My Half Marathon Training Plan


My Half Marathon Training Plan | Little Miss Fearless

top (similar) | bra | bottoms (my fav pair with pockets on the sides!) | shoes | wireless headphones | fitbit | white fitbit band

Welp, I finally did, guys! I committed to my first half marathon in 7 years (gasp) in May — Vigor Big Cottonwood Canyon Half. Then something got into me and I signed up for a second half just 6 weeks later in June — American Fork Canyon Half.

I’ve never attempted two half marathons so closely together before, but after asking for your thoughts on my IG story, you convinced me I could do it. I just need to “keep my miles up after the first race while allowing for adequate recovery time,” said too many people to name. (Thank you!)

I’m so excited to be training again. I’m no expert, but I come from a family of runners and race winners and while that used to feel like “too much to live up to” (recovering perfectionist here) I’m happy to get back into a training routine, knowing I’m doing it on my terms, no shame tape driving this plan or fears of inadequacy making me compete with anyone other than myself.

  • My goal for the first race is to HAVE FUN and finish.
  • My goal for the second race is to beat my time in the first race, enjoy the course and speak kindly to myself regardless of the outcome.

Since it’s been so long, and since my body has changed so much these past 7 years, I had to ask my marathon-winning, elite-runner sister (Stefanie) to review my plan before I committed to it. She recommended a few things you may find helpful when making your own training plan:

  1. Plan for at least 3-4 running days per week, 1 of which is your weekly long run;
  2. The miles you put into training are not just for your body, they’ll help train your mind for the distance, too;
  3. Taper 1-2 weeks leading up to the race—you want your legs to feel fresh, not sore;
  4. Don’t do your longest run the Saturday before the race;
  5. Give yourself some extra rest days the week after your race;
  6. No matter how your training goes, don’t get discouraged. Set goals, do your best, but then roll with it. Life happens and some days you will have to make decisions that are better for your family and your health, even if they aren’t ideal for your training.

I am SO lucky and grateful to have her. She really is a legend.

After we spoke, I decided on a Plan A and Plan B for my two races. Plan B basically allows for an additional rest day if Plan A starts to feel too intense. I’ll likely find myself somewhere in the middle of both.

I’m really loving OrangeTheory, so I’m incorporating my 2 classes per week into my plan as cross training days, even though I do always run an average of 1-2 miles on the treadmill each class. I’m hoping to work in some weight lifting beyond what I do at OTF, but only as it makes sense. I’m mostly nervous about increasing my weekly long runs. Those are the days that will probably test me the most. But I have completed 4 half marathons and BIRTHED A CHILD FOR 4 HOURS so I feel pretty confident when I put it in perspective like that. 🙂 #icandohardthings

Without further ado…

My Half Marathon Training Plan | Little Miss Fearless

My Half Marathon Training Plan | Little Miss Fearless

Have you run a half marathon before? Are you training for one or thinking about signing up?

Let me know your thoughts on my training plans and any questions you have!

Be sure to follow along on Instagram and IG stories for the most up-to-date posts about how my training is going. I can promise you I’ll be rolling with it.



  1. So amazing to see your dedication to take on the half marathon! ?
    I’ve never even tried a 10k before, so maybe that first, for me! ❤️

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
  2. Jessie says:

    This is really helpful for me, as I have just signed up to my first-ever half marathon and am slightly terrified! At the moment I’m doing 1 long run a week, in between my gym classes. I’ll make sure I do a few more runs in the week too then 🙂 I hope your training goes well! xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
  3. Stef says:

    I’ve done two halfs and I’d love to do another. Distance days were my favourite. I hated my interval days but those are integral in increasing your cardio capacity so I stuck it out and had really decent results. Seeing your plan has me excited to sign up for another one in the future! Next time I hope to follow the Run Less, Run Faster method. My goal at the end of this year was to run the Dopey challenge at Disney but my low iron won’t allow for that kind of training. When I’ve recovered a bit I can’t wait to jump back into it though! NOTHING like training for a big goal like a half or full marathon :). Also – get yourself some beet juice. Look up the benefits for distance running!! Haha, seriously! Just don’t take too much at once, trust me.

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
  4. Isabel says:

    Hi Amanda, I was wondering if a newbie to running can also follow this half marathon training plan. I did do high school cross country for one semester (3 months) 2 years ago and have not ran since then. I can do 3 miles max right now and I do not know if increasing the mileage within 2 weeks is doable without harming the body. Thanks for your help in advance!

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
    • Hey Isabel! I’m so sorry for the late reply. How’s your running going?

      If you can run 3 miles right now, I definitely think you could follow this training plan. The key for me was not missing the long runs. I had several weeks where I didn’t run as many days as I outlined in my plan (life happens), but pushing through the long runs each weekend is what really got me ready for the distance. Hope this helps!


      Posted May 14, 2018 | Reply
  5. Stefanie Talley says:

    Thanks Manda! You are too generous with your praise ?. I love your courage and conviction. You can do this!

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
  6. Congrats!
    xo –

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
  7. Suzanne says:

    Your races sound gorgeous! And that first one sounds FAST, holy crap! A 3000 ft decline is no joke. I ran my first half this past fall after ~4 months of training. The extra training was great because I could keep my long runs around the same mileage for several weeks and “settle in” to the distance before cranking it up. This was especially important because I’m a trail runner and there’s no such thing as “flat” here. If you haven’t tried running trails already, you should mix some in! You live in a great area for it. 🙂

    I was planning my next half for April, but I’m currently recovering from a knee injury so that will have to wait. It’s a bummer since it’ll take a long time to work back to the ~2 hour runs I love so much, but I’m getting close to being able to start again. I miss my long runs more than I can describe!

    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
    • Hey Suzanne! How’s your recovery going? I started having some knee pain a few weeks before my race last week. Mostly related to my IT band being tight, but man, all the foam rolling in the world hasn’t been able to loosen it for me. I hope your injury wasn’t too serious. It’s so hard not being able to do what you love!

      Hope you’re well.


      Posted May 14, 2018 | Reply
  8. Briana says:

    good for you girl! i want to try this!


    Posted February 17, 2018 | Reply
  9. Maureen says:

    That’s great! You are an inspiration. I can’t run to save my life and to think about a marathon just gave me an anxiety attack! Lol ? All joking aside, this is a great plan and goals. You will do well because you have heart and you are determined. I like your energy and it will take you far. Rooting for you in spirit. You got this! Happy weekend!

    Maureen |

    Posted February 18, 2018 | Reply
  10. Meredith Greene says:

    Excited for you and your training! Half Marathon distance is perfect for us moms, at least in my opinion. Have you ever checked out Another Mother Runner? Blog, training plans, podcast. I bet you’d really enjoy it. Best of luck!

    Posted March 28, 2018 | Reply