To get me from a kind-of runner to someone who won’t have a heart attack when doing a half marathon, I’ve made myself at 20 week schedule. You can find any number of half marathon training schedules online, most are about 12-15 weeks. I am lucky and unlucky: lucky because I have so much time to work with, unlucky that my body does not react well to amping up my mileage too fast. And it’s not just a soreness or blisters or anything so nice. No, my body doesn’t seem to grasp that I’m doing something good for it, and if I jump mileage too fast I get a migraine the next day.
Now, this is based on circumstantial evidence, but if you get migraines then you understand my reluctance to test it. They’re really unfun, and I habitually do everything in my power to avoid them (as in, I try to get lots of sleep and maybe not live off pizza and chocolate).
So to try to work up to 13.1 miles in a healthy and and (hopefully) migraine-less way, I adapted this schedule. I mostly followed it, but I upped my long runs by .5 miles instead of a whole mile and switched up the days around to better fit my schedule. My runner friend also advised me to put my shortest run the day after my long run, since according to her it’s a good idea to get moving the next day too.
I currently have this schedule printed out and hanging up on my wall, and I cross out each run as I do it (because constant validation is a necessity for me in this process).