Advanced Beginner Half Marathon Training Schedule

Get Ready to Run a Half Marathon in 12 Weeks

Young woman running, Sweden.
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You've already run at least one half marathon (13.1 miles) road race, or you've done a 5K or a 10K and you're ready to race a half marathon. If the beginner runner half marathon schedule seems too easy or the intermediate half marathon schedule seems too challenging, try this 12-week advanced beginner half marathon schedule (see chart below).

This schedule is geared toward runners who can run 4 miles comfortably and can run 4 to 5 days per week.

Notes about the schedule:

Mondays and Fridays: Mondays and Fridays are usually rest days. Don't ignore rest days -- they're important to your recovery and injury prevention efforts. Your muscles build and repair themselves during your rest days. You're not going to gain much strength and you're increasing your risk of injury if you don't take some rest days.

Tuesdays and Saturdays: After you warm up, run at a comfortable pace for the designated mileage.

Wednesdays: Do a cross-training (CT) activity (such as biking or swimming) at an easy to moderate effort for 45 to 50 minutes.

Thursdays: At Week 4, you'll start to do race pace runs. After a one-mile warm-up (WU), run for the indicated distance at your half-marathon race pace. Then run a one-mile cooldown (CD) at your easy, conversational pace. If you're not sure what your half marathon pace is, run at a speed that you think you could hold for 13.1 miles.

Sundays: Sundays are active recovery days. Run at an easy (EZ), comfortable pace to help loosen up your muscles.

You can switch days to accommodate your schedule. So, if you prefer to workout on a Monday or Friday, it's fine to swap a rest day for a run day.

Advanced Beginner Half-Marathon Training Schedule

1Rest3 miCT4 miRest4 mi2.5 mi EZ
2Rest3 miCT4 miCT5 mi2.5 mi EZ
3Rest3.5 miCT5 miRest6 mi3 mi EZ
4Rest3.5 miCT1 mi WU / 1 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest7 mi3 mi EZ
5Rest4 miCT1 mi WU / 1.5 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest8 mi3.5 mi EZ
6Rest4 milCT1 mi WU / 2 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest9 mi3.5 mi EZ
7Rest4 miCT1 mi WU / 2.5 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest10 mi3.5 mi EZ
8Rest4.5 miCT1 mi WU / 3 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest8 mi4 mi EZ
9Rest5 miCT1 mi WU / 3 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest10 mi3 mi EZ
10Rest4.5 miCT1 mi WU / 4 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest12 mi3 mi EZ
11Rest4 miCT1 mi WU / 2 mi race pace / 1 mi CDRest5 mi2.5 mi EZ
12Rest1 mi WU / 1.5 mi race pace / 1 mi CD30 minutesRest20 minutesRace Day!Rest Day!

FAQs About Half Marathon Training

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