Half-Marathon Training in Winter

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I don’t know what the weather is like where you live, but in Colorado it gets pretty cold and snowy! That can really affect my running and training plans when I’m trying to prepare for a half-marathon. No worries though, I have a backup plan in place: treadmill running.

My backyard view today. Brr!

When I trained for my first half-marathon in 2012, I did most of my running during the early summer mornings in Georgia and Alabama (that’s an entirely different beast, with humidity and heat and bugs!). Here in Colorado, I’m faced with snowy and icy sidewalks in the winter months. That can be somewhat dangerous, especially for someone who isn’t used to this type of weather. I can deal with the cold, but I worry about slipping and falling on the ice. I definitely don’t want to get injured. So when the conditions don’t allow for me to run outside, I bring my runs indoors to the treadmill.

My new happy place: My basement gym!

Most people don’t get very excited about running on the “dreadmill,” especially when your long runs last more than 5 miles. That’s why I try to distract myself with some motivating music (check out my Spotify playlists), or even some mindless TV episodes on Netflix.

I have two half-marathons that I’m preparing for this spring, and the first one is coming up fast. I’m running That Dam 13.1 on March 5, and my training so far has been less than ideal. I just got my treadmill at Christmas, so I haven’t had much time to work on increasing my mileage. That’s ok though, I’m not looking to PR with this race. I just want something that’s going to MAKE me keep running. What I’m really excited about is the Colfax half-marathon in May. My 15 year old will be running that one with me, and I’d like to finish in better time than I did on my last race (also the only other half-marathon I’ve ever done, which took 2:38).

Here’s my training schedule for these next two months:

You can see I’m only running about 3 days per week right now – two short runs during the week and one long run on the weekends. I also have a LOT of BODYPUMP in there, as I’m still working really hard to increase my strength and ability to teach those classes. Cross-training is important though, as I want to keep gaining strength all over my body to avoid any muscular imbalances due to just running. This will be the first time I try incorporating yoga into my running training, and I’m excited to see how that goes!

Are you doing any running during the winter, or training for an upcoming race?

Happy running!

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  1. Now this is what you call discipline! I love the fact that you’re able to train even with the harsh weather. It’s sometimes better to just have all the equipment you need at home so you won’t miss a workout session.

  2. You should get you a big poster of a tropical island for that blank wall. I trained to run the Paris marathon in Germany, so I know exactly how you feel.

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