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3 Things I Wish I Knew Before Training For a Half Marathon

Hi! My names Olivia and I blog over at, I am so excited to be here on Sarah’s blog today and I cant wait to share some of the things I have learnt about training for a half marathon.

Sarah had this great idea that we collab on posts about running, as conveniently, we are both currently training for a half marathon that’s coming up very soon! We have been updating each other during our training and sharing the ups and downs that a lot of running brings.

For my side of our collab post, I wanted to dive into the training but also the things I wish I knew before I started running. Now, I am not a professional runner at all. Before this training I hadn't exercised for years, and I mean years.

But after starting a health journey and falling in love with running, I decided to take on this challenge. I ran one 10k for charity in 2017, but as far as distance that’s the furthest I have ever run before. Training for a half marathon is like nothing I have ever experienced before.

So lets look at some of the things I wish I knew before training for a half marathon!

The Mental Battle

As I am now 2 weeks out until my run, I'm doing longer and longer runs. So sometimes I am running for 2+ hours. Which can have such a crazy impact on your body, but your mind too.

One thing I wish I knew was how much of a mental battle running long distance is. There have been times during training where I have felt physically capable to run, but its like there's a block in my mind and I really don't want to.

Going into a run with the wrong mindset can have such a horrible negative impact on you and can really effect your performance.

Runners often talk about getting in the zone, and I didn't believe that until I started running. The zone is the place where all runners want to be. It's the place where you feel strong, capable and ready to get moving. Getting in that zone and staying in it though, is another story!

Good music is a must

As my time running has continued, so has my running playlist on Spotify. Nobody told me how important music would become when feeling exhausted and trying to complete that last mile.

I honestly don't know how some people don't listen to music whilst running, I couldn't think of anything worse than choosing to listen to how out of breath I am after every step!

So my advice to you, is make sure you create that perfect running playlist. I’m sure you'll add more and maybe remove some as the time goes on, but having that playlist will save you.

How exhausting it would be

I know it sounds silly, but I really didn't realise how exhausting training for a half marathon would be. I knew obviously it would take a toll on my body, but it's when your mind is tired AND your body and you still have to function and work on top of that. It's a lot!

Running is like nothing else in this world, it really takes it out of you and you feel like you want to curl up into a ball and stay there for months. Sorry if I'm not selling training for a half marathon but I need to share the reality!

Did you realise how hard it would be to train for a marathon? I had no clue! Have you ever trained for a long run?

Thanks again to Sarah for letting me collab with her on this post. Don't forget to check out her post on my blog at!

Olivia x

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A 30 something woman navigating life, sharing posts focussing on mental health, midsize fashion, self-care routines and life as a vegan.

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