Hello loves! Who’s kept up with my half marathon journey so far?! It’s been a long 22 weeks, but guys, I DID IT! I can check this off my bucket list finally! Running a half marathon has been something I have tried doing for years. I first told myself that I would run 13.1 miles back in college. But, due to pursuing an art degree, I didn’t quite understand how LONG I would be running for while training. Some runs total longer than two hours, which sounds like quite a bit of running right now. After 22 weeks of training, I crave my long run days! Which may sound crazy, but that is my new me time!
I got so many people asking me how I trained, what shoes I used, apps, running gear, you name it! So today I am sharing all of my secrets with you loves on how I trained for my first half marathon!
What app did you use?
So the secret to every training program is finding one that works for you! And for me, that was Nike+ Run Club! This easy to use and free app offers training programs for everyone. From Beginners to expert long distance runners, this one is great! I actually ran my first 5K using their programs, and look at me now!
The easy simple to use interface is friendly for all users. With just a few quick taps, you’re ready to run! One of my favorite things about this program is that you can edit it. So, if you have a busy week and you know you can’t make your Tuesday run, no worries! Just edit your runs for the week without worrying about falling behind on your program!
Need a little boost while you run? Link Nike+ Run Club to your facebook and friends and family can cheer you on while you run! There’s nothing like hearing the crowd cheer while you start hitting your goal!
How do I find the RIGHT shoes?
Okay, so I cannot stress this enough. You need the RIGHT shoes when you run. Or you will get injured, and it has happened to me! The first time I trained I didn’t take this part seriously. I just laced up whatever shoes I had and hit the road. Turns out there wasn’t enough support for my ankles and *SNAP*. Mid run injury put me on the bench for 5 weeks.
Start by hitting up your local run on here in DFW, or any other running shoe store specialist that can determine your pronate and arch support needed for the best run possible! Some brands people like are Brooks, Asics, and Nike. For me, my perfect fit was the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 35. They offer the right support I need for my ankles. As well as great cushion for my heels and joints. I have what’s called an underpronation, so I need LOTS of cushion! And for me, that just happened to be the Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 35! I bought my shoes at an outlet, so I paid roughly $60 vs full price of $130+. Finding the perfect fit and price is just as important as the perfect plan!
What Clothes I Trained In
Let me start off by saying I have trained in many different brands of workout gear. From GAP to Lululemon, I’ve worn it all. I have a mix of brands I swear by and will exclusively buy now. Partially because I have had pants and tops that fall apart WHILE I AM RUNNING. Which is SO embarrassing.
My go to tops are always Old Navy! They offer an array of colors, styles, and varieties that make me feel good. Which is the ultimate goal, to feel good when you run! I find when I am relaxed, feeling good, and wearing things I like, I run better! Now, this is where you want to start investing in quality clothing.
My running leggings are from Lululemon, so they are pricey. But they offer support, make me feel dry throughout, and ultimately are so comfortable. They have the convenient side pocket for the perfect place to put your phone and power chews! A good alternative is my favorite pair from the GAP! They sculpt, stay together, and are way less expensive!
When it comes to sports bras, just be sure you have 100% support. You will be SO incredibly sore if you don’t. Which I learned the hard way! My go to’s are the ones with pads that zip at the front. For me, my favorite has been discontinued, but I love Lululemon bras and the old navy selection!
What no one told me about long distance racing.
You will find you’re running for hours, and your body is using its energy reserves. So you’ll want to find a good power chew to give your body much needed energy! Gatorade chews work for some, but I actually found that ginger chews are my favorite! They also don’t upset my stomach mid run!
Race fees are expensive, especially if you wait till the last minute. I actually had to move my date because the entry fee was going to be $125 because i procrastinated. On average, fees range from $70 all the way to $150 for a half. BUT! You get really great swag, a medal, a race day bid that tracks your exact time, and sometimes even shirts and hoodies!
Taking on a challenge like this has been no easy task, and I have only scraped the surface of what is necessary to start training. I have listed the basics, but you learn as you go when you train for a long distance race like this! For me, I learned its all in my head. When I am tired, I just keep pushing. You will feel so amazing when you cross that finish line knowing that you did this for yourself! Its such a rewarding feeling, one unlike any other.
Want to continue the conversation? I am on instagram, @thed.diaries, where you can ask me anything regarding training, clothes, more tips, or if you even want to run a race together! As always loves, stay positive!