

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 2 miles

Wednesday: Rest Day

Thursday: 3 miles

Friday: 30-45 minutes, cross training or Rest Day

Saturday: 4 miles

Sunday: 20-30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 3

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 2.5 miles

Wednesday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Thursday: 3 miles

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 5 miles

Sunday: 20-30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 4

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 3 miles

Wednesday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Thursday: 4 miles

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 6 miles

Sunday: 20-30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 5

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 4 miles

Wednesday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Thursday: 4 miles

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 8 miles

Sunday: 20-30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 6

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 4 miles

Wednesday: Rest Day

Thursday: 4 miles

Friday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Saturday: 9 miles

Sunday: 30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 7

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 4 miles

Wednesday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Thursday: 3 miles

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday: 10 miles

Sunday: 30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 8

Monday: 30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes, cross training

Tuesday: 4 miles

Wednesday: Rest Day

Thursday: 3 miles

Friday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Saturday: 12 miles

Sunday: 30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 9

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Wednesday: Rest Day

Thursday: 3 miles

Friday: 30-45 minutes, cross training

Saturday: 5 miles

Sunday: 30 minutes easy run or 30-45 minutes cross training

Week 10

Monday: Rest Day

Tuesday: 2 miles

Wednesday: 20 minutes easy run

Thursday: Rest Day

Friday: 20 minutes easy run

Saturday: Race Day!

Sunday: Rest Day!

Tips to Avoid Common Half Marathoner Mistakes
1. Don't run a half marathon as your first race

We always prefer to see runners completing shorter races like a 5k or 10k race before moving up to the 13.1 miles half marathon.

The half marathon race is already a challenge without the added stress of a cheering crowd, drinking at refreshment stops, etc.

2. Not sure if you can beat the cut-off time? Don't enter the race.

Half-marathons typically average 3 hours. Most races have a cut-off time by which all participants should have crossed the finish line.

If you don’t trust your time, look for races that are friendly to slow runners and walkers.

3. Remember to hydrate

We’ve talked to short distance runners who never hydrated during their training runs or races. For a short distance, you can get away with not hydrating.

For half marathon training and races, you must hydrate properly. You should never feel thirst. Drink lots of water especially during your long runs.

Remember, you’ll know you’re properly hydrated when your urine color is light yellow.

4. Don't quit

It is not easy training for a half marathon and there will be times you'll consider throwing in the towel. Don’t do it. Fight the temptation and keep training, keep running.

Remember why you’re doing the half marathon training. Remain steadfast even on race day.

When you feel like giving up, dig deep, stay mentally strong and push to the finish.

5. Be prepared for your long runs

Your long run days are critical in your half marathon training. Eat and drink properly the days before the long run.

Get a good night sleep and hydrate properly to fuel the body during your run.

6. Don't ignore pain

Post-run muscle soreness is common during running. However pain that worsens after your run or affects your running or even walking is a sign that something is wrong in your body.

Don’t assume all pain is normal in half marathon training. Take time off training when you get an injury and rest. Pushing through despite injury will most likely make it worse.

7. Don't skip cross training

Too much running can lead to burnout and injury. Doing your cross training activities supplements your running.

10 week half marathon training is more than just logging miles. Cross training builds your strength for the long runs and boosts your overall fitness level.

8. Don't aim too high (for your first half marathon)

Finishing a half marathon is an incredible milestone. Don’t focus too much on your personal time. Simply focus on completing your first 13.1 mile half marathon race!

9. Don't ignore rest days

Rest! We cannot stress this enough. Rest days are crucial for you to recover from the stress of running.

Giving your body a break also reduces injuries such as stress fractures and shin splits. A rest day also gives you a mental break so you don’t lose your motivation by running every day.

10. Don't do too much too late

We’ve all come across stories of amateur runners who tried running half marathons with little or no training beforehand. Don’t be that guy.

Two weeks before your race should be slowing down to give your mind and body the chance to rest, recover and prepare for race day. Don’t overdo the miles the last few days.

Stick to your training schedule and you will be fine.

11. Don't start off too fast

Do not fall into the temptation of starting out too fast because you’re feeling strong and well rested. You will burn through too much of your stored energy early in the race and your legs will feel tired much sooner.

Are you ready to start? Remember, follow your 10 week half marathon training schedule, do your cross training activities, rest adequately, eat and hydrate properly. All the best!

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