There’s no doubt that speed is a key ingredient in distance running performance. After all, the faster you can run, the easier it becomes to cover long distances.
But how do you actually go about becoming a faster distance runner? Here are some tips to help you pick up the pace:
1. Train with purpose.
If you want to become a faster distance runner, you need to make sure every workout counts. That means putting in the effort and focusing on quality over quantity. While you don’t want to overdo it and push yourself past your limit—do make sure you’re really pushing yourself.
Don’t just go through the motions. You need to be working hard if you want to become a faster distance runner. It’s better to run fewer miles at a higher intensity than it is to run more miles at a lower intensity. If you can do both, that’s even better. But don’t sacrifice quality for quantity. Make every workout count and you’ll see results in no time.
2. Incorporate speed work.
One of the best ways to get faster at distance running is to do some form of speed training. Speed work can be anything from sprints to tempo runs. This type of training not only helps you to increase your maximum speed potential, but it also helps you to become more agile. This is because speed training forces you to move your feet quickly and change directions quickly.
As a result, you become better at reacting to changes in your environment and avoid obstacles more effectively—skills that come in especially handy when you’re out on the trail or road.
The benefits of speed training for distance running don’t stop there; speed training also helps you to build up endurance. This is because when you do speed work, your body adapts by becoming better at using oxygen. As a result, you can run for longer periods of time without getting tired. So if you want to be a faster distance runner, be sure to include some speed training in your regimen.
3. Build up your mileage gradually.
When it comes to distance running, a lot of new runners seem to think that the only way to get better is by pushing themselves as hard as they can, every single day. But that’s not necessarily true. In fact, if you’re new to distance running, or coming back from a break, it’s actually important to ease into things and gradually build up your mileage. Trying to train too hard too soon will only lead to injury.
The key is to find the balance between pushing yourself and listening to your body. If you start to feel pain, or like you’re about to hit a wall, then it’s time to back off and take a break. But if you’re feeling good, then go ahead and push yourself a little bit harder.
Your body knows what it can handle, so make sure you’re paying attention to how you’re feeling. If something doesn’t feel right, back off or take a break. The key to any training plan for a distance runner—or any athlete—is consistency. Make sure you’re sticking to your plan and not skipping training if you want to see results. And if you truly want to become faster, not only in distance running but in any sport, consider speed training.
The bottom line is that you need to find what works for you and stick with it. Because ultimately, the only person who can make you a better runner is yourself.