I walked away from this weekend’s triathlon with a new sense of purpose. Part of my problem with running is my inability to run a fast distance pace. I can sprint 200 metres or I can plod along at a 12 min/mile pace, I can’t figure out the go between. I am in good shape and I should be able to run faster than I do, I just don’t know how.
I am changing my training focus for a while. I was eye balling half marathons and 10k’s and I realize that I need to work on my speed before distance. I need to get a much faster mile time because this 12 min/mile thing isn’t working for me any longer.
I have been researching training plans for increasing speed and am trying to find a September or October 5k to test it out on.
I found a great training plan on Women’s Running to break the 30 minute 5k mark, a feat I have only done once while in high school cross country running a 29:30. After my vacation next week I’m going to undergo this training plan in the hopes of breaking my PR of 29:30 in October or November.
Key Paces: RP=Race Pace, 9:20/mile XT=Cross Train (bike, elliptical, swim, etc.) E=Easy, 11:35/mile F=Fartlek (run the total distance indicated, incorporating the speedy sections into the middle of the workout) H=Hard, 8:45/mile HI= Hill, 9:00/mile (run the total distance indicated, incorporating hill sprints at this speed into the middle of the workout) LR=Long Run, 11:35-13:45/mile R=Recovery, 15:00/mile SF= Strong Finish, 11:00/mile T=Tempo, 9:45/mile
*For all starred workouts, start with 10-15 min warm up, and finish with 5-10 minute cool down.
Long Run (LR)
Long runs develop the aerobic capacity and endurance necessary for covering the race distance. Your pace should stay fairly comfortable, although fatigue will build up toward the end.
Strong Finish (SF)
Some long runs will end with five to 15 minutes of running at a slightly quicker pace to teach your body to pick
it up when you’re fatigued. The pace translates to roughly 20 to 30 seconds per mile faster than your normal long run pace.
In fartlek workouts, you’ll mix up your speed, running some segments fast and some slow. The “hard” segments should be run at goal 5k pace or a bit quicker. Make sure to run at a pace that you can maintain throughout the entire effort. Start with a warm up of 10 to 15 minutes of easy jogging. Jog or walk the recovery time between hard effort, and then finish with a five to 10 minute easy cool down.
Hill Repeats (HI)
Hill sessions strengthen your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and calf muscles, which will equate to faster running on all terrain. After warming up for 10 to 15 minutes, run up a hill with a moderate grade for the amount about the same as 5k race effort, although the pace will likely be slower. If you live in a flat area, find a bridge or use a treadmill. Walk or jog back down the hill for recovery and repeat the effort when you reach the bottom.
Race Pace (RP)
Race pace workouts require you to run at your goal 5k pace. This workout teaches your body what the pace feels like, and increases your ability to hold RP for an extended period of time. Start and finish each workout with 10 to 15 minutes of light jogging.
Tempo runs build stamina. Tempos are performed at a comfortably hard pace. Breathing will be slightly labored, but you should be relaxed and able to maintain an even pace. Begin T sessions with 10 to 15 minutes of easy running as a warm up. Start the T portion of the run as indicated, and ease into your pace. End the workout with a five to 10 minute easy cool down.
Sprinkled throughout each plan are easy runs. Easy runs are just that, easy. These runs are used for recovery, as well as just getting time on your legs.
Has anyone out there worked on increasing speed? Any tips or advice?