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Video:Tips for Starting a Half-Marathon Training Program

with Michele Jaco

Starting a half-marathon training program requires some foresight and thought. Watch this how-to video from About.com to see tips for beginning the training.See Transcript

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Transcript:Tips for Starting a Half-Marathon Training Program

Hi I'm Michele and today for About.com we're going to talk about tips for starting a half-marathon training program.

About Half-Marathon Training Programs

13.1 miles is a long way to run, so having a program is essential so you don't get hurt and so you have a good time running. There are a couple of pre-requisites. You should be able to run 8-10 miles per week and you should have a couple months of running experience before attempting a half-marathon training program. There are many elaborate training programs, but I'm going to show you one that's simple, but effective and can be accomplished in 12 weeks.

Before Beginning a Half-Marathon Training Program

First see your doctor for medical clearance before you train for a half marathon.Next you need a couple of days of rest each week for your muscles to recuperate.

Schedule for a Half-Marathon Training Program

Try Monday as your first rest day. You've probably had a full weekend of running, so taking Monday off will be just what your body needs. Next pick a day for Tempo runs. I personally like Tuesdays. Start your run with 5 to 10 minutes easy running, then continue with 20 to 30 minutes of harder running –about 10 to 15 seconds slower than your 10K pace-- and then finish with 5 to 10 minutes of cooling down. Wednesday is a favorite night for running clubs so use this day for a moderate run. Map out a 4 or 5 mile distance and run at a comfortable pace. Make sure you warm up and stretch before and after the run. Also if you're planning on running a hilly half-marathon adding some hills into this run would be advisable.

Switching Up a Half-Marathon Workout

Thursday is a great day for cross-training activities like biking, swimming or using an elliptical trainer, this will give your running muscles a break. Now you need another day of rest for your muscles to recuperate, so Friday seems to be ideal since you'll be doing a longer run on Saturday and you've trained hard the first part of the week. This rest day could be the most important training day of the week, so don't skip it!

Since Saturday is another great day to run with a running club, make this your long run of the week. Start with 3-4 miles and add one mile per week until race day.And finally Sunday is a great day just to enjoy your run, whether it's in a park or in a 5 or 10K race. Leisurely run for 30-40 minutes. You can also do a run/walk combination or even some cross-training.

Remember everyone responds differently to training methods, so see what works best for you. Keep a running journal and write down the specifics of each run and how you felt afterwards. Hopefully your endurance is improving and you feel better each week.

And that's a simple half-marathon training program. Thank you for watching and for more information visit us on the web at About.com

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