Competitor.com Break-2:00 8 Week Half Marathon Plan

Average Weekly Training Hours 00:31
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours 00:31
Training Load By Week

The 8-week Sub 2 hour half marathon plan is designed for the experienced runner looking to take their half marathon training to the next level with more challenging, race-specific workouts.

You should be comfortable running 30-35 miles per week with at least a 10 mile long run. Your previous personal best should be at least better than one of the following:

5k – 26:00 10k – 55:00 HM – 2:05 Marathon – 4:15

The goal of this half marathon plan is to increase your weekly mileage to 35-40 miles per week and is a blend of stamina and speed endurance (the ability to hold a fast pace for a long time), which are critical to running your fastest half marathon.

This plan includes half marathon specific workouts and quality long runs. The half marathon specific workouts come in two varieties – stamina workouts, like tempo or threshold runs, and long speed workouts, like 5 x 1 mile with a short rest. In addition, we mix in hard, quality long runs so you can teach your body how to run fast late in the race when you’re tired.At the end of this 8 weeks you’ll be ready to smash your half marathon personal best!

Plan written by Jeff Gaudette.

Sample Day 1
4mi
Easy run

4 miles easy (10:10 to 11:00 pace)

Stay comfortable during this run, even if that means running outside of the recommended pace range. Running frequently helps train your body to adopt an efficient stride. Every run is moving you toward your goal.

Exclusive training video: Going Easy Improves Fitness
Password: competitor
https://vimeo.com/100381168

Sample Day 2
6mi
Hill intervals

2 mile warm up, 6 x (30 sec uphill at mile effort 7:30 w/jog down rest, 75 sec uphill at 5k effort (8:20 pace), walk down rest), 2 mile cool down

Running hard up hill forces your hips into a position that's efficient both for climbing hills and when running on the flats. During the intervals, think about your posture and try to replicate it in your other workouts.

Exclusive training video: Hill Workout
Password: competitor
https://vimeo.com/100658691

Sample Day 4
8mi
Alternating tempo run

2 mile warm up, 4 miles at (9:15, 8:50, 9:15, 8:50 pace), 2 mile cool down

Many of the workouts in this plan are intended to make your race pace feel more natural and easier than it does today. This workout has you switching paces from slightly faster than goal race pace to a little faster for a few reasons. First, it will improve your aerobic fitness. Second, holding a pace just above goal race pace will start to cement the muscular pattern of your stride at that speed. Dropping to 9:15 pace will teach you to recover while still running a demanding clip.

Hydration During Running
http://running.competitor.com/2014/06/nutrition/running-101-hydration-during-running_7800

Sample Day 5
0:30:00
Easy cross training

30-45 minutes easy

Your core muscles include much more than just the abs. Crunches train your stomach muscles to fold your upper body downward, a motion that never happens while running. Abs get the glory, but hips, back and obliques are all as or more important to your success on race day.

10 Minute Plyometrics Workout for Runners
http://running.competitor.com/2014/03/training/the-10-minute-plyometric-workout-for-runners_26184

Sample Day 6
4mi
Easy run plus strides

4 miles easy (10:10 to 11:00 pace) w/4 x 20 sec strides

Stay comfortable during this run, even if that means running outside of the recommended pace range. Find a variety of routes instead of sticking to a couple. Exploring new roads and trails will help keep you mentally fresh.

Strides are short accelerations from a stand-still up to a fast pace. They help refine your technique and improve efficiency at every speed. Take as much standing rest as you need between strides. Top out at a fast but comfortable speed--strides are not sprints. These will appear repeatedly through your training plan.

Exclusive training video: Beat Shin Splints
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Sample Day 7
10mi
Long run

10 mile long run - all easy pace (10:10 to 11:00 pace)

Your first Sunday run is long, so bring fluids--either water or sports drink--in a hydration belt. A small amount of fluid can make the difference between finishing a run strongly or fading down the stretch. 8 ounces of fluid and 100-150 calories per hour is a good place to start. Use your experience to improve your nutrition plan based on the way you feel.

Exclusive training video: Nutrition for a Long Run
Password: competitor
https://vimeo.com/100661816

Sample Day 8
4mi
Easy run

4 miles easy (10:10 to 11:00 pace)

Stay comfortable during this run, even if that means running outside of the recommended pace range. Focus on striking the ground beneath your hips.

What Fuels Boston Champ Meb Keflezighi http://running.competitor.com/2014/04/nutrition/what-fuels-boston-marathon-champion-meb-keflezighi_101504