How to Half: Schedule Question

Considering focusing on half marathons this season? 2013 is the year of the half marathon, of course, so it makes sense. But Portland Fit has one training schedule… so how does that work? Read on for the secret!

This year it looks like we have one training schedule for both groups, but it’s easy to focus on half marathons if the full isn’t your thing this year. Every marathon training program is different, but our basic philosophy is to build, slowly and safely, from our first 3-miler to a base of 11 or 12 miles every weekend. That happens right before we do our first half marathon in May.

Once you establish your base distance, marathoners require one extra long day a month. We call this a Benchmark and we have three of them — a 25K in July, a 30K in August, and a 21 miler in September. Don’t ask us why we use kilometers and miles — it’s a secret.*

The trick for half marathon participants is simple: Don’t. Do. The. Benchmarks.

Your best option is to cut it short and just do 10 miles. You won’t be the only one and we’ll have a pace leader and route picked out. Or you could find a half marathon to do somewhere. Or just take the day off. Or better yet, help us by volunteering at our Benchmark (we like to make them special with aid stations and stuff).

So it’s simple to keep running or walking with Portland Fit all season if you only plan to do half marathons this year.


* Actually, it’s the way USA FIT has always done it, so we stuck with it, too. 25k = 15.5 miles. 30K = 18.6 miles. Maybe it’s one of those things where Houston Fit had a 5K course they would do 5 or 6 times and the rest of us blindly inherited the convention.