Friday Five: Half Marathon Training Update!

Happy Friday!

We made it. This week pushed me to my mental and physical limits on multiple occasions, so it’s safe to say that I am pumped for the weekend.

A few weeks ago, I posed some questions on my Instagram stories to gage the type of content y’all want to see more of. Quite a few people requested an update on our Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon training and since we’re just under a month out, I thought today would be a perfect opportunity to share five things that I’ve learned during this process! Let’s get to it:

Get fitted for running shoes.

Until recently, I always just purchased running shoes at a store or online and chose from popular brands like Nike, New Balance, or Adidas. Admittedly, I usually just chose whatever I thought was cutest in my size – ha! But there is SO much that goes into the shoes you wear for long distance running and we wanted to do it right, so Dan and I both went to Fleet Feet in Nashville and went through the fitting process with their team of professionals to make sure we were getting the perfect shoes for our respective needs. They have you stand on a platform that reads the “geography” of your feet – it’s insane! They were able to pick a variety of shoes for me to try based on the fact that I have high arches, that I tend to put most of the weight on the outer edges of my feet when I walk, etc. I tried on 4 pair of shoes total, and ended up going with the Brooks Ghost 11 in this fun blue camo print. They honestly feel like a part of my body when I put them on.

Get acquainted with a local network of runners.

The Fleet Feet team has been an AMAZING resource to us, not only to find our running shoes but also to help guide and encourage us as we train. After my first “long run,” I was experiencing some concerning pain in my left knee. I reached out to Fleet Feet and found out that they host in-store injury screenings with a local physical therapist every week, completely free of charge. I went last Monday and learned that the likely cause of the stiffness in my knee was due to a lack of hip strength on that side of my body. The PT was able to recommend a few pre and post-run stretches and recommended that I get a foam roller to work into my warm-up and cool-down routine. I purchased this one on Amazon and do 30 rolls on each side prior to a run (and after) and it has made a HUGE difference. I know we’ll also lean on their expertise leading up to race day – nutrition right before and during the race, final pro tips, etc. If you have a Fleet Feet store in your area and you’re thinking of getting into running, I can’t recommend them enough!

Make yourself a killer playlist.

I HAVE to listen to music when I run. And my playlist needs to be something that is going to pump. me. up. I tend to listen to a lovely mixture of Nicki Minaj, Ariana Grande, Foo Fighters, Cardi B, and pretty much anything from the Forrest Gump soundtrack when he goes on his cross-country run. I’ll be sharing my playlist via Spotify soon – keep an eye on my Instagram stories if you’re interested in taking a listen!

What you eat (and drink) makes a big difference.

In terms of nutrition, I am by no means an expert. Dan and I try to eat really balanced meals – lean protein, veggies and carbs that make sense. That said, if I know I have a longer run one day, I’ll eat a pretty hearty breakfast/lunch to make sure I’ve got plenty of energy to carry me through all those miles. I love avocado toast with an over-easy egg on top, a salad with grilled salmon… stuff like that. One of my all-time favorite easy (and insanely inexpensive meals) is the frozen veggie fried rice from Trader Joes with an over-easy egg on top. It fills me and fuels me! Dan and I have also recently cut back on the amount of alcohol we drink. We’re limiting ourselves to enjoying adult beverages one day a week – a hungover run is no bueno. We have also been drinking Tailwind Endurance Fuel prior to our longer runs – it tastes yummy and gives us steady energy without hurting our stomachs.

Listen to your body!

I can’t stress this enough. There have been a handful of times during training where I was scheduled to run one day, but I had so much muscle soreness/stiffness that I opted out and did a more low-key workout instead (yoga, basic stretching, etc.) The worst thing you can do is overwork yourself, cause injury, and then ultimately set yourself back in training. It’s just not worth it. That’s also where having contacts within a network of running pros comes in handy – even if it’s just a close friend who has run a few races. Don’t be scared to ask for advice… it’s the best way to learn!

That’s it for now! I’ll try to post another update or two the closer we get to race day (April 27th). I’d love to know – have you ever run a half marathon, marathon, or an even longer distance? What tips and tricks do you have for us? I’m all ears! Many thanks for following along.



3 thoughts on “Friday Five: Half Marathon Training Update!

Leave a Reply