Are you ready for the next step in your running journey? Is it time to tackle the Half-Marathon? Local MS Society Office Manager, Karen Torrie-Racine (KTR), sat down with local runner, Phil Barnes (Phil) to discuss training for a 21.1 kilometer run.

(Skip the talk and scroll down to the plans.)

KTR: Hi Phil, Runner's World says the half-marathon is fastest growing distance in our sport. 

Phil: That sounds accurate to me. It seems the half (at big events) is usually the first race to sell out. The MS half is my personal favourite run.  It's a great route and a blast to run.

KTR: Do you have any advice for first timers tackling the Run to endMS Half?

Phil: My biggest advice, and this goes for all runs, is to take it easy at the start. Don't get carried away with the enthusiasm. The run starts at the College and then goes along Montreal Road, when we turn down McConnell towards the Cotton Mill, it's a nice downhill, and sometimes you can get caught up keeping that pace through Lamoreux Park. Keep it in check, and then pick up the pace on your way back by the power dam.

KTR: How long does it take to train for the half-marathon?

Phil: That will vary from runner to runner, but an experienced 5 or 10K runner could probably do well on a 12 week training plan. There are many different plans out there; I've used the Hal Higdon plans with good results. It's an easy one to follow. 

Here is a basic 12 week Half-Marathon training plan. 

Basic Half-Marathon Training Plan

All distances in kilometers. Adapted from Hal Higdon's Novice 2 Half-Marathon Plan. See
Most runs should be done at a comfortable conversational pace.
Pace runs, are done at your "half-marathon" pace, so a little quicker than the other runs.
The 5K and 10K weekend runs on week 6 and week 12 could be full out race-pace.
Saturday runs could be done on Sunday.
Cross-training on Sunday is a good opportunity to recover from Saturday's long run.

Download this plan as a PDF.


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Race Date: Saturday, April 28, 2018

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