5 Tips to Increase Your Running Speed

7 Nov

I’ve started running again.

I’m not really sure what spurred the hiatus after Seawheeze, but it happened. Before I knew it, a couple of months had passed and it suddenly occurred to me that I was barely running at all.

About a week ago, Erin (one of my besties + fellow Seawheezer) asked me a simple question while on a business trip to NYC: “Can we start running again when I get back?” Like she even had to ask. I’ve been working out out plenty- but somehow my #1 hobby and favorite activity had fallen by the wayside and I had traded it for HIIT in the gym, Lagree Method, and Spin. Of course I agreed and we picked a half marathon in February.

Our first run back felt amazing.  Uh, I had missed running more than I realized- I didn’t even care that I needed a quick break at mile 2 or that we only ran 4 and a half miles.

With one half marathon comfortably under my belt, my goal for the next one is to focus on my finishing time. Based on my run the other day, I believe that I will be giving these 5 little tips a whirl:

running graphic

Interval training  Warm up with a slow jog for about 10 minutes, and then put forth high-intensity effort for 2-5 minutes. Follow with a medium or low recovery period for an equal amount of time. Repeat this 4-6 times.

Hill training: Hill training is a key element of training for hilly courses, and are very helpful to increasing speed. Find yourself a hill that should take around 90 seconds to climb, and run at full speed. Jog slowly back down to recover. Repeat 4 times to start, and gradually build up to 6-8 repetitions.

Fartlek: Sweet word, I know (It means “Speed Play” in Swedish). The nice thing about Fartleks is that you can customize them however you please – after your warmup, just start incorporating 30/60/90 second sprints as often as you feel like, and recover for as long as you feel. Try squeezing in 10 60-second sprints into your 40-60 minute training run.

Tempo training: Tempo training is a great way to push your body to handle a faster pace. Run at a comfortably hard pace for a few minutes, and recover with an easy pace for the same amount of time. Repeat and gradually work up to 20 minutes or more at the quicker pace, and gradually increase your speed.

Long Runs: Increasing your endurance will actually help you increase your speed. (And increasing your speed will help increase your endurance). Increase your long run by a mile or so each week and start incorporating any of these speed workouts into your training – before you know it you’ll be shaving seconds- or minutes- off your race time.

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2 Responses to “5 Tips to Increase Your Running Speed”

  1. Tara Catherine Coppock November 8, 2013 at 2:22 am #

    Nice job, Meg!

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