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After doing the 6 km run this year, I will attempt the 21 kms next year, i.e. Jan 2011.
I have located a few web-sites on running that give tips and schedules as how to prepare for both a marathon and a half-marathon. All said, running a marathon or a half-marathon is about endurance. It does not matter how much you run but how long you run! The longer the better!
Of course distance counts but if you are a beginner, like me, then you should not concentrate on the distance and/or speed but focus on increasing the time spent running i.e. running non-stop. You can of course, choose to fortify yourself with water and small snacks. Hydration is very , very important. Carry a water bottle with you especially for the longer runs.
Some interesting sites to look at:
and of course
the Mumbai Marathon web-site
As for myself, I will be training by running 3 times a week, supplemented by cycling 2 times a week (to reduce the wear and tear on my knees) and some light weight-training! Bulking up is out – makes it harder to run!
You can find a program to follow on the web-sites listed or use them to create one tailored for yourself!
Also, do not try to be rigid about your running schedule. Listen to your body! Rest when your body tells you to! Also, start early, so that you can compensate for slippages. Or sick time. Ensure that you have good running shoes. Change them as needed.
Have a great day!