Half Marathon

Coach Alden's Half Marathon Advanced Plan - 12 Weeks

by Alden Basmajian & Carrie Tollefson
Run Rock ‘n’ Roll Certified Coaches
This advanced runner's half marathon training plan is a combination of endurance based running and speed work running. At the start of this plan, you should be running 4-5 times per week and roughly 30 miles. We will jump right into training and pick up the intensity. It's a twelve week program so if you need more time, consider adding a couple weeks of steady running at the beginning. You can take the first week and repeat it in the same structure.

The advanced plan is meant for those runners that have raced several half-marathons before as well as any of the primary distances leading up to it. During this build, you will have track workouts using various pacing goals, tempo runs, and long distance runs.

This plan can also be used to work towards a marathon build. It will help you increase turnover and strength before stretching out for the transition to the marathon distance.

It's important to give the body recovery time and you will also have a standard cross training day built into the schedule in addition to strength training. Even if you're used to running 7 days a week, I definitely encourage you to get in a pool, on a bike, or even a weekly session of yoga in place of active recovery. Swimming is an effective exercise to help recovery while also furthering aerobic development. If swimming is unavailable, then even a 30 minute bike ride is effective to help clear out lactic acid buildup and stimulate recovery. Strength training will change every few weeks so you can spend time perfecting the different movements. All exercises are body weight but can be modified to include weights as well.
Other - Notes
Week 1
Training starts now. You will jump right into a track workout tomorrow. You should ONLY do this if you have established a consistent and steady running routine over the last couple weeks. If you need more time, you have two choices. You can flip the first two days of the plan this week. Or, you can build in another week of steady running before kicking off the plan.
Cross Training
X-train + core
Cross training provides you with an additional aerobic component without having to increase running mileage. This includes swimming, cycling or another non-impact aerobic activity. The idea is still have some recovery while minimizing any extra wear and tear on the joints. Keep the intensity down so this becomes an active recovery day. Core work = same as strength session from earlier in the week.
30:00 min
Strength Training
Runners Core
Circuit 1: single leg bridges - 12 each side dead bugs - 20 bicycle crunches - 30 Circuit 2 pushups - 10-15 toe touches - 30 side plank dips - 20 Circuit 3: flutter kicks - 50 scissor kicks - 30 plank knee to elbow - 12 each side
20:00 min
Midweek distance
This will be a staple run. As the weeks progress, you can expect this run to extend out a bit more. Take it easy today. Endurance run; steady and consistent
55:00 min
Run - Track Workout
Mile repeats
15-20min warm up 3x1mi with 400 recovery - target pace = 5k race pace 10-15min cool down The pace for the warm up and cool down is not important. It's a chance to get your body prepared for the work and then to recover. If you need to regroup after the warmup with some dynamic stretching, go ahead and do that to get loose and ready so the first rep is productive right away.
Recovery run
Easy 40min recovery run today. Keep the HR down and under control.
40:00 min
Run - Fartlek
25min run to start and then transition to a light fartlek 10min Fartlek with: 30s on / 30s recovery 12min fartlek with 90s on / 90s recovery 5-10min easy back home to finish The fartlek today is meant to push you but in a controlled manner. Don't spike to an all out effort. Push the pace but settle around 5k pace or a little faster.
55:00 min
Steady run
35min run Easy conversational run
35:00 min
Run - Long Run
Weekend long run
steady distance day This is your third key run of the week. It's important to keep this endurance pace and smooth. There will be time for long run workouts later in this build. Today, it's about recovery after your first productive week of the plan.
10 mi
107 mi
47 hrs
70 workouts
Strength Training
3 hrs
12 workouts
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