Preparing for your first half marathon as a beginner must start by deciding on your goal. Just to finish or with a specific time in mind. My advice is to not worry about specific time goals for your first half marathon, instead just focus on crossing the finish line. Remember, the vast majority of people who decide they ‘want to run a half marathon’ do not even make it as far as the race start line.
Plan Your First Half Marathon
The plan for your first half marathon depends to a great extent on your level of ability, fitness and running experience. Should you have no running experience, it’s important to instead train for a 5K race first and gradually build up your running base towards the half marathon distance. However, if you are already at a level where you can comfortably run a 5K/10K race, then you certainly can think about starting your half marathon training.
Schedule Your Half Marathon
To get started, look at a list of races in your community and see which ones appeal to you. Probably, you’ll like a few races from your list. Based on other factors just like the time of the year the race is held, the time you will need for training etc. you can limit the list and pick out a race to run. Given that this will be your first half marathon, it is crucial that you pick the race carefully, bearing in mind all travel, accommodation and running conditions.
Plan Your Half Marathon Training
When you have chosen your half marathon race, create or purchase a timetable for your training. You need to think about both your daily and weekly training progression. While its important to ensure you train enough for your half marathon race, equally as important is to make sure you don’t over-train. Following a reputable training plan will help you avoid over-training and the possibility of suffering injury.
Build in Progress Races
Signing up for your half marathon race shows a dedication and desire to seriously train for the race. Help achieve your goal by building smaller ‘practice’ or ‘progress’ races into your training plan. A 5k or 10k race is the perfect opportunity to get your ready for ‘race day’ and experience race conditions.
Follow these easy steps and you’ll be sure to achieve your goal of running your first half marathon.