Hospital Hill – When Should Training Begin?

10 Feb

Hello to my Hospital Hill runners! This is my 2nd post in my Hospital Hill blog series, and I am already excited with some of the people I have connected to in this process.

Tonight I’d like to talk about your training plan, specifically when you should start.

For many people, half marathon training can be intimidating and stressful (for good reason though, it is a major commitment!). But I want to help you feel like you can manage the training and succeed at following your plan.

The Hospital Hill race is a little under 4 months (17 weeks) away – 111 days to be exact!

Most training plans follow a 12 week program, however sometimes you will see 16 or 18 week plans. I always prefer a 12 week program to avoid burnout and to keep things fun. To me, 12 weeks is doable, where as 16 or 18 weeks sounds crazy.

In the weeks prior to my 12 week training kick off, I like to get in a couple runs a week and some cross training. This will give you a nice base to start your training and will keep you from feeling like you are completely out of shape when you begin training.

I would suggest having a base of 10 – 15 miles per week before you begin official training. I also like to use the month before training to focus on strength and cross training. Prior to kicking off my last training session, I spent a lot of time at the gym doing Body Pump and Spin. I loved mixing it up with these two classes and have really loved the results from them. Another great workout option are at home DVD’s. Jillian Michaels can be your BFF as well as biggest enemy 🙂

If you choose to go with the 12 week plan I prefer, your official training should ideally kick off the week of March 4th.

My next post will be focused on the types of runs you should incorporate into your training, and an example of my ideal training schedule.

Please feel free to email me, or comment with any questions you have! I love to hear from you all 🙂





5 Responses to “Hospital Hill – When Should Training Begin?”

  1. A foodie guy with great taste in food, likes to run healthy and dress sharp! February 12, 2013 at 11:02 am #

    Burnout occurs because of “over-training” and has nothing to do with number of weeks. The probable reasons for burnout and hence over-training are :-
    a) Not able to give proper recovery to your body between each training run.
    b) Running every training run hard.
    c) Increasing running frequency during the week without resting the body just to build the mileage because training program say so.
    d) Training hard despite being injured or just coming out of injury.

    Considering Hospital Hill Half Marathon falls in very beginning of June there are very important and interesting aspects to it – apart from being hilly the most important factors which makes this race arduous are heat, humidity and dew point. We train in cold weather and so on a race day when temps are in 70 degs and add to that humidity of 70% + & dew point of 70 deg +, suddenly the whole equation gets convoluted.

    I am not sure what type of audience you writing here for. They could someone doing their first half marathon, someone who wants to may be just walk the whole half, someone who wants to just able to finish the half and don’t care about any time, someone who wants to try for a PR or someone who just wants to run just for fun. Also if someone who have ran several half marathons and is an intermediate-advanced runner probably may not need 14 or 12 weeks even. In that case I guess they won’t be following your training schedule from your blog to begin with as they would have their own training plans/coach etc. Also, what if one doesn’t have 15 miles base build up so what should they be doing? Trying to build 15 miles a week mileage schedule just to follow your training program may not be good for some readers.

    So having a “cookie-cutter” approach to the training plan may not work. “Doable to you” may not be doable to ALL others.

    What good is a training plan if it looks wondrous on paper but by following it end up getting injured and not able to make it at the start line for the race? It is not just about the numbers after all. Listening to your own body is the most important aspect of any training program. It doesn’t matter how many mileage one does a week depending on what they really want to achieve, what’s important is – are you and your body fit enough to run those miles for that day. Don’t be slave to the numbers.

    I personally think cross training is really helpful. It balances out the training program very well. But I also think doing cross training from the beginning of the training cycle is helpful to ease out the recovery cycle than just doing at the last month. If one can afford taking Pilates from local Pilates Studio, I think that’s is the best cross-training along with spinning one can incorporate in their training cycle. Pilates makes your core and deeper muscles strong. If one can’t afford Pilates then Yoga, Spinning/biking and perhaps swimming can make cross training effective too.

    Body pump is fine but it is like men’s version of cross-fit. Body pump doesn’t necessarily make you getting toned by repetitions. It is very difficult to get toned by just doing body pump unless one is naturally muscular and can put on muscles easily and of course have a clean healthy diet. One gets a temporary effect of muscle pump during the exercise because of increased blood flow and think they are getting toned. Secondly, I am not sure if it is really possible to teach weight training in a group setting. There is a good chance of people getting away with light weights and/or bad form leading to sets of injuries which we don’t want when we are in a training program for running a race. There are other safe ways to achieve strength training.

    So instead of being slave to numbers, make listening to your body and trying to stay healthy and injury free should be the number one goal for any training program. Else all your training workout plans and numbers are pure nugatory!!

    As always I say to myself – I would be rather be little under-train than 1% over-train!

  2. Nicole February 12, 2013 at 11:27 am #

    Love your post! Hospital Hill is such a fun race to participate in and I am so excited to here what your opinions of the best way to prepare and how you get ready for this race.

  3. Rene February 13, 2013 at 3:57 pm #

    this is very informative thanks. i’ve got a quick dilemma. there is a exercise program which is used by a lot of people recently. i’ve been going throughmuch research into it and it seems like this is a really great training course. everybody’s got good stuff to say about it and even i’ve seen results from it as i have been giving it a go for three weeks now. below is a review i came across on it. what is your opinion with it? On this site should i keep using it as it is working incredibly good.

    • A foodie guy with great taste in food, likes to run healthy and dress sharp! February 24, 2013 at 11:31 am #

      I am not sure if your response was mostly a troll but few things to elucidate:
      1) What this has to do with Half Marathon training?

      2) I looked at the video of that Somanabolic Muscle Maximizer or whatever it is called. My utmost first reaction and word came out of my mouth was “SCAM”! The website looks shady and the video looks sketchy.

      3) Any product which screams about “this will make hot girls look at you and make you get attracted to them” is effing bullshit!! If I want to look good I want to look good for “myself and my own good” and not because I want to effing show off to girls so that I can get laid. That is the effing disgusting. That’s why we call these people meat-heads and creepy! The ones you usually see in any cross-fit studios!

      4) Toning your body takes time, effort and proper nutritions. Don’t expect magic in short amount of time and effort. I would rather go to a proper nutritionist who is local in town and understand basic science of it than watching some junk videos. We ourselves took so much time screwing our body by wrong habits all in our life and suddenly we expect now it to turn into some freaking photogenic well toned body in lesser effort? WTF are we thinking??

      Respect your body and it will pay you back nicely! That applies to any training program and/or building lean muscle mass and/or toning properly.


  1. Half Marathon Training Plan | miles with style - February 28, 2013

    […] my last Hospital Hill blog post, I talked about when you should start training. In this post, I would like to share a training plan […]

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