This is an high level plan for the running for Göteborgsvarvet.
Starter- Here it is important to getting started with regular training and especially running. It is also important to increase the training gradually to avoid injuries. I recommend to train 2-3 times per week, the sessions can be short like 20-30 minutes and it is good to incorporate walking as needed. The most important is to get out there and run.
Step-up- Here it is important with regular training and to start add some structure into it. I recommend to get out at least three times per week. A base that could be used is three sessions; one shorter and easier, one a little faster like a fartlek and maybe the most important one; the long run, preferably on the weekend.
Ambitious- If you are already a regular runner and want to aim for a good time on the half marathon I recommend 4 or more sessions per week. The base is like for the step-up group above; one short easy session, one faster like a fartlek and the long run at the weekend. What you can then add that is good for your running technique is some shorter intervalls. You can also shift some sessions to spinning, swimming or some other endurance sport to minimize the risk for injury.
Make sure to take some easier weeks during Christmans/New years to recover both mentally and physically. Some easier days are good and will only increase your motivation for the running that will be needed during the spring. You can either start the March-May block already now, or continue with the previous block depending on your form and motivation. If you’ve had a longer off period it is good to take some extra weeks to ease back into running again and in that case this block can be used.
Starter- Here you can replace some of the sessions with other types of endurance activies like spinning, swimming or skiing. The most important for this period is to do some training at a regular basis to give you a good base for the running later in the Spring.
Step-up- Here it is important to continue to run at a regular basis. You do not need to run fast and if the weather is bad with cold, ice or snow it is better to take it easy to avoid injuries. You can replace some sessions with spinning, swimming or skiing.
Ambitious- Continue with the same base as in the previous period but add hill running. Running in hills is really good for technique and running strength. This can be an extra boost that will increase your speed later in the spring. If you have any pain or risk for injury it is a good idea to replace some sessions with spinning or skiing. The long run you should try to do as running or as skiing.
Starter- Spring is here and days are getting longer and the motivation for running is getting back. Try to run at a regular basis and you can increase the length of your longer session a little bit once in a while. It is important to increase slowly to avoid injuries. For example add 1km every second long run.
Step-up- It is now time to prepare for the race, mentally as well as physically. You can start to increase your longrun with 1km every second session. Try to aim for 15-18km for the last longruns. You can also replace your fartlek against a fast distance run. The last weekend and the week before the race, take it easy and only do a couple of easy jogs.
Ambitious- To prepare yourself in a good way for a half maraton you can now start to incorporate threshold sessions into your plan. These sessions where you run at a fast pace is really good as a preparation both mentally aswell as physically. It is also important to increase the longrun every second time and try to aim for 18-19km at the last longrun before the race. The last two weeks before the race you can take it a bit easier but still run some sessions. Mostly easy jogging but you can also incorporate some shorter speed parts to keep the legs fresh for the start.
Short intervals- Good for running strength, technique and VO2max. For example 15min warmup followed by 10*1min fast running. End with a cooldown.
Interval ladded- This type of mixed intervals are training many things in the body and you can do it in many ways. For example 15min warmup followed by 1min run, 1min rest, 2min run, 2min rest, 3min run, 3min, 2min run, 2min rest, 1min run, 1min rest. End with a cooldown.
Threshold- Here you are training the body to transport the lactate away from the muscles. The speed you should aim for in these session are the same as you can maximally hold for 1h of running. For example 10min warmpup followed by 3*10min at threshold pace. End with a short cooldown jog.
Fartlek / Speedplay- You play with the speed. These session can be done in many ways and you are the one to decide. Either do it unstructured like run hard in all upphills or do it structured like run 1min fast, 1 min medium and 1 min slow and do this for the complete session.
Fast distans- Here you want to learn the body to run in your race pace. For example 1min warmup followed by 30min at the pace you aim for at the half marathon. End with a cooldown.