8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan

Our 8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan is for experienced runners looking to ramp up their training for a half marathon!

It builds up your mileage over 8 weeks, and includes one tempo run per week.

Tempo runs are great for runners with a specific finishing time in mind; they help you to train towards that time.

8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan

Who is it for?: 

Runners who have run a half marathon in the past and want to ‘dust off’ their half marathon chops. 

How Long?: 

8 weeks.

It includes 2 mid-week runs, to be performed at a comfortable pace, one tempo run, and one long-slow run each weekend to build your max mileage.   The plan includes one cross-training day per week and two rest days. 

Not convinced this is the plan for you?

Check out our other half marathon training plans!

8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan 1

How Many Days Per Week?:

The training plan features 5 days of training per week; 4 days of running and 1 day of cross training.

Training Runs

These are your classic training runs; do them in the mornings or after work, at a comfortable, sustainable pace.  

These runs help add mileage to your training week and get your body used to running far!

Tempo Runs (optional)

A tempo run is a training run done at your target half marathon pace, if you have one.

Not sure what target pace should be?  Check out our pace charts!

Cross Training

Each week includes a cross training day; although these aren’t mandatory, I highly recommend them.

Why?

Cross training is meant to work on your cardiovascular health and strength some of the muscles weakened through running.

Recommended cross-training exercises include body weight exercises, light gym work, swimming, yoga, pilates, and cycling!

Long Runs

You should be factoring in one long, slow run every weekend.  These runs are all about increasing your endurance gradually.

Remember to take it easy during them, don’t push things, and don’t worry about walking breaks – it’s all about building up that time on your feet.

Download The Training Plan Here

Enter your email and I’ll send you this free training plan now, in PDF and Google Sheets formats (completely customisable), in both miles and kilometers.  

8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan 2

Check Out The Premium Version of The 8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan . . .

We’ve teamed with TrainingPeaks to offer a premium version of the 8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan:

Access the plan via the TrainingPeaks website and app, track your workouts in real-time against the plan, and get performance data analysis on your progress.

Check out the premium 8 Week half marathon training plan here!

trainingpeaks
trainingpeaks training plan

The most comprehensive plan you will find

Rated 5 out of 5
October 28, 2019

I had run a couple of half marathons and was in reasonable shape coming into the plan and it was a good rise in intensity throughout. You need to want to do an event like this – I was getting up at 3am to get my long run in before kids weekend sport etc and this was hard. When you combine the plan with the online community through the Marathon Handbook FB page and website, you get complete support. Have used this plan with great success and now looking at upping the pace in the marathon space… GREAT JOB!

Rob McCaw

Interesting

Rated 5 out of 5
May 10, 2021

Very informative!

Elmarie De Bruin

Noice

Rated 5 out of 5
November 18, 2020

Got me round me Virtual London Marathon, great plan – I did 6hrs 56min

Hugh

Amazing

Rated 5 out of 5
November 1, 2020

This is quite amazing. It will help me achieve my goal

Kelvin Kamphambale

good job

Rated 4 out of 5
October 21, 2020

Thanks for this – got me to the finish line of my marathon surprisingly comfortably!
I wasn’t sure if 3 months for a marathon was enough….I somehow scraped through in 4 hours and 20 minutes 😀

mert

8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan 3
8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan 4

Proven Training Plans by a UESCA-certified Running Coach 

Every one of our training plans has been developed by Thomas Watson, a UESCA-certified running coach.

Thomas is also a podium-finishing ultra-marathon runner, and has dozens of marathons under his belt.

Each training plan has been road-tested by hundred of runners, refined and improved – and are free to download and customise to suit your needs!

Training Plan Elements Explained:

Training Runs

These are standard runs, typically of 3 – 6 miles in length.  They are used to build running form and time-on-your-feet. They should be performed at close-to your target race pace, or at a conversational pace if you have no target speed. 

Long Runs

These are longer distance runs, designed to increase your stamina.   They are purely about building up the length of time you can continue running – don’t worry about your pace, keep it an easy conversational level (more info).

Speed Work / Interval Training

Run workouts designed to increase your speed!  These come in various forms – Yasso’s, intervals, Fartleks, etc.   They are useful if you have a speed-based goal, but if you don’t then no need to focus on them – they can be tiring (more info).

Cross Training

Any form of exercise which does not involve running, and preferably one which is low impact (avoid contact sports).   Good forms of cross training include yoga, swimming, and strength training.

8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan (2)