16 weeks to go until Vitality Brighton Half Marathon! Here’s a guide on what to expect and how to get the most from your training and recovery over the coming weeks:
This week - kick start your training! It sounds silly but even with the best intentions starting your training can be difficult especially as the nights draw in. Get together with friends and pick some days you can train together to keep yourself motivated.
Next 5-6 weeks - build your running fitness. Whether you’re a regular runner or a beginner you will want to focus on building a solid foundation.
However this doesn’t mean doing lots of low intensity steady runs when you feel like it. Although this may develop your aerobic potential, following a structured and varied plan early on will help you to perform at your best on race day.
Your training week should ideally be made up of steady state running to improve your aerobic threshold, one long run to help build your aerobic endurance, and faster paced interval training. It’s important to gradually introduce speed into a training schedule so your body is ready for more intensive speed sessions later on in your plan and to help reduce injury.
Don’t worry about your pace for the first few weeks, try to run by feel. Focus on the training effort rather than the speed so you’re not being held back by your GPS watch or overdoing it too early.
Running fitness doesn’t just mean running! Doing strength & conditioning exercise along with cross training is a great way to build up muscle strength, improve your aerobic fitness and minimise your injury risk.
10 weeks out - gradually build speed and distance. The next 8 weeks is all about getting prepared for race day. Your weekly mileage and long runs will be gradually ramping up so it’s important to fuel up on the best foods and stay hydrated to keep performing at your best.
In general, as distance and running time increase, so do calorie and carbohydrate needs. A balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, protein, fat and a slightly higher carbohydrate intake will help maintain essential glycogen stores within the muscles, keep your energy levels up and aid your recovery.
The long run is one of the most important parts of your training prep for the Vitality Brighton Half Marathon, as it will ensure you can run the distance on race day. Get the most out of your long runs by adding some ‘pick-ups’ which are short burst or faster paced running. Pick-ups help to stimulate speed over long distance and help with form, as they increase engagement of your major muscle groups. We generally run with better technique when we run faster.
Take the time to recover properly as it’s just as important as as logging those hard miles. hen correctly implemented, you’ll feel more energised and bounce back quicker so you’ll be ready for your next training session.
2 weeks to go - start to taper. Reduce your training volume and intensity over the last 2 weeks to allow your body to recover from all the hard work you have put in, so you’re ready for race day.
Most of your runs should be at a steady pace so try to take it easy and enjoy the shorter session. It’s aso beneficial to do a couple of ‘sharpener’ sessions which will include some very short bursts of speed to keep your legs feeling fresh and ready for action.
Take a look at the race day information so you know what to expect, plan how you’re going to get there and lay out your race day outfit.
Most importantly, don’t do anything new in training! Try to eat healthily, drink plenty of water and get to know your couch again. You’ve put all the hard work in so now all you have to do is get race ready.
An Mbition Adaptive training plan will guide and support you through the above phases of training. Just click the ‘Start FREE Trial’ to set-up your free plan.
If you’re based near Brighton, we highly recommend attending the Run Brighton training groups. Running with a group brings so many motivational and fitness benefits. For more information visit runbrighton.com