Spring Half Marathon Schedule & Training Plans

Good morning!

I hope you all had a nice weekend (and are maybe still enjoying it with the holiday today for President’s Day!). I had a super low key, relaxing weekend and I’m happy to say I started feeling a lot better by Saturday! I still have a little congestion but I’m definitely on the mend and ready to tackle this week. :)

I’m also ready to get back to running, so let’s talk spring racing! You guys know I love training over the winter – for me, cold weather running (within reason) is a million times better than hot weather running, and as a result, I tend to do a lot of races in the late spring. This spring is no exception. I have not one… not two… but THREE half marathons on the docket. Whoa!

First up? The Rock ‘n’ Roll USA Half Marathon on March 16!


I’ll be running this race sponsored as part of my Brooks Run Happy Ambassadorship and I can’t wait! I ran this race two years ago with a group of my grad school girlfriends before it was a Rock ‘n’ Roll race – back then it was the National Half Marathon – and I love the course. I hear they’re changing it up a little for this year; the full marathon course wasn’t the best before so hopefully that will be improved and the half will still stay just as awesome.


Next on the docket I have the Nike Women’s Half Marathon on April 28!


This race was outrageously expensive (and sold out really quickly – they had a lottery system), but I’m not gonna lie – I totally signed up because I want the Tiffany’s finisher’s necklace they hand out at the end of the race. ;) Plus, my college BFF Turner and grad school BFF Elle will be doing the race with me! Should be fun. :)

And last but not least – the ZOOMA Annapolis Half Marathon on June 1!


Those of you who have been reading since the beginning will remember that ZOOMA Annapolis was actually my very first half marathon back in June 2010! It was a ROUGH race for me – really really hot out and I was having some calf issues, too, but I pushed through and was so proud of myself for crossing that finish line.


I’m really excited to return to the very start of my half marathon adventures. I’ll be running the race as a ZOOMA Ambassador with a couple blogger buddies and it should be a good time! By the way – if you’re interested in running the race, too (they have a 10k as well!), use the code ANNAMB6 to get 10% off registration for either distance at Annapolis. Hope to see you there! :)


So now – let’s talk training! I didn’t find out until recently that I’d have the opportunity to do the Rock ‘n’ Roll USA Half and I’ve been so busy with the whole RD exam business that it kind of snuck up on me! I can’t believe that race is in only a month! In the past, I’ve created detailed half marathon training plans (click to see an old training schedule) for myself that start at about 2 to 2.5 months out, but for this round I decided it would be best to be flexible. Here’s the general plan for the next few months until all the races are over:

Each week will include:

  • 1 long run
  • 2 shorter runs (1 hilly, 1 speedy)
  • 2 days of cross training (either kickboxing or CrossFit at CrossFit Arlington/NOVA MMA)
  • 1 day of yoga
  • 1 rest day

Long runs will be on the weekends and won’t be more than 12 miles; short runs will be between 4 and 6 miles. I don’t run more than 3 days per week when I’m training because, for me, it helps to decrease chance of injury. Plus, I like mixing it up too much! Working in CrossFit, kickboxing, boot camps and/or yoga not only help to decrease boredom and burnout, but they also assure that my legs are staying strong in ways that compliment my running. I might also work some swimming into the mix once per week (in place of something else) occasionally – swimming is awesome cross training for running!

Other things I’ll be doing a lot of:

  • Icing my legs (knees, ankles, calves) after runs
  • Wearing compression sleeves/socks either before, during, or after runs
  • Foam rolling! (Check out my extremely nerdy “How to Use a Foam Roller” video from last year for some tips – and just a note that another way to use a foam roller is to find a tense point and hold yourself still on that spot to release the tension.)


My original plan was to do another 8 mile over the weekend (you’ll remember I did 8 miles last weekend in Chapel Hill), but since I’d been sick I decided to bag the long run this weekend and got in a 4 miler instead, once I was on the mend.

So here is the new plan:

  • Weekend of February 22nd – 10 mile run (I’ll need to do this during this week because I think we’re going on a ski trip over the weekend with friends!)
  • Weekend of March 1st – 12 mile run
  • Weekend of March 9th – 6 mile run (taper)
  • Weekend of March 16th – HALF MARATHON!

Obviously not the most ideal training plan, but it’ll do. :) I’m excited to share my training and racing adventures with all of you over the next few months!

What races do you have on the docket for this spring?


  1. 1

    I’m running the Nike half too! So excited!

  2. 3

    I’m running in a 10-miler (my first!) March 9, followed by the Run the Bluegrass Half Marathon 3/30 and then the Kentucky Derby Half Marathon April 28. I’m getting excited already!

  3. 5

    So glad to see you’re doing RnR! A bunch of my friends and my fiance are doing the half. Maybe you’ll see me shuffling down the road on my way to (hopefully) finishing my first full marathon (note: I’ll be back to doing halfs after this one…). Let’s hope the weather is good this year :). Good luck with training!

  4. 7

    Training plan looks good! This has me inspired to sign-up for a race. Hope my knee heals soon, so I can do so. I think compression socks would be a helpful, healthy investment :) Hope you’re feeling better!

  5. 8

    I’m running 3 this spring as well! I’m doing the the Rock n Roll DC Half on March 16th too!! Then, the AC April Fools Half on April 7 and the New Jersey Half on May 5! Soo excitingg :) Good luck with all your training and hope you feel better!!

  6. 9

    Good luck! I couldn’t imagine having to start training with only a month until the race but you will do fine!

  7. 10

    I’m psyched to be running the Broad Street Run in Philly on May 5. It’s a 10 miler and my longest race ever. My niece has been urging me to run a half with her. I think knowing a Tiffany necklace was waiting for me at the finish line might just be the ticket to get me to run one! Maybe next year…

  8. 12
    jess @ burgers and thighs says

    good luck with your halfs! i unfortunately wasn’t chosen in the lottery for the nike half. but i am doing 2 10 mile races 3/24 and 5/5. i’m hoping to squeeze in a couple halfs in the fall.

  9. 13

    I’m running the Nike half as well and am so pumped! Can’t believe I got in!

  10. 14

    I really like the look of your training plan, especially since you don’t have a lot of time. I like how you’re only doing two runs and mixing it up with other workouts. I so want to run the Nike half or full and totally just for the Tiffany’s necklace!!

  11. 15

    Love your training plan and how flexible it is to your personal style. I’m beginning to think that I can only run 4 times a week at a maximum too, I love cross-training and strength training too much to give those up when I’m training for a race!

  12. 16

    Very exciting news on the race front! I have five triathlons on my race schedule, but no “straight up” roadraces. Hmm … that needs to change! ;)

  13. 17

    I’m doing a couple of 10k and we have the first rock and roll half marathon in Dublin this year which I’m tempted by!!!

  14. 19

    You are such an ass-kicker :P

    • 20

      Oh oh oh PS I just signed up for my first EVER race (besides the one I tried to run like 5 yrs ago with you and Turner and I got the flu instead and didn’t go to Cape May at all). Sept 15th I am running the 6k La Parisienne race in Paris- its bringing attention to women’s health (they hate exercise here and just smoke like chimneys), its a fundraiser for breast cancer research, AND the course goes through the heart of Paris including the Eiffel tower! Could not say no- the whole book club of ladies is running so I thought it would be a cool experience in Paris to do! :)

    • 23

      lol thanks ;)

  15. 24

    Just curious… is crossfit your strength training 1-2 times a week?

  16. 27

    I’m running the NWM this year too!! I’ve run the other two before too! They are great races!

  17. 29

    We’re most likely moving back to the northeast this summer, and all of those races are ones I hope to do at some point in the next few years. For now, I have a half in two weeks, and then a 10k and a number of 5ks. It starts getting ridiculously hot in Tx by April, so there really aren’t more half marathons beyond that point.

  18. 30

    Yay, glad to also be running 2/3 of these races! :D

  19. 31

    You’ve totally inspired me! I’ve been thinking about doing another half marathon and after reading your training plan, I know it’s do-able! I just need to commit to it and find one to do here in the northeast!

  20. 33

    You are an animal. Can’t wait to run the Nike 1/2 with you! :)

  21. 35

    Good luck with your training! I’m running my first 1/2 marathon (EVER!) in April and I’m so excited!!

  22. 37

    Yayy for running two of the same races!!

  23. 38

    I was slated to run the R’n’R USA too!! But then my boss decided to push up an international research trip to Asia, so I have to leave DC on Thursday, so I had to drop out!!! I’m so bummed, but Asia should be interesting/exciting. I’m just happy I got into the Cherry Blossom 10-miler this year. :-) Good luck with all your races!

  24. 39

    I have a very busy spring running schedule! Did the Goofy Challenge in Jan. The Birmingham half last weekend! I have one half per month until July. Can’t wait to read your recap of the rock N Roll DC. Its on my race to do list!

  25. 40
    Healthy Eater says

    Awesome plans, Anne. Go for it!

  26. 41

    Definitely with you on the mixing it up. I thrive best on 3 running days a week, and although it is still, hands down mybfavorite I have also worked in/incorporated more strength and swimming and biking.

  27. 42

    Looks like you’ll be having lots of fun this spring! One other tip that has helped me in past marathon training is after a long run- lay on your back at put your legs up on the wall. I like to do it while laying in bed. 10-15 minutes of that and maybe a short nap and the legs feel fresh again!

  28. 44

    I am coming from Boston to run the rock n roll half (my first half)! Maybe I’ll see you there!

  29. 46
    Mary Lou says

    Did the cpn code for the Annapolis race expire? I just tried to use it and it didn’t work:(

    • 47

      No, it should still work! Are you sure you entered it correctly?

      • 48

        I just went to do it again and it did not work- This is what it says- The coupon code was not recognized. Please try again.
        I’m ready to give up since each time I have to put in all my info again.

        thanks for you reply!

        • 49

          I contacted ZOOMA and here’s what they said: “Make sure they’re using all caps ANNAMB6 and that they are trying to register for the Annapolis race not a different location.”

          Sorry for the trouble!

          • 50
            Mary Lou says

            Thanks for your response. I ended up switching browsers and went from Safari to Firefox and that made it work. I’m all signed up for Annapolis my first 10K!

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