Find your inner sprinter
Most distance runners aren’t that fast. There’s a reason that we gravitated towards cross country or marathons rather than soccer or football.
That’s why when you hear runners talk about “speed” work they could mean a progression run, repeats at 5k pace, or a tempo run. We like to do workouts that are faster than we run on a normal day, but we don’t really like to work on our “speed.” But improving your top-end speed is a great way to get faster at EVERY distance.
A quick and easy way to do this:
- 4×10 sec accelerations after 2-3 runs a week
- Gradually build-up your pace throughout the 10 seconds so that you are running 90-95% for the last few seconds
- Gradually slow back down rather than putting on the brakes
- Make sure that you focus on good form and staying relaxed — if you feel your neck and shoulder tensing up, you’re straining too much
As with any new addition to your training, it’s important to start light and build up as you feel comfortable. You should find yourself feeling more fluid and relaxed after a couple weeks, and from there the PR’s will follow!