Get Ready to Run: How I Prepared for a Half Marathon

Running is hard, it doesn’t matter if you’re new at it or a pro, we all have our good runs and bad runs. My first half marathon took everything in me to finish, even with all the hours of training I had put in, it was one of the hardest yet most fulfilling things I had ever done.

I was hooked and didn’t just want to stop at one. So, I signed up to run the Detroit Free Press International Half Marathon. This being one of a few truly international races, I was excited and registered as early as I could.

Emily - Detroit Free Press Half Marathon
Emily – Detroit Free Press Half Marathon

Because I wanted to do better than I had done in my last race I reworked my training and took some additional steps to ensure I would be prepared. Here are a few things I did leading up to the race:

  1. Planned out my training.

After having some experience from my previous race, I started mapping out the months ahead. I decided my weekly mileage, long vs. tempo vs. fartlek runs, and what sort of cross training I was going to do.

  1. Recovered from injuries.

Unfortunately, I had developed runner’s knee so I visited a specialist and knew that the best thing I could do for myself was get plenty of rest and give my knee enough time to fully recover.

  1. Respected my training schedule.

I scheduled my runs and workouts like I did if I had an important meeting or appointment. If there was something else that needed to get done during a run day, I always planned around it.

  1. Went to the doctor.

The Detroit Free Press Half was in October and as the months got colder my lungs had a hard time adjusting the rapidly changing weather. I visited my doctor where I was prescribed medication that would keep my airways from getting irritated.

  1. Read up on race instructions.

If I have learned anything from participating in races, it’s read the pre-race instructions carefully! Because this was an international race there was another level complexity involved, I had to make sure I had appropriate identification, always keep my pass card on me during the race and my race bib had to show.

I successfully finished my race and was fortunate enough to even set a new personal record. Being able to pass by some famous Detroit landmarks, have strangers cheer you on and connect with other Michigan runners made the experience even more special. If you ever get a chance to run in the wonderful city of Detroit, I highly recommend it.

Detroit Free Press Half Marathon
Detroit Free Press Half Marathon
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