Half marathon in two weeks - help please

Hi everyone,

I'm running my first half marathon in two weeks and have been training since October. I've been running for almost two years and prior to training could run 5K comfortably. My training plan was going well until January when I injured my knee. Since then my training has been stop/start and I've had limited number of weeks where I've completed my full prgramme. Finally, I have my knee under control, the physio has advised I use a knee support to get me through my training (which is working)and after the half marathon I will start my physio and will no longer need the knee support.
Last weekend I ran my fourth 10 mile run and it was terrible, I was starting to feel tired after 2 miles, I kept going, paced myself but felt completely exhausted at the end of the 10 mile run. The next day, Sunday, I was still exhausted and on the couch all day and on Monday morning I had a really poorly stomach. All this week I have felt lethargic and have come home from work and gone to sleep. This has never happened to me before. I tried running again yesterday and just couldn't get into it and ran only two miles.
I'm really worried now as my first half marathon is in two weeks and I feel completely exhausted and am worried I won't be able to run the distance. I feel so upset as I've stuck to my training plan as much as possible and have done everything I possibly can to prepare myself. I'm seeing my doctor tomorrow, but was hoping for some advice on what else I can do to help myself and if anyone else has experienced anything similar.



  • In similiar boat, mine is in 2 weeks - Fleet half. I've worked so damn hard since I entered late last year, endured the winters runs which I actually quite enjoyed and now for last few months have had reoccurring episodes of shin splints I have not run since week Friday and don't intend to Thursday or Friday of this week and only then will it be a 10k. Are you doing anything else to compensate for fitness I've had to drop my spin classes as they were aggravating the injury as did a 33 mile bike ride but I'm comfortable doing long cross training sessions so I'm going to do a couple more of those before my next run(s). No real advice but I'm with you and it's so frustrating and disheartening. For a girl who was only this time last year training for a 5k race for life this means everything to me as I'm sure yours does. Fingers crossed we do this!
  • HI there,

     Sounds familiar to my first marathon preparation...the build up in mileage led to sharp knee pain...which turned out to be ITB (long muscle on the leg affecting the knee) which needed me to take more time to stretch and ice after long runs...it's perfectly normal when increasing mileage to beyond normal levels to feel more heavy legged and with the muscles experiencing DOMS (Delayed onset of muscle soreness)...foam rollers are a godsend for this in the gym...

    Do take the rest when needed but stretch and icing helped after sessions when the soreness was intense this also coincided when I came to the time of my highest total weekly mileage...and eating eating enough food in recovery also helped at this point

    Good luck to you both, if you're at 10 miles you will get through your first 1/2....

  • Thank you so much for the support and guidance.

    I've been paying special attention to what I've been eating over the past week and have been listening to my body and resting. I completed a quick 4.5 mile run on Wednesday night (first proper run in 10 days) which seemend to go well, so fingers crossed, whatever it was, I'm starting to recover.

    Good luck with your half marathon Christian.

  • Hi Laura,  this is such a shame.  It does sound perhaps that on top of your acute knee injury, your body was telling you that you were doing a bit too much by the 10 mile race?  (This is going from your OP) It's so easily done.   The main thing now, with two weeks left, is to get completely recovered  - as you already seem to be doing.

    There isn't anything magical that can happen in just two weeks to improve a race time, but you can have a much better race if you arrive at the start line completely refreshed.  I'd consider lowering your training volume right down now,  and trust that your repaired body will be 100% ready for the HM - and you'll enjoy it so much more on the day.  You might even get a mini 'performance peak' after adequate rest, and run far better than you expected!

    Keep us posted! image

  • Completed my first half marathon yesterday and my knee was fine on the day. My target was 2 hours and 30 minutes but I managed to get round in 2 hours and 23 minutes which I am really pleased with, especially as it was so hot.

    The last mile and a half was horrendous, I was really struggling with the heat and felt exhausted (actually thought I was going to vomit towards the end). Typical that I've been training since October in fairly cool conditions and race day comes and we have a heat wave! There were quite a few poorly runners yesterday who were suffering with heat exhaustion, I hope they are all feeling better today.

    I think I will train for 11 1/2 miles for my next half marathon rather than 10 miles, as the additional three seemed to be quite a challenge on the day (especially the last mile and a half!!), what do you think?

    Christian - Not sure if you've completed your first half marathon yet? If you have, I hope it went well, if not good luck...there is no better feeling than passing that finishing line and collecting your medal!

    Anyway,the course at Wilmslow was great
  • Hey, well done Laura, glad you had a good experience and you achieved your goal and more!
  • Thanks questforspeed, still can't believe I've done it!
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