InHealth and Wellness, Lifestyle

The Best Half Marathon Training Plan

Training for a half marathon and not sure where to start? Are you planning to run your first one? Check out this fun half marathon training plan.

FINALLY, spring has sprung… or has it? Ugh, it has been a long cold winter. It feels so good to be back on the pavement running again. This summer one of my goals is to improve my running. I signed up for a half marathon race, which will take place in September. This will be my first time running a half. I am so excited about this new challenge, and to get back into running.

This information is not to be taken as medical, nutritional, certified or professional advice. This information provided here is what works for Heather Barrett. Please see FAQ for full disclaimer.



Don’t overestimate running a half marathon; give yourself time to prepare.

A friend of mine helped me design this 15-week running plan. Actually, her plan was a little more intense than mine and I added in different workouts and extended the training time. I’m all about simple and using my time wisely.

You can train for 12-weeks, 15-weeks, 20-weeks, etc. Heck, you could train all year for it if you wanted to or be that one… and not train, just wing it. I decided to create a training plan to help me stayed focused, work hard and achieve my goal.

I get bored too easily, and I need to be switching things up. Training any longer than 15-weeks {that was long enough}, I would’ve given up. I wouldn’t finish the training. I loved how this training includes different kinds of runs/tempos, rest days, and of course strength training days.

I think combining strength training, rest, and different running tempos is HUGE when it comes to training. Having a training plan to go by has been KEY! A 15-week training guide has been perfect so far for me as I train for my first marathon.


Strength training should be included; make or follow a half marathon plan and stick to it.

Having this plan has been key for me when it comes to staying on track. I love strength training and it is important to also incorporate that into your plan. Strength training is very important as it helps strengthen your joints.

Running can be so hard on the hips and joints. So keeping up with strength training will help you get stronger for race day. I included strength training workouts in my plan.


Runs vary from short-semi tempo runs, long-distance, hills and more! It is crazy to see changes happening already and this is my first full dedicated week back running. The sort-semi tempo runs have already been a challenge with trying to keep my pace up! I LOVE my Fitbit for helping me track all of this info.

I’ve always enjoyed running, but now I am actually training for a race, not to win, just for fun. All the different variations on my training plan help keep me entertained, motivated and dedicated. I love the high I get and just how great it feels to cross that line in the driveway after a good run!


Fuelling your body with energizing foods is key.

You WILL need a ton of energy for running. Lots of carbs, healthy carbs of course. But, that’s where the energy will come from mostly. Having a nicely balanced meal of carbs, healthy fats with some protein will ensure your body has an abundance of energy.

You’ll want to consume foods that are HIGH energy foods. Here are some ideas;

  • Oatmeal with peanut butter and a banana
  • Whole grain peanut butter bagel
  • Energy bar and a banana
  • Whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk

Two of my fav pre-run meals are oatmeal with peanut butter and a banana, and whole-grain toast with peanut butter and eggs. Don’t forget lots of water!

During a run, I like to keep candy in my pockets and when I feel like a need a little “buzz”, I’ll pop a candy in my mouth, and the sugar is enough to kick my butt back in high gear. You can also get “energy gels” that you consume during a race to give you a boost too, I am going to look into those.

The spring melt/thaw has been keeping things interesting for me as I train for my first half marathon. Between the water, ice, snow, and mud… I’ve encountered it all!

However, with each one, I’ve learned and improved on how to run in such conditions. Let’s just say it keeps things interesting for me and when I arrive home it is usually a trip to the laundry room before anything else.

I am hoping by late July I’ll be at my goal and maintaining that until race day.

I am hoping to stick to IT and show up as much as I can. I know how important it is and I know the bittersweet feeling of hitting a GOAL! It feels amazing!

Check out my half marathon training plan below.

Half Marathon Training Plan

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