How To Run A Sub 90 Half Marathon | Run Training & Tips

How To Run A Sub 90 Half Marathon | Run Training & Tips


– Completing a half-marathon
in any time is obviously a huge achievement but being able
to say that you did it under the illusive one hour
30 or the 90 minute mark is pretty special. Now let’s be clear, that
is a very quick time but whilst we’re out here in
Fuerteventura enjoying ourselves at the Playitas Resort,
I thought I’d take this opportunity to help you
be able to run it too. (fast-paced synth medley) (mid-tempo encouraging music) But first of all, let’s take
a look at what we are tackling here because a 90 minute
half-marathon works out at 4:16 per kilometer, or 6:52 per mile. That’s 14.1 kilometers an hour, but it would be fairly
foolish of me to suggest you just target 90 minutes. We need some sort of
buffer or margin for error, so let’s shave a minute of
that and go after 89 minutes or one hour 29. That works out at 4:13 per kilometer or 6:47 per mile. That’s 14.2 kilometers an
hour, now to put that into some context, for five 5K
that works out at 21:06 or for a 10K that’s 42:11. For a 10 mile, that works
out one hour hour minute and six seconds. Now obviously feel free to
give yourself more of a buffer or even target a faster time
and if you want to do that and work our and find
out the pace for that, just use one of the online calculators. Now ideally, you’re going to
start this in fairly good shape fairly good fitness so that
you can follow a good program and that will ideally
be eight to 12 weeks. If maybe you’re not in quite
as good shape at the moment, you might want to extend
that period of time out just a fraction. (mid-tempo encouraging music) Now also, a half-marathon
is a distance event, it still requires a good
mix and variety of training. We need speed-training, we
need tempo-threshold training and we even need those
long endurance runs. Now let’s actually start off
with those long endurance runs because these should be a staple in any distance runner’s training plan. Ideally performed once a week,
no more than that for sure and building up to probably
around half-marathon distance or slightly above that. And the idea of these is to build our base aerobic endurance so it’s
really important that we keep these to a steady pace, somewhere
around zone two intensity, a real conversational pace. Anything above that and it
actually starts to negate the benefit of it, in fact,
it can start to be detrimental to some of the key sessions in the week. It could even cause over-training, illness, maybe even injury. Now when you’re starting out
with this, probably just start with a distance or a time
that you’re comfortable with. Maybe 45 to 60 minutes in
duration and then just add five to 10% per week, topping
out around two hours. (mid-tempo encouraging music) Now my next big session for
you for your half-marathon training program is the
tempo or the threshold run. Now the idea of these sessions
is that you’re working out your anaerobic threshold,
by working at this point, you are just below the point
in which your body would start to get flooded with lactic
acid and by doing that it means you’re able to rack up a
good duration of time at this intensity and therefore,
bumps our threshold up which in turn can make us faster. Now this is actually
often described as being a comfortably hard pace,
something that you can sustain for at least 20 minutes. It’s normally calculated
somewhere around 25 to 30 seconds per mile slower than your current 5K pace, but if you’re using a heart-rate
monitor, now it should be around 90% of your maximum heart-rate. Now if you’re starting out
with these kind of sessions then I’d suggest breaking it down. You’re looking for a total
duration at this tempo pace around 20 to 30 minutes,
so let’s go with five lots of four minutes with two minutes recovery. Then you could potentially
build this up to four lots of five
minutes, three lots of 10, two lots of 50 and maybe
even eventually getting to 20 to 30 minutes straight
at this intensity. Now another session that you
should be aiming to complete most weeks is a speed session. This should be performed in short reps above your target half-marathon pace. The idea here is that we’re
hoping to tap into, unlock and develop some new top-end speed. Ideally, you want to perform
this kind of session on something like a track, failing that, at least a flat smooth surface. Basically so that you don’t
have to worry about what’s under-foot whilst you’re
running at this high-speed. Now starting out with these,
you can go for something like 10 lots of 400 with 90 seconds recovery. Then build that up to eight by 800, maybe to six by 1K, five by one mile, maybe even to four by two K. But don’t feel like you
need to progress each week, you can off course, just flip back to one of the shorter original reps. Well those are your three
key sessions per week but in addition to those we’ve
got some other runs that are equally as important that we
need to fit in around those and they are your easy runs. Now similarly to the long run,
these should be at a steady pace within zone two and these
are an opportunity for you to switch off, for your legs
to essentially get an active recovery and for you to not
worry about pace at all. In fact, by going to fast in
these they can have a knock-on effect and start, well
effecting the quality of some of those key sessions we’ve
just been discovering. The easy runs are also an
opportunity to improve your base aerobic endurance, so we
do actually want to increase the length and the
duration of these with time but it’s important that
you follow that 10% rule. So you never increasing any
run or your weekly volume by more than 10%. (mid-tempo soothing music) Now there is one more session
that I’ve yet to mention and that is hill reps. The reason I haven’t mentioned it is because, well it’s optional. It’s a session that I quite
like to use in the off-season as an opportunity to increase my strength and make myself more resilient. But some people actually
quite like to use it during their race season
in the lead up to an event and they might just
alternate it with their tempo or threshold run, using
the hill reps one week, tempo threshold run the following week. Now if you’re going to do
that, I suggest starting out with short reps, something
like eight by 20 seconds then building up to 30 seconds, 45 seconds, 60 seconds, 90 seconds and then finally, two minutes. While all this training is
very good but there’s no point in doing it all and then
arriving on race day feeling tired or fatigued. It’s really important that
we allow our bodies time to adapt and recover, so I normally
suggest every three to four weeks you factor in a recovery week. This should include a day
off and then a really reduced volume week with no intensity in there. Then going into the race it’s
a similar story, one or two weeks out from the race we
want to start knocking it back a little bit in terms of
overall volume but this time we actually want to still
keep a little bit of intensity in there so that we
don’t arrive on race day feeling really flat. So for some of those key
sessions you might want to knock a couple of reps out, do some shorter reps and increase the recoveries. We’re now moving into race
day and your biggest job here is to track and to
follow that target pace. Now hopefully by this point,
you’ve got pretty dialed in to that target pace but it
can still be a little to easy to get a little bit carried
away or perhaps even allow that pace to drift off
as you get fatigued. And if possible, I’d say,
try and run with a GPS watch so you can continually
monitor and track that pace or at least just some sort
of watch so that you can keep an eye on your pace every time
you go through a kilometer or mile marker. Now, a lot of people do go off too hard at the start of events, I’d say that’s good to a
degree because you’re utilizing the adrenaline that’s there
but do keep a cap on it and certainly after a kilometer,
you want to be dialing in to that target pace. And my last thing to consider
for race day is your fueling. Now given that we are
targeting sub-90 minutes for the half-marathon, you
could be forgiven for thinking that you don’t really need
to take any fuel with you. But technically your body
can only store enough fuel for 60 minutes. Now it doesn’t mean that you’re
going to come to an almighty stop after 60 minutes, you’ll just see a real reduction in performance. So you want to be taking some
fuel with you that’s easy to take on whilst you’re running. Now personally, I’ll take
a couple of gels with me, I’ll have one after 30 to 40
minutes, then another after 60 minutes, that should
keep me well topped up and away from hitting that wall. Now best of luck if you after
that sub-90 half-marathon. Let us know in the comments
section below if you are targeting that or if you
have indeed succeeded in accomplishing your
sub-90 half-marathon. If you have any more
questions about how to do it, then drop them in the comments
section below and make sure if you have enjoyed today’s
video give us a like and don’t forget to follow GTN.

67 thoughts on “How To Run A Sub 90 Half Marathon | Run Training & Tips

  1. I’m doing my first half marathon March 15!!! I just got out the hospital yesterday with pneumonia…what have I done to anger the race gods??!!

  2. Wow… Stop me if I'm wrong but you completely mixed up speed sessions and tempo sessions. 6x1k, 5x1m or 4x2k (which you include in your speed sessions) are all sessions where the rep times are gonna be from 4 to 8 minutes. This is NOT speed sessions, these are typical threshold sessions.
    Imho, anything above 400m per rep should not be considered as a speed session.
    Also, 10 miles at 4'13/k leads to a time of around 1:08, not 1:01…

  3. I’m looking ahead to 90mins Half Marathon this year, your tips will definitely help during my training session.
    Many thanks

  4. I did a sub 40 minute 10 km last year, so this year, in addition to upping the number of tris I'm doing, I'm also targeting a 90 minute half. Very excited.

  5. Without any special preparation I am able to do HM in 1h 59min. For sure 90min is huge step up from there. Cheers to all who can do it. I shall stay with my <2h for the time being. Running for fitness is enough for me 😉

  6. I couldn't go 6:47/mile if you threw me out of an airplane. 😄. I'm shooting for a 2:30 half marathon in November, but I'll be happy to just finish running.

  7. Going to start in Berlin in the beginning of April. I trained for a sub 1:30, but now im ill since the beginning of February and couldn't run. New goal: Getting well and finishing it healthy :/

  8. Sub 90 is easy if you’ve been running a couple of years and do about 25mpw and have a small amount of natural talent. Sub 80, now that’s a tough nut to crack

  9. My best half is 1:35 so decided to chase the 1:30. I'm 56 years old and following an 80/20 HR HM plan. I tested a 30 min lactate test at 4:09/km HR lactate 158 so I know I can run that speed for 30min. 7 weeks until my goal race which is a flat course. Enjoying your videos and what you have just told me is very close to what I'm doing. 80/20 16km run today has me doing mainly zone 2 with 8x 400m zone 3 with 1200m zone 2 recovery. Keep up the good content guys.

  10. My son and his XC buddy just ran 1:32 half, hilly half in bristol indiana, and they took a 1/4-1/2 mile wrong turn in town. they are 17yo and weigh 100lbs. This video is unrealistic for 99% of the population.

  11. My fastest half so far (I've been focused more on cycling since then) was 1:28:59.6 in Fall of 2009 at the Army Run Half Marathon in Ottawa, ON, Canada. I've been running more lately, though, and this video has me wondering if I've got another one in me! 🙂

  12. I ran a 1hour 20 minute Half Marathon in September up in Edinburgh running in the Scottish Half Marathon. I had previously never ran in a Half Marathon competitively, only ever running in 10km events with a personal best time of 35:40. Felt like a real achievement.

  13. 8:15 You can go longer than 60 minutes without nutrition. I believe that, on average, people can store 2000 kcal of glycogen between the liver and muscles. And the rule of thumb is that you use up about 100 kcal per mile when you run. So, in theory, you could go for about 20 miles or 32 km i.e. longer than a half marathon. (That’s also why people “hit the wall” around mile 20-22 of the marathon if they don’t fuel appropriately as they run out of stored glycogen.)

    I’d still get energy drink at the aid stations, though.😄

  14. Nice advice, I went sub 1.20 a few weeks ago but about to race a half this morning on Blackpool prom in very strong winds coming off the sea, not sure if I’ll manage sub 1.30 lol

  15. thanks for the video guys, great help, trying to nail my IM70.3 Jönköping Sweden this summer.. quick question about tempo run…approx 90% of HR? thats like z5 right? did I heard right!?

  16. Saw this vid yesterday, today was my first half marathon.. was planning on doing 1:35. Had my running legs, finished 1:29:29.

  17. I just ran my first half marathon over two hours because I didn’t train much this past year after my bq, any chance I can get back to this in 2 months? or ideally I need to run the Boston marathon in under three hours in two months…

  18. How is this video specific to running a HM sub 90?! Throwing out the avg pace and giving some advice on fueling, that's it?! I am sorry, this is a misleading title at best, clickbait at worst. Not coming back to this channel.

  19. Hit 85 minutes HM at Oxford 2018. Have struggled to get back to that since, but that's the beauty of running – It's not linear. You are constantly evolving and changing and growing.

  20. If training for a triathlon, could you replace the easy run with an easy bike ride instead? Or, is it more important to get a actual run in?

  21. Some top tips. I run consistently under 90 min and produced my own video on this topic a while back also https://youtu.be/7UiUH_Qb3SU

  22. I think this needs a disclaimer that if your a woman who can run under 90 minutes, you are seriously good. That would be an age grade equivalent of a man running 1:20:37.

  23. I'm slowly wrapping up my program for a late march half marathon – actually targetting a 1:30 this year. Should stay nicely under that, just this week did a couple hard workouts, a windy 40 minute tempo at just above 4:10/km, and a 21 km fast finish long run, with the last 5 km at HM pace. Like you said, comfortably hard, maybe not much so near the last km (it didn't help that I did a few hours of skiing earlier on the same day with the fast finish run, foolish me!)

  24. Wow a 90mins HM, it's really awesome to see people doing this. And here I am with my fat bum still trying to clock a 35mins 5k.

  25. I recently did my first half marathon @ 1:39. Not sure if I want to target a marathon next (@ about 3:30) or sub 90 half

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