General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Increasing Run Speed Rss Feed  
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2018-07-31 9:34 PM

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Expert
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Subject: Increasing Run Speed
Once upon a time I was fast. But I'm 20+ years removed from high school track and cross country. Since I started running and racing about 12 years ago (with most of the last 8 years spent out of commission or dealing with children), I've turned into more of a plodding runner. My swim and bike are pretty quick, usually top 10-20%, but my run is usually bottom 50% in my races. My work schedule is utterly chaotic looking as s nurse, but I do want to improve. I've done probably 18 sprints/olympics over the years with some age group s success. I'd like to get back to that point now that I finished my first race in ~5 years, and I'd like to expand into half marathons too. This run is holding me back though. 8:10 miles aren't going to cut it.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.


2018-07-31 11:45 PM
in reply to: #5247233

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed
I'm sure there are a lot of folks who would kill for 8:10 miles. But you already alluded to the answer...Track! You can't beat the track for gaining speed. It's exactly like doing swim intervals at the pool. Marked, measurable, and repeatable. 200's, 400's, and 800 repeats. You should be going anaerobic. When I'm strictly run training, I'll run track once a week, one day of hill repeats, one easy long run, and one of two shorter slow recovery runs.

Track absolutely sucks if done right but it's a lot better if you can com a few friends to join you and split the pacing duties.
2018-08-01 12:34 AM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

Do these.....EVERY DAY YOU RUN....in addition to whatever you are doing now, and you will get faster.  Yes, you should eventually start track work, etc....but start here and you will get some free speed, but also get your body ready for the track work that you will eventually want to do.

.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULwtgZA5wAE

There is not one single shortcut to running faster.....build a good foundation and add floors a bit at a time.  Get yourself used to the idea that it's a process.....and be patient!!!  Start with form drills (again,in addition to your current running)......get proficient with them before you move on. 



Edited by Left Brain 2018-08-01 12:41 AM
2018-08-01 7:43 AM
in reply to: paddle2paddle

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed
how much do you run per week ?
2018-08-01 8:33 AM
in reply to: paddle2paddle

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Olathe
Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed
Are you just running fast in some runs, or do you have any set plan and workout intent built in?

It's not just adding volume and running as fast as you can.

You need speed work, strength (running), strength (core and functional), tempo (race) and long slow runs. You also need proper rest, nutrition and hydration. If any one of those are out of whack or proportion, gains will be slow to none.

It needs to be strategic to build week after week and over time speed will come. At times is almost as much form and technique than effort. Speed is no good if you can't hold it for 13.1 miles like you want.
2018-08-01 6:59 PM
in reply to: marcag

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

Originally posted by marcag how much do you run per week ?

Bingo.  That is the key question.

Drills done well can help.  Track work might help or might get you injured.  Running more, and perhaps more consistently, is almost definitely part of the formula for success, here.



2018-08-01 8:57 PM
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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

Originally posted by Experior

Originally posted by marcag how much do you run per week ?

Bingo.  That is the key question.

Drills done well can help.  Track work might help or might get you injured.  Running more, and perhaps more consistently, is almost definitely part of the formula for success, here.

There is not an argument against that.......BUT, it's relative.  What's fast?  For some people a 25:00 5K is fast.  Hell, a 30:00 5k may be fast.  For others.....a 17:00 5k is not fast.  I've seen 16:30 5k's on 25 mpw. (yes, there was swimming and biking and youth involved)

Again.....more miles is a simple formula.  It also eventually leads to injury, in some form, in almost EVERY SINGLE AG'er.    If you are at 8:30 miles and want to get to 8:00 to be "fast"......there are other ways, because there are other things you can do better.

Drills are so simple and so easy (and easy on your legs).....because most people who want to be faster actually suck at running.  The same as the person who can't hit, but wants to hit a softball better, sucks at the mechanics of hitting.  Learn how to swing the bat.....you'll hit better.

For almost all AG'ers who want to be "faster".....get better first.  That's the foundation.  You can always increase miles.......there is no learning there.  My god.....most people can get faster running the same amount of miles and going on a diet.....again....no learning involved.

Learn to run.....then train to run faster.



Edited by Left Brain 2018-08-01 9:03 PM
2018-08-01 9:31 PM
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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

I don't disagree with doing drills.  But we have no idea what mileage OP is running right now.  What if he's running 15mpw?  I bet you'll agree that he needs to run more.  On the other hand, if OP is running 75mpw right now (I'll bet not) then volume is not the issue and some of the other things that you allude to are more likely culprits.

Separate topic:  I certainly agree with what you say about what counts as 'fast'.  I never said anything about 'fast'.  OP wants to be 'faster'.  Running more almost always achieves that result for most AGers.  Running more also helps develop economy.  But yeah, drills -- do them too.  They're great, and help a lot.  Drills in combination with lots of running can help develop better running, especially better economy.

We could get more specific and talk about economy at different goal distances and such, but honestly for a former college (EDIT: oops, high school, but I think I still stand by this claim) runner who is now running 8:00/mile in relatively short races (if I've read the OP correctly), there are some low hanging fruits, here, and I'll bet that volume is one of those fruits.  Just judging statistically and not making any claims about OP in particular, weight is another likely suspect.

(Yes, I realize that higher volume can be difficult for some.  It's 'low hanging' in the sense of 'obvious', not necessarily 'easy'.  Same goes for weight loss.)



Edited by Experior 2018-08-01 9:36 PM
2018-08-01 9:40 PM
in reply to: Experior

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

I remember your posts from years ago.  I know you have spent many hours on this topic, and I know you are knowledgeable and your advice is solid.

I just think we lead many folks down a road to injury when we say "run more" with nothing else.  I still see the "increase by 10% each week" thrown around.  For people just looking for a way to be "faster" without working to find the rest of the equation, we might as well just say "increase your running bit by bit until you get hurt".....because that is where we are driving them. That's where most of the folks no longer in the sport head off to. 

There is MUCH to learn along that path that doesn't have a damn thing to do with running more miles.  I'm glad to see you are a proponent of form drills......I trust everything else you have to say because of it.

2018-08-01 10:01 PM
in reply to: Left Brain

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

And yeah.....I'm glad to see you made a distinction between high school and college running......bleh, many of us ran in high school.....what, 2% went on to run in college?  Not even the same animal.....I know you know that.

I'm a fan of triathlon.....and our sport is hurting.  I want to see people stay in the sport and help it grow.  Injury is a major problem.....and when I say injury you know I mean running injury, because that's what it is.

Yes, run more.....but LEARN to run and understand what you are doing.  There is as much difference there as there is between HS and college running.

 

2018-08-02 10:57 AM
in reply to: Left Brain

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Subject: RE: Increasing Run Speed

No disagreement.  Let's see where OP is and then maybe there are some solid and specific recommendations to make.  I certainly agree that increasing volume too quickly, or past one's ceiling, is a bad idea.  10% rule is maybe a useful middle ground, but I've violated it in both directions and seen the opposite of the expected result.  (Increased less; still got injured.  Increased more; all was well.)  There are too many other factors for that to be the one size fits all approach, for sure.



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