Jen’s Journey: Syracuse Half Marathon Training Plan

Training has begun for my first race of the year – the Syracuse Half Marathon. Race day is April 3rd so we’re only 11 weeks out. This will be my 2nd time running this race and Travis’ 3rd. It’s a sold out event this year with 5,000 runners participating.

syracuse elevation1

My journey to 26.2 miles in Chicago on October 9th will begin by training for this spring race. I have a lofty goal for Syracuse – taking over 15 minutes off my personal best. Ultimately I want to use this race as a springboard for the demanding training that will follow this event.

Travis and I could not find a training plan that we felt was appropriate for my goals . Plans were either too advanced for me or too easy with not enough mileage or speedwork. Therefore we have come up with our own training plan by combining multiple plans that were available to us. It ended up being a combination of a Higdon Intermediate plan with tweaked mileage and a lot of the speed work was from marathon training plans with the distances adjusted.

Our intention while designing this plan was to run more miles than I have in previous training, building up my base and engine. Increasing mileage is stressful on your body and should be done gradually over time which I feel we accomplished overall. We also wanted to be sure to include strength training and speed work into the plan. I know strength is only listed on the plan once weekly but I plan on doing at least 3 days a week of strength training. I lost nearly the entire first week of training but thankfully I haven’t had any issues picking up with the second week.

It should be noted that we are not professional runner’s, trainer’s or coaches. We did the best we could incorporating recommended training methods. So without further ado, here is my plan!

Syracuse training plan

15 minutes seems like a lot to shave off, especially after over a year of not running much at all but I’m hoping that by taking a different approach to this training cycle that I’ll see some great results.


Does anybody have any experience creating their own plan? Any advice for me going into this training cycle?



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