I don’t know what it is, but I feel like there have been so many races going on across the country. We all saw the craze over events like the Color Run, The Krispy Kreme challenge and The Tough Mudder. Perhaps it was these races that go me amped to run a half-marathon. Running has always been an interest of mine. I ran cross country in high school and would often run distances between 2 and 8 miles in my practices and races. However, never had I attempted 13.1 miles.
I truly believe that anyone can run a half-marathon (assuming they don’t have any serious injuries) if they put in the time and effort to properly train for the race.
If I were to give advice to a novice runner who is interested in running their first half marathon, these would be my key points:
Invest in Running Shoes. No matter what shape your in, it’s important to keep your body in check. Proper running shoes give you great support and prevent injuries like Tendenitis and shin splints just to name a few. If you go to a local athletic store, usually someone can help you figure out what shoe is right for your feet.
Follow a Plan. I followed Hal Higdon’s Novice Half Marathon Training Plan for my first half marathon and would highly recommend it. For my next half-marahon, which I plan to do in July, I am going to make up a very similar plan just incorporating some types of cross-training that I enjoy more. It’s important to try and stick to a plan because if you just go out there and run everyday, you really might get an injury.
Choose a Fun Race. This first half marathon was great but it wasn’t that interesting. I’ve heard that the quality of your race can really impact your experience. For example, I had a friend who flew down to Florida and did a half-marathon in Walt Disney World. She got to dress up like a princess while she ran. How fun does that sound?
Choose a race supporting a cause you care about. What’s a better feeling than crossing a finish-line knowing your donation helped a cause that you support? There are so many races that support various charities. If you want to see the half-marathon that I plan on running in July, check it out here.
Rest. Resting is just as important as all the exercise. Without giving your body proper rest, you can really injure yourself. So on those days it says rest, go take a hot bubble bath or relax in a sauna.
At the finish line after the RunRaliegh Half!
I can’t tell you what it feels like to cross that finish line. It’s one of the most exciting experiences I’ve ever had and it really makes you aware of your capabilities. Feel free to comment on other tips you have regarding your running experience!