Fast is a relative term. I should really call this post "How to run FastER!"
The truth is, with the proper training, anyone can run faster! There are many different ways to accomplish it. Let's discuss...
Everyone has two different types of muscle fibers- slow twitch (Type I) and fast twitch (Type II). While the amount of each muscle fiber you have is genetically predetermined, everyone has some of each.
Here's the quick low down...
However, both types of muscle fibers have one thing in common...
What that means is, you can train your fast twitch muscle fibers and get faster. Here are some ways you can do that...
One of the most effective ways to run faster is to incorporate speed training into your weekly runs. There are many different ways to incorporate speed training. The main concept is this: Alternate running at a very fast pace with running at a recovery pace.
Tempo runs are another effective way to train your body to run faster. People throw around many definitions of tempo runs, but the true meaning (as I have understood it, and I could be wrong!) is running a portion of you run at a predetermined pace. This could be your goal pace, 30 seconds slower than goal pace, etc. It's up to you.
Then, there are hill repeats. They suck, but they work. This is how you do it: 1. Run up a hill. 2. Try not to throw up. 3. Run down a hill. 4. Repeat.
Something else to note...
Speed training, tempo runs, and hill repeats are all well and good, but PLEASE don't underestimate the importance of recovery runs and REST. Not every run has to be at max effort and you don't have to train every. single. day. Actually, I take that back. I think you should look at your rest day AS PART OF YOUR TRAINING. What's the use of breaking those muscle fibers down if you're not going to build them back up?
And I gotta give myself a plug...
If you want to become a faster/better/smarter/more awesome runner than you already are, consider hiring me as a person trainer! Check out my website and contact me for your FREE consultation!
How often do you incorporate speed workouts?
Do you have a favorite type of speed workout?
I really wish I lived close to you so you could train me! I want to get faster, but nothing seems to work. :( Love your plank pic!ReplyDelete
I would love to train you- heck I would train WITH you!Delete
My fast twitch muscle fibers resist adaption and cry like little babies when I do speedwork. BUT my easy pace this year is a minute faster than it was last year so I guess something is happening to them!ReplyDelete
I want to start doing bridge repeats!
I minute is A LOT! Something is working. :) My fast twitch cry like babies too. Don't worry, it's supposed to suck!!Delete
I love speedwork! I actually think it's fun, and I love to run fast. Intervals really help break up a workout and make it go by faster, in my opinion. I have a 10K coming up in 1 month and I really want to break the 50 minute mark, so I am doing speed work once a week.ReplyDelete
I think my favorite speed workout is an interval workout that mixes up the intervals: 4x400, then 1x800, then 4x400, then 1x800, etc. It is HARD, but it's more interesting and comprehensive than just doing the same interval over and over. When I was a beginner and training for a half marathon in the winter, I would just make up my own interval workouts on the treadmill. I noticed a huge difference in my running when I started doing those workouts.
That DOES sound hard! I was doing 400s once a week for the 10k I just ran. They suck so bad. I never mixed it up though with different distances within the workout. That sounds like more fun, and like you said, a better way to break it up. It seems like whatever speed workout I pull out of my ass, it WORKS.Delete
I can't wait to start running and speed training again. I'm ready to be fast!ReplyDelete
Go get it!Delete
I just started speed work this training cycle, and I really liked it--It broke up the week. I liked doing track workouts, 4oo repeats were my fav...ReplyDelete
It clearly worked MISS BQ!!!! :) :) :)Delete
I did not start integrating speed work into my training until this past year. It has helped me to get significantly faster and reach goals that I once thought were impossible. It is amazing how our bodies respond to the variety of effort and intensity we expose it to. I now integrate speed work into my training once a week and love it! My favorite speed distance is 800m. I feel like it is far enough to push me hard, but short enough that I don’t feel like it is endless.ReplyDelete
Do you do speed workouts for swimming and biking too?Delete
I know I should incorporate more speed workouts but I'd rather just go out for a long steady run. Of course know that's not making me faster but it is still building endurance:)ReplyDelete
Well I guess it doesn't matter if speed isn't your focus. I am going to lay off the speed training for awhile because I have been doing it religiously for the past 2 months and I feel like there is a time for speed and a time to just let me body "chill" for a little so it doesn't get injured! I'm switching to chill mode soon.Delete
I am with you! It is not an all the time thing for me either! I go through spurts... I want to run fast, then I want to build my mileage, then I want to run trail... It is all about your own personal goals! It just so happens that if getting faster is a goal and your body can handle it, speed training it the way to do it! (as you know!)ReplyDelete
Favoriting. Even though I know speed work and bridge runs work, I like the reminder from a pro that I'm doing the right thing with my training! hahaReplyDelete
I have no idea what bridge workouts are! I thought Kristina meant running over her bridge! But now you mentioned it too, which means I am clearly missing something and will be heading over to google. :)Delete
HAHA! Bridge repeats are what those of us who live in Florida do since we don't have hills :)Delete
lol okay so I was right! I did google it and all I found for glute bridges. Then I was like, okay, what am I missing here??? Hahaha. So are bridges in Florida usually like a hill up and then down the other side?Delete
Yes! Just like a hill!Delete
Hehehe, I might take your offer up on that free consultation. How often do you run, Megan, and how long lengthwise and timewise are your long runs and fast runs?ReplyDelete
I run 4-5 days a week. I recently was training to PR in the 10k so most of my runs were only about 5 miles. I did 400s and tempo runs to train to get faster. I did not time my 400s- simply just ran my heart out during the sprinting. For my tempo runs, I aimed for a 6:55-7:10 pace. That put me right around my race pace.Delete
Oh my long runs lately have only been 8-10 miles. Since I was training for a 10k, there was no point in worrying about upping my mileage. However, now that the race is over, I am thinking about starting to build my mileage back up again. :)Delete
For years I did every run at the same pace - 3 miles,10 miles, 16 miles.....Then I realized that to run faster I had to push myself and run faster. Now I love doing some runs that really force me to push me speed up.ReplyDelete