Half marathon training

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  GTF 14 years, 2 months ago.

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  • #2445

    What are the major differences between full and half marathon training? I want to train specifically for a half in October, and keep my mileage high enough to start training for Boston 06 in November. This year I want to up my mileage for the marathon, I was thinking about jumping up to Pfitzs 18/70. Any advice on a plan for the half that keeps the mileage high enough to be ready to start that Pfitz schedule.

    I was thinking about getting Road racing for serious Runners, but i kind of dont want to spend the money, is it worth it? Could I just modify one of his marathon plans for the half? If so, what modifications should I make?

    Thanks for any and all advice,


  • #18422


    The way most people train for marathons, I don’t think there’s any need for difference. If you do marathon pace runs, replace them with some faster workouts and you’re good to go.

  • #18423

    Run, this if more related to Boston next year but here’s my experience. I spent 3 weeks in the mid 70’s last september before jumping to the pfitz 18/70 for boston training. The work in September gave me the confidence that I could handle the added volume. I wasn’t able to run many doubles but pfitz recommends them. You may want to experiment with that a bit. Going into it, pfitz recommends being able to handle 17 or 18 for a long run and high 50’s for the week without much difficulty. I’m going on recall here so definitely have look at the book.

    I also targeted the LBI 18 mile run last year in Mid October. This is one of my favorite races of the year and may be a good primer for you.

  • #18424

    Steve, this is definitely more related to Boston, because out of these 2 races, Boston is the one that is more important to me. The half Im running in Oct is a race Im running with my Dad. Hes running the full and he wanted someone to go with him to SD because my mom took a pass. I looked at the race, which is supposed to be slighly dowhn hill the whole way, and thought maybe I could mount an attempt for NY qualifying run (1:21 for the half)

    After reading Ryans post I was thinking I would do Pfitzs 12/55 to train for the half, and replace some of the MP workouts with faster stuff. This would allow for another 3 months of about 45 MPW average leading up to the half (during the 12/55), followed by by about 2 months after the half to recover (maybe a couple of days for recovering) and get comfortable with the first week of the 18/70 plan. Last year in prep for the 24/55, coming off an injury, I slowly worked up until I was able to do the first week of the plan, which I then did for 2 or 3 weeks in a row, followed by a recovery week before starting marathon training in earnest.

    Any other thoughts that occur to anyone, Id love to hear em’



  • #18425

    I don’t think you can go wrong following Pfitz. I’ve got his Road Racing for Serious Runners book and for the 15K-half mary unit he really stresses the importance of lactate threshold training for the half mary. In the 50-70 miles/week schedules he suggests peaking at 17 miles for the long run. He’s also got a second medium long run each week which ranges from 9 to 12 miles. The schedule alternates each week between a tempo run and a VO2max workout. This is where I’d probably differ. I’d do both on some weeks, and I’d probably tip the scales towards tempo runs over VO2max overall. Then again he’s a two time Olympian with a PhD in Exercise Physiology, so take my advice for what it is.

  • #18426
    Ryan wrote:
    The way most people train for marathons, I don’t think there’s any need for difference. If you do marathon pace runs, replace them with some faster workouts and you’re good to go.

    FYI, I would concur. Pace workouts would certainly differ, but otherwise it is pretty much the same from 800m through the marathon.

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