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Mini-Marathon Training Program

Training begins January 22-May 7 Wednesday evening Downtown and Carmel Locations! Register Today!

Register now for the Mini Marathon Training Program! Come see why more than 6,000 walkers and runners have chosen to train with NIFS! Geist Half Marathon participants also welcome!   

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Why join our program?

The NIFS 14-week program provides an in-depth, personalized and interactive training approach.

Features include:
  • Two convenient locations: NIFS (downtown Indy) and Cherry Tree Elementary School (Carmel)
  • Weekly group training runs and walks on Wednesday evenings
  • The Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training, that can be purchased by participants, published by Que Publishing and written by Heather Hedrick Fink, MS, RD, CSSD, at almost 50% OFF the cover price when you join the NIFS Training Program. The book can be puchased separately at NIFS, via www.amazon.com or your local Barnes & Noble bookstore.
  • Training program and logs designed for your level of training, experience and goals
  • Cross training on a variety of cardiovascular and strength training equipment at the NIFS Fitness Center on Wednesdays
  • Educational Training Clinic & Expo held during the program orientation
  • Weekly snacks and refreshments
  • A celebration post-event dinner party at Maggiano's Little Italy

General Information (Time / Date / Location / Registration):

National Institute for Fitness and Sport
250 University Boulevard
Downtown in White River State Park
On the IUPUI campus
Wednesdays at 6:00 pm
Beginning January 22, 2013
Cherry Tree Elementary School
13989 Hazel Dell Parkway, Carmel

Wednesdays at 6:00 pm
Beginning January 22, 2014
  • Program orientation, packet pickup and training clinic will be held on Wednesday, January 22, 2014 at 6:00 pm.
  • Monitored training walks and runs will be held weekly starting Wednesday, January 22.
  • The program will end on Monday, May 7 with a celebration pasta dinner at Maggiano's Little Italy.

Registration details:

  • Print and complete the Registration Form and mail or fax with credit card information, money order or a check made out to the National Institute for Fitness and Sport. To pay by phone via credit card, call Lynn Gorrell at (317) 274-3432 ext. 222.
  • Spaces are limited, therefore, pre-registration is required.
  • All payments are non-refundable.
  • Participants must be at least 16 years old.
  • Participants are NOT automatically entered into the race. We recommend you register for the Mini-Marathon as soon as possible at www.500festival.com. They predict filling the race by early to late November. We also recommend registering for the Geist Half Marathon as soon as possible at www.geisthalf.com.
  • Participants who are NOT NIFS Fitness Center members must complete a physical activity readiness questionnaire and waiver form.
  • Participants must be able to walk or run a minimum of 2 miles at a 16-minute mile pace.
  • T-shirt size is not guaranteed.
  • Program cost:
    • $70 for NIFS members (with the Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training book)
    • $60 for NIFS members (without the Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training book)
    • $80 for guest members (with the Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training book)
    • $70 for guest members (without the Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training book)
  • Participants will receive detailed parking instructions for the NIFS location several weeks before training begins.
  • Parking is available for Carmel participants in the Cherry Tree Elementary school parking lot.
Need to register?

Download the Mini-Training Registration Form.

Or register online at Get me Registered.com.

Interested in becoming a group leader? Contact Angie Scheetz (317) 274-3434 ext. 239 or email. 

Questions? Contact Stephanie Kaiser at (317) 274-3432 ext. 226 or via email.

Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training provides readers an easy-to-understand introduction to the world of walking or running 5Ks, 10Ks and half-marathons. Illustrated to make learning quick and easy and loaded with notes on training gadgets and gear, staying motivated and how to train without pain this book makes walking and running an accessible and easy-to-practice fitness routine.

The book is an excellent guide for training for the 500 Festival Mini-Marathon or Geist Half Marathon but can also be used for other 5K, 10K and half-marathon races throughout the year. Absolute Beginner's Guide to Half-Marathon Training is offered to program participants at a discounted rate of only $10. For those who are unable to join the weekly training program, the book is sold at NIFS, on www. amazon.com and at your local Borders and Barnes & Noble bookstores for $18.95.

Chapter topics include:

  • Setting goals and tracking your progress (training and nutrition logs available online)
  • 5K, 10K and half-marathon training protocols
  • Determining appropriate heart rate training zones
  • Safety precautions and injury prevention techniques
  • Tips on proper walking and running form
  • Guidelines for stretching and strengthening exercises for walkers and runners
  • Daily nutrition and race-day nutrition
  • Mental training for race-day and motivational techniques
  • Racing strategies
  • Resources for walking, running, nutrition and racing events/clubs across the country
  • Plus much more!

What Our Participants Have to Say!

“I come back to group Mini Marathon training at NIFS year after year, because they help me achieve my goals. I enjoy the motivation and structure.”
~2010 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

“I never thought walking 13.1 miles could be so much fun. Great people. Very inspirational!"
~
2010 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

“I look forward to participating every year.  The training program is even more fun than the actual race!" ~2010 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

“I have mild asthma and never thought I could run  5 miles, much less 13. Now I find myself saying “Oh I just have a 5-mile run tonight! If I can do it any one can!”
~
2010 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

“For my first mini I trained on my own (what a joke) and I barely made it across the finish line. Training with a group who has the same goal is exciting. It’s an outstanding program.”
~
2010 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

“We have participated in other training programs in the past and in my opinion the NIFS program beats theirs hands down.”
~
JENNIFER M.

“I look forward to participating every year. The training program is even more fun than the actual race!“
~DENISE B.

“I never thought I could run 13 miles. Not only did I finish, but I never struggled on the race day and I was hardly sore at all"
~
2009 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

“It was an awesome program. It was great knowing someone would be there each week cheering you on to do your best!“
~
2009 PROGRAM PARTICIPANT

Thank You to Our Program Sponsors!

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Congratulations to our 2013 Participants!

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Thank You to Our Program Sponsors!

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