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Running speed help needed

maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
I've been jogging for about 4 months now, having walked daily for 18 months.
I am going about 3 or 4 times a week, with a one-hour bootcamp twice a week, occasionally swimming or cycling instead of a run and a few squash games thrown in.
I had a target in mind, to run 10k by the end of term. I've managed that, in fact done it a couple of times now.
My next challenge is to get faster.bim currently running 9 minute kms average over 10k. I really want to get down to 7 or even 6minute kms.
I've tried fartlek running but I really struggled with it. I can run for 90 minutes or more at my slow pace, but as soon as I speed up I can't last long at all. At my 9 minute pace, my breathing is easy and it's my legs that give out first. As soon as I try to go faster, I struggle with rhythm and breathing.
How can I build up speed so I'm running 10k regularly at 7 minutes a km? Do I even need to worry about speed?
I've lost nearly 50kg and hoped as I got lighter I'd get faster, but that hasn't happened!
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Replies

  • LietchiLietchi Member Posts: 2,257 Member Member Posts: 2,257 Member
    Speed comes with time.
    I'm not an expert runner (I started 18 months ago, as slow as you) but I've found mixing it up is a good idea. I alternate between longer slower runs, shorter/medium runs at a slightly quicker speed, shorter/medium runs doing intervals, and runs where I start slow and increase my speed gradually every few minutes.
    My speed has gradually increased from 9+ min km to currently sub 8min km. I have no natural talent for running 🤪 so that's pretty good progress for me. (Also taking into account 3 months where I had to seriously dial down the running because of knee issues)
    edited April 15
  • evefryerevefryer Member Posts: 2 Member Member Posts: 2 Member
    I have exactly the same problem - can run for 45 minutes at 9km/hr, but if I push up to 10 km/hr I can manage about 10 minutes before I feel like I'm going to die. I think I'm just quite intolerant of the higher heart rate that running at the higher speed requires. It was putting me off running, so I've decided to not worry about it, to stick with my plodding and gradually increase the distance instead. And in so doing, I've actually got a little bit faster too.
  • wunderkindkingwunderkindking Member Posts: 738 Member Member Posts: 738 Member
    Varying distances and speeds, by all accounts, is important to fitness. Not everything can or will be fast and long and shouldn't be.

    But it's also just a different kind of fitness and for all of them it's a build.

    Your heart rate getting up and recovering to normal is a thing that improves by... getting your heart rate up and then letting it recover. If you're having a super hard time with it and feel like something's wrong, see a doctor, but as someone who's done short and intense sprints for YEARS (including while obese) thanks to dog agility, it's a situation where it feels like DEATH for a while and then gets easier - takes longer to feel like you're going to die over time and your heart rate drops back faster.

  • spiriteagle99spiriteagle99 Member Posts: 3,121 Member Member Posts: 3,121 Member
    Increase your overall weekly mileage. Going from 10 to 25 miles a week will make a difference. Do most of your runs at a comfortable pace. Once a week, do a 1-2 mile warmup, then do short 1-3 minute hard intervals followed by the same time recovery at a very easy pace. You can also do short 50-100 m. sprints at the end of an easy run to get your legs used to a faster turnover. Or do some running on hills, either running uphill hard for a minute or two, jogging down and then repeating, or just find a hilly route that will challenge your lungs and heart and help strengthen your legs. Only do the harder workouts once a week.
  • heybalesheybales Member Posts: 18,915 Member Member Posts: 18,915 Member
    Intervals.

    Many times a slight increase in speed leads to some bad running form, not as efficient, a bigger hit to your aerobic system then the slight increase should require.

    But it can easily be you have a good natural form going even faster.
    Aerobic system just can't go for that long though.
    It could be you don't have better form, in which case advice above about variety is needed to gain that.

    Try doing some 1 min faster intervals with slow jog between, testing different paces to find that one which feels better.

    Then keep increasing the time at that pace/form, decreasing the recovery time.

    Still need the base miles, this would only be good for couple times a week, couple other times the long slow run.
    Though - with recovery intervals, it really isn't hard to get this method up there in distance.
  • maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
    Good to know there are others that run at or near my speed. It's a bit disheartening to always get overtaken! I'll mix up my speed and distance and see how I go.
  • maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
    Thanks for this. I've tried various ways of mixing up my speed. Might carry on and just up my base distance a bit every day.
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Member, Premium Posts: 25,750 Member Member, Premium Posts: 25,750 Member
    maiomaio71 wrote: »
    Good to know there are others that run at or near my speed. It's a bit disheartening to always get overtaken! I'll mix up my speed and distance and see how I go.

    I will never be the fastest runner in my running club, but I comfort myself with this: I am 100% faster than I would be if I was sitting on the couch. That's the time I focus on.
  • yirarayirara Member Posts: 6,650 Member Member Posts: 6,650 Member
    Another slow runner here. I just don't manage to get faster for various reasons. But like @janejellyroll I'm faster than when I'm sitting on the sofa.
  • BrianSharpeBrianSharpe Member Posts: 9,096 Member Member Posts: 9,096 Member
    Patience.....you've only been running for 4 months. Right now, and for the foreseeable future, your only goal should be building aerobic fitness. Don't worry about speed yet, if you're consistent it will come. My best ever 10K was 54:41 a few years ago but it took years of very consistent training (I didn't start running until my early 50s) to get there (my very first 5K race was closer to 8:00/km and was, at that time, very difficult)
  • LoveyCharLoveyChar Member Posts: 3,198 Member Member Posts: 3,198 Member
    I do not know why this is an afterthought but it is: strength training. I did not do any strength training last Marathon but I've been muddling through it now for a couple of weeks since a few people told me that it would improve my runs. It's something to consider...
  • maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
    LoveyChar wrote: »
    I do not know why this is an afterthought but it is: strength training. I did not do any strength training last Marathon but I've been muddling through it now for a couple of weeks since a few people told me that it would improve my runs. It's something to consider...

    Yes, boot camp is mainly strength training...squats, lunges, resistance band work, and core strengthening etc. I do that twice a week for an hour with our training group. I might need to just push a little harder to get more out of it.
  • LoveyCharLoveyChar Member Posts: 3,198 Member Member Posts: 3,198 Member
    Something else I thought about... Posture! I ran 15.5 strong miles today but I consistently have to remind myself to keep my head up because I look down at the pavement or at my feet too often. Looking down affects my running...circulation of air and speed. Husband made me more aware of some of my bad running habits. I bring it to my consciousness, more aware of it now, to eliminate this bad habit. I'm just throwing this out to the wind but it's something to consider...
    edited April 17
  • maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
    This is interesting...I definitely look down at the ground. I am doing a 5k today, so I'll focus on posture. Will have to keep reminding myself to look up.
  • LtHammerheadLtHammerhead Member Posts: 27 Member Member Posts: 27 Member
    Work in a sprint or hill sprint day once a week. 10-15 minute slow, 1 minute full effort, 5 minute walk x3, 10 min CD
  • maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
    Work in a sprint or hill sprint day once a week. 10-15 minute slow, 1 minute full effort, 5 minute walk x3, 10 min CD

    Thanks. I'll give this a go. @LtHammerhead Would I do it after a long slow run day, or after a rest day? I generally have a rest day after my longer run.
    edited April 19
  • LtHammerheadLtHammerhead Member Posts: 27 Member Member Posts: 27 Member
    Follow a sprint day with a rest day. It should be taxing.
    I like a MWFS schedule with Monday doing my sprint, Wednesday and Friday are steady state runs (middle distance) at race pace and Saturday is a long slow run.
    Have you tried the training runs on the Nike app? It’s free and a pretty good program to follow.
  • maiomaio71maiomaio71 Member Posts: 230 Member Member Posts: 230 Member
    @LtHammerhead no I haven't looked at Nike. I'll check it out. Thanks for the advice. I'll give it a go...MWFS will work at the moment. I did a good 6k today slightly faster than previously. I think slowly increasing my total mileage will help too.
    Looking forward to seeing my place gradually get better!
  • owieproneowieprone Member Posts: 214 Member Member Posts: 214 Member
    I had the same issue, and did something similar to a few of the suggestions here I did 2 things to up my speed and endurance.
    I already added 3 lamppost sprints into the end of my run, so 3 away from finish up speed, 2 away speed up again, 1 away full sprint: jog back to 3 and warmdown dynamic stretches.
    Where I lived was a short steep road that went over and old train track, I ran up there as fast as I could sustain for the whole hill and then walked or jogged back down and did that 4 times.
    The other thing I also tried was 10 min runs on the treadmill 2 min warm up at normal pace (after being warm already) then upping .5mph (or whatever it was set at) every minute until I was at a speed I couldn't keep up for a minute, slow down 2 min warm down (jog or walk) then off do something else or finish.

    Both of those worked really well, and not only up my speed but also my endurance so I could run further, or faster (I couldn't do both to start with).
    I did each once a month. I left it that long to let my body get used to the new speed and distance, once I could do the new distance at the new speed, I did both again a week apart.
    I did those two alone with no other running that day. Eventually got to the point where they were part of the long run or a bit of cardio before weight training, karate or a gym class etc (i usually find gym class and karate warmups aren't long enough).
    You might not like hiits but they definately do the job. If you find them too hard, lower the pace and effort so you can sustain what you're doing.

    Hopefully my or someone's similar suggestion will work for you, have fun trying them out.
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