Can I run a half marathon on 2 weeks' training?

I booked my place in the Leeds Half Marathon 2007 quite a while back. I took part in the 2005 and 2006 events and naturally wanted to complete it once again this year...

However, I stopped running altogether at the beginning of March (due to depression/obsessive reasons). But then it got to May and I really missed running - my mood was really down, I wanted that runner's high again etc, so I started up again a week last Friday.

The half marathon is this coming Sunday (13th May) and I really really really want to do it. I don't care how long it takes me to run round.

Do you think I can do it on two weeks' training? Yesterday I managed a 6 mile run (it being only my 5th run since I started running again last Friday). I've been running for over 2 years with the exception of these past two months.

Should I go for it...?!

Anybody else done a half marathon on virtually no training? How did it go?

Help me decide please! x x x


  • I reckon you can finish, yes

    but you will have to not be worried about the time

    are you going to be ok with that mentally?
  • I don't know... I've completed the last 2 in under 2 hours, so I don't reckon I'm going to do that! But I think just completing it will be better than not doing it at all!

    I'm just worried whether or not my legs will carry me, hehe. Don't know if I've got the muscle strength back up yet...
  • Leeds half is quite a big one isnt it
    so even 3 hours would be ok no?

    but if you are the obsessive type-would you not be cruel to yourself about doing a slower time?
  • Yeah, 3 hours would be ok. So long as I get the T-shirt :)

    I am quite the obsessive type, but I think I'll get over it. I'll train to do another one this year.

    I'm nervous now... eek!
  • Summerrain.
    Yes hipps is right. I think there are upwards of 5000 runners at least. Ive missed some training for several reasons, but Im going to just get on and do it, walking if necessary.

    No shame in walking some given the circumstances and I doubt very much if you'll be the only one!!!

    We will be arranging a social for afterwards as well. Not sure where yet but there is a main thread to discuss this. Be nice to meet you!
  • It just gets me stressed when everybody's overtaking, makes my heart rate go up even further! Need to work out a way of remaining calm throughout...
  • they wont overtake if you start RIGHT at the back
  • It can be a bit soul-destroying I must admit. I always start near the back.

    What about taking some sweets or something like that. Sounds a bit mad but perhaps having something to occupy yourself and the actual chewing action will keep you calm. Sorry if that sounds like madness!!
    Or music if you have any. Perhaps just wear one ear so you can have a natter on the way round with other runners.
  • Sweets sounds good, hehe. And I fully intend to take some music with me. I hope I can cope with the tiredness!

    Should I cut down my running this week do you think? Or try and do as much as I can? I don't know which would be worse?
  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭
    Doing too much this week will be worse - I'd do maybe 4 or 5 miles today maximum, then maybe 3 miles on Thursday, and a couple on Saturday if you feel the need to calm down. :O)

    I carry a bag with 13 Jelly Babies - one per mile as a countdown. As the bag empties, I'm getting nearer the end.

    Just keep saying "training run - just to get back into it" all the way round. You're not racing, just doing a 13 mile training run with fellow runners.
  • The Jelly Babies plan sounds a good one!

    I'll take your advice on the training too. The first year I did it I ran 56 miles in the 6 days leading up to it and was shattered on the actual day.

    It's just a training run. Just a training run...

    Thanks for your help, peeps! It's good to have some words of encouragement.

    And it's nice to meet you all :)
  • as per above, i think if you'ren ot prepared about the time or people going past you, you should be ok, just find your steady pace and settle in. also remember that once you get about 5 miles in, you're at your highest pointy, and its all downhill from there (or on the flat).

    its my first ever 'race' at this leeds half, i cant wait, although im getting a bit nervous now, ive done the mielage well in training but it wont be the same. the original plan was just to do it without stopping, which still holds, but i did it in under 2 hours in training tother week, so somewhere similar would do me fine! this weeks going to drag though, especially with just a couple of short runs to keep me ticking over!
  • You're right, it feels like the first 5 miles are all a steady uphill, but once that's over with it's ok. Just need to remember to take it slowly.

    Good luck yourself!
  • cheers, straight back at you!
  • I am sure you can do it, because of your previous training and experience.
    Use it as a 'training run' and enter another in 3-4 months after 'normal' training.
    Good luck.
  • The short answer is yes you can do it. I had a similar experience, I almost stopped running for about 1 year. I dropped from 30 to 40 miles a week to almost nothing. I entered the Nottingham half marathon last year and hardly trained for it, nothing longer than about 5 or 6 miles for about a month beforehand. I did finish, but it wasn't the most comfortable experience of my life.

    I started well back and ran at what I thought was a slow pace, but the wheels did fall off at about 10 miles and the last 2 or 3 miles were very slow.

    Would I do it again? Well it's not ideal, and you have to be prepared to run a good deal slower than you did last year, but on balance I'm glad I did it. It did give me the motivation to start running again.
  • Yeah, that's what I'm not looking forward to - it being an experience that isn't very comfortable. Having to really struggle to the end will probably put a downer on the day, especially in a slow time. But I guess it's better than not doing it at all!

    My race pack is all ready and waiting, I just can't not do it :)

  • well, you need to forget what went before

    this is your return to running
    starting again, with a whole new set of pbs to achieve and beat

    and pride that you actually finished
  • Yes you can do it - but it will hurt!

    I did the Great West last year off not training at all for the previous seven weeks, and only a total of 100 miles after Christmas (it's in May).

    My pb is 1:32, so I set off at 8 min miling. Actually I felt quite good, and was slightly ahead of this schedule. By about 5 miles I was running fine, but could tell it was going to get tough later.
    About 9 miles I really began to feel it, and slowed noticeably. By 11 miles I was struggling quite a lot. I had to stop and walk in the last mile (which I've never done in a half before). In fact I barely made it round the track we finished on without having to walk.

    I still did it in 1:48:58 so it wasn't too awful a time. Iwas glad I had done it, and it had been a real challenge, but I think I was stiffer afterwards than I was ofter doing the marathon. I won't do another without training reasonably for it, except in very exceptional circumstances now.
  • Similar here. I stopped running since November. Just joined gym last week and start to run again. I've register in a half-marathon in South Devon on Feb 7th. A 2-week training plan from anyone? It would be mine first half-marathon. Any suggestions?
  • Hi Jennifer, you say you were running until November. What sort of fitness did you have in November, what sort of distances were you running and, although you haven't run for a couple of months, have you been doing any sort of exercise to keep your fitness up?

    I would say that a HM on 2 weeks training is a big ask unless you have a base fitness level.
  • RicFRicF ✭✭✭


    Rule one of forum (well maybe not)

    Check the date of the thread. This one finished in 2007. 

  • Hi Rob,

    Thanks for your reply. I was running casually, 3-4 times a week, 5-10miles per week. The longest distance I've done is 10k. After November I rarely do any exercise as I just started my first job after graduation. I signed up for a gym near my work place and joined a few classes eg. Nike training club or Spinning. Then I ran twice last week on treadmill, 5k each time
  • As Ric says, this is quite an old thread so it may be better to start a new thread specifically to discuss your question.

    I'm not an expert but I have run three half marathons and each time I have followed a twelve week plan from a book called "how to run" by Paula Radcliffe, the plan I followed for my first one gradually worked up to a fourteen mile run and it was a great feeling taking part knowing that I had done the distance before and that I could finish it.

    Personally I don't think that it would be possible to train for a half marathon in two weeks having never run further than 10k if you wanted to run the entire course, although if you are not too bothered about finishing in a specific time you could employ a run/walk strategy.

    I would advise starting a new thread on this subject and hopefully you will get some constructive advice.
  • Question for me would be Why?

    If the longest you have run is 10k and have not run seriously since November you will at best have a miserable 2 weeks and a miserable race.

    My suggestion would be to find a 10k race for the same weekend and a HM 12-15 weeks from now. Will cost more but it will be more enjoyable and will do yourself justice.

Sign In or Register to comment.