Question : How to improve your running/walking pace?

Hello All,

I am a beginner and started with my exercise routine exactly one month ago from today on July 9th.
I do jog/walk 3 times a week and my pace now is between 13:30 min /mile to 15 min /mile which was 15 min/ mile even when I started.
I have noticed that I have not improved much after a month of very serious efforts...
I am wondering if there is something that I could do to overcome that plateau for the pace.
Everyday I start my jogging with a firm mind of improving the pace but end up same time as before... can't figure whats holding me up...
Any ideas? Anyone noticed same thing?

- Sam
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Replies

  • Mokoshne
    Mokoshne Posts: 9 Member
    Get an app like runkeepr or something equivalent.

    Set up an interval training plan, create it yourself. You can then program the app to tell you based on either time or distance to go at a faster pace for a set period of time or distance.

    Then slowly ramp it up over a period of time til you reach your goal.
  • DenyseMarieL
    DenyseMarieL Posts: 673 Member
    I would set my timer and a goal distance, then try to beat it every time. Sometimes I'd shave off a minute, sometimes as low as 15 seconds. Still, it meant I was getting faster.
  • chirosche
    chirosche Posts: 66 Member
    Are you doing any weight/strength training. This may also help you. As your body becomes stronger, when you make more demands on it by increasing your pace, it will work with you and become easier.
  • icimani
    icimani Posts: 1,454 Member
    Slowly!

    I'm a walker and I've been working on lengthening my stride as opposed to quickening my pace. Quickening my pace would mean more pounding which is not good for my new knees, and I figure lengthening my stride will be good for all the muscles/tendons in the hip area.

    Another idea is music - there are sites out there that will set up a playlist depending on your pace. I finally quit listening to music when I'm walking because I tend to match my pace with the beat of the music.
  • dizzysmile
    dizzysmile Posts: 71 Member
    I'm currently doing C25K, and I'm about as slow as possible. I haven't tried to increase my speed yet because I'm still building endurance, but once I'm done the program I plan to follow the plan again, slightly altered. Where it says to walk, I'll jog as normal, and where I says to jog, I'll run faster. Check it out! That might work for you too.

    Oh, and like icimani said, there's a site that creates a playlist based on your pace, so you could easily input the pace you'd like and use the music to speed you up. jog.fm is the one that I know of.
  • Trechechus
    Trechechus Posts: 2,819 Member
    Try adding some HIIT to your routine rather than static-paced cardio to help increase your endurance. Speed will come as your body gets stronger.

    I also agree with the set timer/goal idea.

    http://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/2009/01/27/kick-your-*kitten*-and-kickstart-your-metabolism-in-20-minutes/
  • samonmission
    samonmission Posts: 62 Member
    I'm currently doing C25K, and I'm about as slow as possible. I haven't tried to increase my speed yet because I'm still building endurance, but once I'm done the program I plan to follow the plan again, slightly altered. Where it says to walk, I'll jog as normal, and where I says to jog, I'll run faster. Check it out! That might work for you too.

    Oh, and like icimani said, there's a site that creates a playlist based on your pace, so you could easily input the pace you'd like and use the music to speed you up. jog.fm is the one that I know of.

    I am doing C25K as well... Started W6 yesterday ! I like your idea of repeating it with Jog/Run plan.. Thanks for suggestion !
  • samonmission
    samonmission Posts: 62 Member
    Are you doing any weight/strength training. This may also help you. As your body becomes stronger, when you make more demands on it by increasing your pace, it will work with you and become easier.
    Yes I try to do weights once a week but I admit that I am no doing it for a long time... may be 30min / week only. Thanks for your suggestion !
  • samonmission
    samonmission Posts: 62 Member
    Get an app like runkeepr or something equivalent.

    Set up an interval training plan, create it yourself. You can then program the app to tell you based on either time or distance to go at a faster pace for a set period of time or distance.

    Then slowly ramp it up over a period of time til you reach your goal.
    I am on C25K right now but after 5 weeks also I am confused why my pace hasn't improved much ... may be I am going too slow on the jog
  • waskier
    waskier Posts: 254 Member
    Don't fixate on pace too soon. Fixate on weight loss. Every pound you lose will equate to 2-3 seconds per mile faster. If you hit your weight loss target you will lose about 2 minutes per mile without doing anything else. As you get close to goal you can work on details, but for now set volume goals (how much time you will run) and be patient on how long it takes you to cover a distance. Trust me on this. Pushing too hard too soon will lead to injury. Take it nice and slow and it will come.
  • ze_hombre
    ze_hombre Posts: 377 Member
    I mainly came here to say time. Speed and distance come with time. Don't push yourself and let your body do its thing.

    Intervals are good for building speed. Also try adding some cross training. I have noticed huge gains in speed by starting road biking with a group of riders in town (shaved over two minutes off my 5k time this week alone).

    I started C25K last November and finished it in February (I had some injuries due to poor form and trying too hard too fast). I started out running a 15 min/mile and my first 5k race was a 33 something. I then just kept adding miles eventually getting to over 9. I am now doing shorter runs but trying to maintain a faster pace.
  • TyTy76
    TyTy76 Posts: 1,761 Member
    You get faster by running more.

    Please don't rush into speed work or anything like that.

    Run more
    Run slow

    Speed/Endurance will come.
  • BrianSharpe
    BrianSharpe Posts: 9,249 Member
    Slowly!

    I'm a walker and I've been working on lengthening my stride as opposed to quickening my pace. Quickening my pace would mean more pounding which is not good for my new knees, and I figure lengthening my stride will be good for all the muscles/tendons in the hip area.

    Another idea is music - there are sites out there that will set up a playlist depending on your pace. I finally quit listening to music when I'm walking because I tend to match my pace with the beat of the music.

    I'm not sure about walking but for running the opposite of what you're doing is preferable, shorter stride + faster foot turnover + midfoot strike = lower impact
  • chantels1
    chantels1 Posts: 391 Member
    I'm currently doing C25K, and I'm about as slow as possible. I haven't tried to increase my speed yet because I'm still building endurance, but once I'm done the program I plan to follow the plan again, slightly altered. Where it says to walk, I'll jog as normal, and where I says to jog, I'll run faster. Check it out! That might work for you too.

    Oh, and like icimani said, there's a site that creates a playlist based on your pace, so you could easily input the pace you'd like and use the music to speed you up. jog.fm is the one that I know of.

    I am doing C25K as well... Started W6 yesterday ! I like your idea of repeating it with Jog/Run plan.. Thanks for suggestion !

    Doing the C25K should be enough right now. Complete the program then work on speed. It would be very difficult to build up the speed without cutting your endurance. The C25K is building your endurance, so when you get the endurance part complete, then work on speed! I am averaging runs around 12:50 per mile during the program. Later I will worry about going faster! One step at a time right?! ;-)
  • I've found that consciously increasing stride length has improved my walking speed, but of course there's a limit!
  • CarsonRuns
    CarsonRuns Posts: 3,039 Member
    You get faster by running more.

    Please don't rush into speed work or anything like that.

    Run more
    Run slow

    Speed/Endurance will come.

    This is the answer. Any interval training and HIIT stuff is not going to make you faster in the long run (pun intended). You get faster by running for longer periods of time over longer periods of time. Building aerobic fitness by running easy over a period of months, then years will improve you pace more than any other method AND allow you to sustain those improvements and to continue to get faster. Any interval work is for the FINE TUNING of speed gained from aerobic fitness.
  • bmskid
    bmskid Posts: 153 Member
    Don't fixate on pace too soon. Fixate on weight loss. Every pound you lose will equate to 2-3 seconds per mile faster. If you hit your weight loss target you will lose about 2 minutes per mile without doing anything else. As you get close to goal you can work on details, but for now set volume goals (how much time you will run) and be patient on how long it takes you to cover a distance. Trust me on this. Pushing too hard too soon will lead to injury. Take it nice and slow and it will come.

    I like this answer. I did C25K two years ago, but had a completely misguided concept of what it would take to lose weight. I fell off the "wagon" with eating properly and didn't really lose weight. I kept up the jogging, but without the proper intake, it didn't really matter.

    Once I started focusing on the weight loss, everything started improving. When I really started trying to build strength, I naturally started jogging faster without trying.
  • GCPgirl
    GCPgirl Posts: 208 Member
    I am doing C25K now and I am a slow runner too. I am more focused on endurance and being able to run the whole 5k without stopping then I will train to run faster.
    Music helps. I was also reading a book on running this morning on the train and they said agility training (like jump rope) and cross training(Like bike riding or swimming) will help you pick up the pace.
  • chirosche
    chirosche Posts: 66 Member
    Are you doing any weight/strength training. This may also help you. As your body becomes stronger, when you make more demands on it by increasing your pace, it will work with you and become easier.
    Yes I try to do weights once a week but I admit that I am no doing it for a long time... may be 30min / week only. Thanks for your suggestion !

    Consistency is the key. And when you lift weights the human growth hormone is secreted for even more benefits. Your muscles will almost crave the workout. There are so many benefits from weight/strength training and especially so when you get older. If you can stick with it, training the different muscle groups on different days, you'll always want to do it. I train my legs by doing five different exercises once a week. Leg extension -- 4 sets/10-12 reps; abductor 4 sets/10-12 reps; lunges 4 sets of 12 while holding weights, hamstrings and dead lifts (I always do 4 sets of everything) Or you could do 3 sets of 15 reps. Tailor it to you. And of course I do my chest, back and shoulders as well on alternating days. It gets easier and like I said, your muscles will start to crave the workout because of the hormones that are released during weight training and can become a little addictive.
  • SpeSHul_SnoflEHk
    SpeSHul_SnoflEHk Posts: 6,256 Member
    Hello All,

    I am a beginner and started with my exercise routine exactly one month ago from today on July 9th.
    I do jog/walk 3 times a week and my pace now is between 13:30 min /mile to 15 min /mile which was 15 min/ mile even when I started.
    I have noticed that I have not improved much after a month of very serious efforts...
    I am wondering if there is something that I could do to overcome that plateau for the pace.
    Everyday I start my jogging with a firm mind of improving the pace but end up same time as before... can't figure whats holding me up...
    Any ideas? Anyone noticed same thing?

    - Sam
    It takes time. Go slow. I started "running" in January, and could only run at ~4mph. Yesterday, I ran 3.5 miles at 6 mph on a treadmill, when I slowed to cool down, I was cooling down at 4mph. When I saw that, it made me notice how far I had come in 7 months.