Can anyone become a faster runner? Well after running three half marathons where each race I finished shy of breaking two hours by 90 seconds or less I am starting to believe that I’m not designed to run any faster! I decided to run the Okanagan Half Marathon Oct 10, 2010 and am about to embark on a three month training program where the bulk of my energy will be focused on increasing my pace.
The last half marathon I ran was the BMO Half in May; my official race time was 2:00:47; pace of 5:40 per km.
I used to think that I had to run more miles to run faster. I’m no longer worried about the distance of the race, as my Saturday leisurely 17 km run is one of my favorite times of the week (besides Friday afternoon cocktail hour on the patio…of course) I attempted some hill training during my last half training but focused mainly on logging miles; unfortunately running those extra miles at my regular pace didn’t turn me into a cheetah After talking to some friends, discussing with some trainers and a little online research it seems the only way to learn how to run faster is to get out there and run faster! Here are a few steps that I think will help me:
Increase your turnover (turnover refers to the number of times your right (or left) foot hits the ground in 1 minute). Obviously the faster your turnover, the more distance you cover in a given period of time. Count your current turnover rate and then aim to increase your turnover by 5 steps per minute until you eventually reach that magical 80. Elite runners usually clock around 90+ strides per minute but for us mere mortals runner a turnover of 80 is considered pretty decent.
*Note – Don’t let your feet get in front of your body.
Push off with your big toe. This will also help to take some of the pounding out of your heels and push your body forward more effectively.
Swing your arms forward, not across your body. Moving your arms back and forth across your body will pull your body from side to side. Aim your hands in the direction you want to go; directly in front of you.
Incorporate speed workouts into your program. Speed workouts are a great way to increase your pace slowly and steadily over time.
In addition to a long run and a shorter fast run per week, here are the new rules I will be living by for the next three months:
Rule # 1 – Set a clear & realistic goal of a time you wish to beat
I want to run a 1:55 half marathon (5:27 per km) Thirteen seconds per kilometers faster
Rule #2 Use hill training to build muscle & endurance
Hill sprints at least once a week
Rule #3 Yoga & strength training to prevent injury and to increase flexibility and range of motion
Strength training twice week with my personal trainer.
2 yoga classes a month and 1 massage therapy session a month.
Rule # 4 Interval training, using sprints to increase speed as well as lung capacity
To be incorporated in each of my personal training session
Rule # 5 Give your body rest so your muscles can recover and avoid injury
I swear to take a rest day (or yoga day) a week
Does anyone have any other suggestions how this turtle can evolve into a cheetah?
PT Girl xo