Your Step-by-Step Half Marathon Training Schedule
Get across the finish line happily whether you're a first timer or a frequent runner
Whether it's your first time in a racing bib or you just need a little refresher on those 10-miler training runs, we've got a half-marathon training schedule that will get you across the finish line. Join the ranks: The half marathon currently has the highest percentage of women of any U.S. road distance—57 percent of competitors are now female (in 1985, just 20 percent of competitors were!). If it seems like everyone and her sister is doing a half marathon, there’s a reason: between 2008 and 2009, the number of half marathon finishers grew 24 percent, to more than 1.1 million.
So SHAPE asked running coach Brendan Cournane to give us two plans. Follow his expert advice (he's completed marathons in all 50 states!), get started on this half marathon training schedule, and you'll be feeling confident at the start and ready to finish strong come race day. Try it: 13.1 will look great on you!
RELATED: Too hot to run outside? Skip the treadmill and watch this video for Victoria's Secret model Alessandra Ambrosio's indoor cycling workout.
Half Marathon Training Schedule For First Timers—Even If You Haven't Been Working Out
The free 12-week training program starts with periods of walking interspersed with periods of running. You can do this, even if you haven't been working out that much for the past 6 months. Your longest walk/run the first week is 4 miles, and you work up to race ready over three months. Bonus: Sundays and Fridays are rest days!
Half Marathon Training Schedule for Regular Runners (You Run About 10 Miles/Week)
If you've been running 3 or so miles three times a week, this free plan is for you. In 12 weeks, you'll safely increase your mileage so you can handle the whole 13.1. Plus, you get two days of rest and two days of cross training every week.