About three years ago, I ran my first half marathon in San Diego. It was a blast training for it and felt like a HUGE accomplishment. However, my first experience was terrifying. I got super sick and grossness was coming out of both end. (don’t visualize that…) There was TOTALLY a reason behind why I got sick, which I will share later. After accomplishing the race, it felt like such a fulfillment. I made a personal resolution to do another half SOON, I am SO excited for the one in February here in Fort Worth, Cowtown! It’s the first half I have done in Texas and thought it would be a good transition into doing another race in the spring. The ultimate goal is to do the “popular race” here in DFW, The Big D Half Marathon.
Training for a half is no small feat, and not just because of the miles you put in. You have to plan for the week: what days can I run this week, what day can I do my long run? You have to be more conscience about the food you’re putting into your body, stay hydrated, get good rest, etc. It’s commitment.
I wanted to share a few basic half marathon training tips with any of ya’ll who are considering doing a half, but don’t know where to start!
Pick a race. I think this is one of the hardest parts of your whole training. Once you pick a race, sign up, and pay the money…you have no choice now, but to STAY COMMITTED. I picked a race that was in my city but you could also make a trip out of it by googling a location you want to go to! For instance the Disney Princess race at Disney World!! (now that’s my kind of race)
Pick a plan. There are tons of half marathon training plans out there, but I personally like Hal Higdon’s training plans the best. I’ve done the beginners version and intermediate. Currently I’m working on the intermediate plan. The mileage during the weeks is reasonable, and he also stresses the importance of strength training and stretching. That is huge when you’re training for a half because it majorly helps with preventing injuries. I wish I focused on this more the first go around!!
Find some sort of nutrition supplements that work for you. I personally am obsessed with Tone It Up Protein to build lean muscle mass when taking in so much cardio. It helps to not lose muscle mass that is currently there. Plus, it’s plant based so it’s easier on your stomach & is CLEAN! I also take a pre-workout that does not have any extra “junk” or “bad stuff” in it. Cardio Ignite gives me a major energy boost, especially after a long day teaching Kindergarten. I could not do my long runs without these products! (Feel free to comment below if you have questions about those!)
Lastly, take each running day one day at a time. If you are just starting out already thinking of the big picture, 13.1 miles will seem absolutely impossible. Y’all just need to focus one day at a time. What helps me not get overwhelmed is to print off my training schedule and cross off each day that is completed. I can also write in notes incase I needed to switch days up. The biggest thing is to stay disciplined, you can totally get there! Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed, just focus on the task in front of you that day.
Stay hydrated as much as possible!! I learned the hard way and that’s the reason I got so sick after. It wasn’t because I had the flu, but it was from dehydration. It was pretty scary and super uncomfortable too. I knew it was dehydration because the night before I got in late traveling, had wine that evening, did not drink water, and about 30 minutes after the race it totally HIT me!! This go around I am trying really hard to be more hydrated. MIRA Brands water bottles help me stay hydrated because who doesn’t love an insulated water bottle & it’s cute too!! MIRA water bottles are the perfect size, easy to carry around, doesn’t leak, keeps my water cold, and is super durable!! Snag your new bottle here!! Use promo code: SEQUINS10 for 10% off too!!
Find some cute workout clothes. Who doesn’t like to feel cute when they workout? I know for me that motivates me to work harder. (I know so weird!!) So some reason having a cute workout outfit will help me show up to the gym. No reason behind it or anything, except feeling cute!! I love Calia workout clothes for all types of workouts. Calia by Carrie Underwood has some great running pieces that are perfect for training! The pieces are great quality and LAST through several washes. It’s amazing how my Calia workout leggings have held up better than other higher end brands. I am all about Calia being my favorite workout brand! Shop it here!
If y’all have questions regarding how to train or my experience, I would love to help you through the journey!!
Love from Texas & happy running!