7 Half Marathon Training Tips

We're about 11 weeks from the start of the Marion Arts Festival Half Marathon & 5K on May17. There's still plenty of time to get ready. Here are a few  tips to use while you train for the big day:


1. Set realistic goals. Whether you've already got a base or are just getting started, keep a journal of your progress and use it to set and adjust your goals as your training progresses. You'll go into race day with a clear head about what you can expect.


2. Run with friends. Maybe not every day, but at least once or twice a week, or even once or twice a month, head out with a group of runners at your skill level. It'll help keep you motivated and give you friends and the finish line.


3. Stretch & strength training. Don't just pound the pavement for your training. Include some strength and stretch training in the mix. 


4. Rest days. They're vitally important. Rest after your long runs, and pay attention to your body if it feels fatigued.


5. Mix up your workouts. If you feel like you're getting mentally fatigued, mix up your workouts to break the boredom.


6. Warm up and cool down. While this one seems obvious, many runners need to be reminded to leave time before and after their workouts for proper warming up and cooling down periods. They're critical for avoiding injury. They also help you perform at your peak.


7. Include walking. This can be a great way to catch your breath and let your body recover on your long run training days. The important thing is to get to the finish line. How you get there isn't as important as breaking the tape.


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