TRAIL RUNNERS PLAN FOR HALF MARATHON
TIME to bust UP your Trail Half Marathon PB?
Sharing tips and training ideas for non-pro athletes from athlete & personal trainer, Ian Clarke.
A half marathon training plan for an intermediate - level trail runner who already have some experience of 8 - 10 mile trail runs and regular higher intensity training sessions.
Here is a descriptive guide to the trail half marathon training plan;
How many runs each week?:
- If you run 4 times per week, do only the runs in green and rest on the other days.
- If you run 5 times per week, do only the runs in green & blue.
- If you run 6 times per week, do the runs in green, blue & red.
- If you run 5-6 times per week, but usually only do one harder run per week, do the runs in green and add in your remaining 1-2 easy runs as usual.
Pacing your training:
Judge your training paces by intensity/effort level, not by actual moving speed, which can be very subjective for off-road running.
- Aim not to make any significant changes to your mileage or frequency of harder runs when following this plan. Hence your easy runs can be a distance that is typical for you, and should be at a truly easy pace.
- Strides are quick 10-20s accelerations that you can include at the end of runs as specified, and also in your warm up for harder sessions. They can feel fast (10-20 min race pace) but are not flat-out sprints.
- Hill sprints are very short, top-speed efforts on a gradual uphill with a firm surface (tarmac/hard-packed trail). The long recovery is an important part of these sessions. Never do hill sprints or other challenging sessions if you are experiencing any tightness or running-related pain.
- Steady pace is slightly quicker than easy, as specified - usually either 3h or 4h race pace. This should feel like a moderate, fairly enjoyable, cruising intensity.
Other half marathon advice:
- It's a good idea to bring a few (2-4) gels with you for a trail half marathon - practice taking these during your faster long runs so that you are prepared to do so on race day.
- Aim for your long runs (and your easy runs) to be on terrain that replicates the event you're training for, when possible.
- Runs can be shuffled around to different days of the week, but avoid doing two hard runs on back-to-back days.
- Significantly exceeding the stated intensities is likely to be detrimental to your race preparation.
HM = half marathon
' = minute
s = second
Our new marathon training hub will be packed full of more tips and advice.