How to train for a half marathon

Race day is important. What you do to get there is even more so.

I ran 2 full marathons, 2 Ragnar Relays, and a handful of half marathons, 10Ks, and 5Ks. To this day, I struggle with preparing for races. Ask my close friends: they laugh at me every single time they think about my first full marathon. I did exactly what you aren’t supposed to do: showed up on race day and winged it. It’s not something I would recommend.

It’s my goal in life to constantly improve. So here I am pondering about how I can better my training going into Rock’n’Roll Los Angeles.

This was my old plan:

  • Ran 5-6x a week
  • No cross training
  • No healthy eating (tons of junk and alcohol)
  • Loss of motivation partway through
  • Lack of sleep

This is my plan for RNRLA prep:

  • Run 2x a week (short/medium and long distance)
  • Cross train 2x a week (spinning, BBG or weight lifting)
  • Mindful eating (minimize junk and alcohol)
  • Surround myself with positive vibes who motivate me
  • Minimum of 6 hours of sleep each night

Sounds basic, right? That’s the point. You want to trick your mind into thinking your plan is achievable (which it is by the way), and you do this by setting realistic goals. Whatever your training may look like, always consider how you feel mentally and physically. Do what feels good – do you.


For example, if working out twice a day is exhausting then cut it back to once a day. If spin hurts your knees, then find another activity like yoga. Who you surround yourself with is also crucial. To be blunt, if you hangout with lazy people who drink and party all the time, you’ll find yourself lacking motivation, drinking, and partying quite often. I know this firsthand. On the flip side, when you’re training with a group who share the same goals with you, you’re more likely to follow through with your plan. Remember: you are the average of your five closest friends.


RnRLA is on October 30 which means I have about 10 weeks to train. My goal for this race is to 1) stick to my pre-race commitments and 2) celebrate my training during race day. The caveat is I’ll be on the road for 6 of the 10 weeks. This will make training even more difficult.

My RnRLA adventures begin now.

Remember, the blood, sweat, and tears you put into training is the hard part. Race is day is the party. It’s where all your hard work will shine its brightest.

Join me on my 10-week journey as I attempt to juggle work, working out, and traveling. And on October 30, let’s party it up at Rock’n’Roll Los Angeles.

Tune back to the blog every week to see where I’m at with training. Follow me on Instagram or Snapchat (rarax3) for the daily details. And if you want to run with me, save $15 on registration using promo code: RARAX3.

New to running? Check out how to get started here.

Photos by John Jefferson for Nike Running.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post although I received a complimentary race entry from Finish Line Women.

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  • Brian Fleming
    August 29, 2016 at 4:06 am

    I’ve been training for a half marathon for months too. It’s been grueling. But so worth it.

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