Our 16 Week Half Marathon Training Plan For Beginners is a great plan to build up a strong base and find success on your first half marathon.
The training schedule is best suited for relatively new runners, or people who lead active lives but lack running experience.
You should ideally be able to run 3 miles / 5 km continuously – regardless of pace – before commencing this half marathon training program. That said, it can be used as a run/walk plan too.
Our 4-month half marathon training plan also comes with a free downloadable PDF.
16 Week Half Marathon Training Plan: Essential Info
Who is it for?:
Runners with little experience, active people with no running experience. People looking to work hard to guarantee a good half-marathon finish.
16 weeks // 4 Months.
This allows for a very gradual, controlled increase in your mileage – which minimizes the risk of injury or overtraining issues.
The half marathon training schedule doesn’t have a speed or pace focus at all – the objective is to get the required mileage in. It includes 3 mid-week runs, to be performed at a comfortable pace, 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?
How Many Days Per Week?:
The beginners’ training plan features 5 days of training per week; 4 days of running and 1 day of cross-training.
Run / Walk
Struggling to continuously run the distances in the plan?
Adopt a structured run/walk approach, and you’ll be fine.
Try this; run for 2 minutes, walk for 1 minute. Repeat.
If this is too much, increase the ratio so you’re walking more frequently.
As you body adjusts, you should find it easier to run more often than walk!
16 Week Half Marathon Training Plan: Training Breakdown
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!
Each week includes a cross-training day; although these aren’t mandatory, I highly recommend them.
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 for Free In PDF, Printable, Or Google Sheets Format:
- Open the Google Sheets version of this plan
( File > Make A Copy) to create your own version
- Get the TrainingPeaks version of this plan, which you can sync with your device.
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 customizable), in both miles and kilometers.
After entering your email, you’ll be prompted to create an account on the Grow platform we use to control access to the plans. It’s completely free – make sure to complete the process to gain access to the plan!
Previous visitor or not seeing where to sign up?
Head over to our half marathon training plan database for full access to all plans.
Check Out The Premium Version of The 16 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.
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 hundreds of runners, refined and improved – and are free to download and customize to suit your needs!
You can also check out our Half Marathon Pace Calculator to help plan your race speed based on your finish time goal.
Other Suggested Half Marathon Training Plans:
Beginner + Novice Training Plans
- Couch To Half Marathon Training Plan
- 5k To Half Marathon Training Plan
- Beginner 16 Week Half Marathon Training Plan
- 12 Week Half Marathon Training Plan
Intermediate + Advanced Half Marathon Training Plans
- 10k To Half Marathon Training Plan
- 10 Week Improver Half Marathon Training Plan
- 8 Week Half Marathon Training Plan
- 6 Week Half Marathon Training Plan
- 4 Week Half Marathon Training Plan
Time-based Half Marathon Training Plans
- Sub 2-Hour Half Marathon Training Plan
- 1:45 Half Marathon Training Plan
- 1:30 Half Marathon Training Plan – 12 Weeks
- 1:30 Half Marathon Training Plan – 8 Weeks
Check out the Half Marathon Training Plans page for more.