Runners have so much initiative and drive as it is but the challenge is directing the energy in the right directions to get the highest impact.
I recently wrote the sub 2 hour half marathon manifesto which contains a 12 week half marathon plan at the conclusion.
It is hard for anyone to purchase a product that they are unsure will work.
Runners are risk takers, they want to improve but few act on account of fear or concerned it won’t work for them.
I love being around runners and people seeking to better their lives through fitness. What the manifesto contains is far more than a 12 week half marathon training plan.
I have, on numerous occasions, payed for advice in the areas of fitness, business and motivation. I always considered it an investment I was willing to make.
It should be a part of everyone’s future success to seek out those who have done things we want to do.
What I wanted to do when I was working on the sub 2 hour half marathon manifesto was to create something that was far more powerful then just giving visitors to rundreamachieve a simple, 12 week half marathon training plan.
If you want average. Find a free half marathon training schedule. Advice sometimes costs but in my own experience it can be life changing. I have purchased online motivation audio CDs, countless running books as well as half marathon training schedules.
I wanted to find out what those who were doing the opposite were doing and emulate that. I didn’t necessarily want to do exactly what they did but I was willing to pay if it was going to help me learn something new, an attack plan that would yield me better results.
I had the motivation and drive but I was training improperly and needed a change. Sometimes it takes failure upon failure before we wake up and take the chance, risk doing something we aren’t comfortable with.
My First Half Marathon Attempt
I competed for Jack Hazen, a world authority on distance running, while competing for Malone University. The farthest I had ever tried racing prior to arriving to Malone University was 5K in high school.
I wish I would have known what I detailed in the sub 2 hour half marathon manifesto back when I was in college.
You mean I can cut time off my race times by focusing on the pace I want to race at?
You would think after a few years of high school competing I would fully understand that but to be quite honest, I didn’t ‘get it’ back then.
I thought running easy long runs would help me drop my half marathon times and I didn’t understand or know what anaerobic threshold training was or how lactic acid accumulation could be lessened by running at higher intensities.
I was a miler and two-miler in high school and I was just learning the game. It is one thing to run an all-out two-mile, a whole different story when trying to maintain goal pace in a 13.1 mile race.
I ran a 1.14.01 in my first attempt at the half marathon distance in a half marathon in cleveland in 1997. I needed a 1.15.00 to qualify for the 1997 NAIA National Marathon Championships.
I decided to hold off from running the national championships and continue to work on my leg speed. I didn’t see breaking 2.30.00 (a time that was needed to be an All-American) as a reasonable goal at the time. I believed it was possible but time was needed and I wanted to keep working.
I was not used to running that far and back in 1997. I thought the 2.22.00 marathon (which was an Olympic Trials standard) was utterly light years ahead of what I thought I could do.
My thinking changed when I began training with the Kenyans and surrounding myself with people who thought I had the capability to make that goal a reality. Funny how much more empowered you feel when you are around the right individuals.
I entertained the idea of breaking 2.22.00 but holding two, back-to-back 1.11.00 half-marathons while still a 1.14 half marathoner was daunting.
Have you felt the same way?
I have since dropped my current half marathon best to 1.07.06 but it has taken a lot of work, some failures along the way. Your confidence will grow the more you seek out knowledge that will help get you results.
The half marathon is a very unique distance. It takes a great deal more anaerobic work. The shorter the distance, the more speed plays a part but endurance work is still vital for you to obtain a breakthrough.
A Few Fundamentals To A Successful 12 Week Half Marathon Plan
I gave a speech to the Clarksville Running Club last week and I brought up race pace training and how it was vital for breakthrough racing.
A 57 year old, sub 3.30 marathoner, came up to me and said, ‘Nate, that was awesome, you are the first person I have heard who brought race pace training up for me to improve as a runner’.
He went on to tell me all the half marathon training plans he followed called for too much easy running.
A 12 week half marathon plan has to be one that works for each individual athlete. I fully understand that harder running may not work equally for two separate athletes.
What I tried to convey in my speech was simply to race at a specific pace you have in mind, practicing that pace and extending the distance you train at that pace will dramatically increase your chance for success.
There is no secret to running faster. It is quite evident. Do you have a goal time in mind? Attack that pace. Get used to it, gradually train your body to lessen the stress you feel about that pace.
Far too many of us, my past self included, get caught up with overanalyzing how we are going to maintain our goal pace.
It takes two things to achieve the goal. Persistence and patience. The two best weapons to accompany a successful 12 week half marathon training plan is an action plan that contains these two secret attack strategies.
I didn’t see enough of that around and is the reason I created the sub 2 hour half marathon manifesto.
Average is everywhere and most of it is free. I don’t see a lot of value in a half marathon training schedule that consists of numbers and nothing else.
Tell me why I am doing what I am doing, teach me something, tell me a story. I want to learn something, not just stare at some cookie cutter plan.
I will pay for a human story. A simple 12 week half marathon plan that I can easily find on other websites, magazines doesn’t tell me much.
The great multiple Olympic gold medalist distance runner, Emil Zatopek, said it best,
I already know how to run slow. I want to run fast.
I can only imagine how hard Emil trained and he was a master at every distance back in the 50′s. He is still the only Olympian to have ever won gold at three different distances. The 5000m, 10,000m and the marathon.
What is incredible is he won gold in his very first marathon with a time of 2.23.03.
If you are not having fun with your training, your life or your career, you have to make a change. I feel this way with my career and I know a change needs to occur.
Emil understood what I write about in the manifesto. It takes skill and razor sharp focus to run fast. Anyone can run easily. You can take a complete beginner who has never run a mile in his or her life and take them out on an easy run.
“The fishing is best where the fewest go and the collective insecurity of the world makes it easy for people to hit home runs while everyone is aiming for base hits.” – Tim Ferriss
Running fast is a far more challenging, it is more then just trying for base hits like Tim mentions. Don’t settle for thinking you are less capable then you are.
It is very easy to miss the mark in your half marathon training quest by self-sabotaging yourself into believing you are not capable your specified goal pace.
You will create breakthrough running performances by balancing recovery between intense, focused and fast efforts.
There is no secret to it and there certainly is not short cuts. The problem is too many athletes spend too much time at the wrong end of the physiological spectrum.
If you want a 12 week half marathon plan that will not only give you a specific game plan to attack your half marathon goal, but motivate you to think at a higher level, to challenge the status quo, perhaps the sub 2 hour half marathon manifesto is what is missing in your training.
It isn’t about creating a product.
It is about taking someone who didn’t think they could achieve a specific goal, who didn’t think it was possible and coaching them to run through, around and over what the status quo would prefer they consider as ‘unrealistic’.
This is what I do best and have lived what I preach. A true half marathon training plan will do no less.
Seek out impossible times, challenge your mind to think in different ways.
You may just find out that what you want will be attracted to you simply by changing what you think about.
If you are a 5 hour marathoner and you want to break 4 hours you have to get in a different mindset.
You can’t believe in the impossible and make it a reality by being realistic.
There are far too many people who will tell you to ‘be realistic’. Where is the fun in that?
Does being realistic excite you? Does that get you fired up?
Does being told to ‘be realistic’ make you want to wake up for a new day? It surely doesn’t do a damn thing for me.
You can’t get the most out of life by trying to live up to others expectations of you and this is what I created the sub 2 hour manifesto.
I wanted more runners to feel as though they are capable, to get out of their comfort zone and create some breakthroughs in their running.
Live up to your own expectations.
Study what those faster then you have done to create the results you want. I still continue to read and buy products that I believe in and most importantly from people I know are truly interested in seeing me succeed.