Registration for the 2019 Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program is Now OPEN!

Beyond-Logo hi res

Registration for the 2019 Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program is Now OPEN! 

There is no time like snow time! Thinking about training for your first half or full marathon and seeking a comprehensive training program in a supportive environment? Completed one or more half and/or full marathons and looking for the next dimension in your training?

Kalamazoo Area Runners (KAR) is pleased to offer our out of this world half and full marathon training program designed to help you achieve your distance running goals! The 2019 Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program is organized by runners for runners, and runs Saturday mornings January 5, 2019 through April 27, 2019 (there is no run February 23 due to the Winterblast Half Marathon 10k and 5k on February 24 and no run April 6 due to the Kal-Haven Trail Run).  Training schedules target the Kalamazoo Marathon, Borgess Half Marathon and the Boston Marathon.

Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program Information Night and Blast Off

Place the launch date on your calendar.  The Beyond Program Information Night and Blast Off is Tuesday, December 4, 2018 at 6:30pm (Location TBD)

The Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program includes:

  • Organized and supported Saturday morning runs held on a variety of courses in greater Kalamazoo and Portage.
  • Runs begin at 8:00am (7:45 pre-run discussion) January and February, and 7:30am (7:15 pre-run discussion) March and April.
  • Low, moderate and high intensity half and full marathon training schedules with day by day workouts.
  • Special advanced training schedule for the marathon distance.
  • Hydration (water and electrolyte beverages) and sag support provided on the course.
  • Weekly email and blog site communications with training tips, schedules, and more
  • Supportive and encouraging Team Leaders with pace groups ranging from 8:00 min/miles and lower to 12 minute miles and higher.
  • Informative Clinic Night Thursday, January 24, 2018 offering a variety of running related topics.
  • A FUN and supportive winter training experience with shared camaraderie and team spirit.

The cost of the Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program is $45 through December 31, 2018 for members of Kalamazoo Area Runners (KAR) (price increases to $55 January 1).  Non-member friends may join KAR at a cost of $20 full-time student/$25 individual/$35 family.

Optional Metabolic Efficiency (ME) Package (available through December 31, 2018). 

Back by popular demand, Athletic Mentors is offering Beyond participants a discounted Metabolic Efficiency (ME) package that includes their cutting edge metabolic efficiency testing and a supplemental 2 hour companion class.  The cost of the package is an additional $99.

Prior to attending the class, you will schedule and complete a 40 minute Metabolic Efficiency test at Athletic Mentors in Richland. The sub maximal effort test is performed on a treadmill while wearing a mask that is attached to a metabolic cart.  The cart captures and measures your breath, analyzing in real time the volumes and concentrations of O2 and CO2 of the inspired and exhaled gases. This enables Athletic Mentors coaches to determine your proportion and type of “fuel” (fats and carbohydrate) used to meet your individual energy demands at increasing intensities.

In one of their scheduled group participation lecture-style classes, Athletic Mentors coaches will discuss some fundamental metabolic physiology as well as nutritional and exercise based strategies that will aid in improving ME over time. You will learn how to interpret and apply your own test results in making informed lifestyle and training decisions, amplifying your journey of improved athletic performance and long term health.

For more information about Metabolic Efficiency click here.

Athletic Mentors Class Times Offered For Beyond Training Athletes are:

  • Wednesday, January 23, 2019
  • Thursday, February 7, 2019
  • Wednesday, February 20, 2019
  • Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Upon close of class registration for KAR athletes (Dec 31st), participants will be contacted to schedule their test and class.


This program was exactly what I needed to successfully train for my first full marathon. Four months is a long time to train, and it takes both a mental and physical toll. There are so many ups and downs. I simply could not have made it to race day without the support and encouragement that this program offers, not to mention the sense of accountability to stick with the training schedules. My first marathon (the Cincinnati Flying Pig) ended up going great; I couldn’t have done it without this group! – Doug Chapel

Having moved to Kalamazoo recently and not knowing anyone here to do my group runs with, I would say I am pleasantly surprised with the Kalamazoo area running community. I would like to thank each and every individual who made beyond training a huge success and I would definitely be willing to take part again in 2018. – Vijay Turlapati

It may sound crazy, but getting up in time to eat and get to a Kalamazoo location ready to run by 8:00 am on Winter Saturdays, with 100s of like-minded folks, is a rush! You hear and share great stories, rack up the miles, and prepare for a dynamite Spring marathon. It’s habit-forming! – Carole Bolthouse

Contact Information

For more information on the Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program,  please contact Bonnie Sexton at


25 Responses to Registration for the 2019 Beyond Half and Full Marathon Training Program is Now OPEN!

  1. Hannah Rose says:

    Do you have a training like this available in the fall? I will not be living in Kalamazoo until late May.

    • gostever says:

      Kalamazoo Area Runners and Gazelle Sports partners for the Safari Training Program which starts in June and targets a fall marathon or half marathon.

  2. Connie says:

    Is it posted yet where the meeting locations are? I would love if there was a meeting place in portage?

    • gostever says:

      For locations, look under the “Schedules” tab. The snapshot schedules show all of the venues. We’ll start in Portage four different times, including week 1 at Portage West Middle School.

  3. stephrdh2001 says:

    Is there a link to access training schedule for Beyond half trying available yet? Wanting to check it out as so I can try and schedule what I need to to prepare an accordingly for a race I have before May.

  4. Kim says:

    Is there a way to preview the training schedule?

  5. Connie says:

    What time are the meetings on Saturday and where do we meet? I can’t make tomorrow’s meeting but would love more information!

  6. Eric Dye says:

    Do we need to register to attend the orientation tomorrow night? Or can we just show up to learn?

  7. Ashley says:

    For the half marathon training, what is the starting point for distance?

    • gostever says:

      Starting mileage for the half marathon is as follows: Low intensity program – 4 miles, medium intensity – 5 miles, and high intensity – 7 miles.

  8. Laura Wilson says:

    I’d like to register, but I’m having some self-doubt as a first-time marathoner! What is the expected level of fitness to start this program?

    • gostever says:

      First Saturday mileage for marathoners is 8 miles for low intensity, 9 for moderate intensity, and 11 for high intensity. Being able to run these distances is recommended but not required. Remember, “intensity” refers to the amount of miles you’ll cover per the training program, not pace.

  9. Holly says:

    Jill when do u do your run walks?

  10. Christine Bartholmey says:

    I work in Ohio during the week and am unable to attend the meeting on the 8th. Can you put me in touch with someone for a short phone discussion? Thank you!

  11. Suzanne Sackett-Muma says:

    Will you have a run/walk half marathon group

    • gostever says:

      Hi Suzanne. There’s no run/walk program planned at this time. But sometimes after pace groups are formed, there’s sub groups that form to run/walk. What pace level are you considering? May be able to connect you with a run/walker.

      • Jill says:

        I just started the Galloway half marathon training program. I’m doing 2:30 run & 1:30 walk. You are more than welcome to join me.

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