So, you signed up for your first half-marathon. Now what?
First off, congratulations on setting such a healthy goal. This is going to be fun! But we know training can also be overwhelming, especially if this is your first time.
Here are some tips to help you train smarter along the way.
Don't start a training schedule without a healthy running routine, first. If you don't already run regularly, start with that -- and don't bother tracking your mileage. You don't want to discourage yourself, or weigh yourself down with unrealistic goals when you're just getting into your groove.
Focus simply on running 3-4 times a week, and walk when you need to. Don't pay attention to speed or distance, just give yourself time to feel good on the road.
Not all races are created equal, even when they're exactly the same distance. Find a race that has a climate and terrain that are similar to the one you'll train in. If you're used to running through the chilly hills of San Francisco, don't sign up for 13.1 miles of hot, flat desert. And if you're training in the flat midwest, a high-altitude course in Colorado is not your best bet.
Challenges in climate and terrain can be fun, but when it comes to your first half-marathon, stick with what you know. Running a race in your hometown can also be a great way to get more friends and family out there to support you on race day!
Running shoes can be a fashion statement, but if you're training for a half-marathon, they're so much more than that. Do NOT base your sneaker decision on color or style. You won't care what those shoes look like if you get blisters at mile 8. Visit a store that specializes in fitting for runners. They'll help you find a pair that works for your feet and your stride. They may cost some extra cash, but your high-quality shoes will be a lot cheaper than a painful injury down the line.
Sometimes just getting out the door is the hardest part. Recruit a friend or two to train with you, and you can hold each other accountable. Even if you can't run together all the time, training buddies can check in on mileage goals and motivate each other.
You can also take advantage of your local running club for further guidance and inspiration.
It’s easy to forget that your work isn’t done when your runs are complete. Work in some time for recovery, every time you run. Get into a post-workout routine that involves stretching, a healthy meal, hydration, and taking care of your feet with an ice bath and the best recovery shoes.
OOFOS offers comfort and recovery that will keep your feet happy and ready to go on the next run!