How to run faster

Good health magazine
Monday, September 10, 2012
How To Run Faster
Image: Thinkstock
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Running offers mental and social rewards, as well as getting you fit fast. Here’s how to get the most out of it, says Beverley Hadgraft.

A common mistake runners make is to do their long training runs at the pace they want to run their race.

Even elite athletes don’t do that. To build up racing speed, you need to run two or three shorter, harder sessions during the week. The accumulation of the training load is what gets you across the line in a personal best.

This is when you do bursts of speed followed by recovery jogs. Start by running hard to a lamppost, then jogging to the next lamppost. Once you’ve got the idea, get a training schedule which will recommend interval sessions depending on your race length and experience. This could include timed bursts or distances of 100m to 800m and you’ll be trying to run at a speed faster than your race pace.

Tempo runs
For this you need to estimate the time you want to run your race. Use an online race time calculator (go to, then Pace Tools, then Calculators) and then measure out a course, usually at least 3km. Warm up for 10 minutes then attempt to run the entire course at your race pace. Cool down for 10 minutes.

Hill training
This is fantastic for building strong legs, glutes, heart and willpower! Aim for a hard run-up time of at least 45 to 60 seconds, then jog to recover.

Good Health magazine

For more running tips pick up the September issue of Good Health magazine or subscribe at

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