For today’s newsletter, Coach Sage Canaday discusses how to move from running 5 kilometers to tackling a half marathon.
We’ll talk about these workouts and share examples of his top three picks. If you’re planning to make the jump to a half marathon, we’ve got some effective training tips that can help you improve your speed, endurance, and stamina.
So, let’s get right into it! Coach Sage’s top three workouts for those going from 5K to half marathon:

Workout #1: The Tempo RunIf you’re moving from a 5K to a half marathon, a great workout to try is called a “tempo run.” A good starting point is a 20-minute tempo run. Here’s how to do it:
1. Warm-up: Begin with an easy jog or a brisk walk for 5 to 10 minutes. You can also do some light stretching during this time to get your body ready.
2. The 20-Minute Tempo Run: Now, start your 20-minute run. You should aim to put in about 80 to 85 percent of your maximum effort. If you have a heart rate monitor, this would be roughly 85 to 88 percent of your maximum heart rate. It should feel like a solid, slightly uncomfortable effort – faster than your goal half marathon pace but steady.
3. Intensity: It’s an effort level where you can’t easily have a conversation with someone because you might be breathing too hard. However, you can still keep going and stay motivated, maybe with your favorite music to keep you going. You’ll feel fatigue building up, but remember, it’s not an all-out, super strenuous workout.This tempo run helps improve your stamina and pace, preparing you for the half marathon.

Workout #2: Hill TrainingIf you’re looking to add some variety to your training, hill workouts are an excellent choice. You don’t need to run up a steep mountain, but you can simulate it by adjusting the incline on a treadmill or by doing short, high-intensity hill repeats. Here’s how to go about it safely:
1. Caution: Be cautious when incorporating hill workouts into your routine. It’s not something you should do more than once a week to avoid overstraining your muscles.
2. Start Gradually: Begin with short intervals of 20 or 30 seconds at a fast pace, much harder than your usual 5K intensity. Choose a hill with a gradient of around 5 percent to start with. Starting too steep can lead to calf muscle strain, so take it easy at first.
3. Recovery: After each hill sprint, give yourself a couple of minutes to rest. Walk back down the hill or jog at an easy pace to recover before the next repetition.
4. Progression: As you become more comfortable with the workout, you can increase the duration of your hill repeats. Aim for one-minute intervals and repeat this cycle six, eight, or even ten times.
Hill training is a fantastic way to build strength and improve your overall fitness. Just remember to start slowly and gradually increase the intensity to get the most out of this effective workout.

Workout #3: The Long RunThe third workout that can significantly boost your stamina and endurance is the long run. You don’t have to run the entire half marathon distance in one go, especially if your weekly mileage is lower. Instead, you can incorporate a longer run into your routine once a week.
Here’s how it works:
1. Duration Over Distance: The focus here is on spending a longer time on your feet rather than covering a specific distance. It’s a great opportunity to enjoy your favorite music and explore new trails if you like.
2. Pacing: This run should be at a comfortable, conversational pace. You’re not racing; you’re extending the duration of your run.
3. Weekly Percentage: Depending on your total weekly mileage, this long run can account for around 20 to 30 percent of your weekly volume. It’s like condensing a significant portion of your weekly mileage into a single day.
4. Benefits: Long runs are fantastic for building cardiovascular endurance and preparing you mentally for the challenge of a half marathon.
Remember, you don’t need to do more than two of these special workouts in a week. Most of your training days should be at a conversational pace, where you can relax and focus on maintaining good running form.

It’s not about pushing yourself to the limit every day. Enjoy the journey, and make sure to include easy days in your routine. Whether you’re running under the sun on beautiful days or hitting the gym on less favorable days, staying active and motivated is the key to your fitness journey.