My Half Marathon Non-Plan Training Plan

Hello there! Hope everyone is having a great weekend. I got hit with some kind of bug on Friday (which actually sent me home from work), but I am happy to say I am feeling much better now. I didn’t photograph any of my food photos from yesterday because they were extraordinarily boring; lots of carbs and fruit because that was all that sounded good to me. I would not let my body stay sick for long and kept a positive attitude all day because I HAVE to be well…I have a big event coming up tomorrow:

My First Half Marathon.

I am getting very excited for it and slightly anxious. Later this afternoon we will be going to pick up our race bibs and such.

Today’s post is going to be about how I prepared and trained for this half marathon. I thought it would be good for me to mentally walk through my training, to help me build confidence in my ability to carry out this run successfully tomorrow. I also thought some of you might enjoy reading it as well!

When Dana and I first decided to register for this half marathon, we began browsing through training plans. Initially, we had found two we were interested in: Hal Higdon’s Half Marathon Training Plan and Jeff Galloway’s Half Marathon Training Plan. Dana liked one of them, and I liked the other. We had tentatively decided we would each train on these schedules and make adjustments as needed.

Then, one of my reader’s Lisa, who is an avid runner, gave me some wonderful advice as I was contemplating the possibility of not following a strict training plan, and instead just running when I wanted to, and resting when I felt I needed to rest. She wrote: ““For my very first marathon, I followed a training plan and I found that when someone else was telling me when to run and how far to go, it became work and I dreaded it. Since then, I have just run to run and not worried about how far I was going. Two years ago I ran my first sub-four hour marathon and couldn’t have been happier. Now, this is not to say that training plans don’t work, but I found that I resented mine. Like I said, I listen to my body, run longer runs when I feel like it (or have the time- usually on the weekends) and give myself rest when I need it.” I also mentioned her comment in a past post: Enjoy Life While Training Plan.

After I read her comment it was as clear as day for me. I would not be following a strict running plan, instead I would make my own, and make it work for me and my life. I want this process to be enjoyable, and not become a second job. So that’s what we decided to do: A Non-Plan Training Plan.

I am trying to remember when I first starting training for this half. Throughout the winter I did continue to run, so this spring I wasn’t COMPLETELY out of running shape, but I definitely wasn’t IN running shape. I would say the more regimented training began in March sometime (when it was starting to get nicer outside here in MN).

There wasn’t necessarily a “typical” weekly workout pattern, but usually it was something along these lines:

  • Monday: Cross-train, strength
  • Tuesday : run
  • Wednesday: Cross-train, strength
  • Thursday: run
  • Friday: rest or light walk
  • Saturday: longer run
  • Sunday: cross-train, strength, or rest depending on the mileage from Saturday

It was nice having so much freedom throughout this training. However, it is important that if you do follow this type of non-plan plan, that you don’t let yourself fall off the workout wagon being that it is so flexible. You have to stay very motivated and also learn to listen to your body. I really enjoy working out so staying motivated was fairly easy for me, and I also feel like I know my body pretty well and understand when it’s trying to tell me something.

To help me stay accountable, I recorded my workouts here. I like being able to look back and track my weekly workouts, and as I mentioned before, I thought this would be a perfect time for me to review the past few months, so that I continue to remember that I am prepared. I’m physically and mentally ready.

The big race is finally here.  U.C. and all, I got this. I cannot wait to report back! Yikes!

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