It happens. You have a half marathon coming up in two weeks and didn’t train for it. This is a habit, signing up for things and not considering time. As if it is infinite. Now you only have a few days to not be in last place. You have your kit laid out and a popping playlist but all that won’t matter if they have to come shuffle your ass off the course. So what to do when time is not on your side and you’ve been eating pounds of truffle fries.

1. Breathe 

Not only is this going to help to keep calm and focused on finishing the race, it’s also going to speed up your digestion and help your muscles recover faster.

2. Hit the Gym

Long distance running is all about endurance and clarity. Can your body perform at a high level for a continuous amount of time? The first part is the body. So get that in order. Hit the gym hard for the first few day focusing on your glutes, hamstrings, abs, and quads. Run for active recovery and cardio in between. Go light to start. It takes time to get stronger.

3. Plan your mileage

Ideally, you should have completed your first 13 miles by now but in the case where you have barely made it to 4, find your way to 11 before the race. If you are running the Virgin Sport Half with us on the 15th, you technically have 12 days to plan out your mileage. Here is how you should break down your running.

Today: 4 miles

Wed: 3 miles

Thursday: 5 miles

Friday: 6 miles

Saturday: 9 miles 

Sunday: 2 miles

Monday: 4 miles

Tuesday: 2 miles

Wednesday: 11 miles

Thursday: rest

Friday: rest 

Saturday: 3 miles

Sunday: RACE!

4. Visualize your finish

From this day on, take at least 10 minutes out of your day to visualize yourself finishing the race. This about the good runs and the bad runs. Think about how it feels to run past the trouble of the bad runs. How victory feels when you overcome doubt. Spend some time with yourself and your thoughts as you prepare for a physical challenge.

5. Catch up on sleep

Especially if you are going to be training hard in the gym. You MUST give your body time to rest and recover. Sleep is the best time so don’t miss out on what you deserve.

6. No new gear

This is something that Robin used to always say and I didn’t understand until I experienced it. I wore new shoes to the LA Marathon and almost lost a foot. If you have trained in it, it’s good enough for race day. Don’t fall into the new stuff frenzy that comes with the expo and experience. These items are about to get drenched in every type of body fluid that secrets from your being. Buy something new after you cross the finish line.

8. Clear pee

This should be your goal every day but make it a real focus during these last few days of training.

9. Tell your friends what you are doing

Motivation is a team sport so make sure your friends know what you are up to so they can cheer you on from near and far.

10. You aren’t going to win

That’s just fact. Enjoy yourself but most importantly impress yourself.

Registration is still open for Virgin Sport San Francisco’s Bay half-marathon, Twin Peaks Mile, and a weekend of fitness, October 13-15 in San Francisco.

Register for Virgin Sport SF:

Facebook: @VirginSport

Twitter: @Virgin_Sport

Instagram: @VirginSport

Official hashtag: #VirginSportSF


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