Motivation The iRun Great Beau’s Beer Powered Half Marathon Spring Training Program

The iRun Great Beau’s Beer Powered Half Marathon Spring Training Program


Winter’s cold and the footing is rough and it gets dark early and everyone’s grumpy. Takes a little something extra to get out for a run. But you can do it and it’s a great way to fight back against the climate and re-take the winter as a pleasure palace and a place to run and get in shape and have fun as you go.

So, with that in mind: we present The iRun Great Beau’s Beer Powered Half Marathon Spring Training Program.

Beau’s, like iRun, is a sponsor of the Tamarack Ottawa Race Weekend and when we heard that, we challenged Beau’s CEO Steve Beauchesne to run his first half marathon. At first, he wasn’t too sure. But he’s since come on board, brought his friends and will be reporting back on his training and experiences and offering the occasional free beer incentive prize for anyone else following our program.  

This is an overview of the program that we gave Steve and expect him to follow to the letter. (And, when he doesn’t, it’s going to be the training program that we’ll have to revise and revise and. . . )

Please follow along at home and share with us the results of your training and if you have any questions, thoughts or beer recipes we should try. And without further ado, a 15-week training program by iRun General Manager and Feet, Don’t Fail Me Now author Ben Kaplan (pictured), designed especially for runners attempting their first half marathon, enjoy!

The iRun Great Beau’s Beer Powered Half Marathon Spring Training Program.  

February 12

4K: establish the habit of running outdoors.

February 15

4K: in the beginning, more important than the distance is the habit-forming. it doesn’t matter how far you go, it only matters that you start getting up and going!

February 19

6K: expect to spend about another 20-minutes outdoors on your run!

February 22

6K: with running just twice a week, we can get you to the half marathon at the end of may, just keep making your running appointments.

February 26

8K = BEER!!!!!!! if we make it through running february, let’s all celebrate and have a group beau’s beer. send us your pictures from sunday’s run and, if you’re of age, you can win a Beau’s Prize Pack.

March 1

10K: this a big milestone to get accomplished. don’t worry if it feels hard, we’re going to focus on 10K for the next two weeks.

March 5 

10K: keep at it, build endurance, build mileage.

March 8 

10K: still rocking the 10K!

March 12 

10K: yep, more 10K.

March 15

7K: good job with all those 10s, now let’s bring it down a bit and rest up for our long run. . . .

March 19

11K: you can do it!

March 22 

12K: this is officially our first run in spring—congratulations, you made it running outdoors through the Canadian winter!

March 25: Earth Day 

13K: keep it going and reach 13, and then we’ll bring it back down for your last two more long runs.

March 29 

9K: remember when 9K was a big deal?

April 2 

11K: hang in!

April 5 (Ben’s birthday!) 

15K: our second to last long run! and once you can run 15K, you can almost surely hit 21.

April 9 

9K: take it slowly after your long run, the point here is to keep up with your training, not slack, and stay loose.

April 12 

9K: same idea as Wednesday’s run.

April 16 

9K: take it slow, because. . .

April 19 

17K: this is the longest we’ll run in training and the big one—you hit 17K, congratulations. the race is a month away and you’re ready, well done. grab a beer.

April 23 

9K: recovery run.

April 26 

9K: recovery run.

April 30 

13K: a little longer than a regular run but nothing that, by now, should bend you too much of shape. take it slowly. remember to breathe.

May 3 

7K: from here on in, we taper.

May 7 

7K: another easy run to stay loose. the distance on these doesn’t really matter, we just want to keep you fit and fighting.

May 10 

11K: stay sharp with a little distance.

May 14 

7K: ease your way into race week.

May 17 

7K: just keeping the legs moving.

May 21

7K: same idea.

May 24 

5K: a beer to assail those race week nerves!

May 28 


Wherever you’re racing, let us know how it goes. And, if you’re racing Ottawa, meet Ben and Steve after your event at the Beau’s Beer Tent in front of City Hall on Saturday and Sunday. Let’s compare race notes. And drink beer! Good luck.


  1. Hi Ben!!

    My name is Ashley and I run a fun business called YOGA ON TAP. I am also the coordinator of the Ottawa based RUN TO BEER program which organizes 10K runs every few weeks with a free beer at the end.

    We are partnering with OTTAWA MARATHON and BEAU’S to run 3 tune up runs and an indoor after party. I’d love to support this training program you’ve laid out as much as possible and use it to add value to our events. Are you based in Ottawa yourself?

    I’ve become good friends with Lisa at RunOttawa, and as a new runner (running my first marathon this year with Ottawa) I am just beginning to interact with iRun.

    I’d love to connect! I can be reached by email or phone at 613-325-8240. Cheers!

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